"But he, the bard of every age and clime, / Of genius fruitful, ardent and sublime, / Who, from the glowing mint of fancy, pours / No spurious metal, fused from common ores, / But gold, to matchless purity refined, / And stamp'd with all the godhead in his mind."
— Gifford, William (1756-1826)
Of genius fruitful, ardent and sublime,
Who, from the glowing mint of fancy, pours
No spurious metal, fused from common ores,
But gold, to matchless purity refined,
And stamp'd with all the godhead in his mind;
He whom I feel, but want the power to paint,
Springs from a soul impatient of restraint,
And free from every care; a soul that loves
The Muse's haunts, clear founts, and shady groves.
Never, no never, did He wildly rave,
And shake his thyrsus in the Aonian cave,
Whom poverty kept sober, and the cries
Of a lean stomach, clamorous for supplies:
No; the wine circled briskly through the veins,
When Horace pour'd his dithyrambick strains!--
What room for fancy, say, unless the mind,
And all its thoughts, to poesy resign'd,
Be hurried with resistless force along,
By the two kindred Powers of Wine and Song!
O! 'tis the exclusive business of a breast
Impetuous, uncontroll'd,--not one distrest
With household cares, to view the bright abodes,
The steeds, the chariots, and the forms of gods:
And the fierce Fury, as her snakes she shook,
And wither'd the Rutulian with a look!
Those snakes, had Virgil no Mæcenas found,
Had dropt, in listless length, upon the ground;
And the still slumbering trump, groan'd with no mortal sound.