« ZurückWeiter »
There interspers'd in lawns and op'ning glades.
Thin trees arise that shun each others shades,
Here in full light the russet plains extend;
There, wrapt in clouds, the bluish hills ascend.
Ev'n the wild heath displays her purple dyes, 25
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 or the balmy tree, 39
While by our oaks the precious loads are borne,
And realms commanded which those trees adorn.
Not proud Olympus yields a nobler sight,
Tho' gods assembled grace his tow'ring height,
Than what more humble mountains offer here, 35
Where, in their blessings, all those gods appear.
See Pan with flocks, with fruits Pomona crown'd,
Hera blushing Flora paints th' enamell'd ground,
Here Ceres' gifts in waving prospect stand,
And nodding tempt the joyful reaper's hand; 49
Rich industry sits smiling on the plains,
And peace and plenty tell, a Stuart reigns.
Not thus the land appear'd in ages past,
And kings more furious and severe than they;
What could be free, when lawless beasts obey'd,
And ev'n the elements a tyrant sway'd?
In vain kind seasons swell'd the teeming grain,
Softshow'rs distill'd, and suns grew warm in vain:
The swain with tears his frustrate labour yields, 5 J
And famish'd dies amidst his ripen'd fields.
What wonder then, a beast or subject slain
Were equal crimes in a despotic reign?
Both doom'd alike, for sportive tyrants bled,
But while the subject starv'd, the beast was fed.
Proud Nimrod first the bloody chace began,
A mighty hunter, and his prey was man;
Our haughty Norman boasts that barb'rous name.
And makes his trembling slaves the royal game.
The fields are ravish'd from th' industrious swains, 6$
From men their cities, and from gods their fanes:
The levell'd towns with weeds liecover'd o'er;
The hollow winds thro' naked temples roar;
Round broken columns clasping ivy twin'd;
O 'er heaps of ruin slalk'd the stately hind; 7*
The fox obscene to gaping tombs retires,
And savage bowlings fill the sacred quires.
Aw'd by his nobles, by his commons curst,
Th' oppressor rul'd tyrranic where he durst;
Stretch'd o'er the poor and church his iron rod, 7 5
And serv'd alike his vassals and his God.
Whom ev'n the Saxon spar'd, and bloody Dane,
The wanton victims of his sport remain.
But see, the man, who spacious regions gave
A waste for beasts, himself deny'd a grave i
Stretch'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, 85
Nor saw displeas'd the peaceful cottage rise;
Then gathering flocks on unknown mountains fed,
O'er sandy wilds were yellow harvests spread;
The forest uqndcr'd at th' unusual grain.
And secret transports touph'd the conscious swain. 50
Fair Liberty, Britannia's goddess, rears,
Her cheerful head, and leads the golden years.
Ye vig'rous swains I while youth ferments your And purer spirits swell the sprightly flood, £blood, Now range the hills, the gameful woods beset, 95
Wind the shrill horn, or spread the waving net.
Co uch'd close he I jes,,and meditates the prey;
Some thoughtless town, with ease and plenty blest,
See! from the brake the whirring pheasant springs,
His purple crest, and scarlet-circled eyes,
Nor yet, when moist Arcturus clouds the sky,
In genial spring, beneath the quiv'ring shade, 1 ;$ Where cooling vapour; breathe ;.long 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, And eyes the dancing cork and bending reed. 140 Our plenteous streams a various race supply-,
The bright-ey'd perch with fins of Tyrian dye,
The silver eel, in shining volumes roll'd,
The yellow carp, in scales bedropp'd with gold,
Swift trouts, diversify'd with crimson stains, 145
And pikes, the tyrants of the wat'ry plains.
Now Cancer glows with Phcebus' 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 op'ning hound. 150
Th' impatient courser pants in ev'ry vein,
And patving, 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 threat'ning steep, 155
Bush through the thickets, down the vallies sweep,
Hang o'er their coursers heads with eager speed,
And earth rolls back beneath the flying steed!
Let old Arcadia boast her ample plain,
Th' immortal huntress, and her virgin train; 160
Nor envy, Windsor l since thy shades have seen
As bright a goddess, and as chaste a queen;
Whose care, like her's, protects the sylvan reign.
The earth's fair light, and empress of the main.
Here too, 'tissung, of old Diana stray'd, 165
And Cynthus' top forsook for Windsor shade;