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Rural Odes for Ipril.
MRS. BARBAULD'S “ SPRING."
Hope waits upon the flowery prime. --- WALLER.
Reluctant shall I bid thee then farewell ;
Nor Summer's ruddiest fruits,
Can aught for thee atone,
Each joy and new-born hope
Sweet daughter of a rough and stormy sire,
Whose unshorn locks with leaves
And swelling buds are crowned ; From the green islands of eternal youth [shade), (Crowned with fresh blooms, and ever springing
Turn, bither turn thy step,
O thou, whose powerful voice,
And through the stormy deep
Breathe thy own tender calm. Thee, best beloved ! the virgin train await With songs and festal rites, and joy to rove
Thy blooming wilds among,
And vales and dewy lawns,
Of him, the favored youth
That prompts their whispered sigh. Unlock thy copious stores ; those tonder showers That drop their sweetness on the infant buds,
And silent dews that swell
The milky ear's green stem, And feed the flowering osier's early shoots ; And call those winds, which through the whispering
With warm and pleasant breath [boughs,
Salute the blowing flowers. Now let me sit beneath the whitening thorn, And mark thy spreading tints steal o’er the dale ;
And watch with patient eye
Thy fair unfolding charms. O nymph, approach ! while yet the temperate sun, With bashful forehead, through the cool moist air,
Throws his young maiden beams,
And with chaste kisses woos
Protects thy modest blooms
LONGFELLOW'S “APRIL DAY."
Their gamered fulness down ;
Hill, valley, grove, and town.
To break the calm of nature ;
Of life, or living creature ; -
Or cattle faintly lowing ;
The leaves and blossoms growing.
The rain's continuous sound ;
Down straight into the ground.
Earth's naked breast to screen, Though every dripping branch is set
With shoots of tender green. Sure, since I looked at early morn,
Those honeysuckle buds
Hath put forth larger studs.
The milk-white flowers revealing ;
Methinks their sweets are stealing.
Is all with fragrance rife;
Are flushing into life.
Those earth-rejoicing drops !
Then thins, decreases, stops.
Have circled out of sight,
Breaks forth of amber light. *
Sweet is thy reign, but short : the red dog-star
Thy greens, thy fowerets all,
MRS. HEMANS'S “ VOICE OF SPRING."
Spirit of Beauty ! the air is bright
I COME, I come ! ye have called me long,
See how the clouds, as they feetly pass,
He comes from the mountain's piny steep,
He has crossed the lake, and the forest heaves,
Come forth, 0 ye children of gladness, come!
I depart to a brighter shore
WHEN the warm sun, that brings Seed-time and harvest, has returned again, 'T is sweet to visit the still wood, where springs
The first flower of the plain.
I love the season well When forest glades are teeming with bright forms, Nor dark and many-folded clouds foretell
The coming-in of storms.
PERCIVAL'S “SPRING.” Again the infant flowers of Spring Call thee to sport on thy rainbow wing
From the earth's loosened mould The sapling draws its sustenance, and thrives : Though stricken to the heart with winter's cold,
The drooping tree revives.
The softly-waroled song Comes through the pleasant woods, and colored wings Are glancing in the golden sun along
The forest openings.
And when bright sunset fills The silver woods with light, the green slope throws Its shadows in the hollows of the hills,
And wide the upland glows.
And when the day is gone,
And twinkles many a star.
Inverted in the tido Stand the gray rocks, and trembling shadows throw, And the fair trees look over, side by side,
And see themselves below.
Sweet April !- many a thought
Life's golden fruit is shed.
CLARE'S “SPRING MUSINGS"
OF THE PEASANT POET.
0! who can speak his joys when spring's young
morn, From wood and pasture, opened on his view ! When tender green buds blush upon the thorn, And the first primrose dips its leaves in dew : Each varied charm how joyed would he pursue, Tempted to trace their beauties through the day ; Gray-girdled eve and morn of rosy hue
Have both beheld him on his lonely way,
Sequestered nature was his heart's delight;
And a rude sonnet in its praise he tried,
The freshened landscapes round his routes unfurled, The fire-tinged clouds above, the woods below, Each met his eye a new-revealing world, Delighting more as more he learned to know; Each journey sweeter, musing to and fro. Surrounded thus, not Paradise more sweet ; Enthusiasm made his soul to glow;
His heart with wild sensations used to beat ;
Upon a molehill oft he dropped him down,
The stone-rocked wagon with its rumbling sound ; The windmill's sweeping sails at distance seen;
And every form that crowds the circling round, Where the sky, stooping, seems to kiss the meeting
ground. And dear to him the rural sports of May, When each cot-threshold mounts its hailing bough, And ruddy milkmaids weave their garlands gay, Upon the green to crown the earliest cow; When mirth and pleasure wear a joyful brow ; And join the tumult, with unbounded glee, The humble tenants of the pail and plough :
He loved "old sports,' by them revived, to see, But never cared to join in their rude revelry.
O'er brook-banks stretching, on the pasture-sward He gazed, far distant from the jocund crew ; 'T was but their feats that claimed a slight regard ; 'T was his — his pastimes lonely to pursue Wild blossoms creeping in the grass to view, Scarce peeping up the tiny bent as high, Betinged with glossy yellow, red, or blue,
Unnamed, unnoticed but by Lubin's eye, (die. That like low genius sprang, to bloom their day and
0, who can tell the sweets of May-day's morn
While all the prospect round beams fair to view, Like a sweet opening flower with its unsullied dew!
Ah ! often brushing through the dripping grass,
Raising the bleatings of unfolding sheep,
Nor could the day's decline escape his gaze ;
And drove him headlong from the mountain top, And shut the lovely scene, and bade all nature stop.
With contemplation's stores his mind to fill,
Musing the cricket twittering o'er its dream,
WARTON'S « APRIL."
And high her tuneful track pursues Mid the dim rainbow's scattered hues.
WITH dalliance rude young Zephyr woos Coy May. Full oft with kind excuse The boist'rous boy the fair denies, Or with a scornful smile complies.
Mindful of disaster past, And shrinking at the northern blast, The sleety storm returning still, The morning hoar and evening chill ; Reluctant comes the timid Spring. Scarce a bee, with airy ring, Murmurs the blossomed boughs around, That clothe the garden's southern bound : Scarce a sickly, straggling flower Decks the rough castle's rifted tower : Scarce the hardy primrose peeps From the dark dell's entangled steeps : O'er the field of waving broom Slowly shoots the golden bloom : And, but by fits, the furze-clad dale Tinctures the transitory gale ; While from the shrubb’ry's naked maze, Where the vegetable blaze Of Flora's brightest 'broidery shone, Every checkered charm is flown ; Save that the lilac hangs to view Its bursting gems in clusters blue.
Where, in venerable rows,
Musing through the lawny park,
Within some whispering, osier isle,
O'er the broad downs, a novel race,
Scant along the ridgy land The beans their new-born ranks expand : The fresh-turned soil with tender blades Thinly the sprouting barley shades : Fringing the forest's devious edge, Half-robed appears the hawthorn hedge ; Or to the distant eye displays Weakly green its budding sprays.
The swallow, for a moment seen, Skims in haste the village green : From the gray moor, on feeble wing, The screaming plovers idly spring : The butterfly, gay-painted, soon Explores a while the tepid noon, And fondly trusts its tender dyes To fickle suns and flatt'ring skies.
His freeborn vigor yet unbroke
Yet in these presages rude,
Fraught with a transient, frozen shower, If a cloud should haply lower, Sailing o'er the landscape dark, Mute on a sudden is the lark ; But when gleams the sun again O'er the pearl-besprinkled plain, And from behind his watery veil Looks through the thin-descending hail, She mounts, and, lessening to the sight, Salutes the blithe return of light,
Exhausted, waits the culture of the plough,
The proposition. — Address to the Prince of Wales. — Invo
cation to the genius of Britain. - Husbandry to be encouraged, as it is the source of wealth and plenty. Advice to landlords, not to oppress the farmer. - The farmer's three great virtues. - His instruments of husbandry. - His servants. — Description of a country.statute. ' - Episode of the fair milk-maid. — The farm-yard described. - The pleasures of a rural life. — Address to the great, to study agriculture. — An allegory, attempting to explain the theory of vegetation.
LANDHOLDERS EXHORTED TO DEAL HONESTLY AND LIBER
ALLY WITH FARMERS.
THE SUBJECT. — CCLTURE ; FRUITS ; EXCHANGES OF PROD
UCTS. -THE PRINCE OF WALES.
O ye, whom fortune in her silken robe Enwraps benign ; whom plenty's bounteous hand Hath favored with distinction ! O look down, With smiles indulgent, on his new designs ! Assist his useful works, facilitate His honest aims : nor in exaction's gripe Enthral the endeavoring swain. Think not his toils Were meant alone to foster you in ease And pampered indolence ; nor grudge the meed Which Heaven in mercy gives to cheer the hand, The laboring hand of useful industry. Be yours the joy to propagate content ; With bounteous Heaven coöperate, and reward The poor man's toil, whence all your riches spring. As in a garden, the enlivening air Is filled with odors, drawn from those fair flowers Which by its influence rise ; so in his breast Benevolent, who gives the swains to thrive, Reflected live the joys his virtues lent.
INVOCATION TO THE GENICS OF BRITAIN. Genius of Britain ! pure intelligence ! Guardian, appointed by the One Supreme, With influential energy benign To guide the weal of this distinguished isle ; 0, wake the breast of her aspiring son ! Inform his numbers, aid his bold design, Who, in a daring flight, presumes to mark The glorious track her monarch should pursue.
LABOR THE SOCRCE OF WEALTU ; AND THE LABORER COM
MENDED TO GOVERNMENTAL CARE. From cultivation, from the useful toils Of the laborious hind, the streams of wealth And plenty flow. Deign, then, illustrious youth ! To bring the observing eye, the liberal hand, And with a spirit congenial to your birth, Regard his various labors through the year : So shall the laborer smile, and you improvo The happy country you are born to rule.
THE YOUNG FARMER ADVISED TO FRUGALITY, TEMPERANCE,
INDUSTRY. But come, young farmer, though by fortune fixed On fields luxuriant, where the fruitful soil Gives labor hope ; where sheltering shades arise, Thick fences guard, and bubbling fountains flow; Where arable and pasture duly mix; Yet, ere thy toils begin, attend the muse, And catch the moral lessons of her song. Be frugal and be blest ; frugality Will give thee competence ; thy gains are small, Too small to bear profusion's wasteful hand. Make temperance thy companion, so shall health Sit on thy brow, invigorating thy frame To every useful work. And if to these Thou happily shalt join one virtue more, The love of industry, the glowing joy Felt from each new improvement; then fair peace, With modest neatness in her decent garb, Shall walk around thy dwelling; while the great, Tired with the vast fatigue of indolence, Filled with disease by luxury and sloth, Impatient curse the dilatory day, And look with envy on thy happier state.
WINTER; THE TIME TO CHOOSE A FARM. The year declining, now hath left the fields Divested of their honors, the strong glebe
1 The author's original design was to have written a poem entitled “ Public Virtue,' in three books : Ist, Agriculture ; 21, Commerce ; 3d, Arts. The first book was all that he ever executed.