Elizabeth Ryves, “Ode to Friendship”


“Ode to Friendship”


Fond LOVE, with all his winning wiles
Of tender looks and flattering smiles;
Of accents that might Juno charm,
Or Dian’s colder ear alarm;
No more shall play the tyrant’s part,                                                       5
No more shall lord it o’er my heart.

To Friendship (sweet benignant Power!)
I consecrate my humble bower,
My lute, my muse, my willing mind,
And fix her in my heart enshrin’d :                                                         10
She, Heaven-descended Queen! shall be
My tutelar Divinity.

Soft Peace descends to guard her reign
From anxious fear and jealous pain:
She no delusive hope displays,                                                                15
But calmly guides our tranquil days;
Refines our pleasure, soothes our care,
And gives the joys of Eden here.


3 accents “Language or words” (Johnson); Juno Ancient Roman deity, “chief goddess and female counterpart of Jupiter” (Encyclopedia Britannica).

4 Dian’s Ancient Roman deity, “the moon-goddess, patroness of virginity and of hunting” (OED).

8 bower “A vague poetic word for an idealized abode” (OED).

12 tutelar “Having the charge or guardianship of any person or thing” (Johnson).

Source: Poems on Several Occasions (London, 1777), pp. 63-64.  [Google Books]

 Edited by Nargis Srejan

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