Exert thy Voice, sweet Harbinger of Spring! This Moment is thy Time to sing, This Moment I attend to Praise, And set my Numbers to thy Layes. Free as thine shall be my Song; As thy Musick, short, or long.
Poets, wild as thee, were born, Pleasing best when unconfin'd, When to Please is least design'd, Soothing but their Cares to rest; Cares do still their Thoughts molest, And still th' unhappy Poet's Breast, Like thine, when best he sings, is plac'd against a Thorn.
She begins, Let all be still! Muse, thy Promise now fulfill! Sweet, oh! sweet, still sweeter yet Can thy Words such Accents fit, Canst thou Syllables refine, Melt a Sense that shall retain Still some Spirit of the Brain, Till with Sounds like these it join. 'Twill not be! then change thy Note; Let division shake thy Throat. Hark! Division now she tries; Yet as far the Muse outflies.
Cease then, prithee, cease thy Tune; Trifler, wilt thou sing till June? Till thy Bus'ness all lies waste, And the Time of Building's past! Thus we Poets that have Speech, Unlike what thy Forests teach, If a fluent Vein be shown That's transcendant to our own, Criticize, reform, or preach, Or censure what we cannot reach.