1783
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Pastoral.

Edinburgh Weekly Magazine 57 (24 July 1783) 111.

C.


A pastoral ballad in eight anapestic couplets, signed "C." There seems to be an implied contrast between Highland and Lowland situations as Caledon expresses his complaint: "Should the charmer approve my pure flame, | And venture my wand'rings to share; | Could I see her soft delicate frame | Expos'd to the blasts that I bear?"



Young Caledon loaded with care,
By Fortune's proud menace impell'd,
O'er mountains dark, hanging and bare,
The path of uncertainty held.

Thus wild as he wander'd along,
In a green fruitful vale he espied
A nymph that sweet warbl'd her song
By a rivulet's flow'r-sprink'd side.

Enraptur'd, her charms he survey'd,
And tuning his lute to her strain,
Conceal'd in a neighbouring shade,
Thus softly began to complain.

"O Fortune! unvanquish'd till now,
Thy frowns and thy scourge I have born,
Disdain'd in thy temple to bow,
And dar'd to encounter thy scorn.

"But why must I madly admire
A maid thus so gay and so fair?
When Fortune forbids to aspire,
Why thus must I love and despair?

"To add a fresh weight to my woe
Ah! why did I visit the vale,
Where nought save what thou can'st bestow,
The victim of Love can avail?

"Should the charmer approve my pure flame,
And venture my wand'rings to share;
Could I see her soft delicate frame
Expos'd to the blasts that I bear?

"Thro' wilds and thro' waves let me stray,
Afar from the darts of her eye,
The pangs of my breast to allay,
Or with toil and with torture I die."

[p. 111]