To His Serene Highness The Duke Of Montpensier On His Portrait Of The Lady Adelaide Forbes.

A poem by Thomas Moore

Donington Park, 1802


To catch the thought, by painting's spell,
Howe'er remote, howe'er refined,
And o'er the kindling canvas tell
The silent story of the mind;

O'er nature's form to glance the eye,
And fix, by mimic light and shade,
Her morning tinges ere they fly,
Her evening blushes, ere they fade;

Yes, these are Painting's proudest powers,
The gift, by which her art divine
Above all others proudly towers,--
And these, oh Prince! are richly thine.

And yet, when Friendship sees thee trace,
In almost living truth exprest,
This bright memorial of a face
On which her eye delights to rest;

While o'er the lovely look serene,
The smile of peace, the bloom of youth,
The cheek, that blushes to be seen.
The eye that tells the bosom's truth;

While o'er each line, so brightly true,
Our eyes with lingering pleasure rove,
Blessing the touch whose various hue
Thus brings to mind the form we love;

We feel the magic of thy art,
And own it with a zest, a zeal,
A pleasure, nearer to the heart
Than critic taste can ever feel.

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