O nightingale, best poet of the grove,
That plaintive strain can ne’er belong to thee,
Blessed in the full possession of thy love:
O lend that strain, sweet Nighingale, to me!
‘Tis mine, alas! to mourn a wretched fate:
I love a maid who all my bosom charms,
Yet lose my days without this lovely mate;
Inhuman fortune keeps her from my arms.
You happy birds! by nature’s simple laws
Lead your soft lives, sustained by nature’s fare;
You dwell wherever roving fancy draws,
And love and song is all your pleasing care:
But we, vain slaves of interest and of pride,
Dare not be blessed, lest envious tongues should blame;
And hence, in vain I languish for my bride!
O mourn with me, sweet bird, my hapless flame.