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the door, unfolds his fleecy care,
And gladly sees them crop their morning fare!
Down upon easy moss he lays,
And sings some charming shepherdess's praise.
When whinny braes are garlanded with gold,
And, blithe, the lamb pursues, in merry chase,
His twin around the bush; the Linnet, then,
Within the prickly fortress builds her bower,
And warmly lines it round, with hair and wool
Inwove. Sweet minstrel, may'st thou long delight
The whinny knowe, and broomy brae, and bank
Of fragrant birch! May never fowler's snare
Tangle thy struggling foot! Or, if thou’rt doomed
Within the narrow cage thy dreary days
To pine, may ne'er the glowing wire (oh, crime
Quench, with fell agony, the shrivelling eye!
Deprived of air and freedom, shall the light
Of day, thy only pleasure, be denied ?
But thy own song will still be left; with it,
Darkling, thou'lt soothe the lingering hours away;
And thou wilt learn to find thy triple perch,
Thy seed-box, and thy beverage saffron-tinged.
HAPPY insect! what can be
In happiness compared to thee?
Fed with nourishment divine,
The dewy Morning's gentle wine!
Nature waits upon thee still,
And thy verdant cup does fill;
'Tis filled wherever thou dost tread,
Nature's self's thy Ganymede,
Thou dost drink, and dance, and sing,
Happier than the happiest king !
All the fields which thou dost see,
All the plants belong to thee;
All that summer-hours produce,
Fertile made with early juice :
Man for thee does sow and plough;
Farmer he, and landlord thou !
Thou dost innocently joy,
Nor does thy luxury destroy.
The shepherd gladly heareth thee,
More harmonious than he.
Thee country hinds with gladness hear,
Prophet of the ripened year!
Thee Phoebus loves, and does inspire :
Phoebus is himself thy sire.
To thee of all things upon earth,
Life is no longer than thy mirth.
Happy insect! happy thou,
Dost neither age nor winter know:
But when thou'st drunk, and danced, and sung
Thy fill, the flowery leaves among,
(Voluptuous, and wise withal,
Epicurean animal !)
Sated with thy summer feast,
Thou retir'st to endless rest.
FAIRE pledges of a fruitful tree,
Why do yee fall so fast?
Your date is not so past, But you may stay yet here awhile
To blush and gently smile,
And go at last.
What, were yee born to be
An houre or half's delight,
And so to bid good night? 'Twas pitie nature brought yee forth
Meerly to shew your worth,
And lose you quite.
But you are lovely leaves, where we
May read how soon things have
Their end, though ne'er so brave: And after they have shown their pride,
a while they glide
'Tis not that rural sports alone invite,
But all the grateful country breathes delight;
Here blooming Health exerts her gentle reign,
And strings the sinews of the industrious swain.
Soon as the morning lark salutes the day,
Through dewy fields I take my frequent way,
Where I behold the farmer's early care
In the revolving labors of the year.
When the fresh Spring in all her state is crowned,
And high luxuriant grass o’erspreads the ground,
The laborer with a bending scythe is seen,
Shaving the surface of the waving green ;
Of all her native pride disrobes the land,
And meads lays waste before his sweeping hand;
While with the mounting sun the meadow glows,
The fading herbage round he loosely throws;
But, if some sign portend a lasting shower
Th' experienced swain foresees the coming hour;
His sunburnt hands the scattering fork forsake,
And ruddy damsels ply the saving rake;
In rising hills the fragrant harvest grows,
And spreads along the field in equal rows.