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With what suspicious fearful care
The fordid wretch secures his claim,
If haply some luxurious heir
Should alienate the fields that wear his name!
What scruples lest some future birth
Should litigate a span of earth!
Bonds, contracts, feoffments, names unmeet for prose,
The towering Muse endures not to disclose;
Alas! ber unrevers'd decree,
More comprehensive and more free,
Her lavish charter, Taste, appropriates all we see.
Let gondolas their painted flags unfold,
And be the folemn day enrollid,
When, to confirm his lofty plea,
In nuptial fort, with bridal gold,
The grave Venetian weds the fea;
Each laughing Mufe derides the vow;
Ev’n Adria fcorns the mock embrace,
To fome lone hermit on the mountain's brow,
Allotted, from his natal hour,
With all her myrtle shores in dow'r.
His breast to admiration prone
Enjoys the smile upon her face,
Enjoys triumphant every grace,
And finds her more his own.
Fatigu'd with form's oppressive laws,
When SOMERSET avoids the Great;
When cloy'd with merited applause,
She seeks the rural calm retreat ;
Does she not praise each moffy cell,
And feel the truth my numbers tell ?
When deafen'd by the loud acclaim,
Which genius grac'd with rank obtains,
Could Nie not more delighted hear
Yon throítle chaunt the rising year?
Could she not spurn the wreaths of fame,
To crop the primrose of the plains?
Does she not sweets in each fair valley find,
Lost to the fons of pow'r, unknown to half mankind?
Ah! can the covet there to see
The splendid Naves, the reptile race,
That oil the tongue, and bow the knee,
That flight her merit, but adore her place?
Far happier, if aright I deem,
When from gay throngs, and gilded spires,
To where the lovely halcyons play,
Her philosophic liep retires :
While studious of the moral theme,
She, to fome fmooth fequefter'd streain
Likens the fivain's inglorious day;
Pleas'd from the flowery margin to survey,
How cool, serene, and clear the current glides away.
O blind to truth, to virtue blind,
Who flight the sweetly-penfive mind!
On whöfe fair birth the Graces mild,
And every Muse prophetic smild.
Not that the poet's boasted fire
Should Fame's wide echoing trumpet swell;
Or, on the music of his lyre
Each future age with rapture dwell;
The vaunted sweets of praise remove,
. Yet shall fucb bofoms claim a part
In all that glads the human heart ;
Yet these the spirits, form’d to judge and prove
All Nature's charms immense, and Heav'n's unbounded love.
And oh! the transport, most ally'd to song,
In some fair villa's peaceful bound,
To catch soft hints from Nature's tongue,
And bid Arcadia bloom around:
Whether we fringe the floping hill,
Or smoothe below the verdant mead;
Whether we break the falling rill,
Or through meandering mazes lead;
Or in the horrid bramble's room
Bid careless groups of roses bloom;
Or let some shelter'd lake serene
Reflect flow'rs, woods and spires, and brighten all the scene.
O sweet disposal of the rural hour!
O beauties never known to cloy!
While worth and genius haunt the favour'd bow'r,
And every gentle breast partakes the joy!
While Charity at eve surveys the swain,-
Enabled by these toils to chear
A train of helpless infants dear,
Speed whistling home across the plain';
Sees vagrant Luxury, her hand-maid grown,
For half her graceless deeds atone, And hails the bounteous work, and ranks it with her own,
cru! Why brand these pleasures with the name
Of soft, unfocial toils, of indolence and shame?
Search but the garden, or the wood,
admir'd carnation own,
Not all was meant for raiment, or for food,
Not all for needless use alone;
There while the feeds of future blofsoms dwell,
'Tis colourd for the fight, perfum!d to please the smell,
Why knows the nightingale to fing?
Why flows the pine's nectareous juice?
Why shines with paint the linnet's wing?
For sustenance alone? for use?
For preservation ? Every sphere Shall bid fair Pleasure's rightful claim
And sure there seem, of human kind,
Some born to fhun the solemn strife ;
Some for amufive tasks design’d,
To soothe the certain ills of life;
Grace its lone vales with many a budding rose,
New founts of bliss disclose,
Call forth refreshing shades, and decorate repose.
From plains and woodlands; from the view
Of rural Nature's blooming face,
Smit with the glare of rank and place,
To courts the sons of Fancy flew;
There long had Art ordain'da rival feat;
There had the lavish'd all her care
To form a scene more dazzling fair,
And call them from their
To share her proud controul ;
Had giv'n the robe with grace to flow,
Had taught exotic gems to glow;
And emulous of Nature's pow'r,
Mimick'd the plume, the leaf, the flow'r ;
Chang'd the complexion's native hue,
Moulded each rustic liinb
And warp'd the very soul!