Thornton, Robert John (1768?-1837) / Temple of Flora, or, Garden of the botanist, poet, painter, and philosopher.
Verses Addressed to Doctor Thornton, on the Completion of his Temple of Flora
'Or Genius waving high her magic wand, Bids all Arabia's purple blooms expand; Or pours the Ganges through the wide spread plain, In foaming torrents rushing to the main. By THEE transported from the farthest pole, Where the slow Bears their frozen circuit roll, We tread the region parch'd by Syrius' ray, Where the bright LOTOS basks in floods of day; Or pensive wander by Columbian streams, Where everlasting summer pours its beams; Along her vast but rich savannahs rove, Or trace the mazes of the boundless grove, Where thousand birds their painted plumes unfold, And crests that blaze with azure and with gold; Where Nature's pencil lights her brightest dies, And fam'd Brazilia flames before our eyes. Though o'er her head the southern whirlwind rave, Secure, behold! august STRELITZIA wave! While amidst barren rocks and arctic snows Fair KALMIA in refulgent beauty glows Lo! CEREUS faithful to th' appointed hour, With glory's beams illumes the midnight hour; Ah fleeting beams! ere Phoebus darts his rays, Wither'd thy beauty and extinct its blaze! Not so yon ALOE, on whose tow'ring head An hundred years their fost'ring dews have shed; Not so the Glories that these leaves illume, Whose splendid tints for centuries shall bloom! Fain would the MUSE each beauteous Plant rehearse, And sing their glories in immortal verse; But who shall paint them with a pow'r like THINE? 'Tis in THY page those glories brightest shine So lovely in their form, so bright their hue, And in such dazzling groups they charm the view! The MUSE astonish'd drops her feeble lyre, And baffled Art gives way to Nature's fire; That fire is THINE-in ev'ry leaf it burns, And imitation's noblest effort spurns. The Mighty Work complete, through EUROPE's bounds THY name is echoed, and THY fame resounds; Exulting Science weaves the deathless bays, And rival Monarchs swell the note of Praise. REV. MR. MAURICE, British Museum
This material may be protected by copyright law (e.g., Title 17, US Code).| For information on re-use, see http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/Copyright