“To a Friend, on her recovery from Sickness”
My much belov’d, my gentle friend,
May ev’ry happiness attend
Thy health’s returning bloom;
May fell disease, and grief, and pain,
With all their dire afflictive train, 5
No longer be thy doom.
Th’ autumnal sun now shines serene,
Rich Ceres beautifies each scene,
And plenty laughs around;
The woods, the hills, the vales look gay, 10
O! hither come, and every day
With rapture shall be crown’d.
Come, range with me the verdant lawn,
And hear the lark at early dawn
His sprightly matin trill; 15
Or, with my little playful throng,
At eve enjoy the blackbird’s song,
Beside some gurgling rill.
But wheresoe’er my friend shall stray,
May peace and pleasure smooth her way, 20
And health and fortune smile;
May love, with all his choicest flowr’s,
For thee adorn his myrtle bowr’s,
And all thy cares beguile.
May some gay youth, fond, kind, and true, 25
My SYLVIA’s worthy heart subdue
To Hymen’s gentle pow’r;
Soft may the silken fetters prove,
Distrust or doubt ne’er chill your love,
But peace gild every hour! 30
8 Ceres “The Roman goddess of the growth of food” (Britannica).
10 vales “A more or less extensive tract o f land lying between two ranges of hills” (OED).
14 lark “A name used generally for any bird of the Alaudidae family” (OED).
15 matin “The morning song of birds” (OED); trill “To utter or sing (a note, tune, etc.) with tremulous vibration of sound” (OED).
18 rill “Small stream; a brook; a rivulet” (OED).
23 myrtle bowr’s “Any various evergreen shrubs or small trees of the genus Myrtus” (OED).
27 Hymen “In Greek mythology, the god of marriage” (Britannica).
28 fetters “Chains for the legs” (Johnson).
30 gild “To cover entirely or partially with a thin layer of gold” (OED).
Source: Poems on Several Occasions (London, 1794), pp. 26-28. [ Google Books]
Edited by Sandy Karkar