1790 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Robert Merry

Philenia, "To the inimitable Author of the Poems under the Signature of Della Crusca" Massachusetts Magazine or Monthly Museum 2 (December 1790) 761.



Across the vast Atlantic tide,
Down Apalachia's grassy side,
What echoing sounds the soul beguile,
And lend the lip of grief a smile!
'Tis DELLA CRUSCA'S heav'nly song,
Which floats the western shores along,
Breathing as sweet, as soft a strain,
As kindness to the ear of pain,
Splendid as noon, as morning clear,
And chaste as ev'ning's pearly tear;
Where cold despair in music flows,
While all the FIRE OF GENIUS glows.

Still thy enchanting pow'rs display,
Still charm me with the magic lay!
The Muses all thy soul inspire,
APOLLO tunes thy matchless lyre!
O strike the lustral string again,
And o'er Columbia waft the strain.

Ah! would to light my clouded days
One ray from thy unequall'd blaze,
Might thro' my dark'ning fortunes shine,
And grace me with a note like thine!
But no, BRIGHT BARD, for thee alone
The Muses wave the LAUREL CROWN:
Ne'er can the timid, plaintive dove,
Soar with the DAUNTLESS BIRD OF JOVE;
Nor silv'ry Hesper's dewy ray
Beam like the GOLDEN ORB OF DAY.