1763
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Ode to Peace.

Scots Magazine 26 (February 1764) 96.

Anonymous


A Pindaric celebration of the conclusion of the Seven Years' War, by a juvenile poet: "The storms retire, the shades decay, | And balmy breezes skim the air: | The shepherd swain attunes his Doric lay, | And wildly-warbling, hymns the rise of day." The poem is signed "Caledonius, Perthshire, April 1763." Raymond Dexter Havens includes this poem, much of it in octosyllabic couplets, in his list of imitations of Milton's L'Allegro.

Headnote: "That the following is a juvenile essay, will, I'm afraid, appear too evident; but, if not disagreeable to your readers, I should be glad to see it inserted. I am, &c." p. 96.



I. 1.
Boldly smite the votive lyre,
And let our joy our hearts inspire:
The Fates unfold a fairer scroll;
And happier years begin to roll.
High-mounted on his fiery car,
Retreats the fierce-ey'd God of War:
Alarms, and Fears, and pale Dismay,
And black-brow'd Horror mark his way;
With Carnage foul, and wild Despair;
And dread Confusion through the rear.

I. 2.
Now let joy expand the soul,
Happier years begin to roll.
From Heav'n the gracious mandate past,
And PEACE bids warring nations rest.
Say, lovely Maid, what pathless grot,
From wild Ambition's rage remote;
What lone retreat your steps detain'd,
While War and madding Discord reign'd?
Where Oroonoko's rapid wave
Does th' unfrequented valley lave,
With th' artless Indian didst thou rove
The orange-glade, or citron-grove;
Where Europe's crimes shall ne'er invade,
To taint with gore the placid shade?

I. 3.
Ambition's flaming bolts were hurl'd;
And Terror shook th' astonish'd world;
Mad Rapine rag'd with threefold wrath,
And rous'd the frantic scream of Death.
PEACE came; — her radiant form display'd,
The blood-stain'd monsters saw, and fled.
Impervious clouds involve the midnight sky,
And now ferment, now roar aloud;
The glaring lightnings flash abroad;
And black-wing'd Tempests rule, and rage on high.
How soon the crystal gates of day
Expand to Phoebus' glowing car,
The storms retire, the shades decay,
And balmy breezes skim the air:
The shepherd swain attunes his Doric lay,
And wildly-warbling, hymns the rise of day.

II. 1.
Now restor'd from dread alarms,
And the direful pomp of arms,
The warrior, crown'd with lasting bays,
Enjoys the blissful calm of ease.
Warm Friendship crowns the rosy bowl;
And social pleasure melts his soul;
And young Love waves his turtle wing;
While Music smites the trembling string,
And laughter-loving maids advance,
To mingle in the mazy dance.

II. 2.
Genial PEACE, to thee belong
Mirth, and dance, and jocund song!
From haunted groves, and vocal glades,
And Helicon's inspiring shades,
Ye Nine, unite the choral song;
In festive measure move along;
And frame the gratulating lay:
To PEACE, the grateful tribute pay.—
Hail, Goddess of the brow serene!
Belov'd of thee the tuneful strain:
For in the lucid climes above,
Reside the radiant throne of Jove,
No higher bliss thy bosom knows
Than heavenly Harmony bestows.

II. 3.
Reviv'd by thy propitious aid,
Fair Science lifts her modest head;
With all her various offspring join'd,
To pour new favours on mankind.
As foster'd by the vernal showers,
Up spring the many-tinctur'd flowers:
In loveliest raiment smiles th' Arcadian vale;
Here vermil blushes paint the rose,
And there the snowy lily blows;
And choicest sweets perfume the vagrant gale,
Long may the golden periods run!
Long, Goddess, to the sons of men,
Be all thy tranquil pleasures known;
While Discord bites the galling chain,
And direful Tart'rus, from its utmost bounds,
The hideous howling of his wo resounds.

[p. 96]