1796
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

[Pastoral Ballad.]

Philadelphia Minerva 2 (26 March 1796).

Olivia


A lover's complaint in seven anapestic quatrains signed "Olivia." The juvenile poet has been abandoned by her Strephon: "The bow'r has no pleasure for me | No more can I visit the grove, | I fear you are like to the bee | Which careless and heedless does rove." This poem attracted answering verses signed "Cicilia" published in the Philadelphia Minerva for 23 April.

Headnote: "The following, by a young lady at school, obligingly submitted to my inspection, will no doubt meet your approbation, as it possesses natural ease and elegance. N."



Return, O lov'd Strephon return,
Nor fly thus thy once belov'd maid,
Ah will you then leave me to moan
And is my fond heart thus betray'd?

The garland you wove for my hair,
It withers and droops on my head,
Yet still the lov'd gifts I will wear,
Tho' its beauty and fragrance are fled.

When in the calm moment of eve,
I by the clear rivulet stray,
Still for thy dear presence I grieve
And mourn for you all the long day.

If e'er through the woodland I rove
Or under the willow recline,
My thoughts still revert to thy love,
Still for thy departure repine.

The grotto where oft your sweet song
Has rivall'd the birds of the spring;
Now alas! the lov'd grott is forlorn,
No mirthful ideas can bring.—

The bow'r has no pleasure for me
No more can I visit the grove,
I fear you are like to the bee
Which careless and heedless does rove.

Unhappy I fly to the lawn,
The scene but increases my pain,
Or wretched at day's early dawn,
I wander forlorn on the plain.

[unpaginated]