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And still admiring, with regret fuppos'd
The foy half lost because not sooner found.
Thee too, enamour'd of the life I lovd,
Pathetic in its praise, in its pursuit
Determin'd, and poffeffing it at laft
With transports such as favour'd lovers feel,
I studied, priz'd, and wish'd that I had known,
Ingenious Cowley ! and though now reclaimed,
By modern lights, from an erroneous taste,
I cannot but lament thy fplendid wit
Entangled in the cobwebs of the schools.
I still revere thee, courtly though retir'd,
Though stretch'dat ease in Chertsey's filent bowr's,
Not unemploy'd, and finding rich amends
For a loft world in folitude and verfe. .
Tis born with all : the love of Nature's works
Is an ingredient in the compound, man,
Infus'd at the creation of the kind.
And though th' Almighty Maker has throughout
Discriminated each from each, by strokes
and touches of his hand, with so much art
Diverfified, that two were never found
Twins at all points yet this obtains in all,
That all difcern a beauty in his works,
And all can taste them; minds that have been
And tutor'd with a relith more exact,
But none without some relish, none unmov'd.
It is a flame that dies not even there,
Where nothing feeds it: neither bufiness, crowds,
Nor habits of luxurious city-life,
Whatever else they smother of true worth
In human boforas, quench it, or abate.
The villas with which London ftands begirt,
Like a swart Indian with his belt of beads,
Prove it. A breath of unadult'rate air,
The glimpse of a green pasture, how they cheer
The citizen, and brace his languid frame !
Ev'n in the stifling bosom of the town,
A garden, in which nothing thrives, has charms
That footh the rich poffeffor ; much confold
That here and there fome sprigs of mournful mint,
Of nightshade, or valerian, grace the well
He cultivates. These ferve him with a hint
That Nature lives ; that fight-refreshing green
Is still the liv'ry the delights to wear,
Though fickly samples of th' exub'rant whole.
What are the casements lin'd with creeping herbs,
The prouder fathes fronted with a range
Of orange, myrtle, or the fragrant weed
The Frenchman's * darling? Are they not all
That man, immur'd in cities, still retains
His inborn inextinguifhable thirft
Of rural scenes, compensating his lofs
By supplemental shifts, the best he may ?
The most unfurnish'd with the means of life,
And they that never pass their brick-wall bounds
To range the fields and treat their lungs with air,
Yet feel the burning instinct : over-head
Suspend their crazy boxes, planted thick,
Aud water'd duly. There the pitcher stands
A fragment, and the fpoutless tea-pot there ;
Sad witnesses how close-pent man regrets
The country, with what ardour he contrives
A peep at nature, when he can no more..
Hail, therefore, patroness of health and ease
And contemplation, heart-solacing joys
And harmless pleasures, in the throng'd abode
Of multitudes unknown ! hail, rural life !
Address himself who will to the pursuit
Of honors, or emolument, or fame,
I shall not add myself to such a chase,
Thwart his attempts, or envy his success.“
Some must be great. Great offices will have
Great talents; and God gives to ev'ry man
The virtue, temper, understanding, taste,
That lifts him into life, and lets him fall
Just in the niche he was ordain'd to fill.
To the deliv'rer of an injur'd land
He gives a tongue t'enlarge upon, an heart
To feel, and courage to redress her wrongs ;
To monarchs dignity, to judges sense,
To artists ingenuity and skill ;
To me an unambitious mind, content
In the low vale of life, that early felt
A wish for eafe and leisure, and ere long
Found here that leisure and that ease I wish d.