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"Tis liftening fear, and dumb amazement all:
When to the ftartled eye the fudden glance
Appears far fouth, eruptive thro' the cloud;
And following flower, in explosion vast,
The thunder raifes his tremendous voice.
At first, heard folemn o'er the verge of heaven,
The tempeft growls; but as it nearer comes,
And rolls its awful burden on the wind,
The lightnings flash a larger curve, and more
The noife aftounds: till over head a sheet
Of livid flame difclofes wide; then fhuts,
And opens wider; fhuts and opens ftill
Expanfive, wrapping ether in a blaze.
Follows the loofen'd aggravated roar,
Enlarging, deepening, mingling; peal on peal
Crush'd horrible, convulfing heaven and earth.
Down comes a deluge of fonorous hail, Or prone-defcending rain. Wide-rent, the clouds, Pour a whole flood; and yet, its flame unquench'd, Th' unconquerable lightning ftruggles through, Ragged and fierce, or in red whirling balls, And fires the mountains with redoubled rage. Black from the stroke, above, the fmould'ring pine Stands a fad fhattered trunk; and, ftretch'd below, A lifelefs groupe the blafted cattle lie:
Here the foft flocks, with that fame harmless look
They wore alive, and ruminating ftill
In fancy's eye; and there the frowning bull,
And ox half-rais'd. Struck on the castled clift,
The venerable tower and fpiry fane
Refign their aged pride. The gloomy woods
Start at the flash, and from their deep recefs,
Wide-flaming out, their trembling inmates shake,
Amid Carnarvon's mountains rages loud
The repercuffive roar: with mighty crush,
Into the flashing deep, from the rude rocks
Of Penmanmaur heap'd hideous to the sky,
Tumble the fmitten cliffs; and Snowden's peak,
Diffolving, inftant yields his wintry load.
Far-feen, the heights of heathy Cheviot blaze,
And Thule' bellows thro' her utmost ifles.
GUILT hears appall'd, with deeply troubled thought, And yet not always on the guilty head Defcends the fated flash. Young CELADON And his AMELIA were a matchless pair; With equal virtue form'd, and equal grace, The fame, diftinguish'd by their sex alone : Hers the mild luftre of the blooming morn, And his the radiance of the rifen day.
THEY lov'd: But fuch their guileless paffion was, As in the dawn of time inform'd the heart Of innocence, and undiffembling truth. 'Twas friendship heighten'd by the mutual wifh, Th' enchanting hope, and fympathetic glow, Beam'd from the mutual eye. Devoting all To love, each was to each a dearer felf; Supremely happy in th' awaken'd power Of giving joy. Alone, amid the shades, Still in harmonious intercourfe they liv'd The rural day, and talk'd the flowing heart, Or figh'd, and look'd unutterable things.
So pafs'd their life, a clear united stream,
By care unruffled; till, in evil hour,
The tempeft caught them on the tender walk,
Heedlefs how far, and where its mazes ftray'd,
While, with each other bleft, creative love
Still bade eternal Eden fmile around.
Prefaging inftant fate her bofom heav'd
Unwonted fighs, and stealing oft a look
Of the big gloom on CELADON her eye
Fell tearful, wetting her diforder'd cheek.
In vain affuring love, and confidence
In HEAVEN, reprefs'd her fear; it grew, and shook
Her frame near diffolution. He perceiv'd
Th' unequal confli&, and as angels look
On dying faints, his eyes compaffion fhed,
With love illumin'd high. "Fear not, he said,
"Sweet innocence! thou ftranger to offence,
"And inward ftorm! He, who yon skies involves
"In frowns of darkness, ever fmiles on thee
"With kind regard. O'er thee the fecret shaft
“That wastes at midnight, or th' undreaded hour
"Of noon, flies harmless: and that very voice,
"Which thunders terror thro' the guilty heart,
"With tongues of feraphs whispers peace to thine.
"'Tis fafety to be near thee fure, and thus
"To clasp perfection!" From his void embrace,
Myfterious Heaven! that moment, to the ground,
A blacken'd corfe, was struck the beautious maid.
But who can paint the lover, as he stood,
Pierc'd by fevere amazement, hating life,
Speechlefs, and fix'd in all the death of woe!
So, faint resemblance, on the marble tomb,
'The well diffembled mourner ftooping stands,
For ever filent, and for ever fad.
In the poem on autumn, he introduces a profpect of the fields ready for harvest, with some reflections in praise of industry, which are naturally excited by that fcene. We are then presented with a defcription of reapers in a field, and with a tale relative to it which we fhall infert. This is followed by a description of an harvest storm, and of hunting and fhooting, with fuitable reflections on the barbarity of thofe paftimes. After which he gives us a defcription of an orchard, wall-fruit, and a vineyard; defcants on the fogs, that fo frequently prevail in the latter part of autumn, and by a beautiful and philofophical digreffion, endeavours to inveftigate the caufe of fprings and rivers. He then confiders the birds of season, that now change their habitation, and speaks of the prodigious number that cover the western and northern ifles of Scotland. This na. turally leads him to describe that country, We are then entertained with a profpect of woods that are fading and difcoloured, of moon-light after a gentle dufky day, and of autumnal meteors. The morning fucceeds, which ufhers in a calm fun-fhiny day, fuch as ufually close this feafon. He then defcribes the country people at the end of harvest, giving loose to pleasure and diffolv'd in joy, and concludes with a panegyric on a philofophical country life.
The following pleafing and pathetick tale, which is naturally introduced in his defcription of the reapers, is, if I Make not, borrowed from the ftory of RUTH in the Old
Soon as the morning trembles o'er the sky,
And, unperceiv'd, unfolds the fpreading day;
Before the ripen'd field the reapers ftand,
In fair array each by the lass he loves,
To bear the rougher part, and mitigate.
By nameless gentle offices her toil.
At once they stoop and fwell the lufty fheaves;
While thro' their chearful band the rural talk,
The rural fcandal, and the rural jeft,
Fly harmless, to deceive the tedious time,
And fteal unfelt the fultry hours away.
Behind the mafter walks, builds up the fhocks;
And, confcious, glancing oft on every fide
His fated eye, feels his heart heave with joy.
The gleaners fpread around, and here and there,
Spike after spike, their feanty harvest pick.
Be not too narrow, hufbandmen! but fling
From the full fheaf, with charitable ftealth,
The liberal handful. Think, oh grateful think!
How good the GOD of HARVEST is to you;
Who pours abundance o'er your flowing fields;
While thefe unhappy partners of your kind,
Wide hover round you, like the fowls of heaven,
And ask their humble dole. The various turns
Of fortune ponder; that your fons may want
What now, with hard reluctance, faint, ye give.
The lovely young LAVINIA once had friends
And fortune fmil'd, deceitful, on her birth.
For, in her helpless years depriv'd of all,
Of every stay, fave innocence and HEAVEN,
She with her widow'd mother, feeble, old,
And poor, liv'd in a cottage, far retir'd
Among the windings of a woody vale ;
By folitude and deep furrounding fhades,
But more by bashful modefty, conceal'd.
Together thus they fhunn'd the cruel fcorn
Which virtue, funk to poverty, would meet
From giddy paffion and low-minded pride:
Almost on nature's common bounty fed ;
Like the gay birds that fung them to repose,
Content and careless of to-morrow's fare.
Her form was fresher than the morning rofe,
When the dew wets its leaves; unftain'd, and pure,
As is the lily, or the mountain fnow.
The modeft virtues mingled in her eyes,
Still on the ground dejected, darting all
Their humid beams into the blooming flowers:
Or when the mournful tale her mother told,
Of what her faithlefs fortune promis'd once,
'Thrill'd in her thought, they, like the dewy star
Of evening, fhone in tears.
A native grace
Sat fair proportion'd on her polish'd limbs,
Veil'd in a fimple robe, their beft attire,
Beyond the pomp of drefs; for loveliness
Needs not the foreign aid of ornament,
But is when unadorn'd adorn'd the most.
'Thoughtless of beauty, she was beauty's felf,
Reclufe amid the clofe-embowering woods.
As in the hollow breast of Appenine,
Beneath the shelter of encircling hills,
A myrtle rifes, far from human eye,
And breathes its balmy fragrance o'er the wild;
So flourish'd blooming, and unfeen by all,
The fweet LAVINIA; till, at length, compell'd
By ftrong neceffity's fupreme command,
With fmiling patience in her looks, she went
To glean PALEMON's fields. The pride of fwains
PALEMON was, the generous, and the rich;
Who led the rural life in all its joy
And elegance, fuch as Arcadian fong
Tranfmits from ancient uncorrupted times;
When tyrant custom had not fhackled man,
But free to follow nature was the mode.
He then, his fancy with autumnal scenes
Amufing, chanc'd befide his reaper-train
To walk, when poor LAVINIA drew his eye;
Unconscious of her power, and turning quick
With unaffected blushes from his gaze:
He faw her charming, but he faw not half
The charms her down-caft modefty conceal'd.
That very moment love and chafte defire
Sprung in his bofom, to himself unknown ;
For ftill the world prevail'd, and its dread laugh,
Which scarce the firm philofopher can fcorn,
hould his heart own a gleaner in the field: