Слике страница

“ Her end accomplishd, and her hopes at stay,
What need her now, she recks, one smyle bestow ;
Each care to please were trouble thrown away,
And thriftlesse waste, with many maxims moe,
As, What were she the better did she so?
She conns, and freely sues her native bent;
Yet still can she to guard his thralldom know,
Though grimd with, snuff in tawdrie gown she went,
Though peevish were her spleen and rude her jolli-


As when the linnett hails the balmie morne,
And roving through the trees his mattin sings,
Lively with joy, till on a lucklesse thorne
He lights, where to his feet the birdlime clings;
Then all in vain he flapps his gaudie wings;
The more he flutters still the more foredone:
So fares it with the knight : each morning brings
His deeper thrall; ne can he brawling shun,
For Kathrin was his thorne and birdlime both in one.

Or, when atop the hoary western hill
The ruddie sunne appears to rest his chin,
When not a breeze disturbs the murmuring rill,
And mildlie warm the falling dewes begin,
The gamesome trout then shows her silverie skin,
As wantonly beneath the wave she glides,
Watching the buzzing flies, that never blin,
Then, dropt with pearle and golde, displays her sides,
While she with frequent leape the ruffled streame


“ On the greene banck a truant schoolboy stands ;
Well has the urchin markt her merry play,
An ashen rod obeys his guilefull hands,
And leads the mimick fly across her way; ,
Askaunce, with wistly look and coy delay,
The hungrie trout the glitteraund treachor eyes,
Semblaunt of life, with speckled wings so gay;
Then, slylie nibbling, prudish from it flies, ..
Till with a bouncing start she bites the truthless


“ Ah, then the younker gives the fatefull twitch;
Struck with amaze she feels the hook ypight
Deepe in her gills, and, plonging where the beech
Shaddows the poole, she runs in dred affright;
In vain the deepest rock, her late delight, ';
In vain the sedgy nook for help she tries;
The laughing elfe now curbs, now aids her flight,
The more entangled still the more she flies,
And soon amid the grass the panting captive lies.

“ Where now, ah pity! where that sprightly play,
That wanton bounding, and exulting joy,
That lately welcomd the retourning ray,
When by the rivlett bancks, with blushes coy,
April walkd forth-ah! never more to toy
In purling streame, she pants, she gasps, and dies !
Aye me! how like the fortune of the boy,
His days of revel and his nights of noise
Have left him now, involvd, his lemmans hapless


“ See now the changes that attend her sway;
The parke where rural elegance had placed
Her sweet retreat, where cunning art did play
Her happiest freaks, that nature undefacd
Receivd new charmes; ah, see, how foul disgracd
Now lies thilke parke so sweetlie wylde afore !
Each grove and bowery walke be now laid waste;
The bowling-greene has lost its shaven flore,
And snowd with washing suds now yawns beside the


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

“ All round the borders where the pansie blue,
Crocus, and polyanthus speckld fine,
And daffodils in fayre confusion grew
Emong the rose-bush roots and eglantine ;
These now their place to cabbages resign,
And tawdrie pease supply the lillys stead;
Rough artichokes now bristle where the vine
Its purple clusters round the windows spread,
And laisie coucumbers on dung recline the head.

The fragrant orchard, once the summers pride,
Where oft, by moonshine, on the daisied greene,
In jovial daunce, or tripping side by side,
Pomona and her buxom nymphs were seene;
Or, where the clear canal stretchd out atweene,
Defily their locks with blossomes would they brede
Or, resting by the primrose hillocks sheene,
Beneath the apple boughs and walnut shade,
They sung their loves the while the fruitage gaily

spread :

“ The fragrant orchard at her dire command
In all the pride of blossome strewd the plain ;
The hillocks gently rising through the land
Must now no trace of natures steps retain;
The clear canal, the mirrour of the swain,
And bluish lake no more adorn the greene,
Two durty watering ponds alone remain;
And where the moss-floord filbert bowres had beene,
Is now a turnip-field and cow-yarde nothing cleane.

An auncient crone, yclepd by housewives Thrift,
All this devisd for trim oeconomie;
But certes ever from her birth bereft
Of elegance, ill fitts her title high:
Coarse were her looks, yet smoothe her courtesie,
Hoyden her shapes, but grave was her attyre,
And ever fixt on trifles was her eye;
And still she plodden round the kitchen fyre,
To save the smallest crombe her pleasure and de-


“ Bow-bent with eld, her steps were soft and slow,
Fast at her side a bounch of keys yhong,
Dull care sat brooding on her jealous brow,
Sagacious proverbs dropping from her tongue:
Yet sparing though she beene her guests emong,
Ought by herself that she mote gormondise,
The foul curmudgeon would have that ere long,
And hardly could her witt her gust suffice;
Albee in varied stream, still was it covetise.

“ Dear was the kindlie love which Kathrin bore
This crooked ronion, for in soothly guise
She was her genius and her counsellor:
Now cleanly milking-pails in careful wise
Bedeck each room, and much can she despise
The knights complaints, and thriftlesse judgment ill:
Eke versd in sales, right wondrous cheap she buys,
Parlour and bedroom too her bargains fill;
Though uselesse, cheap they beene, and cheap she

purchasd still.

« His tenants whilom been of thriftie kind,
Did like to sing and worken all the day,
At seedtime never were they left behind,
And at the harvest feast still first did play;
And ever at the terme their rents did pay,
For well they knew to guide their rural geer:
All in a row, yclad in homespun gray,
They marchd to church each Sunday of the year,
Their imps yode on afore, the carles brought up the


Ah, happy days! but now no longer found :
No more with social hospitable glee
The village hearths at Christmas tide resound,
No more the Whitsun gamboll may you see,
Nor morrice daunce, nor May daye jollitie,
When the blythe maydens foot the deawy green;
But now, in place, heart-șinking penurie
And hopelesse care on every face is seen,
As these the drery times of curfeu bell had been.

« ПретходнаНастави »