Ode To Solitude

by Elizabeth Bentley

Elizabeth Bentley

O thou, each Muse's dearest friend,
Pensive Solitude, attend;
With musing thought and steadfast eye,
All is peace when thou art nigh;
Parent of Meditation, hail!
guide my steps to yonder vale;
Where nought disturbs the silent morn,
Save chirping birds on ev'ry dewy thorn.
When first the cock's shrill clarion founds,
Which Echo from her cave rebounds;
While yet the sons of toil are deep
Lull'd in the downy arms of Sleep;
Then lead me up the mountain's height,
To view the skies in azure delight,
And Phoebus' rising beams behold,
When first they tinge the orient clouds with gold.
Or for a summer seat I'd take
The margin of yon crystal lake;
Or with the winding current stray,
And see the finny nation play;
'Till fervent Noon, with scorching heat,
Bids to seek some cool retreat;
Then with thee I'd choose to rove
To shades impervious in the thickest grove.
And when the radiant God of Day,
Declining, sheds a milder ray;
And with less dazzling glories crown'd,
Casts the length'ning shadows round;
Then the flow'ry fields invite,
With thee to walk in calm delight;
'Till by degrees each prospect fades,
Involv'd in sable Night's advancing shades.
But see, the full-orb'd Moon appears,
Sublimely soaring 'mid the spheres;
And now the mind, with sacred flame,
Contemplates the starry frame:
As each new wonder she explores,
The great Creator's pow'r adores;
Admires o'er all his wise control,
'Till heav'nly ecstasy enwraps the soul.
Solitude I thy vot'ry tell,
In what wild wood thou joy'st to dwell;
Amid the deserts thou art found,
Thy awful brows with cypress crown'd:
Through each quick-revolving day,
The Muse delights to own thy sway;
To thee, O thoughtful Nymph, belong
The pow'rs which animate her noblest song.

Last updated January 14, 2019