1796 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Hayley

A Lady, "Addressed to William Hayley, Esq." Walker's Hibernian Magazine (October 1796) 377.



For thee, O Hayley, master of the lyre,
Whose song expresseth more than poet's fire,
Who from Parnassian heights has cull'd a store
Of laurell'd treasures never found before;
For thee whose song in sweetest cadence strays
Through poesy's wild walk's entangled maze;
My feeble muse expiring, strikes the string,
That would of learning, such as thine is, sing.

Enchanting poet, o'er whose cradle hung,
Well pleas'd to view thee, the great god of song;
Fair genius too, as early on thee smil'd,
And fondly own'd thee for her best lov'd child;
While judgment's self, with looks delighted, spread
The deathless garland round thy fav'rite head;
And fancy from her fairy haunted cell,
Bid her young graces in thy works excel.

Like the firm rock that fears no fall from time,
Shall last the various beauties of thy rhyme;
To future ages will the muse transmit
The cultur'd wonders of thy potent wit.
October, 1796.