Mark Akenside

Ode XIV: The Complaint

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Away! Away!
Tempt me no more, insidious love:
Thy soothing sway
Long did my youthful bosom prove:
At length thy treason is discern'd,
At length some dear-bought caution earn'd:
Away! nor hope my riper age to move.
I know, I see
Her merit. Needs it now be shewn,
Alas, to me?
How often, to myself unknown,
The graceful, gentle, virtuous maid
Have I admir'd! How often said,
What joy to call a heart like her's one's own!

But, flattering god,
O squanderer of content and ease,
In thy abode
Will care's rude lesson learn to please?
O say, deceiver, hast thou won,
Proud fortune to attend thy throne,
Or plac'd thy friends above her stern decrees?

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Mark Akenside