Thou who hast amply quaff'd the Muse's rill,
And bath'd thy locks in pure poetic dews,
Canst thou disparage the Petrarcan Muse;
To her sweet voice deaf, cold, fastidious still!
Examine if unprejudic'd the will,
Coleridge, which can to her high praise refuse;
And of perverseness her fair laws accuse
Which through the enchanted ear the bosom fill.
Her various, cadenc'd, regularity
He who o'er epic heights hath soar'd sublime,
And magic Spenser, lov'd. The mighty dead
Have followers, haply to posterity
Not unendear'd.--O scorn not these, who led
In many a graceful maze the full harmonious rhyme.
Capel Lofft (1753-1824)
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