Thomas Gray


(From The Progress of Poesy)


FAR from the sun and summer gale,

In thy green lap was Nature’s darling laid,

What time, where lucid Avon strayed,

To him the mighty mother did unveil

Her awful face; the dauntless child

Stretched forth his little arms, and smiled.

This pencil take (she said), whose colors clear

Richly paint the vernal year;

Thine too these golden keys, immortal boy!

This can unlock the gates of joy;

Of horror that and thrilling fears,

Or ope the sacred source of sympathetic tears.