- Joseph Addison, "The Transformation of Cycnus into a Swan"
Cycnus beheld the Nymphs transform'd, ally'd
To their dead Brother, on the Mortal Side,
In Friendship and Affection nearer bound;
He left the Cities and the Realms he own'd,
Thro' pathless Fields and lonely Shores to range,
And Woods, made Thicker by the Sisters Change.
Whilst here, within the dismal Gloom, alone,
The melancholy Monarch made his Moan,
His Voice was lessen'd, as he try'd to speak,
And issu'd through a long extended Neck;
His Hair transforms to Down, his Fingers meet
In skinny Films, and shape his oary Feet;
From both his Sides the Wings and Feathers break;
And from his Mouth proceeds a blunted Beak:
All Cycnus now into a Swan was turn'd,
Who, still remembring how his Kinsman burn'd,
To solitary Pools and Lakes retires,
And loves the Waters as oppos'd to Fires.
Mean-while Apollo in a gloomy Shade
(The native Lustre of his Brows decay'd)
Indulging Sorrow, sickens at the Sight
Of his own Sun-shine, and abhors the Light:
The hidden Griefs, that in his Bosom rise,
Sadden his Looks, and over-cast his Eyes,
As when some dusky Orb obstructs his Ray,
And sullies, in a Dim Eclipse, the Day.
Now secretly with inward Griefs he pin'd,
Now warm Resentments to his Griefs he joyn'd,
And now renounc'd his Office to Mankind.
" E'er since the Birth of Time, said he, I've born
" A long ungrateful Toil without Return;
" Let now some Other manage, if he dare,
" The fiery Steeds, and mount the burning Carr;
" Or, if none else, let Jove his Fortune try,
" And learn to lay his murd'ring Thunder by;
" Then will he own, perhaps, but own too late,
" My Son deserv'd not so severe a Fate.
The Gods stand round him, as he mourns, and pray
He would resume the Conduct of the Day,
Nor let the World be lost in endless Night:
Jove too himself, descending from his Height,
Excuses what had happen'd, and intreats,
Majestically mixing Pray'rs and Threats.
Prevail'd upon at length, again he took
The harness'd Steeds, that still with Horror shook,
And plies 'em with the Lash, and whips 'em on,
And, as he whips, upbraids 'em with his Son.