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Welcome! as to a youthful poet wine,
To fire his fancy and enlarge his soul:
He weaves the laurel chaplet with the vine,
And grows immortal as he drains the bowl.
Welcome! as beauty to the lovesick swain,
For which he long had sigb'd, but sigh'd in vain :
He darts into her arms; quick vanishes his pain.

The drowsy Elements, aroused by thee,
Roll to harmonious measures, active all !
Earth, Water, Air, and Fire, with feeling glee,
Exult to celebrate thy festival.
Fire glows intenser; softer blows the Air;
More smooth the Waters flow; Earth smiles more

fair :

Earth, Water, Air, and Fire, thy gladdening im

pulse share.

What boundless tides of splendour o'er the skies,
O’erflowing brightness! stream their golden rays !
Heaven's azure kindles with the varying dyes,
Reflects the glory, and returns the blaze.
Air whitens : wide the tracts of ether been
With colours damask'd rich, and goodly sheen;
And all above is blue, and all below is green.

At thy approach, the wild waves' loud uproar,
And foamy surges of the maddening main,
Forget to heave their mountains to the shore;
Diffused into the level of the plain.
For thee the halcyon builds her summer's nest;
For thee the Ocean smooths her troubled breast,
Gay from thy placid smiles, in thy own purple

dress’d.

Have ye not seen, in gentle eventide,
When Jupiter the earth hath richly shower'd,
Striding the clouds, a Bow dispredden * wide
As if with light inwove, and gaily flower'd
With bright variety of blending dyes?
White, purple, yellow, melt along the skies,
Alternate colours sink, alternate colours rise.

The Earth's embroidery then have ye eyed,
And smile of blossoms, yellow, purple, white;
Their vernal-tinctured leaves, luxurious, dyed
In Flora's livery, painted by the light.
Light's painted children in the breezes play,
Lay out their dewy bosoms to the ray,
Their soft enamel spread, and beautify the day.

From the wide altar of the foodful Earth
The flowers, the herbs, the plants their incense roll:
The orchards swell the ruby-tinctured birth;
The vermil gardens breathe the spicy soul.
Grateful to May, the nectar spirit flies,
The wafted clouds of lavish'd odours rise,
The zephyr’s balmy burthen, worthy of the skies.

The Bee, the golden daughter of the Spring,
From mead to mead, in wanton labour roves,
And loads its little thigh or gilds its wing
With all the essence of the flushing groves:
Extracts the aromatic soul of flowers,
And, humming in delight, its waxen bowers
Fills with the luscious spoils, and lives ambrosial
Touch'd by thee, May, the flocks and lusty droves,
That low in pastures or on mountains bleat,
Revive their frolics and renew their loves,
Stung to the marrow with a generous heat.
The stately courser, bounding o'er the plain,
Shakes to the winds the honours of his mane,
(High-arch'd his neck) and, snuffing, hopes the

hours.

Spread.

dappled train.
The aereal songsters soothe the listening groves:
The mellow thrush, the ouzle* sweetly shrill,
And little linnet celebrate their loves
In hawthorn valley or on tufted hill;
The soaring lark, the lowly nightingale,
A thorn her pillow, trills her doleful tale,
And melancholy music dies along the dale.
This gay exuberance of gorgeous Spring,
The gilded mountain, and the herbaged vale,
The woods that blossom, and the birds that sing,
The murmuring fountain, and the breathing dale:
The dale, the fountains, birds, and woods delight,
The vales, the mountains, and the Spring invite,
Yet unadorn’d by May, no longer charm the sight,
When Nature laughs around, shall man alone,
Thy image, hang (ah me!) the sickly head?
When Nature sings, shall Nature's glory groan,
And languish for the pittance poor of bread!
0, may the man that shall his image scorn,
Alive, be ground with hunger, most forlorn,
Die unanell’dt; and dead, by dogs and kites be
Cursed may he be (as if he were not so)!
Nay doubly cursed be such a breast of steel,
Which never melted at another's woe,
Nor tenderness of bowels knew to feel.
His heart is black as hell, in flowing store
Who hears the needy crying at his door,
Who hears them cry, ne recks *; but suffers them

torn.

* Blackbird.

+ Without a funeral knell.

be poor.

But bless'd, O more than doubly bless'd be he!
Let Honour crown him and eternal Rest,
Whose bosom, the sweet fount of Charity,
Flows out to noursle + Innocence distress'd.
His ear is open to the widow's cries,
His hand the orphan's cheek of sorrow dries;
Like Mercy's self he looks on Want with Pity's

eyes.
In this bless'd Season, pregnant with delight,
Ne $ may the boding owl with screeches wound
The solemn silence of the quiet night,
Ne croaking raven with unhallow'd sound,
Ne damned ghost affray $ with deadly yell
The waking lover, raised by mighty spell,
To pale the stars, till Hesper shine it back to hell.
Ne witches rifle gibbets, by the moon
(With horror winking, trembling all with fear),
Of many a clinking chain, and canker'd bone:
Nor imp in visionary shape appear,
To blast the thriving verdure of the plain;
Ne let hobgoblin, ne the ponk, profane [brain.
With shadowy glare the light, and mad the bursting

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Yet fairy elves (so ancient custom's * will)
The green-gown’d fairy elves, by starry sheen t,
May gambol or in valley or on hill,
And leave their footsteps on the circled green.
Full lightly trip it, dapper Mab, around;
Full featly f, Oberon, thou, o'er grass turf bound:
Mab brushes, off no dewdrops, Oberon prints no

ground.
Neş bloody rumours violate the ear,
Of cities sack'd and kingdoms desolate,
With plague or sword, with pestilence or war;
Ne rueful murmur stain thy era date;
Ne shameless calumny, for fell despite,
The foulest fiend that e'er blasphemed the light,
At lovely lady rail, nor grin at courteous knight.
Ne wailing in our streets nor fields be heard,
Ne voice of misery assault the heart;
Ne fatherless from table be debarr’d;
Ne piteous tear from eye of sorrow start;
But, plenty, pour thyself into the bowl
Of bounty-head; may never want control [soul.
That good good honest man who feeds the famish'd
Now let the trumpet's martial thunders sleep;
The viol wake alone and tender flute:
The Phrygian lyre with sprightly fingers sweep,
And, Erato, dissolve the Lydian lute.

• The Lemuria, or rites sacred to the Lemores, were cele. brated by the Romans in May. See Ovid. Fast, 1, 5, &c. They imagined the Lemures (in English, Fairies) to be like ghosts of deceased persons: but our traditional accounts are very diffe. rent in respect to the nature of fairies. Shakspeare's Midsummer Nighi's Pream, Drayton's Fairy Tale, and a celebrated • Old Ballad,' are masterpieces in their kind.

† Brightness. # Nimbly.

ý Nor.

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