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WINDSOR-FOREST.

To the Right Honourable

GEORGE Lord LANSDOWN.

T

HY forefts, Windfor! and thy green re

treats,

At once the Monarch's and the Mufe's feats,

Invite my lays. Be prefent fylvan maids!
Unlock your fprings, and open all your fhades.
Granville commands; your aid O Mufes bring!
What Mufe for Granville can refuse to fing?

The groves of Eden, vanish'd now fo long,
Live in defcription, and look green in fong:
Thefe, were my breast infpir'd with equal flame,
Like them in beauty, fhould be like in fame.
Here hills and vales, the woodland and the plain,
Here earth and water feem to ftrive again.

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Not Chaos-like together crush'd and bruis'd,
But as the world, harmoniously confus'd:
Where order in variety we fee,

And where, tho' all things differ, all agree,
Here waving groves a checquer'd fcene display,
And part admit, and part exclude the day;
As fome coy nymph her lover's warm addrefs
Nor quite indulges, nor can quite repréfs.
There, interfpers'd in lawns and opening glades,
Thin trees arife that fhun each others fhades.
Here in full light the ruffet plains extend;
There wrapt in clouds the blueish hills afcend:
Ev'n the wild heath displays her purple dyes,
And 'midft the defert fruitful fields arife,"

That crown'd with tufted trees and fpringing corn,
Like verdant ifles the fable waste adorn.
Let India boaft her plants, nor envy we

The weeping amber or the balmy tree,
While by our oaks the precious loads are born,
And realms commanded which thofe trees adorn.
Not proud Olympus yields a nobler fight,

Tho' Gods affembled grace his tow'ring height,
Than what more humble mountains offer here,
Where, in their bleffings, all thofe Gods appear.

See

9

See Pan with flocks, with fruits Pomona crown'd,
Here blushing Flora paints th' enamell'd ground,
Here Ceres' gifts in waving prospect stand,
And nodding tempt the joyful reaper's hand,
Rich induftry fits fmiling on the plains,
And peace and plenty tell, a Stuart reigns.
Not thus the land appear'd in ages past,
A dreary defert and a gloomy wafte,
To favage beafts and * favage laws a prey,
And Kings more furious and fevere than they :
Who claim'd the fkies, difpeopled air and floods,
The lonely Lords of empty wilds and woods.
Cities laid waste, they ftorm'd the dens and caves,
(For wifer brutes were backward to be slaves.)
What could be free, when lawless beafts obey'd,
And ev'n the elements a tyrant sway'd?

In vain kind feafons fwell'd the teeming grain,
Soft fhow'rs diftill'd, and funs grew warm in vain;
The fwain with tears to beafts his labour yields,

And famifh'd dies amidft his ripen'd fields.
No wonder favages or fubjects flain

Were equal crimes in a defpotic reign,

The Forest Laws.

Both

A S

Both doom'd alike for fportive tyrants bled,
But fubjects ftarv'd while favages were fed.
Proud Nimrod firft the bloody chace began,
A mighty hunter, and his prey was man.
Our haughty Norman boafts that barb'rous name,
And makes his trembling flaves the royal game.
The fields are ravish'd from th' industrious swains,
From men their cities, and from Gods their fanes:
The levell'd towns with weeds lie cover'd o're;
The hollow winds thro' naked temples roar;
Round broken columns clafping ivy twin'd;
O'er heaps of ruin ftalk'd the ftately hind;
The fox obfcene to gaping tombs retires,
And wolves with howling fill the facred quires.
Aw'd by his Nobles, by his Commons curft,
Th' oppreffor rul'd tyrannick where he durft,
Stretch'd o'er the Poor, and Church, his iron rod,
And treats alike his vaffals and his God.
Whom ev'n the Saxon fpar'd, and bloody Dane,
The wanton victim of his fport remain.

But fee the man who fpacious regions gave
A wafte for beafts, himfelf deny'd a grave!

† Alluding to the new forest, and the tyrannies exercis'd there by William I

Stretch'd

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