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Boys and maidens, birds and bees,
Airy whisperings of all trees,
With their music well supply,
All we need of sympathy.

Now and then a graver guest
For one moment here will rest,
Loitering in his pastoral walk,
And with us hold kindly talk;
To himself we've heard him say,
“Thanks that I may hither stray ;
“Worn with age and sin and care,
“Here to breathe the pure, glad air;
“Here Faith's lesson learn anew
“Of this happy vernal crew.
“Here the fragrant shrubs around,
“And the graceful, shadowy ground,
"And the village tones afar,
“And the steeple with its star,
" And the clouds that gently move,
“ Tune the heart to trust and love."

Thus we far'd in ages past:
But the nineteenth age at last
(As your suppliants are advis’d)
Reigns, and we no more are priz’d.
Now a giant, plump and tall,
Called "High Farming," stalks o'er all;
Platforms, railing, and straight lines,
Are the charms for which he pines.

Forms mysterious, ancient hues,
He with untir'd hate pursues ;
And his cruel word and will
Is, from every copse-crown'd hill,
Every glade in meadow deep,
Us and our green bowers to sweep.

Now our prayer is, here and there,
May your Honour deign to spare,
Shady spots and nooks, where we,
Yet may flourish, safe and free.
So old Hampshire still may own
(Charm to other shires unknown)
Bays and creeks of grassy lawn,
Half beneath his woods withdrawn.
So from many a joyous child,
Many a sire and mother mild,
For the sheltering boughs so sweet,
And the blossoms at their feet,
Thanks with prayers shall find their way,
And we flowers, if we might pray,
With our very best would own

Your young floweret newly blown.

Innumerable other signatures. Ladwell Hill, April 3, 1851.

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