HYMN to CONTENT.
— natura beatis
Omnibus esse dedit, si quis cognoverit uti.
1 O Thou, the Nymph with placid eye!
2 O seldom found, yet ever nigh!
3 Receive my temperate vow:
4 Not all the storms that shake the pole
5 Can e'er disturb thy halcyon soul,
6 And smooth unalter'd brow.
7 O come, in simplest vest array'd,
8 With all thy sober cheer display'd[Page 54]
9 To bless my longing sight;
10 Thy mien compos'd, thy even pace,
11 Thy meek regard, thy matron grace,
12 And chaste subdued delight.
13 No more by varying passions beat,
14 O gently guide my pilgrim feet
15 To find thy hermit cell;
16 Where in some pure and equal sky
17 Beneath thy soft indulgent eye
18 The modest virtues dwell.
19 Simplicity in Attic vest,
20 And Innocence with candid breast,
21 And clear undaunted eye;
22 And Hope, who points to distant years,
23 Fair opening thro' this vale of tears
24 A vista to the sky.
25 There Health, thro' whose calm bosom glide
26 The temperate joys in even tide,
27 That rarely ebb or flow;
28 And Patience there, thy sister meek,
29 Presents her mild, unvarying cheek
30 To meet the offer'd blow.
31 Her influence taught the Phrygian sage
32 A tyrant master's wanton rage
33 With settled smiles to meet;
34 Inur'd to toil and bitter bread
35 He bow'd his meek submitted head,
36 And kiss'd thy sainted feet.
37 But thou, oh Nymph retir'd and coy!
38 In what brown hamlet dost thou joy
39 To tell thy simple tale;[Page 56]
40 The lowliest children of the ground,
41 Moss rose, and violet, blossom round,
42 And lily of the vale.
43 O say what soft propitious hour
44 I best may chuse to hail thy power,
45 And court thy gentle sway?
46 When Autumn, friendly to the Muse,
47 Shall thy own modest tints diffuse,
48 And shed thy milder day.
49 When Eve, her dewy star beneath,
50 Thy balmy spirit loves to breathe,
51 And every storm is laid;
52 If such an hour was e'er thy choice,
53 Oft let me hear thy soothing voice
54 Low whispering thro' the shade.
About this text
Title (in Source Edition): HYMN to CONTENT.
Author: Anna Laetitia Barbauld
Themes: retirement; happiness; contentment; health
Genres: hymn; ode
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The text has been typographically modernized, but without any silent modernization of spelling, capitalization, or punctuation. The source of the text is given and all editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. Based on the electronic text originally produced by the ECCO-TCP project, this ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 3.0.
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