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TO THE REVEREND MR. NEWTON.
AN INVITATION INTO THE COUNTRY.
The swallows in their torpid state
And bees in hives as idly wait
The keenest frost that binds the stream,
Are neither felt nor fear'd by them,
But man, all feeling and awake,
With present ills his heart must ache
Old Winter, halting o'er the mead,
But lovely Spring peeps o'er his head,
Then April, with her sister May,
And weave fresh garlands every day,
236 TO THE REV. MR. NEWTON.
And if a tear, that speaks regret
A glimpse of joy, that we have met,
ADDKESSED TO MISS STAPLETON,
She came—she is gone—we have met—
And meet perhaps never again;
And seems to have risen in vain.
(So vanishes pleasure, alas!)
That will not so suddenly pass.
The last evening ramble we made,
Catharina, Maria, and I,
By the nightingale warbling nigh.
And much she was charm'd with a tone,
Who so lately had witness'd her own.
My numbers that day she had sung,
And gave them a grace so divine, As only her musical tongue
Could infuse into numbers of mine. The longer I heard, I esteem'd
The work of my fancy the more, And e'en to myself never seem'd
So tuneful a poet before.
Though the pleasures of London exceed
In number the days of the year, Catharina, did nothing impede,
Would feel herself happier here; For the close-woven arches of limes
On the banks of our river, I know, Are sweeter to her many times
Than aught that the city can show.
So it is when the mind is endued
With a well-judging taste from above, Then, whether embellish'd or rude,
'Tis nature alone that we love.
May even our wonder excite,
A lasting, a sacred delight.
Since then in the rural recess
Catharina alone can rejoice, May it still be her lot to possess
The scene of her sensible choice!
To inhabit a mansion remote
From the clatter of street-pacing steeds, And by Philomel's annual note
To measure the life that she leads.
With her book, and her voice, and her lyre,
To wing all her moments at home;
As oft as it suits her to roam;
With little to hope or to fear,
Might we view her enjoying it here.
THE MORALIZER CORRECTED.
A Hermit (or if 'chance you hold
Autumnal rains had made it chill,
And from the trees, that fringed his hill,
Shades slanting at the close of day
Chill'd more his else delightful way.
Distant a little mile he spied
A western bank's still sunny side,
And right toward the favour'd place
Proceeding with his nimblest pace,
In hope to bask a little yet,
Just reached it when the sun was set.
Your hermit, young and jovial sirs!
True, answer'd an angelic guide,