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Where nought but shadowy forms were seen to move,
And where this valley winded out below,
But whate'er smack'd of noyance, or unrest,
Was plac'd; and to his lute, of cruel fate,
VIII. Thither continual pilgrims crowded still, From all the roads of earth that pass thereby ; For as they chaunc'd to breathe on neighb'ring hill, The freshness of this valley smote their eye, And drew them ever and anon more nigh; 'Till clustering round th'enchanter false they hung, Ymolten with his syren melody;
While o’er th’ enfeebling lute his hand he flung, And to the trembling chords these tempting verses sung!
IX. “ Behold! ye pilgrims of this earth, behold! “See all but man with unearn’d pleasure gay; " See her bright robes the butterfly unfold, “ Broke from her wintry tomb in prime of May! “What youthful bride can equal her array? “Who can with her for easy pleasure vie? “ From mead to mead with gentle wing to stray,
"From flower to flower on balmy gales to fly, " Is all she has to do beneath the radiant sky.
X. “ Behold the merry minstrels of the morn, “ The swarming songsters of the careless grove, “Ten thousand throats! that,from the flowering thorn,
Hymn their good God, and carol sweet of love, “ Such grateful kindly raptures them emove: “ They neither plough, nor sow; ne, fit for flail, “ E’er to the barn the nodden sheaves they drove;
“ Yet theirs each harvest dancing in the gale, “Whatever crowns the hill, or smiles along the vale.
XI. 5 Outcast of nature, man! the wretched thrall “Of bitter-drooping sweat, of sweltry pain, “Of cares that eat away the heart with gall, < And of the vices, an inhuman train, “That all proceed from savage thirst of gain : “For when hard-hearted Interest first began “ To poison earth, Astræa left the plain!
“Guile, violence, and murder seiz'd on man, “ And, for soft milky streams, with blood the rivers (ran.
XII. “Come, ye, who still the cumb’rous load of life “ Push hard up hill; but as the farthest steep “ You trust to gain, and put an end to strife, 6 Down thunders back the stone with mighty sweep, " And hurls your labours to the valley deep, “For ever vain: come, and, withouten fee, "I in oblivion will your sorrows steep,
“Your cares, your toils, will steep you in a sea “Of full delight : 0 come ye weary wights, to me!
“With me, you need not rise at early dawn, “ To pass the joyless day in various stounds ; “Or, louting low, on upstart fortune fawn, " And sell fair honour for some paltry pounds; “Or through the city take your dirty rounds, “ To cheat, and dun, and lie, and visit pay, “Now flattering base, now giving secret wounds;
6. Or prowl in courts of law for human prey, “ In venal senate thieve, or rob on broad highway.
XIV. “ No cocks, with me, to rustic labour call, “ From village on to village sounding clear : “ To tardy swain no shrill-yoic'd matrons squall; “No dogs, no babes, no wives, to stun your ear; “ No hammers thump; no horrid blacksmith fear ; “ No noisy tradesmen your sweet slumbers start, “ With sounds that are a misery to hear :
“But all is calm, as would delight the heart “Of Sybarite of old, all nature, and all art.
XV. 6 Here nought but candour reigns, indulgent ease, "Good-natur'd lounging, sauntering up and down: 6. They who are pleas'd themselves must always
please ; “On others' ways they never squint a frown, “ Nor heed what haps in hamlet or in town: 66 Thus, from the source of tender indolence, “ With milky blood the heart is overflown, “ Is sooth'd and sweeten’d by the social sense : For interest, envy, pride, and strife are banish'd
“ And torture man a proud malignant worm?
“A quicker sense of joy; as breezes stray “ Across th’enliven'd' skies, and make them still more
XVH. “ The best of men have ever lov'd repose : « They hate to mingle in the filthy fray ; " Where the soul sours, and gradual rancour grows, “Imbitter'd more from peevish day to day. « Even those whom fame has lent her fairest ray, “ The most renown'd of worthy wights of yore, “ From a base world at last have stol'n away :
“ So Seipio, to the soft Cumæan shore “ Retiring tasted joys he never knew before.
XVIII. “ But if a little exercise you choose, “Some zest for ease, 'tis not forbidden here. “ Amid the groves you may indulge the muse, “ Or tend the blooms, and deck the vernal year ; “Or softly stealing, with your watery gear,
Along the brooks, the crimson-spotted fry “You may delude : the whilst, amus'd you
hear “Now the hoarse stream, and now the zephyr's
sigh “Attun'd to the birds, and woodland melody.