“DAMON‘s Complaint for AMYNTA‘s absence. In the person of a despairing Shepherd. By a young Lady”
AH, hapless fate, and luckless day,
That call’d my lovely nymph away!
O fairest fav’rite of the plain,
Desir’d by all, desir’d in vain;
O thou, my dear, my darling theme, 5
My morning tho’t, my midnight dream;
Beneath what poplar, or what pine
Dost thou thy slumb’ring charms recline,
While whisp’ring breezes panting play,
And waft the sultry heats away? 10
O nymph, return to Damon‘s call,
See! floods of tears in torrents fall!
By which in silence are exprest
The struggling sorrows of my breast.
But ah! how vainly do I mourn, 15
And wish my absent Fair’s return!
Perhaps a more deserving swain
Detains her on a distant plain.
Charmer! was all the world my own,
I’d change that world for thee alone! 20
Lord of my heart, thy love my crown,
With pity I’d on kings look down.
O, then return, no longer stay,
But haste, my fair one, haste away.
Here ev’ry bird, on ev’ry tree, 25
Fills ev’ry twig with harmony:
The primrose paints the bank around,
And vi’lets strew th’ impurpled ground:
The tow’ring larks, enchanting, sing,
And gayly smiles the glad’ning spring: 30
While flocks compleat the rural scene,
And frisk, and ramble round the green.
Beneath yon oak’s expanding shade,
A lovely arbour I have made:
The woodbine, jes’mine, vine and rose, 35
In various twines the parts compose;
And this I did, O fair ! for thee
To taste the noontide air with me.
Return, return ! thy charms disclose,
O, mistress of my soul’s repose. 40
No longer let they Damon sigh,
But songs of joy for tears supply.
Didst thou, my dear Amynta, know
The tort’ring griefs I undergoe,
Pity wou’d, sure, thy heart incline, 45
By sympathy to throb with mine.
O, may the Gods thy breast inspire
With some such sympathetic fire!
And, may’st thou then thy Damon bless
In one completed happiness! 50
Then shall our fates so close be ty’d,
That nothing can our joys divide:
Thy kisses shall my senses charm;
Thy bliss my breast with bliss shall warn:
Nor, shall I grieve thy griefs to share, 55
O, fairest of ten thousands fair!
Title Damon’s Complaint for Amynta’s absence A possible reference to John Dryden’s poem, “The Tears Of Amynta, For the Death of Damon. A Song” (1684).
2 nymph “A young and beautiful woman” (OED).
17 swain “A man, youth. Also, esp. in pastoral poetry, a country gallant or lover, wooer, sweetheart” (OED).
27 primrose “A well-known plant bearing pale yellowish flowers in early spring” (OED).
Source: The Gentleman’s Magazine (February, 1748), p. 87. [Google Books]
Edited by Ben Koh