[Page 73]


1 WHEN urg'd by Honour, from thy Sight I flew,
2 And scarce would breath one tender soft adieu,
[Page 74]
3 From thy dear Face I turn'd my gazing Eyes,
4 Supprest the Tears, and check'd the rising Sighs.
5 Self-banish'd all Despairs worst Pangs I prove,
6 I fled from you, but could not fly from Love.
7 Oh do not then, my lovely Swain, accuse
8 My Want of Truth, nor charge on me thy Woes:
9 For every Pain which racks thy faithful Breast,
10 A thousand more my anxious Soul opprest;
11 Sorrows for which Description's all too faint,
12 And equal Misery alone can paint.
13 Dearer than Light to these fond Eyes you are,
14 My first, my last, and still my only Care.
15 My hapless Flame nor Time nor Absence cures,
16 Still constant to the Vows which made me yours.
17 Ah! why then in that sadly-pleasing Strain?
18 Why does Moneses of his Wrongs complain?
19 Forbear to send me what thy Muse inspir'd,
20 By ill-requited Love, and Absence fir'd:
[Page 75]
21 Deep in my Soul thy soft Reproaches steal,
22 And all thy Griefs redoubled there I feel;
23 Still round my Heart plays the same lambient Flame,
24 Each Wish, and every fond Desire the same.
25 Nor can thy Pen one piercing Woe reveal,
26 Which thy Ardelia does not equal feel.
27 Ah, dear Idea of my lovely Swain!
28 Ah, soft Remembrance of my former Pain!
29 Why to my anxious Breast do you return?
30 Why wake a Flame which must for ever burn?
31 Still shall that lovely Image charm my View,
32 And those dear Accents all my Grief renew:
33 Still must I love, tho' Honour Love deny,
34 And bids me from the dangerous Charmer fly.
35 Ah then how vain, how fruitless all my Care?
36 This welcome Absence, this confirm'd Despair?
[Page 76]
37 This cruel Contest between Love and Fame?
38 These endless Pangs for which I want a Name?
39 Why does Moneses still love on? Why share
40 In all those Sorrows I alone should bear?
41 All tender as thou wert, all soft and kind,
42 I flew, and with thee left my Soul behind;
43 I left thee, fancied Honour to pursue,
44 Just to myself, but more unjust to you.
45 Why then my Image dost thou still retain?
46 Why for a Wretch unworthy thee complain?
47 O rather hate me, drive me from your Breast,
48 By Scorn and Hate be all thy Soul possest:
49 Let its fond Heart thy once-lov'd Chains resign,
50 Compleat thy Cure, and O assist in mine.
51 Why did I love? Why did my easy Heart
52 Admit the dear, but ah too dangerous Dart?
[Page 77]
53 Why did I not the pleasing Torment shun?
54 Why fondly listen to thy soothing Tongue?
55 Quick to my Heart the subtle Poison stole,
56 Charm'd all my Senses, and enslav'd my Soul;
57 And less the Beauty of thy matchless Form,
58 Then thy prevailing Eloquence could charm.
59 Oh come once more, Moneses, and renew
60 Those tender Vows, and I'll believe them true:
61 Let me once more behold those melting Eyes,
62 Where Love a thousand nameless Charms supplies:
63 The soft Enchantment shall my Fears controul,
64 And Love claim all his Empire in my Soul.
65 Ah! whether would my boundless Wishes rove?
66 Still, still am I enslav'd by guilty Love!
67 Still shall its lawless Fires my Soul profane,
68 And is my boasted Virtue but a Name?
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69 No; I'll forget thee, drive thee from my Breast,
70 Thou dear Undoer of my Peace and Rest.
71 Yet how forget, when every Thought is thine?
72 Even Life itself were easier to resign.
73 To lonely Shades in vain I fly for Ease,
74 There secret sigh, and feed the sweet Disease.
75 On thy dear Name I call, and all around
76 The whisp'ring Winds repeat the charming Sound.
77 'Tis thus I wear the anxious Hours away,
78 'Till Night restores the Sorrows of the Day.
79 Then does thy Image to my Eyes appear;
80 But ah! with Looks averse, and Frowns severe;
81 Still as you seem to chide me with your Eyes,
82 My own in streaming Tears to yours replies,
83 Oh stay, I cry, thou charming Phantom stay,
84 Or with thee take my fleeting Soul away!
[Page 79]
85 In vain I call, my clasping Arms you shun,
86 And waking find the dear Delusion gone.
87 Thus, does Ardelia haunt thy boding Dream;
88 Does she like thee all cold and cruel seem?
89 Or does the pensive Shade soft Sorrows wear,
90 Heave the faint Sigh, and shed the mimick Tear?
91 On thy lov'd Breast her painful Head recline,
92 And tell thee that her Torments equal thine.
93 Why can I not this fatal Flame remove?
94 Or why, O why is it a Crime to love?
95 By Turns my Reason and my Passion sway,
96 As Honour triumphs, and as Love betray;
97 My tortur'd Breast conflicting Passions tear,
98 And Love and Virtue wage unequal War:
99 Now all its sacred Precepts I pursue,
100 Lost for a while is every Thought of you.
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101 But oh! again the guilty Lover burns,
102 And all the Woman in my Soul returns;
103 Again my Bosom glows with soft Desire,
104 And hope returning fans the fatal Fire.
105 Seas rolls between us, but the active Mind
106 Still springs to thee, and leaves its load behind.
107 Oh should some happy Chance to us unknown,
108 Without a Crime confirm me all thy own.
109 Blest be these tender Griefs, these anxious Fears,
110 These never-ceasing Sighs and flowing Tears!
111 Oh! let my Soul the pleasing Hope retain,
112 One Hour of Joy repays whole Years of Pain!
113 To suff'ring Martyrs thus such Hopes are given;
114 Such Views of promis'd Joys and future Heaven.
115 For this resign'd they calmly meet their Fate,
116 Conscious of Blessings in a happier State.


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Title (in Source Edition): An EPISTLE TO MONESES, IN IMITATION of OVID.
Genres: heroic couplet; epistle

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Source edition

Lennox, Charlotte, ca. 1729-1804. Poems on Several Occasions. Written by a Young Lady. London: printed for, and sold by S. Paterson, 1747, pp. 73-80. [8],88p.; 8⁰. (ESTC T139692; OTA K110146.000) (Page images digitized from microfilm of a copy in the Bodleian Library [G.Pamph. 1289 (14)].)

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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 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 4.0.0.