1795
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Lines in the Style of Shenstone.

New York Magazine and Literary Repository 6 (August 1795) 508-09.

M. E. O'Brien


Six anapestic quatrains signed "M. E. O'Brien." The poet declares his love of Delia, fair charmer, which seems to be shared even by the beasts of the field: "No more shall my oxen complain | Of the labours they still undergo; | Should Delia partake of their gain | They'd utter content in their low." The poem shares the page with an excerpt from Timothy Dwight's recently-published Greenfield Hill.



Releas'd from dull bondage his days,
The captive exults to be free,
Yet dear less his freedom and ease,
Than Delia, fair charmer, to me.

No brightness the dew-drops disclose;
Obscure are the beauties of spring;
No sweets hath the opening rose;
No melody songsters that sing.

No longer the woodbine exhale
Rich odours, or jessamine gay;
No cheerfulness waft on the gale,
When Delia, fair charmer's, away.

No more shall my oxen complain
Of the labours they still undergo;
Should Delia partake of their gain
They'd utter content in their low.

My bees are so emulous grown,
With harmonic hum thro' the grove,
They pilfer the blossom unblown,
Since Delia has listened to love.

But oft are their labours unpaid;
Few sweets do in common appear;
To Delia's chaste lips have they fled,
For the nectar of Virtue is there.

[pp. 508-09]