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The fubject propofed. Infcribed to the Countess of HARTFORD. The Seafon is defcribed as it affects the various parts of Nature, afcending from the lower to the higher; with digreffions arifing from the fubject. Its influence on inanimate Matter, on Vegetables, on brute Animals, and laft on Man; concluding with a diffuafive from the wild and irregular paffion of Love, oppofed to that of a pure and happy kind.
COME, gentle SPRING, ethereal Mildnefs, come, And from the bofom of yon dropping cloud, While mufic wakes around, veil'd in a shower Of shadowing rofes, on our plains descend.
O HARTFORD, fitted or to shine in courts
With unaffected grace, or walk the plain
With innocence and meditation join'd
In foft affemblage, liften to my song,
Which thy own Season paints; when Nature all
Is blooming and benevolent, like thee.
AND fee where furly WINTER paffes off,
Far to the north, and calls his ruffian blafts:
His blafts obey, and quit the howling hill,
The shatter'd foreft, and the ravag'd vale;"
While fofter gales fucceed, at whofe kind touch,
Diffolving fnows in livid torrents loft,
The mountains lift their green heads to the sky.
As yet the trembling year is unconfirm'd,
And WINTER oft at eve refumes the breeze,
Chills the pale morn, and bids his driving sleets
Deform the day delightlefs: fo that scarce>
The bittern knows his time, with bill ingulpht
To shake the founding marsh; or from the shore
The plovers when to fcatter o'er the heath,
And fing their wild notes to the liftening waste.
Ar laft from Aries rolls the bounteous fun,
And the bright Bull receives him. Then no more
Th' expanfive atmosphere is cramp'd with cold;
But, full of life and vivifying foul,
Lifts the light clouds fublime, and fpreads them thin, 30
Fleecy and white, o'er all-furrounding heaven.
FORTH fly the tepid airs; and unconfin'd, Unbinding earth, the moving foftnefs ftrays. Joyous, th' impatient husbandman perceives Relenting Nature, and his lufty fteers
Drives from their ftalls, to where the well-us'd plough
Lies in the furrow, loofened from the froft,
There, unrefufing to the harness'd yoke
They lend their shoulder, and begin their toil,
Chear'd by the fimple fong and foaring lark.
Meanwhile incumbent o'er the shining share
The mafter leans, removes th' obftructing clay,
Winds the whole work, and fidelong lays the glebe.
WHITE thro'the neighbouring fields the fower ftalks,
With measur'd step; and liberal throws the grain
Into the faithful bofom of the ground:
The harrow follows harsh, and shuts the fcene.
BB gracious, HEAVEN! for now laborious Man
Has done his part. Ye foftering breezes, blow!
Ye foftening dews, ye tender showers, defcend!
And temper all, thou world-reviving fun,
Into the perfect year! Nor ye who live
In luxury and ease, in pomp and pride,
Think these loft themes unworthy of your ear:
Such themes as these the rural MARO fung
To wide-imperial ROME, in the full height
Of elegance and tafte, by GREECE refin'd.
In antient times, the facred plough employ'd
The kings, and awful fathers of mankind:
The plough, and greatly independent fcorn'd
All the vile ftores corruption can bestow.
And fome, with whom compar'd your infect-tribes 60
Are but the beings of a summer's day,
Have held the scale of empire, rul'd the ftorm
Of mighty war; then, with victorious hand,
Difdaining little delicacies, feiz'd
Ye generous BRITONS, venerate the plough;
And o'er your hills, and long withdrawing vales,
Let Autumn fpread his treasures to the fun,
Luxuriant and unbounded: as the fea,
Far thro' his azure turbulent domain,
Your empire owns, and from a thousand shores
Wafts all the pomp of life into your ports;
So with fuperior boon may your rich foil,
Exuberant, Nature's better bleffings pour
O'er every land, the naked nations cloathe,
And be th' exhaustless granary of a world!
NOR only thro' the lenient air this change, Delicious, breathes; the penetrative fun,