Lend, O my Muse, awhile thy golden quill!
For I would tell a vision, wondrous fair,
Of rivers brimmed with molten metals rare,
Now seen as Phoebus climbs the eastern hill,
And from their banks full many a lovely rill
Breaking across the plains of pearl, to bear
Their treasure to the earth, the gladsome heir
Of wealth a million Inds and more would fill!
’Twould seem a thousand trembling minarets
Call, from their jasper moons, to morning prayers;
The while the sun-god mounts the golden stairs,
And dips his head to dodge the cloudy nets.
Fair Morning, whom old Phoebus now begets,
Why follows thee cold Night with all her cares?
William Blocksidge, Songs o’ the South, London: Watts, 1908, p. 45
beget = to father a child, to bring a child into existence as a parent (especially as a father); to create, cause, produce
Ind = (archaic) India (also an archaic name for the Indies)
Muse = a source of artistic inspiration; a person, especially a woman, or a force personified as a woman, who is the source of inspiration for an artist (derived from the Muses of Greek and Roman mythology, who were said to provide inspiration for artists and writers)
Phoebus = the sun; a reference to Phoebus (also known as Apollo) who, in Greek mythology, was the god of light (amongst other things) and in literature was often identified with the sun
rill = a very small brook, creek, or stream (a rivulet)
thee = (archaic) you
thy = (archaic) your
’twould = (vernacular) a contraction of “it would”