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E'en spring displeases when she shines not here; But, bless'd with her, 'tis spring throughout the year STREPHON.
Say, Daphnis, say, in what glad soil appears, A wondrous tree that sacred monarchs bears: Tell me but this, and I'll disclaim the prize, And give the conquest to thy Sylvia's eyes.— DAPHNIS.
Nay, tell me first, in what more happy fields The thistle springs, to which the lily yields: And then a nobler prize I will resign,
For Sylvia, charming Sylvia, shall be thine.
Cease to contend; for, Daphnis, I decree, The bowl to Strephon, and the lamb to thee. Blest swains, whose nymphs in every grace excel; Blest nymphs, whose swains those graces sing so wel Now rise and haste to yonder woodbine bowers, A soft retreat from sudden vernal showers: The turf with rural dainties shall be crown'd, While opening blooms diffuse their sweets around For see! the gathering flocks to shelter tend, And from the Pleiads fruitful showers descend.
THE SECOND PASTORAL; OR, ALEXIS
To Dr. Garth.
A SHEPHERD's boy (he seeks no better name)
Led forth his flocks along the silver Thame,
Where dancing sun-beams on the waters play'd,
And verdant alders form'd a quivering shade
Soft as he mourn'd, the streams forgot to flow,
The flocks around a dumb compassion show
The Naiads wept in every watery bower,
And Jove consented in a silent shower.
Accept, O Garth, the muse's early lays,
That adds this wreath of ivy to thy bays;
Hear what from love unpractised hearts endure,
From love, the sole disease thou canst not cure.
Ye shady beeches, and ye cooling streams,
Defence from Phœbus', not from Cupid's beams,
To you I mourn; nor to the deaf I sing;
The woods shall answer, and their echo ring.
The hills and rocks attend my doleful lay:
Why art thou prouder and more hard than they?
The bleating sheep with my complaints agree,
They parch'd with heat, and I inflam'd by thee.
The sultry Sirius burns the thirsty plains,
While in thy heart eternal winter reigns.
Where stray ye, muses, in what lawn or grove, While your Alexis pines in hopeless love? In those fair fields where sacred Isis glides, Or else where Cam his winding vales divides? As in the chrystal spring I view my face, Fresh rising blushes paint the watery glass; But since those graces please thine eyes no more, I shun the fountains which I sought before. Once I was skill'd in every herb that grew, And every plant that drinks the morning dew Ah, wretched shepherd! what avails thy art, To cure thy lambs, but not to heal thy heart! Let other swains attend the rural care, Feed fairer flocks, or richer fleeces shear: But nigh yon mountain let me tune my lays, Embrace my love, and bind my brows with bay@ That flute is mine which Colin's tuneful breath Inspired when living, and bequeathed in death: He said: 'Alexis, take this pipe, the same That taught the groves/my Rosalinda's name.' But now the reed shall hang on yonder tree, For ever silent, since despis'd by thee. O! were I made by some transforming power, The captive bird that sings within thy bower!
Then might my voice thy listening ears employ,
And I those kisses he receives enjoy.
And yet my numbers please the rural throng,
Rough satyrs dance, and Pan applauds the song:
The nymphs forsaking every cave and spring,
Their early fruit and milk-white turtles bring;
Each amorous nymph prefers her gifts in vain,
On you their gifts are all bestow'd again:
you the swains the fairest flowers design,
And in one garland all their beauties join;
Accept the wreath which you deserve alone,
In whom all beauties are comprised in one.
See what delights in sylvan scenes appear!
Descending gods have found Elysium here.
In woods bright Venus with Adonis stray'd,
And chaste Diana haunts the forest shade.
Come, lovely nymph, and bless the silent hours,
When swains from shearing seek their nightly bowers,
When weary reapers quit the sultry field,
And crown'd with corn their thanks to Ceres yield.
This harmless grove no lurking viper hides,
But in my breast the serpent Love abides.
Here bees from blossoms sip the rosy dew,
But your Alexis knows no sweets but you.
O deign to visit our forsaken seats,
The mossy fountains, and the green retreats!
Where'er you walk, cool gales shall fan the glade;
Trees, where you sit, shall crowd into a shade;
Where'er you tread, the blushing flowers shall rise,
And all things flourish where you turn your eyes.
O! how I long with you to pass my days,
Invoke the Muses, and resound your praise!
Your praise the birds shall chant in every grove,
And winds shall waft it to the powers above.
But would you sing, and rival Orpheus' strain,
The wondering forests soon should dance again,
The moving mountains hear the powerful call,
And headlong streams hang listening in their fall'
But see, the shepherds shun the noon-day neat,
The lowing herds to murmuring brooks retreat,
To closer shades the panting flocks remove.
Ye gods! and is there no relief for love?
But soon the sun with milder rays descends
To the cool ocean, where his journey ends:
On me Love's fiercer flames for ever prey,
By night he scorches, as he burns by day.
THE THIRD PASTORAL; OR, HYLAS AND EGON.
BENEATH the shade a spreading beech displays,
Hylas and Ægon sang their rural lays :
This mourn'd a faithless, that an absent love;
And Delia's name and Doris' fill'd the grove.
Ye Mantuan nymphs, your sacred succours bring;
Hylas' and Ægon's rural lays I sing.
Thou, whom the Nine with Plautus' wit inspire,
The art of Terence and Menander's fire;
Whose sense instructs us, and whose humour charms.
Whose judgment sways us, and whose spirit warms
Oh! skill'd in nature! see the hearts of swains
Their artless passions, and their tender pains.
Now setting Phoebus shone serenely bright,
And fleecy clouds were streak'd with purple light;
When tuneful Hylas, with melodious moan,
Taught rocks to weep, and made the mountains grcar
Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs away
To Delia's ear the tender notes convey.
As some sad turtle his lost love deplores,
And with deep murmurs fills the sounding shores;
Thus, far from Delia, to the winds I mourn,
Alike unheard, unpitied, and forlorn.
Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs along!
For her, the feather'd quires neglect their song:
For her, the limes their pleasing shades deny :
For her the lilies hang their heads and die.
Ye flowers that droop, forsaken by the spring,
Ye birds, that left by summer cease to sing,
Ye trees that fade when autumn heats remove,
Say, is not absence death to those who love?
Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs away!
Cursed be the fields that cause my Delia's stay;
Fade every blossom, wither every tree,
Die every flower, and perish all, but she;
What have I said? Where'er my Delia flies,
Let spring attend, and sudden flowers arise!
Let opening roses knotted oaks adorn,
And liquid amber drop from every thorn.
Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs along!
The birds shall cease to tune their evening song,
The winds to breathe, the waving woods to move,
And streams to murmur, ere I cease to love.
Not bubbling fountains to the thirsty swain,
Not balmy sleep to labourers faint with pain,
Not showers to larks, or sunshine to the bee,
Are half so charming as thy sight to me.
Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs away! Come, Delia, come; ah, why this long delay? Through rocks and caves the name of Delia sounos Delia, each cave and echoing rock rebounds. Ye powers, what pleasing frenzy soothes my mind Do lovers dream, or is my Delia kind? She comes, my Delia comes! Now cease my lay, And cease, ye gales, to bear my sighs away!
Next Ægon sang, while Windsor groves admired: Rehearse, ye muses, what yourselves inspired. Resound, ye hills, resound my mournful strain! Of perjured Doris, dying I complain:
Here where the mountains, lessening as they rise, Lose the low vales, and steal into the skies;