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A FAIRY TALE.
In Britain's isle, and Arthur's days, When midnight fairies danc'd the maze,
Liv'd Edwin of the Green ; Edwin, I wis, a gentle youth, Endow'd with courage, sense, and truth,
Though badly shap'd he been.
His mountain back mote well be said
And lift itself above;
This creature dar'd to love.
He felt the charms of Edith's eyes,
Could ladies look within ;
He had a shape to win.
Edwin, if right I read my song,
All in the moony light;
To revel out the night. His heart was drear, his hope was cross'il, 'Twas late, 'twas far, the path was lost
That reach'd the neighbour-town; With weary steps he quits the shades, Resolv'd, the darkling dome he treads,
And drops his limbs adown.
But scant he lays him on the floor,
And, trembling, rocks the ground:
On all the walls around.
Now sounding tongues assail his ear,
And now the sounds increase :
Come prankling o'er the place.
But (trust me, gentles !) never yet
Or half rich before;
The town its silken store.
Now whilst he gaz'd, a gallant dressid In flaunting robes above the rest,
With awful accent cried, • What mortal of a wretched mind, Whose sighs infect the balmy wind,
Has here presum'd to hide ?'
At this the swain, whose venturous soul No fears of magic art controul,
Advanc'd in open sight; • Nor have I cause of dreed, (he said) Who view, by no presumption led,
Your revels of the night.
• 'Twas grief, for scorn of faithful love, Which made my steps unweeting rove
Amid the nightly dew.' ' 'Tis well, (the gallant cries again) We fairies never injure men
Who dare to tell us true.
• Exalt thy love-dejected heart, Be mine the task, or ere we part,
To make thee grief resign; Now take the pleasure of thy chaunce; Whilst I with Mab, my partner, daunce,
Be little Mable thine.'
He spoke, and all a sudden there
The monarch leads the queen :
The rest their fairy partners found :
With Edwin of the Green.
The dauncing pass’d, the board was laid,
As heart and lip desire,
And with a wish retire.
But now to please the fairy king,
And antic feats devise ;
In Edwin's wondering eyes.
Till one at last, that Robin hight,
Has hent him up aloof;
To spraul unneath the roof.
From thence, « Reverse my charm, (he cries) And let it fairly now suffice
The gambol has been shown :' But Oberon answers, with a smile, • Content thee, Edwin, for awhile,
The vantage is thine own.'
Here ended all the phantom piay;
And heard a cock to crow;
To warn them all to go.
Then screaming all at once they fly,
Poor Edwin falls to floor;
Through all the land before.
But soon as dan Apollo rose,
He feels his back the less;
Which made him want success.
With lusty livelyhed he talks,
His story soon took wind;
Without a bunch behind.
The story told, Sir Topaz mov'd,
To see the revel scene :
All on the gloomy plain.
As there he bides, it so befell,
A shaking seiz'd the wall ;
And music fills the hall.
But, certes, sorely sunk with woe
His spirits in him die :
Hangs flagging in the sky.'
With that Sir Topaz, hapless youth !
Intreats them pity graunt;
To tread the circled haunt.
• Ah losell vile, at once they roar ; And little skill'd of fairie lore,
Thy cause to come, we know:
Now has thy kestrell courage fell;
Are free to work thee woe.'
Then Will, who bears the wipsy fire
The caitive upward flung ;
Where whilom Edwin hung.
The revel now proceeds apace,
They sit, they drink, and eat ;
Till all the rout retreat.
By this the stars began to wink,
And down ydrops the knight:
Beyond the length of night.
Chill, dark, alone, adreed, he lay,
Then deem'd the dole was o'er :
Which Edwin lost afore,
This tale a sybil nurse ared ;
And when the tale was done, • Thus some are born, my son, (she cries) With base impediments to rise,
And some are born with none.
• But virtue can itself advance
Bv fortune seem design'd;
Upon the' unworthy mind.'