Ocyrrhoe Transformed to a Mare -

Old Chiron took the Babe with secret Joy,
Proud of the Charge of the Celestial Boy.
His Daughter too, whom on the sandy Shore
The Nymph Chariclo to the Centaur bore,
With Hair dishevel'd on her Shoulders came
To see the Child, Ocyrrhoe was her Name;
She knew her Father's Arts, and could rehearse
The Depths of Prophecy in sounding Verse.
Once, as the sacred Infant she survey'd,
The God was kindled in the raving Maid,
And thus she utter'd her Prophetick Tale;
" Hail, great Physician of the World, All-hail;
" Hail, mighty Infant, who in Years to come,
" Shalt heal the Nations, and defraud the Tomb;
" Swift be thy Growth! thy Triumphs unconfin'd!
" Make Kingdoms thicker, and increase Mankind
" Thy daring Art shall animate the Dead,
" And draw the Thunder on thy guilty Head:
" Then shalt thou dye, but from the dark Abode
" Rise up Victorious, and be Twice a God,
" And Thou, my Sire, not destin'd by thy Birth
" To turn to Dust, and mix with common Earth,
" How wilt thou toss, and rave, and long to dye,
" And quit thy Claim to Immortality;
" When thou shalt feel, enrag'd with inward Pains,
" The Hydra 's Venom rankling in thy Veins?
" The Gods, in Pity, shall contract thy Date,
" And give thee over to the Pow'r of Fate.
Thus, ent'ring into Destiny, the Maid
The Secrets of offended Jove betray'd:
More had she still to say, but now appears
Oppress'd with Sobs and Sighs, and drown'd in Tears.
" My Voice, says she, is gone, my Language fails;
" Through ev'ry Limb my kindred Shape prevails,
" Why did the God this fatal Gift impart,
" And with prophetick Raptures swell my Heart!
" What new Desires are these? I long to pace
" O'er flow'ry Meadows, and to feed on Grass;
" I hasten to a Brute, a Maid no more;
" But why, alas! am I transform'd all o'er?
" My Sire does Half a human Shape retain,
" And in his upper Parts preserves the Man.
Her Tongue no more distinct Complaints affords,
But in shrill Accents and mis-shapen Words
Pours forth such hideous Wailings, as declare
The Human Form confounded in the Mare:
Till by degrees accomplish'd in the Beast,
She neigh'd outright, and all the Steed exprest
Her stooping Body on her Hands is born,
Her Hands are turn'd to Hoofs, and shod in Horn;
Her yellow Tresses ruffle in a Mane,
And in a flowing Tail she frisks her Train.
The Mare was finish'd in her Voice and Look,
And a new Name from the new Figure took.
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