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But when the tainted gales the game betray,
See! from the brake the whirring pheasant
And mounts exulting on trinmphant wings:
Short is his joy; he feels the fiery wound,
Flutters in blood, and panting beats the ground*
Ah! what avail his glossy, varying dyes,
His purple crest, and scarlet circled eyes,
The vivid green his shining plumes unfold,
His painted wings, and breast that flames with gold?
Nor yet, when moist Arcturus clouds the sky, The woods and fields their pleasing toils deny. To plains with well-breath'd beagles we repair. And trace the mazes of the circling hare (Beasts, urg'd by us, their fellow beasts pursue. And learn of man each other to undo): With slaughtering guns th' unwearied fowler roves, When frosts have whiten'd all the naked groves; Wher&'doves in flocks the leafless trees o'ershade, And lonely woodcocks haunt the watery glade. He lifts the tube, and levels with his eye; Straight a short thunder breaks the frozen sky: Oft, as in airy rings they skim the heath, The clamorous lapwings feel the leaden death; Oft, as the mounting larks their notes prepare, They fall, and leave their little lives in air. In genial spring, beneath the quivering shade, * Where cooling vapours breathe along the mead, The patient fisher takes his silent stand, Intent, his angle trembling in his hand:
With looks unmov'd, he hopes the scaly breed,
Now Cancer glows with Phoebus' fiery car:
Here, too, 'tis sung, of old, Diana stray'd, And Cynthus' top forsook for Windsor shade; Here was she seen o'er airy wastes to rove, Seek the clear spring, or hannt the pathless grove; Here, arm'd with silver bows, in early dawn, Her buskin'd virgins trac'd the dewy lawn.
Above the rest a rural nymph was fam'd, Thy offspring, Thames! the fair Lodona nam'd (Lodona's fate, in long oblivion cast, The muse shall sing, and what she sings shall last). Scarce could the goddess from her nymph be known, But by the crescent, and the golden zone. She scorn'd the praise of beanty, and the care; A belt her waist, a fillet binds, her nairf,
A painted quiver on her shoulder sounds,
As from the gods she flew with furious pace,
* Ah, Cynthia! ah—though banish'd from thy train,
Let me, O let me, to the shades repair,
My native shades! there weep, and murmur there!*
She said, and, melting as in tears she lay,
In a soft silver stream dissolv'd away.
The silver stream her virgin coldness keeps,
For ever murmurs, and for ever weeps;
Still bears the name the helpless virgin bore,
And bathes the forest where she rang'd before.
In her chaste current oft the goddess laves,
And with celestial tears angments the waves.
Oft in her glass the musing shepherd spies
The headlong mountains and the downward skies.
The watery landscape of the pendent woods.
And absent trees that tremble in the floods;
In the clear azure gleam the flocks are seen,
And floating forests paint the waves with green;
Through the fairscene roll slow the lingering streams, Then foaming pour along, and rush into the Thames.
Thou, too, great father of the British floods! With joyful pride survey'st our lofty woods; Where towering omks their growing honours rear, And future navies on thy shores appear. Not Neptune's self from all her streams receives A wealthier tribute than to thine lie gives. No seas so rich, so gay no banks appear, No lake so gentle, and no spring so clear. Nor Po so swells the fabling poet's lays, While led along the skies his current strays. As thine, which visits Windsor's fam'd abodes. To grace the mansion of our earthly gods: Nor all his stars above a lustre show, Like the bright beanties on thy banks below; Wlieie Jove, subdued by mortal passion still, Might change Olympus for a nobler hill.
Happy the man whom this bright court approves. His sovereign favours, and his country loves: Happy next him, who to these shades retires, Whom nature charms, and whom the muse inspires, Whom humbler joys of home-felt quiet please, Successive stndy, exercise, and ease. He gathers health from herbs the forest yields, And of their fragrant physic spoils the fields; With chymic art exalts the mineral powers, And draws the aromatic souls of flowers: Now marks the course of rolling orbs on high; O'er figur'd worlds now travels with his eye; Of ancient writ unlocks the learned store, Consults the dead, and lives past ages o'er: Or wandering thoughtful in the silent wood, Attends the duties of the wise and good, T' observe a mean, be to himself a friend. To follow nature, and regard his end; Or looks on heaven with more than mortal eyes. Bids his free soul expatiate in the skies, Amid her kindred stars familiar roam, Survey the region, and confess her home!
Such was the life great Scipio once admir'd,
Ye sacred Nine! that all my soul possess,
I seem through consecrated walks to rove,
I hear soft music die along the grove:
Led by the sound I roam from shade to shade,
By godlike poets venerable made:
Hern his first lays majestic Dentiam sung;
There the last numbors flow'd from Cowley's tongue.
O early lost! what tears the river shed,
When the snd pomp along his banks was led!
His drooping swans on every note expire,
And on his willows hung each muse's lyre.
Since fate relentless stopp'd their lieavenly voice, more the forests ring, or groves rejoice; Who now shall charm the shades, where Cowley strung
His living harp, and lofty Denham sung?
Here noble Surrey felt the sacred rage,