Written on the Road from Worcester to Pershore

WAS ever Beauty's vernal flower
Born in a more propitious hour!
The gallies that on Cydnus roll'd
Could never charms like these unfold.
Bright as the sun-beam glanc'd her eye
With piercing rays — if man was by!
Unborrow'd grace, and sweetly wild,
On the disarm'd Beholder smil'd:
Her form, sublime as in the air,
Seem'd floating on the Zephyr there:
Perch'd on her breast, the Cyprian Dove
To Innocence united Love .
Reverse the medal, oh ye fair!
Of the perfidious morn beware!
Her golden fetters un-endear'd,
The native Hebe disappear'd; —
A borrow'd lustre on her cheek
With art its guilty aim could speak:
Her mind with not one jewel stor'd
That makes deformity ador'd: —
With levities her fall began,
And Vice improv'd on Folly's plan:
Of Art the living spectre died;
The mirrour flash'd upon her pride, —
Then Beauty's havock told its tale,
And Conscience own'd the rest was frail:
No more a phantom of surprize,
The worthless Idiot clos'd her eyes.
In a sequester'd nook her tomb
Has no records that grace her doom:
Her beauty's fame no sculptur'd art,
No Painter's genius could impart:
She lives but in the Poet's lay
That o'er the dust and lifeless clay
No other monument could raise
Than satire in the mask of praise.
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