ALLEN AND ELLA.
1 ON the banks of that crystalline stream
2 Where Thames, oft, his current delays;
3 And charms, more than poets can dream,
4 In his Richmond's bright villa surveys;
5 Fair Ella! of all the gay throng
6 The fairest that Nature had seen,
7 Now, drew every village, along,
8 From the day she first danc'd on the green.
9 Ah! boast not of beauty's fond power,
10 For short is the triumph, ye fair!
11 Not fleeter the bloom of each flower;
12 And hope is but gilded despair.
13 His affection each swain now, behold,
14 By riches endeavours to prove!
15 But Ella still cries, what is gold,
16 Or wealth, when compar'd to his love?
17 Yes! Allen, together we'll wield
18 Our sickles in summer's bright day;
19 Together we'll lease o'er the field,
20 And smile all our labours away:
21 In winter! I'll winnow the wheat
22 As it falls from thy flail on the ground;
23 That flail will be music as sweet
24 When thy voice in the labour is drown'd.
25 How oft would he speak of his bliss!
26 How oft would he call her his maid!
27 And Allen would seal with a kiss
28 Every promise and vow that he said.
29 But, hark! o'er the grass-levelc
c The village of Petersham. land,
30 The village bells sound on the plain;
31 False Allen! this morn gave his hand,
32 And Ella's sond tears are in vain.
33 Sad Ella, too soon, heard the tale!
34 Too soon the sad cause she was told!
35 That his was a nymph of the vale:
36 That he broke his sond promise for gold.
37 As she walk'd by the margin so green,
38 Which befringes the sweet river's side,[Page 322]
39 How oft' was she languishing seen!
40 How oft' would she gaze on the tide!
41 By the clear river, then, as she sate,
42 Which reflected herself and the mead;
43 Awhile! she bewept her sad fate,
44 And the green turf, still, pillow'd her head.
45 There, there! is it Ella, I see?
46 'Tis Ella, the lost, undone maid!
47 Ah! no, 'tis some Ella, like me,
48 Some hapless young virgin betray'd!
49 Like me! she has sorrow'd and wept;
50 Like me! she has, fondly, believ'd;
51 Like me! her true promise she kept,
52 And, like me, too, is justly deceiv'd.
53 I come, dear companion in grief!
54 Gay scenes and fond pleasures, adieu!
55 I come! and we'll gather relief
56 From bosoms so chaste and so true!
57 Like you! I have mourn'd the long night,
58 And wept out the day in despair!
59 Like you! I have banish'd delight,
60 And bosom'd a friend in my care.
61 Ye meadows! so lovely, farewel,
62 Your velvet, still, Allen shall tread!
63 All deaf to the sound of that knell
64 Which tolls for his Ella when dead.
65 Your wish will, too sure! be obey'd;
66 Nor Allen her loss shall bemoan!
67 Soon, soon! shall poor Ella be laid
68 Where her heart shall be cold as your own.
69 Then, twin'd in the arms of that fair,
70 Whose wealth has been Ella's sad fate:
71 As, together, ye draw the free air,
72 And a thousand dear pleasures relate:
73 If chance, o'er my turf, as ye tread,
74 Ye dare to affect a fond sigh!
75 The primrose will shrink her pale head,
76 And the violet languish and die.
77 Ah! weep not, fond maid! 'tis in vain;
78 Like the tears which you lend to the stream;
79 Tears! are lost in that watery plain;
80 And your sighs are still lost upon him.
81 Scarce! echo had gather'd the sound,
82 But she plung'd from her grass-springing bed:
83 The liquid stream parts to the ground,
84 And the mirror clos'd over her head.
85 The swains of the village at eve,
86 Oft meet at the dark-spreading yew;
87 There wonder how man could deceive
88 A bosom so chaste and so true.
89 With garlands, of every flower,
90 (Which Ella herself should have made)
91 They raise up a short-living bower;
92 And, sighing! cry, "Peace to her shade."
93 Then! hand-lock'd-in-hand, as they move
94 The green-platting hillock, around:
95 They talk of poor Ella, and love;
96 And freshen, with tears, the fair ground.
97 Nay, wish! they had never been born,
98 Or liv'd the sad moment to view!
99 When her Allen could thus be forsworn,
100 And his Ella could still be so true.