Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

See a long racel thy spacious courts adorn;
See future sons, and daughters yet unborn,
In crowding ranks on every side arise,
Demanding life, impatient for the skies !

90
See barbarous nations? at thy gates attend,
Walk in thy light, and in thy temple bend;
See thy bright altars throng'd with prostrate kings,
And heap'd with products of Sabean3 springs !
For thee Idume's spicy forests blow,

95 And seeds of gold in Ophir's mountains glow : See heaven its sparkling portals wide display, And break upon them in a flood of day! No more the rising sun' shall gild the morn, Nor evening Cynthia fill her silver horn; 100 But lost, dissolved in thy superior rays, One tide of glory, one unclouded blaze, O'erflow thy courts: the Light himself shall shine Reveal'd, and God's eternal day be thine! The seas5 shall waste, the skies in smoke decay, 105 Rocks fall to dust, and mountains melt away ; But fix'd his word, his saving power remains; Thy realm for ever lasts, thy own Messiah reigns !

WINDSOR FOREST. To the Right Honourable George Lord Lansdowne Non injussa cano: te nostræ, Vare, myricæ. Te nemus omne canet; nec Phæbo gratior ulla est, Quam sibi quæ Vari præscripsit pagina nomen.

VIRGIL. Thy forest, Windsor! and thy green retreats, At once the Monarch's and the Muses' seats, Invite my lays. Be present, sylvan maids ! Unlock your springs, and open your shades.

(1) Ch 1x. ver. 4. (2) Ch. 1x. ver. 3. (3) Ch. 1x. ver. 6 (4) Ch. II. ver. 19, 20. (5) Ch. li. ver. 6, and ch. liv ver. 10.

Granville commands ; your aid, O muses, bring!
What muse for Granville can refuse to sing ?

The groves of Eden, vanish'd now so long,
Live in description, and look green in song:
These, were my breast inspired with equal flame,
Like them in beauty, should be like in fame.
Here hills and vales, the woodland and the plain,
Here earth and water seem to strive again;
Not chaos-like together crusk'd and bruised,
But, as the world, harmoniously confused;
Where order in variety we see,
And where, though all things differ, all agree.
Here waving groves a chequer'd scene display
And part admit, and part exclude the day;
As some coy nymph her lover's warm address,
Nor quite indulges, nor can quite repress.
"There, interspersed in lawns and opening glader,
Thin trees arise that sun each other's shades.
Here in full light the russet plains extend ;
"There, wraptän clouds, the blueieh hills ascend.
E'en the wild heath displays ker purple dyes,
And 'midst the desert, fruitful fields arise,
"That, crown'd with tufted trees and springing corn,
Like verdant isles the sable waste adorn.
Let India boast her plants, nor envy we
The weeping amber, er the balmy tree,
While by our oaks the precious leads are borne,
And realms commanded which those trees adorn.
Not proud Olympus yields a nobler sight,
Though gods assemibled grace his towering height,
Than what more humble mountains offer here,
Where, in their blessings, all those gods appear.
See Pan with flocks, with fruits Pomona crown'd,
Here blushing Flora paints the enameli'd ground,
Here Ceres' gifts in waving prospect stand,
And nodding tempt the joyful reaper's hand;
Rich industry sits smiling on the plains,
And peace and plenty tell, a Stuart reigns.

Not thus the land appear’d in ages past,
A dreary desert, and a gloomy waste,
To savage beasts and savage laws a prey,
And kings more furious and severe than they;
Who claim'd the skies, dispeopled air and floods,
The lonely lords of empty wilds and woods :

Cities laid waste, they storm'd the dens and caves 1 (For wiser brutes were backward to be slaves.)

What could be free, when lawless beasts obey'd,
And e'er the elements a tyrant sway'd ?
In vain kind seasons swell'd the teeming grain;
Soft showers distill'd, and suns grew warm in vain,
The swain with tears his frustrate labour yields,
And, famish’d, dies amidst his ripen'd fields.
What wonder then, a beast or subject slain
Were equal crimes in a despotic reign?
Botk, doom'd alike, for sportive tyrants bled,
But, while the subject starved, the beast was fed
Proud Nimrod first the bloody chase began,
A mighty hanter, and his prey was man.
Our haughty Norman boasts that barbarous name,
And makes his trembling slaves the royal game.
The fields are ravish'd from the industrious swains,
From men their cities, and from gods their fanes :
The leveli'd towns with weeds lie cover'd o'er;
The hollow winds through naked temples roar;
Bound broken columns clasping ivy twined;
O'er heaps of ruins stalk'd the stately hind;
The fox obscene to gaping tombs retires,
And savage howlings fill the sacred quires
Awed by his nobles, by his commons curst,
The oppressor ruled tyrannic where he dursi,
Stretch'd o'er the poor and church his iron rod,
And serv'd alike his vassals and his God.
Whom e'en the Saxon spared, and bloody Dane,
The wanton victims of his sport remain.
But see, the man who spacious regions gave
A waste for beasts, himself denied a grave :

Gretch'd on the lawn his second hope survey,
At once the chaser, and at once the prey :
Lo Rufus, tugging at the deadly dart,
Bleeds in the forest like a wounded hart.
Succeeding monarchs heard the subjects' cries,
Nor saw displeased the peaceful cottage rise.
Then gathering flocks on unknown mountains fed,
O'er sandy wilds where yellow harvests spread,
The forests wonder'd at the unusual grain,
And secret transports touch'd the conscious swain.
Fair Liberty, Britannia's goddess, rearg
Her cheerful head, and leads the golden years.

Ye vigorous swains! while youth ferments your blood,
And purer spirits swell the sprightly flood,
Now range the hills, the gameful woods beset,
Wind the shrill horn, or spread the waving net.
When milder autumn summer's heat succeeds,
And in the new-shorn field the partridge feeds;
Before his lord the ready spaniel bounds,
Panting with hope, he tries the furrow'd grounds;
But when the tainted gales the game betray,
Couch'd close he lies, and meditates the prey:
Secure they trust the unfaithful field beset,
Till hovering o'er them sweeps the swelling net.
Thus (if small things we may with great compare)
When Albion sends her eager sons to war,
Some thoughtless town, with ease and plenty bless'd
Near and more near, the closing lines invest;
Sudden they seize the amazed, defenceless prize,
And high in air Britannia's standard flies.

See! from the brake the whirring pheasant springs, And mounts exulting on triumphant wings : Short is his joy, he feels the fiery wound, Flutters in blood, and panting beats the ground. Ah! what avails 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?

[ocr errors]

Nor yet, when moist Arcturus clouds the sky,
The woods and fields their pleasing toils deny.
To plains with well-breathed beagles we repair,
And trace the mazes of the circling hare:
(Beasts, urged by us, their fellow-beasts pursue,
And learn of man each other to undo :)
With slaughtering guns the unwearied fowler roves,
When frosts have whiten'd all the naked groves ;
Where 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 unmoved, he hopes the scaly breed,
And eyes the dancing cork and bending reed.
Our plenteous streams a various race supply,
The bright-eyed perch with fins of Tyrian dye,
The silver eel, in shining volumes rollid,
The yellow carp, in scales bedropp'd with gold,
Swift trouts, diversified with crimson stains,
And pikes, the tyrants of the watery plains.

Now Caneer glows with Phæbus' fiery car
The youth rush eager to the sylvan war,
Swarm o'er the lawns, the forest walks surround,
Rouse the fleet hart, and cheer the opening hound.
The impatient courser pants in every vein,
And, pawing, seems to beat the distant plain :
Hills, vales, and floods appear already cross'd,
And, ere he starts, a thousand steps are lost.
See the bold youth strain up the threatening steep,
Bush through the thickets, down the valleys sweep,

« ZurückWeiter »