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TIRST in these fields I try the fylvan strains,
Nor blush to sport on Windfor’s blissful plains :
Fair Thames, flow gently from thy sacred spring,
While on thy banks Sicilian Muses fing;
Let vernal airs through trembling osiers play,
And Albion's cliffs refound the rural lay.
You that, too wise for pride, too good for power,
Enjoy the glory to be great no more,
And, carrying with you all the world can boast,
To all the world illustriously are loft !
O let my Muse her sender reed inspire,
Till in your native shades you tune the lyre :
So when the Nightingale to rest removes,
The Thrush may chant to the forsaken groves,
But charm’d to silence, listens while she sings, 55
And all th' aërial audience clap their wings.
Soon as the flocks shook off the nightly dews,
Two Swains, whom Love kept wakeful, and the Muse,
Pour'd o'er the whitening vale their fleecy care,
Fresh as the morn, and as the season fair :
The dawn now blushing on the mountain's side,
Thus Daphnis spoke, and Strephon thus reply'd.
Hear how the birds, on every bloomy spray,
With joyous music wake the dawning day!
Why ft we mute, when early linnets sing,
When warbling Philomel salutes the spring ?
Why sit we fad, when Phosphor shines so clear,
And lavish Nature paints the purple year?
Sing then, and Damon shall attend the strain,
While yon' now oxen turn the furrow'd plain.
Here the bright crocus and blue violet glow;
Here western wiņds on breathing roses blow.
I'll stake yon' lamb, that near the fountain plays,
And from the brink his dancing fhade surveys,
And I this bowl, where wanton ivy twines,
And swelling clusters bend the curling vires :
Four figures rising from the work appear,
The various seasons of the rolling year ;
And what is that, which binds the radiant sky,
Where twelve fair signs in beauteous order lie?"
Ver. 34. The first reading was,
And his own image from the bank surveys.
Ver, 36. And clusters lurk beneath the curling vines.
Then sing by turns, by turns the Muses sing,
Now hawthorns blossom, now the daisies spring,
Now leaves the trees, and flowers adorn the ground ;
Begin, the vales (hall every note rebound.
Inspire me, Phoebus, in my Delia's praise, 45
With Waller's strains, or Granville's moving lays !
A milk-white bull shall at your altars stand,
That threats a fight, and spurns the rising fand.
O Love! for Sylvia let me gain the prize,
And make my tongue victorious as her eyes ; 5®
No lambs or sheep for vi&tims I'll impart,
Thy victim, Love, shall be the shepherd's heart.
Me gentle Delia beckons from the plain,
Then, hid in shades, eludes her eager swain ;
But feigns a laugh, to see me search around, 55
And by that laugh the willing fair is found.
The sprightly Sylvia trips along the green,
She runs, but hopes she does not run unseen ;
While a kind glance at her pursuer flies,
How much at variance are her feet and eyes! 60
Ver. 49. Originally thus in the MS.
Pan, let my numbers equal Strephon's lays,
Of Parian itone thy ftatue will I raise ;
But if I conquer and augment my fold,
Thy Parian itatue shall be chang'd to gold.
O’er golden sands let rich Pactolus flow,
And trees weep amber on the banks of Po;
Blest Thames's Tores the brightest beauties yield,
Feed here my lambs, I'll seek no distant field.
Celestial Venus haunts Idalia's groves ;
Diana Cynthus, Ceres Hybla loves :
If Windsor shades delight the matchless maid,
Cynthus and Hybla yield to Windsor-shade.
All nature mourns, the skies relent in showers, Hush'd are the birds, and clos’d the drooping flowers ; If Delia smile, the flowers begin to spring,
71 The skies to brighten, and the birds to sing.
Ver. 61. It stood thus at first :
Let rich Iberia golden fleeces boast,
Her purple wool the proud Assyrian coast,
Lleit Thames's shores, &c.
Ver. 61. Originally thus in the MS.
Go, flowery wreath, and let my Sylvia know,
Compar'd to thine how bright her beauties show :
Then die; and dying, teach the lovely maid
How soon the brightest beauties are decay'd.
Go, tuneful bird, that pleas'd the woods so long,
Of Amaryllis learn a sweeter song:
To Heav'n arising then her notes convey,
For Heav'n alone is worthy such a lay.
All nature laughs, the groves are fresh and fair,
The fun's mild lustre warms the vital air ;
If Sylvia smiles, new glories gild the shore,
And vanquish'd nature seems to charm no more.
In spring the in autumn hills I love,
At murn the plains, at noon the shady grove,
But Delia always; absent from her light,
Nor plains at morn, nor groves at noon delight.
Sylvia's like autumn ripe, yet mild as May,
More bright than noon, yet fresh as early day;
E'en spring displeases, when she shines not here;
But, bless'd with her, 'tis spring throughout the year.
Say, Daphnis, say, in what glad foil appears,
A wondrous Tree that sacred Monarchs bears :
Teil me but this, and I'll disclaim the prize,
And give the conquest to thy Sylvia's eyes.
Nay, tell me first, in what more happy fields The Thistle Springs, to which the Lily yields :
Ye. 19. &c. These verses were thus at first :
Ail nature mourns, the birds their songs deny,
Scr wasted brooks the thirsty flowers fupply;
1 Delia (mile, the flowers begin to spring,
The brooks to murmur, and the birds to ling.