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Still find them happy; and confenting Spring
Sheds her own rofy garland on their heads:
Till ev'ning comes at laft, ferene and mild;
When, after the long vernal day of life,
Enamour'd more, as more refemblance fwells
With many a proof of recollected love,
Together down they fink in focial fleep;
Together freed, their gentle fpirits fly

To fcenes where love and blifs immortal reign.

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CHAP. XXVIII.

THOMSON.

THE PLEASURES OF RETIREMENT.

KNEW he but his happine fs, of men

The happieft he! who, far from public rage,
Deep in the vale, with a choice few retir'd,

Drinks the pure pleasures of the rural life.
What though the dome be wanting, whofe proud gate,
Each morning vomits out the freaking crowd
Of flatterers falfe, and in their turn abus'd!
Vile intercourfe! What though the glittering robe,
Of every hue reflected light can give,

Or floating loofe, or ftiff with mazy gold,
The pride and gaze of fools, opprefs him not?
What though, from utmost land and fea purvey'd,
For him each rarer tributary life

Bleeds not, and his infatiate table heaps

With luxury and death? What though his bowl
Flames not with coftly juice; nor funk in beds
Oft of gay care, he toffes out the night,
Or melts the thoughtless hours in idle state ?
What though he knows not those fantastic joys,
That ftill amufe the wanton, ftill deceive;

A face of pleafure, but a heart of pain;

5

Their

Their hollow monuments undelighted all ?
Sure peace is his; a folid life eftrang'd
To difappointment, and fallacious hope:
Rich in content, in Nature's bounty rich,

In herbs and fruits; whatever greens the Spring,
When Heav'n defcends in showers; or bends the bough
When Summer reddens, and when Autumn beams;

Or in the wintry glebe whatever lies

Conceal'd, and fattens with the richest sap:

These are not wanting; nor the milky drove,
Luxuriant, fpread o'er all the lowing vale;
Nor bleating mountains: nor the chide of streams,
And hum of bees, inviting fleep fincere
Into the guiltless breaft, beneath the fhade,
Or thrown at large amid the fragrant hay;
Nor aught befides of profpect, grove, or song,
Dim grottoes, gleaming lakes, and fountain clear.
Here too dwells fimple Truth; plain Innocence;
Unfullied Beauty; found unbroken Youth,
Patient of labour, with a little pleas'd;
Health ever blooming; unambitious Toil;
Calm Contemplation, and poetic Eafe.

The rage of nations, and the crush of ftates,
Move not the man, who, from the world escap'd,
In still retreats and flow'ry folitudes,

To Nature's voice attends, from month to month,
And day to day, through the revolving year:
Admiring, fees her in her ev'ry shape;
Feels all her fweet emotions at his heart;

Takes what she lib'ral gives, nor thinks of more.
He, when young Spring protrudes the bursting gems,
Marks the first bud, and fucks the healthful gale
Into his freshen'd foul; her genial hours
He fuil enjoys; and not a beauty blows,
And not an op'ning bloffom breathes, in vain.

In fummer he, beneath the living fhade,
Such as o'er frigid Tempe wont to wave,
Or Hemus cool, reads what the Mufe of thefe,
Perhaps, has in immortal numbers fung;
Or what she dictates writes: and, oft an eye
Shot round, rejoices in the vig'rous year.
When Autumn's yellow luftre gilds the world,
And tempts the fickled fwain into the field,
Seiz'd by the gen'ral joy, his heart diftends
With gentle throes; and, through the tepid gleams
Deep mufing, then he beft exerts his fong.
Even winter wild to him is full of blifs.
The mighty tempeft, and the hoary waste,
Abrupt, and deep, ftretch'd o'er the buried earth,
Awake to folemn thought. At night the skies,
Difclos'd, and kindled, by refining frost,
Pour ev'ry luftre on th' exalted eye.

A friend, a book, the ftealing hours fecure,
And mark them down for wifdom. With fwift wing,
O'er land and fea th' imagination roams;

Or truth, divinely breaking on his mind,
Elates his being, and unfolds his powers:
Or in his breaft heroic virtue burns.

The touch of kindred too and love he feels;
The modeft eye, whofe beams on his alone
Ecftatic fhine; the little ftrong embrace.
Of prattling children, twisted round his neck,
And emulous to p'eafe him, calling forth
The fond parental foul. Nor purpose gay,
Amusement, dance, or fong, he fternly scorns;
For happiness and true philofophy

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Are of the focial ftill, and fmiling kind.
This is the life which those who fret in guilt,
And guilty cities, never knew; the life,

Led

Led by primeval ages, uncorrupt,

When angels dwelt, and God himself, with man.

THOMSON.

CHAP. XXIX.

GENIUS.

FROM Heav'n my ftrains begin; from Heav'n descends

The flame of genius to the human breast,

And love and beauty, and poetic joy

And infpiration. Ere the radiant Sun

Sprang from the eaft, or, 'midft the vault of night
The Moon fufpended her ferener lamp;

Ere mountains, woods, or streams adorn'd the globe,
Or Wisdom taught the fons of men her lore;
Then liv'd th' almighty ONE; then, deep retir'↓
In his unfathom'd essence, view'd the forms,
The forms eternal cf created-things;

The radiant fun the moon's nocturnal lamp,

The mountains, woods, and ftreams, the rolling globe,
And Wisdom's mien celestial. From the first
Of days, on them his love divine he fix'd,
His admiration till in time complete,
What he admir'd, and lov'd, his vital fmile
Unfolded into being. Hence the breath
Of life informing each organic frame;

Hence the green earth,- and wild refounding waves;
Hence light and shade alternate; warmth and cold;
And clear autumnal fkies and vernal show'rs,
And all the fair variety of things.

But not alike to ev'ry mortal eye

Is this great fcene unveil'd. For fince the claims
Of focial life to diff'rent labours urge

The active pow. rs of man; with wife intent

The hand of Nature on peculiar minds

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Imprints a diff'rent bias, and to each
Decrees its province in the common toil.
To fome she taught the fabric of the sphere,
The changeful moon, the circuit of the stars,
The golden zones of Heav'n: to some she gave
To weigh the moment of eternal things,
Cf time and space, and fate's unbroken chain;
And will's quick impulfe: others by the hand
She led o'er vales and mountains, to explore
What healing virtue fwells the tender veins
Of herbs and flow'rs; or what the beams of more
Draw forth, diftilling from the clifted rind
In balmy tears. But fome to higher hopes
Were deftin'd: some within a finer mould
She wrought and temper'd with a purer flame.
To these the Sire Omnipo:ent unfolds
The world's harmonious volume, there to read
The tranfcript of himself. On every part
They trace the bright impreffions of his hand;
In earth, or air, the meadow's purple stores,
The moon's mild radiance, or the virgin's form
Blooming with rofy fmiles, they fee portray'd
That uncreated eauty which delights
The Mind fupreme. They alfo feel her charms,
Enamour'd they partake th' eternal joy.

AKENSIDE.

CHAP. XXX.

GREATNESS.

SAY, why was man fo eminently rais'd
Amid the vaft creation? why ordain'd
Through life and death to dart his piercing eye,
With thoughts beyond the limits of his frame?
But that th' Omnipotent might fend him forth

IA

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