Samuel Boyse

(1708-1749 / Dublin/ Ireland)

Irene, An Heroic Ode In The Stanza Of Spenser. - Poem by Samuel Boyse

IRENE! fav'rite daughter of the skies!
Round whose calm brows immortal graces glow,
Desire of Earth! which from thy smile enjoys
The truest happiness perceiv'd below,
By thee, the joyful peasant tills the plain,
And sees his toils with golden plenty crown'd:
By thee secur'd, the merchant braves the main,
And visits every coast — till wealth is found:
To thee the shepherd tunes his artless lay,
As in the shade he sits — and feels thy placid ray.

Around thee, Goddess, endless blessings wait,
And man to man in sweet accord unite;
Each social virtue joys to form thy state,
Reviv'd, Improv'd, and Strengthen'd by thy sight;
The cherish'd Muses bless'd beneath thy reign,
With gratitude confess thy guardian care,
Encourag'd arts compose thy shining train,
And ev'ry life-endearing charm is there;
E'en on the worthless are thy bounties shed,
Pour'd on th' unfeeling heart, and mischief making head.

For man, unhappy man! with Pride possess'd,
By Passion hurried; with Ambition blind;
Forgets thy balmy sweets, and kind behest,
To issue forth the foe of humankind;
Of heav'n regardless, — and rejecting thee,
He stretches out the self-destroying hand;
And breaking from the bonds of nature free,
Pollutes, with horrid havock, sea and land:
Compelling thee, chaste Goddess, oft to fly
To snow-surrounded wastes beneath the polar sky.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, May 10, 2012

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