Ode for the Concluding Night

Mr Elliott


Spirit of song, descend!
 Wit, genius, fancy, leave your airy height!
 Suspend awhile your flight,
And o’er the Attic Chest together bend!
 For hence your visions bright,
Your strains as soft as dying gales,
Your quips, and cranks, and mirth-fraught tales,
 Are drawn each due-returning night;
And here your votaries pleas’d repair,
Your joys and converse sweet to share.


Ev’ry care full sweetly slumbers,
Here, by force of magic numbers,
 Lull’d to rest;
Here mirth and lore, in pastime blent,
Form pleasures useful, innocent:
 The youthful breast
Smit with the love of song, yet fearing
 What it dictates to the lyre
May prove a strain not worth the hearing,
 Void of feeling, taste, or fire,
 Here tries secure sits doubted pow'rs;
 For here no brow of critic low'rs,
 But by impartial friends the meed
 Of praise or silence is decreed;
 And, if no plaudit greet the strain,
The bard successless may unknown remain.


Descend, immortal truth!
 And candour, white-robed guest!
 In varying colours drest
Sweet modesty, peculiar grace of youth!
 And curiosity, with sharpen’d eye
 Each secret to espy,
And flush’d surprise, and gratulation bland!
For now discovery waves her mystic wand;
 And secrecy retires to midnight shades — 
  Naught shall be left her here to brood upon.
Now expectation rules the Attic Band,
And to avow their own effusions stand
 All who have wander’d in Pierian glades,
  Or filled their little urn from Helicon.
No more to unknown bards we lift the loud acclaim,
Each now shall stand confest, and “each receive his fame.”


 Descend, propitious pow’rs!
  Our festival preside!
 Your choicest gifts be ours!
  And still may joy betide
 All those to whom these classic bow’rs
  Have pleasure’s purest draught supplied!
 But first and chief our honor’d host,
 And who his name and lineage boast;
 May bounteous Heav’n, his race caressing,
 Upon them pour each choicest blessing,
 And grant them, free from care or pain,
 Their friends next year to meet again!
Wit, genius, fancy, pow’r of potent song!
 All that exalts the soul
  And heaven’y strains inspires!
  Still fan the poet’s fires — 
 Your inspiration roll — 
And with us still your cheering stay prolong!
 So shall our summer pass in pleasure,
 So shall its beauties live in dulcet measure,
So shall the Attic Chest be rich in future treasure.