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There blooms exotic beauty, warm and snug,
Must fly before the knife; the wither'd leaf
So manifold, all pleasing in their kind, All healthful, are the employs of rural life,
625 Reiterated as the wheel of time Runs round ; still ending, and beginning still. Nor are these all. To deck the shapely knoll, That, softly swell’d and gaily dress’d, appears A flowery island, from the dark green lawn
630 Emerging, must be deem'd a labour due To no mean hand, and asks the touch of taste. Here also grateful mixture of well-match'd And sorted hues (each giving each relief, And by contrasted beauty shining more)
635 Is needful. Strength may wield the ponderous spade, May turn the clod, and wheel the compost home ; But elegance, chief grace the garden shows, And most attractive, is the fair result Of thought, the creature of a polish d mind.
640 Without it all is Gothic as the scene To which the insipid citizen resorts Near yonder heath; where industry mispent, But proud of his uncouth, ill-chosen task, Has made a heaven on earth : with suns and moons 645 Of close-ramm'd stones has charg'd the encumber'd soil, And fairly laid the zodiac in the dust. He, therefore, who would see his flowers dispos’d Sightly, and in just order, ere he gives The beds the trusted treasure of their seeds,
650 Forecasts the future whole ; that, when the scene Shall break into its preconceiv'd display, Each for itself, and all as with one voice Conspiring, may attest his bright design. Nor even then, dismissing as perform'd
655 His pleasant work, may he
it done. Few self-supported flowers endure the wind Uninjur'd, but expect the upholding aid
Of the smooth-shaven prop, and, neatly tied,
670 Noisome, and ever greedy to exhaust The impoverish'd earth ; an overbearing race, That, like the multitude made faction-mad, Disturb good order, and degrade true worth. Oh, blest seclusion from a jarring world,
675 Which he, thus occupied, enjoys! Retreat Cannot indeed to guilty man restore Lost innocence, or cancel follies past ; But it has peace, and much secures the mind From all assaults of evil; proving still
680 A faithful barrier, not o'erleap'd with ease. By vicious custom, raging uncontroul'd. Abroad, and desolating public life. When fierce temptation, seconded within By traitor appetite, and arm'd with darts
685 Temper'd with hell, invades the throbbing breast, To combat may be glorious, and success Perhaps may crown us ; but to fly is safe. Had I the choice of sublunary good, What could I wish, that I possess not here?
690 Health, leisure, means to improve it, friendship, peace No loose or wanton, though a wandering muse, And constant occupation without care. Thus blest, I draw a picture of that bliss ; Hopeless, indeed, that dissipated minds,
695 And profligate abusers of a world Created fair so much in vain for them, Should seek the the guiltless joys that I describe, Allur'd by my report : but sure no less, That, self-condemn'd they must neglect the prize, 700 And what they will not taste must yet approve. What we admire we praise ; and, when we praise, Advance it into notice,, that, its worth
Acknowledg’d, others may admire it too.
Is but a transient guest, newly arriv'd,
750 And soon to be supplanted. He that saw His patrimonial timber cast its leaf, Sells the last scantling, and transfers the price To some shrewd sharper, ere it buds again. Estates are landscapes, gaz'd upon a while,
7755 Then advertis d, and auctioneer'd away. The country starves, and they that feed the o'ercharg'd And surfeited lewd town with her fair dues, By a just judgment strip and starve themselves. The wings that waft our riches out of sight
760 Grow on the gamester's elbows; and the alert And nimble motion of those restless joints, That never tire, soon fans them all away. Improvement too, the idol of the age, Is fed with many a victim. Lo, he comes !
765 The omnipotent magician, Brown, appears ! Down falls the venerable pile, the abode Of our forefathers--a grave whisker'd race, But tasteless. Springs a palace in its stead, But in a distant spot; where, more expos'd,
770 It may enjoy the advantage of the north, And aguish east, till time shall have transform'd Those naked acres to a sheltering grove. lle speaks. The lake in front becomes a lawn ; Woods vanish, hills subside, and vallies rise ;
775 And streams, as if created for his use, Pursue the track of his directing wand, Sinuous or straight, now rapid and now slow, Now murmuring soft, now roaring in cascadesEven as he bids! The enraptur'd owner smiles.
789 'Tis finish'd, and yet, finish'd as it seems, Still wants a grace, the loveliest it could shew, A mine to satisfy the enormous cost. Drain'd to the last poor item of his wealth, He sighs, departs, and leaves the accomplish'd plan 785 That he has touch'd, retouch'd, many a long day Labour'd, and many a night pursu'd in dreams, Just when it meets his hopes, and proves the heaven He wanted, for a wealthier to enjoy! And now perhaps the glorious hour is come,
790 When, having n10 stake left, no pledge to endear Her interests, or that gives her sacred cause A moment's operation on his love, He burns with most intense and flagrant zeal To serve his country. Ministerial grace