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Joseph Warton (Джозеф Уортон)


Sappho's Advice


Tir'd with the visits of the day,
Semanthe on a sofa lay;
And leaning on her elbow, thought
Which was the loveliest silks she bought;
How by Sir Plume she was gallented,
How at the park and opera flaunted!
What silly hearts she had subdu'd,
And how she best might play the prude!
Till sleep his heavy poppies spread,
Adown she drops her drowsy head!

Sudden a female phantom rose,
Her cheek with healthy roses glows,
Her lively eyes are fill'd with fire,
Yet modesty forbid desire:
Her ebon curls hang loose behind,
And laurel-wreaths her temples bind:
A snowy robe her limbs array'd,
While thus the virgin, Sappho, said.

—It grieves me much, alas! to find
The fair neglect t' improve her mind!
The toys that your attention claim,
A Grecian maid would blush to name:
While you're adjusting your commode,
Lesbia, or I, could make an ode!
No gaudy ribbons deck'd her head,
A trembling light no diamond shed;
In white and innocency drest,
The plainest beauties were the best:
A pen I handled for a fan,
And learnt not how to dance by scan:
Those pretty eyes! — how soon they close!
Those cheeks — how fades the blushing rose!
When age has wean'd your love for dress,
And akes and beaus your years confess,
When Amoret no more can shine;
And Stella owns she's not divine,
Then sense and merit shall supply
The blushing cheek, the sparkling eye:
For nymphs, regardless of their faces,
Should add Minerva to the Graces.



Joseph Warton's other poems:
  1. On Shooting
  2. Ode to Fancy
  3. To Solitude
  4. The Enthusiast, or the Lover of Nature
  5. Contentment


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