O thou, the friend of man, assigned
With balmy hands his wounds to bind,
And charm his frantic woe:
When first distress with dagger keen
Broke forth to waste his destined scene,
His wild unsated foe!
By Pella's bard, a magic name,
By all the griefs his thought could frame,
Receive my humble rite:
Long, Pity, let the nations view
Thy sky-worn robes of tend'rest blue,
And eyes of dewy light!
But wherefore need I wander wide
To old Ilissus' distant side,
Deserted stream, and mute?
Wild Arun too has heard thy strains,
And Echo, midst my native plains
Been soothed by Pity's lute.
There first the wren thy myrtles shed
On gentlest Otway's infant head,
To him thy cell was shown;
And while he sung the female heart,
With youth's soft notes unspoiled by art,
Thy turtles mixed their own.
Come, Pity, come! By Fancy's aid,
Ev'n now my thoughts relenting maid,
Thy temple's pride design:
Its southern site, its truth complete,
Shall raise a wild enthusiast heat
In all who view the shrine.
There picture's toils shall well relate
How chance, or hard involving fate,
O'er mortal bliss prevail:
The buskined Muse shall near her stand,
And sighing prompt her tender hand
With each disastrous tale.
There let me oft, retired by day,
In dreams of passion melt away,
Allowed with thee to dwell:
There waste the mournful lamp of night,
Till, virgin, thou again delight
To hear a British shell!