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Of graces mild, far be the Stoic boaft,
The Cynic's fnarl, and churlish pedantry.
Bright visitant, if not too high my wish,
Come in the lovely dress you wore, a guest
At Plato's table, or at Tufculum,
The Roman feafting his selected friends.
Tamer of pride! at thy serene rebuke
See crouching insolence, spleen, and revenge
Before thy shining taper disappear.
Tutor of human life, auspicious guide,
Whose faithful clue unravels every Muse,
Whose conduct smooths the roughest paths; whose voice
Controuls each storm, and bids the roar be ftill:
O condescend to gild my darksome roof :
Let me know thee - the Delphic oracle
Is then obey'd and I fhall know myself.
ν Α C Α Τ Ι ο Ν.
By Efq; Y ENCE sage, mysterious Law, 1 That fitest with rugged brow, and crabbed look
O'er thy black-letter'd book,
And the night-watching student strik'it with awe ;
Away with thy dull train,
Slow-pac'd Advice, Surmise, and squint-ey'd Doubt ;
Dwell with the noisy rout
Of busy men, 'mid cities and throng'd halls,
Where Clamour ceafelefs bawls, ,
And enmity and strife thy ftate fuftain.. ;
But on me thy blessings pour, i .
Sweet Vacation. Thee, of yore,
In all her youth and beauty's prime,
Summer bore to aged Time,
As he one funny morn beheld her
Tending a field of corn : the elder
There ʼmid poppies red and blue,
Unsuspected nearer drew,
And, with softly-sliding pace ' .
Haft'ning to a stoľn embrace,
Filld her with thee; and joy and mirth
Hung on thy auspicious birth.
Come, sweet goddess ; full of play,
Ever unconfin’d and gay,
Bring the leisure-hours with thee'.. ."
Leading on the Grace's chrée
Dancing; nor let aught detain
The Holidays, a smiling train :
Whose fair brows let Peace serene
Crown with olive-branches green.
Bring too Health with ruddy cheek,
Lively air, and count'nance sleek,
Attended, as she's wont to be,
With all her jolly company
Of exercises, chace, and flight,
Active strength, and cunning Neight,
Nimble feats, and playful bouts,
Leaps of joy, and cheerful shouts,
Tricks and pranks and sports and games
Such as youthful Fancy frames.
And, O kind goddess, add to these
Cheerful Content, and placid Ease;
Not her who fondly fitteth near,
Dull Indolence in elbow'd chair;
But Ease who aids th’ harmonious Nine,
Tuning their inftruments divine,
And without whom, in lofty strain,
Phoebus' client tries in vain
To raise his feeble voice above
The crowd, and catch the ear of Jove.
And do thou, Vacation, deign
To let me pass among thy train ;
So may I thy votry true,
All thy fow'ry paths pursue,
Pleased still with thee to meet
In some friendly rural seat;
Where I gladsome oft survey
Nature in her best array,
Woods and lawns and lakes between,
Fields of corn and hedges green,
Fallow grounds of tawny hue, .;
Distant hills, and mountains blue ;
On whose ridge far off appears
A wood (the growth of many years)
Of aweful oak, or gloomy pine,
Above th' horizon's level line . .,
Rising black : such those of old .
Where British druids wont to hold .
Solemn assemblies, and to keep
Their rites, unfolding mystries deep,
Such that fam'd Dodona's grove,
Sacred to prophetic Jove.
Oft' I admire the verdant steep,
Spotted white with many a sheep,
While, in pastures rich below :
Among the grazing cattle, Now
Moves the bull with heavy tread
Hanging down his lumpish head,
And the proud steed neigheth oft'
Shaking his wanton mane aloft.
Or, traversing the wood about,
The jingling packhorse-bells remote
I hear, amid the noontide ftillness,
Sing through the air with braffy shrillness;
What time the waggon's cumbrous load
Grates along the gravilly road :
There onward, dress'd in homely guise,
Some unregarded maiden hies,
Unless by chance a trav'lling 'squire,
Of base intent and foul desire,
Stops to infnare, with speech beguiling,
Sweet innocence and beauty smiling,
Nor fail I joyful to partake
The lively sports of country wake,
Where many a lad and many a lass
Foot it on the close-trod grass.
There nimble Marian of the green
Matchless in the jig is seen,
Allow'd beyond compare by all,
The beauty of the rustic ball :