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Wretch of rude and rugged soul,
Stranger to pity's soft control,
Who violates the rural glee
Of Nature's sweetest minstrelsy,
Who banishes the race of love,
The tuneful tenants of the grove,
Unpeoples all the vocal ground,
And desolates the hills around !
Ye throstles blithe, whose matin strains
Melodise the lonely plains;
Ye nightingales, the woods among,
Where warbles wild your midnight song,
If e'er my fond enamour'd ear
Hath loved your siren plaints to hear,
If e'er my steps have loved to tread
The dewy vale and moonlight mead,
Where the lone mate in craggy dell
Bemoans her absent Philomel,
Or to the trees in piteous strains
Still of her plunder'd nest complains ;
And all ye various-plumed train,
Who haunt the stream or wing the plain ;
Hence, gentle birds, spontaneous flee
With peace, with safety, and with me,
And seek with me the distant vales
That smooth the rugged brow of Wales,
Where of hills a mighty mound
Rears its magic circle round :
There in some villa's calm recess
Health my careless days shall bless.
There lead me forth at break of morn,
Ere sounds the hunter's buglehorn,
There oft shall win my willing ear
Your unbought harmony to hear;
Yet my grateful hands shall pay
With due reward your carois gay;
And to your bills the crumbs afford
That fall from my unpamper'd board,
And build for you the winter shed,
The wicker'd roof and mossy bed.
To your arbour's private home,
Hither, gentle wanderers, come;
Through the copse and by the streams
Tune your nature-prompted themes ;
And to the charmed ear of Spring
Such enchanting descants sing
As may beguile Affliction's tear,
Such as innocence may hear;
Soft as the gales young Zephyr brings,
Or the plumage of your wings;
Far sweeter than the feeble note
Warbled from a eunuch's throat,
Far sweeter than the lisping lays
Which the siren Flattery pays,
At her late and early hour,
On the golden shrine of Power.
When the shades of evening come,
Here the busy bees shall hum,
Here shall range the thymy beds
When her dews young morning sheds,
And love my limits lone and still
More than Hybla's honey'd hill.
These hives, the green parterres among,
Be your cells, industrious throng;
Nor from your nectar-streaming hoard
Refuse, to grace my simple board,
A portion due, content that here
No drone invades your dulcet cheer,
No creeping flames your hives annoy,
Nor music lures you to destroy.
You too, ye feather'd tribes of air,
The same security shall share ;
Here shall dread no secret net
Mid the thorny thicket set;
Nor kites nor hawks, a bloody throng,
Nor griping vulture's talon strong,
Who, taught by man, with rage refined,
Devour their own devoted kind.
Say, silvan quire, what dire offence
Hath stain'd your native innocence,
That danger thus, with ceaseless course,
Pursues your flight, your haunts explores ?
Oft have I seen your callow care
Hard-struggling in the birdlime snare:
So the rash youth, in grief I said,
If once the path of vice he tread,
Caught in the toils of treachery,
In vain long labours to be free:
But ne'er hath pride your minds possess'd,
Harmless offspring of the nest,
Nor folly e'er your hearts beguiled,
Nor guilt disgraced your manners mild,
Which still to active instinct true
Kind Nature's simple paths pursue.
Nor these the only ills you bear,
Winged inhabitants of air :
From danger and from death you fly,
Alas! to loss of liberty ;
Condemn'd to leave your native groves,
Unfinish'd songs, and feather'd
ves; Condemn’d to change your airy downs For busy streets of peopled towns :
Long, long the drooping captive dwells
In cruel cages, grated cells;
Oft wishful views some distant tree,
And pants and flutters to be free;
With grief and rage would fain expire,
And leaves a plume on every wire.
REV. J. WALTERS.
TO THE SPIRIT OF FRESHNESS. O Thou, the daughter of the Vernal Dew, That, glistering to the morn with pearly light,
The gentle Aura woo'd
Beside a dripping cave; There, midst the blush of roses, won the nymph To dalliance, as in sighs she whisper'd love;
There saw thee born, as May
Unclosed her laughing eye; Spirit of Freshness, hail! At this dim hour While, streak'd with recent gray, the dawn ap
Where sport thy humid steps, [pears,
Ambrosial essence, say?
Haply, thy slippers glance along my path
Where frosted lilies veil their silver bells
Beneath the lively green
Of their full-shading leaves.
Or dost thou wander in the hoary field
Where, overhead, I view the cautious hare
Nibbling, while stillness reigns,
The light-sprent barley blade ?
Or dost thou hover o'er the hawthorn bloom,
Where, in his nest of clay, the blackbird opes
His golden lids, and tunes
A soft preluding strain; Ór art thou soaring mid the fleeced air To meet the dayspring, where the plume-wet lark
Pours sudden his shrill note
Beneath a dusky cloud?
I see thee not-But lo! a vapoury shape
That oft belies thy form, emerging slow
From that deep central gloom,
Rests on the moon-tipp'd wood. Now, by a halo circled, sails along, As gleams with icicles his azure vest,
Now shivers on the trees,
And feebly sinks from sight. 'Tis cold! and lo! upon the whitening folds Of the dank mist that fills the hollow dell,
Chill Damp with drizzly locks
Glides in his lurid car, Where a lone fane o'er those broad rushes nods In slumberous torpor; save when flitting bat
Stirs the rank ivy brown
That clasps its oozing walls !
Yet, yet, descending from yon eastern tent
Whose amber seems to kiss the wavy plain,
A form, half viewless, spreads
A flush purpureal round.
I know thee, Freshness! Lo! delicious green
Sprinkles thy path. The bursting buds above
With vivid moisture glow,
To mark thy gradual way.