1787 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Alexander Pope

Anonymous, "Lines sent to a Lady, with Pope's Iliad of Homer" New London Magazine 3 (September 1787) 494.



With this great bard, some friendly lines I send,
And court acceptance from my valued friend;
Here martial themes invite the war's alarms,
The fall of heroes, and the clash of arms;
Here Gods possess'd with mortal rage are found,
And Jove's loud thunder shakes the trembling ground:
Here the wrapt mind may well the theme pursue,
And each new beauty, fill'd with wonder, view.

May these amuse you when in distant vales
Alone you rove, and court the western gales,
Catch the sweet fragrance of the blushing rose,
Or view, where soft the stream meand'ring flows;
For who like Homer felt the Muse's fire,
Or who like Homer struck the manly lyre?

And while the chiefs their warlike lances wield,
Or stern ATRIDES rages round the field;
While shouting heroes rend the vaulted skies,
O let sweet friendship in your bosom rise!
On friendship dwell, while fighting hosts you see,
And 'midst the shock of armies think on me.