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Poem by Mark Akenside
Ode 1. Allusion to Horace
Amid the garden's fragrance laid, Where yonder limes behold their shade Along the glassy stream, With HORACE and his tuneful ease I'll rest from crouds, and care's disease, And summer's piercing beam. Behold the busy, wand'ring BEE! From bloom to bloom, from tree to tree She sweeps mellifluous dews; For her the silken gems arise, For her display their shinking dyes, Their balmy breath diffuse. Sweet Murmurer! may no rude storm This pleasurable scene deform To check thy gladsome toils; Still may the buds unsullied spring, Still flow'rs and sunshine court thy wing To these ambrosial spoils. Nor shall my Muse hereafter fail Her fellow-lab'rer thus to hail, And lucky be the strains! For long ago did nature frame Your seasons and your arts the same, Your pleasures and your pains. Like thee, in lowly, sylvan scenes, And river-banks and fruitful greens Delights my vagrant song; Nor strives by soaring high in air, Tho' swans and eagles triumph there, To draw the giddy throng. Nor where the raven, where the owl By night their hateful orgies howl, Will she her cares imploy; But flies from ruins and from graves, From ghostly cells and monkish caves To day-light and to joy. Nor will she tempt the barren waste; Nor deigns th' ungrateful stores to taste Of any noxious thing; But leaves with scorn to others' use The bitter hemlock's baneful juice, The nettle's sordid sting. From all which nature fairest knows, The vernal blooms, the summer rose, She draws her mingled wealth; And when the lovely task is done, She consecrates a double boon, To pleasure and to health.
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