1610 ca. ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Drummond

John Leech, "The Dream, addressed to W. Drummond, of Hawthornden, from the Latin of J. Leech" Scots Magazine 64 (August 1802) 692-93.



Loved of the muse, to Venus dear,
My Drummond! lend thy partial ear;
Thou, gifted bard, canst best explain
The dreams which haunt a poet's brain.

Ere night's bright wain her course had run,
Venus, to me, and Venus' son,
Descending in a radiant car,
Rapt from earth, and bore me far;
Sparrows, billing, twittering clear,
Drew us on our swift career;
The lovely goddess, all the while,
Glowed with pleasure's wanton smile;
O'er her hovered all the Graces,
Sighs, and Kisses, and Embraces:
Around her son, in vesture bright,
Hopes and Murmurs fluttered light,
With every form of melting bliss,
That breaths or sucks the humid kiss.

Swimming on the moonbeams pale,
Soon we reached sweet Tempe's vale:
Zephyrs fluttering o'er the strand,
Bade every glowing flower expand;
While the nightingale on high,
Poured her liquid melody.

From the chariot light I sprung,
Shrill the golden axle rung;
Kneeling by the chrystal spring,
Every Naiad's charms I sing;
Echo wafts their praises wide,
But chief the Naiad's of the tide.

Goddess of th stream attend!
O'er thy wave I suppliant bend;
Grant thy spring may every be
Dear to Venus, and to me.

As I bent, the waves to kiss,
Murmurs rise of softer bliss;
For the fountain's liquid face,
I feel the humid nymph's embrace;
Glow and pant my labouring veins,
As her ivory arms she strains;
While the melting kiss she sips,
The soul sits quivering on my lips.

Sudden from our watery bed,
Venus slily smiling fled;
With her, sought the shady grove,
The smiling, dimpling god of love;
Loud through all its dusky bounds,
"Hylas! a second Hylas," sounds;
While the vision fled in air,
And left the bard to lone despair.

By every smiling God above,
By the maid you dearest love,
Drummond! to all the muses dear,
Lend, to thy friend, thy partial ear,
Thou, gifted bard, canst best explain
Each dream that haunts the poet's brain.