1813
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

The Shepherdess, a new Pastoral Song.

The Olio (13 March 1813) 56.

G. I. H.


Nine ballad quatrains signed "G. I. H." While Damon is away at sea, Magadelen impatiently awaits his return by the banks of the Hudson: "This moment perhaps he is weeping for me, | And pouring his heart rending grief in the brine; | But, Damon! fond love bids me fly to the wave, | Where, perchance, these sad tear-drops may mingle with thine" p. 56. The Olio was a weekly newspaper published in New York.



Oh! listen ye nymphs of the pure limpid rill
That murmurs delightful the meadows along:
Ye lambs cease your bleating, come list to my theme;
Ye sweet plaintive warblers, come join in my song.

Oh! where is young Damon? each shepherd is heard,
With a tear and a sigh from his heart to exclaim,
"Ah! why did he leave us to wander afar?
Ah! why did he leave us, for riches or fame?"

While Hudson's smoothe waters glide gently along,
Perhaps on the ocean young Damon is tost;
Or, perhaps, while fair Magadalen dreams his return,
Her shepherd 'mid tempest's dread fury is lost.

Ah! see her! all pensive she moves o'er the green;
Her hair is dishevell'd, her cheeks are grown pale;
Kind hope feeds her eye, cruel doubt bids it swim.
Alas, she's no longer the pride of the vale.

She heeds not her flocks, they have wandered astray,
She heeds not the stranger that passes her by;
The damsels all pity her sorrowful case,
While thus she is heard to complain with a sigh:

"Oh, Damon, my love, wilt thou never return!
Ah! why didst thou leave me neglected, forlorn?
My only relief are the streams from my heart!
Oh, surely, 'twere better I'd never been born.

"How pure was the tear that bedimm'd his fond eye,
How sweet was the kiss which at parting he gave;
His look I'll remember, as long as I live,
And his kisses, unsullied, I'll bear to my grave.

"Alas! he now dreams of the pangs I endure,
Unless he has chang'd his dear heart for a stone;
Oh! yes; he may easily judge of my woe,
By comparing the state of my heart with his own.

"This moment perhaps he is weeping for me,
And pouring his heart rending grief in the brine;
But, Damon! fond love bids me fly to the wave,
Where, perchance, these sad tear-drops may mingle with thine."

[p. 56]