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TIRED with the busy crowds that all the day
Impatient throng where Folly's altars flame, My languid powers dissolve with quick decay,
Till genial Sleep repair the sinking frame. Hail, kind reviver! that canst lull the cares
And every weary sense compose to rest, Lighten the oppressive load which anguish bears, And warm with hope the cold desponding
Touch'd by thy rod, from Power's majestic brow
Drops the gay plume; he pines a lowly clown; And on the cold earth stretch'd the son of Woe Quaffs Pleasure's draught, and wears a fan
When roused by thee, on boundless pinions borné,
Fancy to fairy scenes exults to rove, Now scales the cliff gay-gleaming on the morn,
Now sad and silent treads the deepening grove; Or skims the main and listens to the storms,
Marks the long waves roll far remote away; Or, mingling with ten thousand glittering forms,
Floats on the gale and basks in purest day. Haply, ere long, pierced by the howling blast,
Through dark and pathless deserts I shall roam, Plunge down the unfathom’d deep, or shrink aghast
[tomb: Where bursts the shrieking spectre from the VOL. IV.
Perhaps loose Luxury's enchanting smile
Shall lure my steps to some romantic dale, Where Mirth’s light freaks the' unheeded hours
beguile, And airs of rapture warble in the gale. Instructive emblem of this mortal state!
Where scenes as various every hour arise In swift succession, which the hand of Fate
Presents, then snatches from our wondering eyes. Be taught, vain man, how fleeting all thy joys,
Thy boasted grandeur, and thy glittering store; Death comes and all thy fancied bliss destroys,
Quick as a dream it fades, and is no more. And, sons of sorrow! though the threatening storm
Of angry Fortune overhang awhile, Let not her frowns your inward peace deform;
Soon happier days in happier climes shall smile. Through earth's throng'd visions while we toss
forlorn, 'Tis tumult all and rage and restless strife; But these shall vanish like the dreams of morn, When Death awakes us to immortal life.
WINTER. FAREWELL those genial seasons of the year, Young Spring, who filled with flowers the wil
ling soil; Summer, whose sunbeams nursed the foodful ear; With Autumn grateful to the reaper's toil.
For lo! sad change! from yonder gathering cloud
Stern Winter wildly drives his dark array: From the keen north the winds are piping loud, As through the yielding woods they sweep their
High on a storm, with visage fierce and pale,
The barren Eurus rides; the rain descends : Far, far resounding through the floated vale, Its hoarse rough howls the dashing torrent
Where are those rural charms that fed my eyes, The cowsliped meadow and the hedgerow
green? In one wide waste the snow-clad landscape lies,
And frost with withering hand deforms the scene.
I sought the copse, the joyous thrush's haunt;
For much I wish'd her melody to hear: In vain I woo'd her to begin her chant,
Nor joyous thrush nor melody was there.
In social troops the silent larks are found,
Picking with busy bill their scanty food : Ah me, I hear the gun's destructive sound, And the snow blushes with their harmless
Sweet bird ! are these the sports of reasoning man?
Thus doth his savage hands thy songs repay, Which bade his joys awake when spring began, Which cheer'd in summer's heat the toilsome
The redbreast, wisely confident, presumes
To screen his weakness in the peopled cot;: And, sweetly thankful for the scatter'd crumbs,
Pays the cheap bounty with his warbled note, Now dull and dreary wakes the tardy morn;
The sickly sun resigns his noontide power; Night comes; and Fear, of Melancholy born,
Adds a new horror to the darkling hour. At every bush, at every sudden breeze,
Starts the lone traveller on his wilder'd way; In his own shade a thousand deaths he sees,
And stops and pants and listens in dismay. The night bird's thrice-flapp'd wing and shriek
ings fell Denounce the pining sick man's hopeless doom; In the hush air imperfect whispers dwell Of demons prowling through the midnight
gloom. Stonehearted Murder bathes his sword in blood,
Rapine, foul fiend, leads forth his lawless band; Insatiate Hunger calls amain for food;
While pale-eyed Famine howls along the land. Where are thy haunts, O Cheerfulness? the bower
Of spring no more invites thee; nor the walk At summer's eve, beneath thy guardian power
Where late I listen’d to my Laura's talk. Nor art thou seen within the courts of pride;
Ambition drives thy peaceful image thence: Though feast, and sport, and laughter there abide,
Excess and riot pall thy nicer sense.
At length thy coy retirement have I found,
Where smokes the cottage in the sheltered vale; Where,whilst his rustic friends the hearth surround,
The simple swain recounts his frolic tale. His heart is humble as the garb he wears,
Like his coarse daily food, his manners plain; Contentment’s blessing the dull season cheers,
And the storm beats upon his roof in vain. The smiles of innocence his temper guard,
And from his threshold banish homebred strife; Fresh health and honest gain his toils reward ;
And one continued summer rules his life. Learn hence, ye vain, ye idle, and ye proud,
When the dark storms of bleak misfortune lour, 'Tis virtue only can dispel the cloud, And bless with cheerfulness the wintry hour.
ON RURAL SPORTS.
THE sun wakes jocund-all of life, who breathe
In air, or earth and lawn and thicket rove, Who swim the surface or the deep beneath,
Swell the full chorus of delight and love. But what are ye, who cheer the bay of hounds,
Whose level'd thunder frighten's Morn's repose, Who drag the net, whose hook insidious wounds
A writhing reptile, type of mightier woes? I see ye come, and havoc loose the reins :
A general groan the general anguish speaks, The stately stag falls butcher'd on the plains,
The dew of death hangs clammy on his cheeks.