University of Virginia Library

Search this document 
The Poetical Works of the late Christopher Anstey

With Some Account of the Life and Writings of the Author, By his son, John Anstey

expand section 



Read at Lady Miller's Assembly, DECEMBER 3, 1778.

Ye beauteous nymphs, and jovial swains,
Who deck'd with youthful bloom,
In gay assemblage meet to grace
Philander's cheerful dome:
Mark how the wint'ry clouds hang o'er
Yon frowning mountain's brow!
Mark how the rude winds warp the stream,
And rock the leafless bough!


The painted meads and flow'ry lawns
Their wonted pride give o'er;
The feather'd flocks in silence mourn,
Their notes are heard no more,
Save where beneath the lonely shed,
Or desolated thorn,
The Red-breast heaves his ruffled plumes,
And tunes his pipe forlorn:
Yet shall the sun's reviving ray
Recall the genial spring:
The painted meads resume their pride,
The feather'd flocks shall sing;
But not to you shall e'er return
The pride of gaudy years:
When pining Age, with icy hand,
His hoary mantle rears:
When once, alas! his churlish blast
Shall your bright spring subdue,
I know not what reviving sun
Can e'er that spring renew:


Then seize the glorious golden days,
That fill your cups with joy,
Bid every gay and social scene
Your blissful hours employ:
Oft where the crowded stage invites,
The laughing Muses join;
Or woo them while they sport around
Eugenia's laurel'd shrine:
Oft seek the haunts where Health and Joy
To sportive numbers move;
Or plaintive strains breathe soft desire,
And wake the soul to love:
Yet ah! where'er you bend your way,
Let fair Discretion steer
From Folly's vain delusive charms,
And Passion's wild career.
So when the wint'ry hours shall come,
When youth and pleasure fly,
Safe shall you ward th' impending storm,
And Time's rude blast defy;


Perpetual charms, unfading spring,
In sweet reflection find;
While Innocence and Virtue bring
A sunshine o'er the mind.