1790
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rural Felicity. A Pastoral Ballad.

Diary, or Woodfall's Register (6 January 1790).

Mr. Seymour


A pastoral ballad in eight anapestic stanzas, taken "From the Correspondence of Two Lovers, Inhabitants of Lyons" signed "Mr. Seymour." The poem was reprinted in the Town and Country Magazine with the initials "I. C. S." The lyric consists of more imagery than argument: "Thus let me the splendour and strife | Of the rich and exalted forgo; | With beauty still sweeten my life, | And love's gentle storm only know."



How soft are the notes of the Spring!
What fragrance exhales from the grove;
Ye Birds, taught by you, I would sing,
And here I for ever could rove.

Though its bottom is clear, yet the rill
Delights from the rock to descend;
So I, from Ambition's steep hill,
My days in the valley would end.

The waves that so ruffl'd awhile,
Were, glitt'ring, dash'd in the sun,
On the bordering violets smile,
And kiss them, and murmuring run.

Thus let me the splendour and strife
Of the rich and exalted forgo;
With beauty still sweeten my life,
And Love's gentle storm only know.

What joy the Bee murmurs impart!
The Zephyrs that curl the blue waves,
Soft Whispers that steal to the heart,
And Echo that talks in the caves!

Peace! Babblers, or only repeat
The silver descent of the Springs;
Fond shepherds frame here no deceit—
But Scandal has numerous wings.

I call'd you to witness, 'tis true,
The vows that to Phillis I swore;
Methinks still her blushes I view,
And, trembling, forgiveness implore.

Her charms I will grave in my heart,
Her name upon every tree;
And sooner shall Love want a dart,
Than fickleness harbour with me.

[unpaginated]