Old, and abandoned by each venal friend,
Here Holland took the pious resolution
To smuggle some few years, and strive to mend
A broken character and constitution.
On this congenial spot he fixed his choice,
Earl Goodwin trembled for his neighboring sand;
Here seagulls scream and cormorants rejoice,
And mariners, though shipwrecked, dread to land.
Here reign the blustering North and blighting East,
No tree is heard to whisper, bird to sing,
Yet Nature cannot furnish out the feast,
Art he invokes new horrors still to bring.
Now moldering fanes and battlements arise,
Arches and turrets nodding to their fall,
Unpeopled palaces delude his eyes,
And mimic desolation covers all.
"Purged by the sword and beautified by fire,
Then had we seen proud London's hated walls;
Owls might have hooted in St. Peter's choir,
And foxes stunk and littered in St. Paul's.