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A COUNTRY LIFE.

Or how to pay thy hinds, and clear
All scores, and so to end the year;
But walk'st about thy own dear grounds,

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Not craving others' larger bounds;
For well thou know'st 'tis not th' extent
Of land makes life, but sweet content.

A COUNTRY LIFE.

When now the cock, the ploughman's horn,
Calls for the lily-wristed morn,
Then to thy corn-fields thou dost go,
Which, though well soil'd, yet thou dost know
That the best compost for the lands
Is the wise master's feet and hands.
There, at the plough, thou find'st thy team,
With a hind whistling there to them;
And cheer'st them up by singing how
The kingdom's portion is the plough.
This done, then to th' enamelled meads
Thou go'st; and, as thy foot there treads,
Thou seest a present god-like power
Imprinted in each herb and flower;
And smell'st the breath of great-eyed kine,
Sweet as the blossoms of the vine.
Here thou behold'st thy large, sleek neat,
Unto the dewlaps up in meat;
And, as thou look'st, the wanton steer,'
The heifer, cow, and ox, draw near,
To make a pleasing pastime there.
These seen, thou go'st to view thy flocks
Of sheep, safe from the wolf and fox;
And find'st their bellies there as full
Of short sweet grass, as backs with wool;
And leav'st them, as they feed and fill,
A shepherd piping on the hill.

A COUNTRY LIFE.

For sports, for pageantry, and plays,
Thou hast thy eves and holy-days,
On which the young men and maids meet
To exercise their dancing feet;
Tripping the comely country round,

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With daffodils and daisies crowned.
Thy wakes, thy quintels, here thou hast,
Thy May-poles, too, with garlands graced;
Thy morris-dance, thy Whitsun ale,
Thy shearing feast, which never fail;

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