Charlotte Smith

4 May 1749 – 28 October 1806 / London

Sonnet Lxxxii. To The Shade Of Burns

MUTE is thy wild harp, now, O bard sublime!
Who, amid Scotia's mountain solitude,
Great Nature taught to 'build the lofty rhyme,'
And even beneath the daily pressure, rude,
Of labouring poverty, thy generous blood,
Fired with the love of freedom--Not subdued
Wert thou by thy low fortune: but a time
Like this we live in, when the abject chime
Of echoing parasite is best approved,
Was not for thee--Indignantly is fled
Thy noble spirit; and no longer moved
By all the ills o'er which thine heart has bled,
Associate, worthy of the illustrious dead,
Enjoys with them 'the liberty it loved.'
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