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Attuning all their passions into love;
Where friendship full-exerts her softest power,
Perfect esteem enlivened by desire
Ineffable, and sympathy of soul;
Thought meeting thought, and will preventing will,
With boundless confidence: for nought but love
Can answer love, and render bliss secure.
Let him, ungenerous, who, alone intent
To bless himself, from fordid parents buys
The loathing virgin, in eternal care,
Well-merited, consume his nights and days:
Let barbarous nations, whose in human love
Is wild desire, fierce as the suns they feel ;
Let eastern tyrants, from the light of Heaven
Seclude their bosom-Naves, meanly possess’d
Of a mere, lifeless, violated form:
While those whom love cements in holy faith,
And equal transport, free as Nature live,
Disdaining fear. What is the world to them,
Its pomp, its pleasure, and its nonsense all!
Who in each other clasp whatever fair
High fancy forms, and lavish hearts can wish;
Something than beauty dearer, should they look
Or on the mind, or mind-illumin'd face;
Truth, goodness, honour, harmony, and love,
The richest bounty of indulgent Heaven.
Meantime a smiling offspring rises round,
And mingles both their graces. By degrees,
The human blossom blows; and every day,
Soft as it rolls along, shews some new charm,
The father's lustre, and the mother's bloom.
Then infant reason grows apace, and calls
For the kind hand of an affiduous care.
Delightful task! to rear the tender thought,
To teach the young idea how to soot,
the fresh instruction o’er the mind,
To breathe th' enlivening spirit, and to fix
The generous purpose in the glowing breaft.
Oh speak the joy! ye, whom the sudden tear
Surprises often, while you look around,
And nothing strikes your eye but fights of bliss,
All various Nature pressing on the heart :
An elegant sufficiency, content,
Retirement, rural quiet, friendship, books,
Ease and alternate labour, useful life,
Progressive virtue, and approving Heaven.
These are the matchless joys of virtuous love ;
And thus their moments fly. The Seasons thus,
As ceaseless round a jarring world they roll,
Still find them happy; and consenting SPRING
Sheds her own rosy garland on their heads:
Till evening comes at last, serene and mild ;
When after the long vernal day of life,
Enamour'd more, as more remembrance swells
With many a proof of recollected love,
Together down they link in social sleep;
Together freed, their gentle fpirits fly
To scenes where love and bliss immortal reign,
The subject proposed. Invocation. Address to Mr. Doding
An introductory reflection on the motion of the heavenly bodies; whence the succession of the seasons. As the face of Nature in this season is almost uniform, the progress of the poem is a description of a summer's day. The dawn. Sun-rising. Hymn to the sun. Forenoon. Summer insects described. Hay-making. Sheep-shearing. Noon-day. A woodland retreat. Groupe of herds and Aocks. A folemn grove: how it affects a contemplative mind. A cataract, and rude scene, View of Summer in the torrid zone. Storm of thunder and lightning. A tale. The storm over, a serene afternoon. Bathing Hour of walking. Transition to the prospect of a rich well-cultivated country; which introduces a panegyric on Great Britain. Sun-set. Evening. Night. Summer meteors. A comet. The whole concluding with the praise of philofophy.