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Such of the following pieces as were formerly published having been honoured with general approbation, any apology for reprinting them must be unnecessary. The others, which constitute the principal part of this volume, it is apprehended, are not of inferior merit; and the whole may perhaps afford an innocent and agreeable amusement to the lovers of nature and poetry.
move unthinking youth to just regard,
IN FEBRUARY MAGAZINE, 1754.
When the full chorus rises with the breeze,
Or tuneful echoes, when they die, bequeathe; Wben barrd the gates, and clos'd the doors appear, Oft where some Sylvan temple decks the grove, And scarce of grinding the faint sounds they hear; The slave of easy indolence I rove; Long ere the dawn, when early mourners rise, There the wing'd breeze the lifted sash pervades, The solemn rites of grief to exercise.
Each breath is music, vocal all the shacles. Nor songs are heard, nor mirthful minstrels meet; Charm'd with the southing sound, at ease reclin'd, Death 's in the house, and silence in the street! To Fancy's pleasing pow'r I yield my mind : When e'en high places shall be seats of fear; And now enchanted scenes around me rise, Still in the way when danger shall be near; And some kind Ariel the soft air supplies : When the thick, sultry, foul, and stagnant air Now lofty Pindus through the shades I view, Unseen infection scatters ev'ry where;
Where all the Nine their tuneful art porsue : When the ripe almond shall be pluck'd no more, To me tl.e sound the panting gale conveys, Despis'd untasted all its luscious store!
And all my heart is ecstasy and praise. Wide o'er the land when locusts sha:l be spread, Now to Arcadian plains at once convey'd, Dead all the crowds that on their numbers fed : Some shepherd's pipe delights his favourite maid; When fairest objects fail to move desire,
Mix'd with the murmurs of a neighbouring streamin, Of youth extinguish'd all the sprightly fire: I hear soft notes that suit an amorous theine !
Ah! then a victim to the fond deceit,
an action or passion, by its effects on a country My heart begins with fierce desires to beat ; life, has nothing peculiar, but its confinement to To fancy'd sighs I real sighs return,
rural imagery, without which it ceases to be pas By turns I languish, and by turns I burn.
toral." This theory the author of the following Ah! Delia, haste ! and here attentive prove, Eclogues has endeavoured to exemplify. Like me, that “music is the voice of love:" So shall I mourn my rustic strains no more, While pleas'd you listen, who could frown before. Hertfordshire; Nov. 15, 1754.
SCENE, A HEATH:
Fair Spring o'er Nature held her gentlest sway; O THOU! dread foe of honour, wealth, and fame,
Fair Morn diffus'd around her brightest ray; Whose touch can quell the strong, the fierce can
Thin mists bung hovering on the distant trees, tame,
Or roll'd from off the fields before the breeze, Relentless Fear! ah! why did fate ordain
The shepherd Theron watch'd his fleecy train, My trembling heart to own thy iron reign?
Beneath a broad oak, on the grassy plain. There are, thrice happy, who disdain thy sway: A heath's green wild lay pleasant to his view, The merchant wand'ring o'er the wat'ry way;
With shrubs and field-flow'rs. deck'd of varicd The chief serene before th' assaulted wall;
hue: The climbing statesman thoughtful of his fall;
There hawthorns tall their silver bloom disclos'd, All whom the love of wealth or pow'r inspires,
Here flexile broom's bright yellow interpos'd; And all who burn with proud ambition's fires : There purple orchis, here pale daisies spread, But peaceful bards thy constant presence know,
And sweet May-lilies richest odour shed. O thou! of ev'ry glorious deed the foe!
From many a copse and blossom’d orchard near, Of thee the silent studious race complains,
The voice of birds melodious charm'd the ear; And learning groans a captive in thy chains.
There shrill the lark, and soft the linnet sung, The secret wish when some fair object moves,
And loud through air the throstle's music rung. And cautious reason what we wish approves,
The gentle swain the cheerful scene admird; Thy Gorgon front forbids to grasp the prize, The cheerful scene the song of joy inspir'd. And seas are spread between, and mountains rise ! “ Chant on,” he cry'd, " ye warblers on the spray! Thy magic arts a thousand phantoms raise, Bleat on, ye flocks, that in the pastures play! And fancy'd deaths and dangers fill our ways: Low on, ye herds, that range the dewy vales! With smiling hope you wage eternal strife, Murmur, ye rills! and whisper soft, ye gales ! And envious snatch the cup of joy from life. How bless'd my lot, in these sweet fields assign'd, O leave, tremendous pow'r! the blameless breast, Where Peace and Leisure soothe the tuneful mind; Of guilt alone the tyrant and the guest.
Where yet some pleasing vestiges remain Go, and thy train of sable horrours spread, Of unperverted Nature's golden reign, Where Murder meditates the future dead; When Love and Virtue rang'd Arcadian shades, Where Rapine watches for the gloom of night,
With undesigning youths and artless maids ! And lawless Passion pants for other's right; For us, though destin'd to a later time, Go, to the bad—but from the good recede,
A less luxuriant soil, less genial clime,
For us the country boasts enough to charm,
The fields, the meads, the trees, are all in bloom,
The vernal show'rs awake a rich perfume,
Where Damon's mansion, by the glassy stream, At secura quies, et nescia fallere vita,
Rears its white walls that through green willows Dives opum variarum; at latis otia fundis,
gleam, Speluncæ, vivique lacus; at frigida Tempe,
Annual the neighbours hold their shearing-day; Mugitusque boum, mollesque sub arbore somni Non absunt. Illic saltus, ac lustra ferarum,
And blithe youths come, and nymphs in neat array: Et patiens operum parvoque assueta juventus,
Those shear their sheep, upon the smooth turf
jaid, Sacra deûm, sanctique patres: extrema per illos Justitia excedens terris vestigia fecit.
In the broad plane's or trembling poplar's shade;
These for their friends th’expected feast provide,
Beneath cool bow'rs along th’ inclosure's side.
Thy Delia, my Melania, shall be there;
Each, kind and faithful to her faithful swain,
Loves the calm pleasures of the pastoral plain. The most rational definition of pastoral poetry Come, Cynthio, come! If towns and crowds invite, seem to be that of the learned and ingenious Dr. And noise and folly promise high delight; Johnson, in the 37th Number of his Rambler. Soon the tir'd soul disgusted turns from these * Pastoral," says he, “ being the representation of The rural prospect, only, long can please."
Why this unlike allotment, save to show,
That who possess, possess but to bestow'?"
Palemon ceas'd.“ Sweet is the sound of gales PALEMON; OR, BENEVOLENCE,
Amid green osiers in the winding vales; SCENE, A WOOD-SIDE ON THE BROW OF A HILL: Sweet is the lark's loud note on sunny hills,
What time fair Morn the sky with fragrance fills; SEASON-SUMMER; TIME-FORENOON.
Sweet is the nightingale's love-soothing strain,
Heard by still waters on the moonlight plain!
ARMYN; OR, THE DISCONTENTED,
SCENE, A VALLEY:
SEASON-SUMMER ; TIME AFTERNOON.
[ground, SUMMER O'er Heav'n diffus'd serenest blue, There stood green fern; there, o'er the grassy
And painted Earth with many a pleasing hue; Sweet camomile and alehoof crept around;
When Armyn mus'd the vacant hour away, And centaury red and yellow cinquefoil grew,
Where willows o'er him wav'd their pendent spray. And scarlet campion, and cyanus blue;
Cool was the shade, and cool the passing gale, And tufted thyme, and marjoram's purple bloom, And sweet the prospect of th' adjacent vale: And ruddy strawberries yielding rich perfume. The fertile soil, profuse of plants, bestow'd Gay flies their wings on each fair flow'r display'd, The crowfoot's gold, the trefoil's purple show'd, And labouring bees a lulling murmur made. And spiky mint rich fragrance breathing round, Along the brow a path delightful lay;
And meadsweet tall with tufts of flowrets crown'd, Slow by the youths Palemon chanc'd to stray, And comfry white, and boary silver-weed, A bard, who often to the rural throng,
The bending osier, and the rustling reed. At vacant hours, rehears'd the moral song! There, where clear streams about green islands The song the shepherds crav'd; the sage reply'd : spread, “ As late my steps forsook the fountain side, Fair flocks and herds, the wealth of Armyn, fed; Adown the green lane by the beechen grove, There, on the hill's soft slope, delightful view ! Their Aocks young Pironel and Larvon drove; Fair fields of corn, the wealth of Armyn, grew; With us perchance they'll rest awhile”—The swains | His sturdy hinds, a slow laborious band, Approach'd the shade; their sheep spread o'er the Swept their bright scythes along the level land : Silent they view'd the venerable man, [plains: Blithe youths and maidens nimbly near them passid, Whose voice melodious thus the lay began : And the thick swarth in careless wind-rows cast. “What Alcon sung where Evesham's vales extend, Full on the landscape shone the westering Sun, I sing; ye swains, your pleas'd attention lend ! When thus the swain's soliloquy begun : There long with him the rural life I led,
“ Haste down, O Sun! and close the tedious day: His fields I cultur'd, and his flocks I fed.
Time, to the unhappy, slowly moves away. Where, by the hamlet road upon the green, Not so to me, in Roden's sylvan bowers, Stood pleasant cots with trees dispers'd between, Pass'd youth's short blissful reign of careless hours; Beside his door, as waving o'er his head
When to my view the fancy'd future lay, A lofty elm its rustling foliage spread,
A region ever tranquil, ever gay. Frequent he sat; while all the village train O then, what ardours did my breast inflame! Press'd round his seat, and listen'd to his strain. What thoughts were mine, of friendship, love, and And once of fair Benevolence he sung,
fame! And thus the tuneful numbers left his tongue :
How tasteless life, now all its joys are try'd, Ye youth of Avon's banks, of Bredon's groves, And warm pursuits in dull repose subside !" Sweet scenes, where Plenty reigns, and Pleasure He paus'd: his closing words Albino heard, Woo to your bow'rs Benevolence the fair, (roves! As down the stream his little boat he steerd; Kind as your soil, and gentle as your air.
His hand releas'd the sail, and dropt the oar, She comes ! her tranquil step and placid eye, And moor’d the light skiff on the sedgy shore. Fierce Rage, fell Hate, and ruthless Avarice fly. “Cease, gentle swain,” he said; “no more, in vain, She comes! her heav'nly smiles, with powerful Thus make past pleasure cause of present pain ! charm,
[arm. Cease, gentle swain,” he said; “ from thee, alone, Smoothe Care's rough brow, and rest Toil's weary Are youth's bless'd hours and fancy'd prospects flown? She comes ! ye shepherds, importune her stay! Ah, no!-remembrance to my view restores While your fair farms exuberant wealth display, Dear native fields, which now my soul deplores; While herds and flocks their annual increase yield, Rich hills and vales, and pleasant village scenes And yellow harvests load the fruitful field; Ofoaks whose wide arms stretch'do'er daisied greens, Beneath grim Want's inexorable reign,
And windmill's sails slow-circling in the breeze, Pale Sickness, oft, and feeble Age complain! And cottage walls envelop'd half with trees