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Thy gracious auspices impart,
Behind, n green like velvet neat,
Soft to the eye, and to the feet;
Where odious plants in ev'ning fair
Breathe all around ambrosial air;
From Eurus, foe to kitchen-ground,
Fenc'd by a slope with bushes crown'd,
Fit dwelling for the feather'd throng,
Who pay their quit-rents with a song;
With op'ning views of hill and dale.
Where sense and fancy too regale,
Where the half-cirque, which vision bounds,
Like amphitheatre surrounds:
And woods impervious to the breeze,
Thick phalanx of embodied trees,
From hills through plains in dusk array
Extended far, repel tne day.
Here stillness, height, and solemn shade
Invite, and contemplation aid:
Here nymphs from hollow oaks relate
The dark decrees and will of fate,
And dreams beneath the spreading beech
Inspire, and docile fancy teach,
While soft as breezy breath of wind,
Impulses rustle through the mind:
Here Dryads, scorning Phoebus' ray,
While Pan melodious pipes away,
In measur'd motions frisk about,
'Till old Silenus puts them out.
There see the clover, pea, and bean,
Vie in variety of green;
Fresh pastures speckled o'er with sheep,
Brown fields their fallow sabbaths keep,
Plump Ceres golden tresses wear,
And poppy top-knots deck her hair,
And silver streams through meadows stray.
And Naiads on the margin play,
And lesser nymphs on side of hills
From play-thing urns pour down the rills.
Thus shelter'd, free from care and strife. May I enjoy a calm through life; See faction, safe in low degree, As men at land see storms at sea, And laugh at miserable elves, Not kind so much as to themselves,
Curs'd with such souls of base alloy,
ELEGY to a YouNg Nob LEMAN leaving the
ERE yet, ingenuous youth, thy steps retire
If mimic hues, by Art or Fashion spread,
Their genuine, simple colouring should supply; O! with them may these laureat honoi'-'s fide;
And with them (if it can) my fri .... . r> die. ■ And do not blame, if, tho' thyseir inspire,
Cautious I strike the panegyric string; The muse full oft pursues a meteor-fire,
And, vainly vent'rous, soars on waxen wing. Too actively awake at Friendship's voice,
The poet's bosom pours the fervent strain,
And oft invokes oblivion's aid in vain.
Condemn me, if I check the plausive string;
Be, what the purest muse would wish to sing. Be still thyself; that open path of truth,
Which led thee here, let manhood firm pursue;
And, all thy virtue dictates, dare to do.
On vice's front let fearful caution lour,
Of knaves that plot, and fools that fawn for power. So, round* thy brow when age's honours spread,
When Death's cold hand unstrings thy Mason's lyre, When the green turf lies lightly on his head,
Thy worth shall some superior bard inspire: He, to the amplest bounds of Time's domain,
On Rapture's plume shall give thy name to fly; For trust, with rev'rence trust this Sabine strain:
"The Muse forbids the virtuous man to die."
Sheep-shearing: Song on that Occasion: SheepShearing Feast and Meiiriments. /dtes.j
Now, joHy swains, the harvest of your cares
* The caves of Brigantiuir.—the forges of Sheffield, in Yorkshire, whera the shepherd's shears and ali edge-toors are made.
The steady anvil, and the glaring mass,
Clatter their heavy hammers down by turn.,
flatt'ning the steel; from their rough hands receive
The shar;>en'd instrument, that from the flock
Severs the fleece. If verdant elder spreads
Her silver flow'rs; if humble daisies vield
To yellow crow-foot, and luxuriant grass,
Gay shearingrtime approaches. First, howe'3?,
Drive to the double told upon the brim
Ofa clear river, gently drive the flock,
And plunge them one by one into the flood:
Plung'd in the flood, not long the struggler sinks,
With his white flakes, that glisten thro' the tide;
The sturdy rustic* in the'middle wave,
Awaits to seize him rising $ one arm bears
His lifted head above the limpid stream,
While the full clammy fleece the .other laves
Around, laborious, with repeated toil;
And then resigns him to the sunny bank,
Where, bleating loud, he shakes his dripping locks.
Shear them the fourth or fifth return of morn. Lest touch of busy fly-blows wound their skin •, Thy peaceful subjects without murmur yield Their yearly tribute. 'tis the prudent part , To cherish and be gentle, while ye strip The downy vesture from their tender sides, fress not too close; with cautiou turn the points; And from the head in reg'lar rounds proceed: But speedy, when ye chance to wound, with tar Prevent the wingy swarm and scorching heat; And careful house them, if the low'ring clouds Mingle their stores tumultuous: through the gloom Then thunder oft with pond'rous wheels rolls loud, And bre?.ks the crystal urns of heav'n: adown Falls streaming rain. Sometimes among the steeps Of Cambrian glades (pity the Cambrian glades), fast tumbling brooks on brooks enormous swell, And sudden overwhelm their vanish'd fields: Down with the flood away the naked sheep, Bleating, in vain, are borne, and straw-built huts, And rifted trees, and heavy enormous rocks, f own with the rapid torrent to the deep.
At shearing-time, along the lively vales, Rural festivities are often heard: