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had bests, clubs typical of strife,
the emblem of a timely graves.

d be and what was an hour-glass once
dce-box, rad a billard mast

des the work of his desertive scythe.
FJ. he charms a world whom fashion bling

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rige worth, most pleased when idle most,

aly happy are then wasted hours.

esses, at whose age thur mothers wore
ekstring and the bit, assume the dress
manhood, sit primis in the school

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1 at some Vic at comer of the board.
s every trick, and soor play all the z ane.
whee with ec ante, Roy ng as I preven
hl 1 f. d an end, or how pirered?
s far oft turns aside

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mirzed rock or mouldering tower,

ts him not the a, coming home,
acorns it, that ile word may knew
pt for what was nothing worth,
shin hand ami paber spread,
wed for & tar different ase,
4 dolis, and every lule thing

That fands in her excursive fights.

Come, Return, s Methink

With ma

Treads on

In letting

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z, once agan season of peace, E.ching, and cortine long!

e in the steaky west,

step slow-moving, wrk the Night
weeping train: one hand employed
the curtain of rose

On bird and best the other charged for man·
With sweet oblici of the cares of day;

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Not sumptuously a med, no: needing aid,
Like homely-featured Night, of clustering geais;
A star or two just twinkling on thy brow
Suffices thee; save that the moon is thine
No less than hers, not worn indeed on high
With ostentatious pageantry, but set
With modest grandeur in thy purpie zone,
Resplendent less, but of an ampler round.
Come then, and thou shalt find thy votary calm,
Or make me so. Composure is thy gift:
And whether I devote thy gentler hours
To books, to music, or the poet's toil;
To weaving nets for bird-alluring fruit:
Or twining silken threads round ivory reels,

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Must be detached, and where it strews the floor
Swept with a woman's neatness, breeding else
Contagion, and disseminating death.
Discharge but these kind offices, (and who
Would spare, that loves them, offices like these?)
Well they reward the toil. The sight is pleased,
The scent regaled, each odoriferous leaf,
Each opening blossom, freely breathes abroad
Its gratitude, and thanks him with its sweets.
7 So manifold, all pleasing in their kind,
All healthful, are the employs of rural life,
Reiterated as the wheel of time✔
Runs round, still ending, and beginning still.✔
Nor are these all. To deck the shapely knoll,
That, softly swelled and gaily dressed, appears
A flowery island, from the dark green lawn
Emerging, must be deemed a labour due
To no mean hand, and asks the touch of taste.
Here also grateful mixture of well-matched
And sorted hues (each giving each relief,

And by contrasted beauty shining more)

Is needful. Strength may wield the ponderous spade,
May turn the clod, and wheel the compost home,
But elegance, chief grace the garden shows,

And most attractive, is the fair result

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Of thought, the creature of a polished mind.
Without it, all is gothic as the scene

640

Near yonder heath; where industry misspent,

To which the insipid citizen resorts

But proud of his uncouth ́ill-chosen task,

Has made a heaven on earth; with suns and moons

Of close-rammed stones has charged the encumbered soil

And fairly laid the zodiac in the dust.

He therefore who would see his flowers disposed
Sightly and in just order, ere he gives

The beds the trusted treasure of their seeds,

Forecasts the future whole; that when the scene
Shall break into its preconceived display,
Each for itself, and all as with one voice
Conspiring, may attest his bright design.i
Nor even then, dismissing as performed
His pleasant work, may he suppose it done.
Few self-supported flowers endure the wind
Uninjured, but expect the upholding aid
Of the smooth shaven prop, and, neatly tied,
Are wedded thus, like beauty to old age
For interest sake, the living to the dead.

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Some clothe the soil that feeds them, far diffused
And lowly creeping, modest and yet fair,
Like virtue, thriving most where little seen:
Some, more aspiring, catch the neighbour shrub
With clasping tendrils, and invest his branch,
Else unadorned, with many a gay festoon
And fragrant chaplet, recompensing well

The strength they borrow with the grace they lend.
All hate the rank society of weeds,
Noisome, and ever greedy to exhaust

The impoverished earth; an overbearing race,
That, like the multitude made faction-mad,
Disturb good order, and degrade true worth.
>O blest seclusion from a jarring world,
Which he thus occupied enjoys! Retreat
Cannot indeed to guilty man restore
Lost innocence, or cancel follies past;
But it has peace, and much secures the mind
From all assaults of evil, proving still

A faithful barrier, not o'erleaped with ease
By vicious custom raging uncontrolled
Abroad, and desolating public life.
When fierce temptation, seconded within
By traitor appetite, and armed with darts

Tempered in hell, invades the throbbing breast,
To combat may be glorious, and success

Perhaps may crown us, but to fly is safe.
Had I the choice of sublunary good,

What could I wish that I possess not here?

Health, leisure, means to improve it, friendship, peace,.

No loose or wanton though a wandering muse,

And constant occupation without care.

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Thus blest, I draw a picture of that bliss;
Hopeless indeed that dissipated minds,
And profligate abusers of a world
Created fair so much in vain for them
Should seek the guiltless joys that I describe,
Allured by my report: but sure no less

That self condemned they must neglect the prize,
And what they will not taste must yet approve.
What we admire we praise; and when we praise,
Advance it into notice, that, its worth
Acknowledged, others may admire it too.
I therefore recommend, though at the risk-
Of popular disgust, yet boldly still,

The cause of piety, and sacred truth,

And virtue, and those scenes which God ordained

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680

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Should best secure them and promote them most;
Scenes that I love, and with regret perceive
Forsaken, or through folly not enjoyed.

Pure is the nymph, though liberal of her smiles,
And chaste, though unconfined, whom I extol;
Not as the prince in Shushan, when he called,
Vainglorious of her charms, his Vashti forth
To grace the full pavilion. His design
Was but to boast his own peculiar good,
Which all might view with envy, none partake.
My charmer is not mine alone; my sweets,
And she that sweetens all my bitters too,
Nature, enchanting Nature, in whose form
And lineaments divine I trace a hand

That errs not, and find raptures still renewed,
Is free to all men, universal prize.

Strange that so fair a creature should yet want
Admirers, and be destined to divide

With meaner objects even the few she finds.

Stripped of her ornaments, her leaves, and flowers,
She loses all her influence. Cities then
Attract us, and neglected nature pines,
Abandoned, as unworthy of our love.

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720

730

But are not wholesome airs, though unperfumed

By roses, and clear suns, though scarcely felt,

And groves, if unharmonious, yet secure

From clamour, and whose very silence charms,

To be preferred to smoke, to the eclipse

That metropolitan volcanoes make,

Whose Stygian throats breathe darkness all day long,
And to the stir of commerce, driving slow,

And thundering loud, with his ten thousand wheels? 740

They would be, were not madness in the head

And folly in the heart; were England now
What England was, plain, hospitable, kind,
And undebauched. But we have bid farewell
To all the virtues of those better days,
And all their honest pleasures. Mansions once
Knew their own masters, and laborious hinds
That had survived the father served the son.

Now the legitimate and rightful lord

Is but a transient guest, newly arrived,
And soon to be supplanted. He that saw
His patrimonial timber cast its leaf

Sells the last scantling, and transfers the price
To some shrewd sharper, ere it buds again.
Estates are landscapes, gazed upon awhile,

750

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