« ПредишнаНапред »
Ye guardian Pow'rs! who make mankind your care,
Give me to know wise Nature's hidden depths,'
Trace each mysterious cause, with jud ment read
The expanded volume, and submiss adore
That great creative Will who, at a word,
Sp_ke forth the wondrous scene.-- At least
Grant me, propitious, an inglorious life,
Calm and serene, nor lost in false pursuits
Of wealth or honours; but enough to raise
My drooping friends, preventing modest Want,
That dares pot ask: and if, to crown my joys,
Ye grant me health, that ruddy in my cheeks,
Blooms in my life's decline, fields, woods, and streams,
Each tow'ring hill, each humble vale below,
Shall hear my cheering voice; my hourds shall wake
The lazy Morn, and glad th' horizon round.
PRINTED FOR, AND UNDER THE DIRECTION OF, G. CAWTHORN, BRITISH LIBRARY, STRAND.
TO WILLIAM SOMERVILE, ESQ.
While you, Sir, gain the steep ascent to fame,
And honours due to deathless merit claim,
To a weak Muse a kind indulgence lend,
Fond with just praise your labours to commend,
And tell the world that Somervile's her friend.
Her incense, guiltless of the forms of art,
h Breathes all the huntsman's honesty of heart,
Whose fancy still the pleasing scene retains
Of Edric's villa and Ardenna's plains:
Joys which, from change, superior charms receiv'd,
The horn hoarse sounding by the lyre reliev'd;
When the day crown'd with rural chaste delight
Resigns obsequious to the festive night,
The festive night awakes th' harmonious lay,
And in sweet verse recounts the triumphs of the day.
Strange! that the British Muse should leave so long
The Chase, the sport of Britain's kings, unsung !
Distinguish'd land ! by Heav'n indulg'd to breed
The stout sagacious hound and gen'rous steed;
In vain! while yet no bard adorn'd our isle
To celebrate the glorious silvan toil.
For this what darling son shall feel thy fire,
God of th' unerring bow and tuneful lyre ?
Our vows are heard---Attend, ye vocal throng?
Somervile meditates th' advent'rous song.
Bold to attempt, and happy to excel,
His num'rous verse the huntsman's art shall tell.
From him, ye British youths! a vig'rous race,
Imbibe the various science of the Chase;
And while the well-plann'd system you admire,
Know Brunswick only could the work inspire ;
A Georgic Muse awaits Augustan days,
And Somerviles will sing when Fredericks give the
NCE more, my friend! I touch the trembling lyre, And in my bosom feel poetic fire; For thee I quit the law's more rugged ways, To pay my humble tribute to thy lays. What tho' I daily turn each learned sage, And labour thro’the unenlighten’d page! Wak'd by thy lines the borrow'd fames I feel, As fiints give fire when aided by the steel. Tho’in sulphureous clouds of smoke confin'd, Thy rural scenes spring fresh into my mind,
Thy genius in such colours paints the Chase,
The real to fictitious joys give place.
When the wild music charms my ravish'd ear,
How dull, how tasteless, Handel's notes appear!
Ev'n Farinelli's self the palm resigns;
He yields---but to the music of thy lines.
If friends to poetry can yet be found,
Who without blushing sense prefer to sound,
Then let this soft, this soul-enfeebling band,
These warbling minstrels, quit the beggar'd land;
They but a momentary joy impart;
'Tis you who touch the soul and warm the heart.
How tempting do thy silvan sports appear!
Ev'n wild Ambition might vouchsafe an ear,
Might her fond lust of pow'r a while compose,
And gladly change it for thy sweet repose.
No fierce unruly senates threaten here,
No axe, no scaffold, to the view appear,
No envy, disappointment, and despair.
Here, bless’d vicissitude ! whene’er you please
You step from exercise to learned ease;
Turn o'er each classic page, each beauty trace,
The mind unweary'd in the pleasing Chase.
Oh! would kind Heav'n such happiness bestow,
Let fools, let knaves, be masters here below.
Grandeur and place, those baits to caich the wise,
And all their pageant train, I pity and despise.