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Corinna from Athens to Tanagra

by
 Tanagra! think not I forget
Thy beautifully-storey’d streets;
Be sure my memory bathes yet
In clear Thermodon, and yet greets
The blythe and liberal shepherd boy,
Whose sunny bosom swells with joy
When we accept his matted rushes
Upheaved with sylvan fruit; away he bounds, and blushes.
I promise to bring back with me What thou with transport wilt receive, The only proper gift for thee, Of which no mortal shall bereave In later times thy mouldering walls, Until the last old turret falls; A crown, a crown from Athens won! A crown no god can wear, beside Latona’s son.
There may be cities who refuse To their own child the honours due, And look ungently on the Muse; But ever shall those cities rue The dry, unyielding, niggard breast, Offering no nourishment, no rest, To that young head which soon shall rise Disdainfully, in might and glory, to the skies.
Sweetly where cavern’d Dirce flows Do white-arm’d maidens chaunt my lay, Flapping the while with laurel-rose The honey-gathering tribes away; And sweetly, sweetly, Attick tongues Lisp your Corinna’s early songs; To her with feet more graceful come The verses that have dwelt in kindred breasts at home.
O let thy children lean aslant Against the tender mother’s knee, And gaze into her face, and want To know what magic there can be In words that urge some eyes to dance, While others as in holy trance Look up to heaven; be such my praise! Why linger? I must haste, or lose the Delphick bays.

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