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THE subject proposed. Inscribed to the countess of Hartford. The season is described as it affects the various parts of nature, ascending from the lower to the higher; with digressions arising from the subject. Its influence on inanimate matter. Ön vegetables. On brute animals. And last, on man. Concluding with a dissuasive from the wild and irregular passion of love, opposed to thato a pure and happy kind.


COME, gentle Spring, ethereal mildness, come,
And, from the bosom of yon dropping cloud,
While music wakes around, veil'd in a show'r
Of shadowing roses, 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 soft assemblage, listen to my song,
Which thy own season paints; when nature all
Is blooming and benevolent, like thee.

And see where surly Winter passes off,
Far to the north, and calls his rufflan blasts.
His blasts obey, and quit the howling hill,
The shatter'd forest, and the ravag'd vale;
While softer gales succeed, at whose kind touch,
Dissolving snows in livid torrents lost,
The mountains lift their green heads to the sky.
As yet the trembling year is unconfirm'd,

And Winter oft at eve resumes the breeze,
Chills the gale morn, and bids his driving sleets
Deform the day delightless; so that scarce
The bittern knows his time, with bill ingulf'd
To shake the sounding marsh; or, from the shore,
The plovers when to scatter o'er the heath,
And sing their wild notes to the list'ning waste.


At last from Aries rolls the bounteous sun,
And the bright Bull receives him. Then no more
Th' expansive atmosphere is cramp'd with cold;
But, full of life and vivifying soul,

Lifts the light clouds sublime, and spreads them thin,
Fleecy and white o'er all-surrounding heav'n.
Forth fly the tepid airs; and unconfin'd,
Unbinding earth, the moving softness strays.
Joyous, th' impatient husbandman perceives
Relenting nature, and his lusty steers

Drives from their stalls, to where the well us'd-plough
Lies in the furrow, loosen'd from the frost.
There, unrefusing, to the harness'd yoke

They lend their shoulder, and begin their toil,
Cheer'd by the simple song and soaring lark.
Meanwhile, incumbent o'er the shining share
The master leans, removes the obstructing clay,
Winds the whole work, and sidelong lays the glebe.
While thro' the neighb'ring fields the sower stalks,
With measur'd step, and lib'ral throws the grain
Into the faithful bosom of the ground,

The harrow follows harsh, and shuts the scene.

Be gracious, Heav'n! for now laborious man
Has done his part. Ye fost'ring breezes, blow!
Ye soft'ning dews, ye tender show'rs, descend!
And temper all, thou world-reviving sun,
Into the perfect year! Nor ye who live
In luxury and ease, in pomp and pride,
Think these lost themes unworthy of your ear.
Such themes as these the rural Maro sung
To wide imperial Rome, in the full height

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