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A Divine Pastorall

Strephon & I upon a bank were laid,
Where the gay spring in varied colours playd,
& her rich odours lavish nature shed.
When thus the Youth, while this we wondring view
Can we but wonder at its maker too,
Amintas, if I know him, did not use
Shoud such a subject call, to want a muse,
Oh sing the great, the wise creating powr,
While silent I admire, & in your words adore.
Then I, for long before the thought was mine,
Did thus to meet the good demand begin.

Ye Mountains, & ye hills which lower rise,
Ye humble vallies, & ye spreading trees,
Ye pleasant meadows, & thou easy stream,
O praise the Lord, O magnify his name!
Yes, as you can you tell his name abroad,
The wondrous work proclaims the worker God.
Gently awhile sweet Breezes move along,
Then swiftly bear aloft my finisht song.

Ye tame & savage beasts in one accord,
Joyn with all these to Glorify the Lord;
Ye Birds, Ye tunefull birds in him rejoyce,
Give him your musick, who gave you your voice,
Hark how the cheerfull labour of their throats,
returns the tribute of their pretty notes.
Gently awhile sweet Breezes move along,
Then swiftly bear aloft my rising song.

But still the earth, & still the seas are mute,
The Birds are speechless, speechless is the Brute,
Man that alone can speak his praise must doo't.
Praise him O man with a transported heart,
Let the melodious hand confess its art,
Let the raisd voice his bounteous glory's sing,
Shoud less be joynd to praise so great a King?
Gently awhile sweet Breezes move along,
Then swiftly bear aloft my rising song.

For thee the seasons run the circling year,
The clouds drop fatness, & the fruits appear,
Thee as the Lord of all below he plac'd,
Free in thy choice, & by thy chusing bless'd,
Tis true we must account for all we do,
But to a God alone th' account is due.
Gently awhile sweet Breezes move along,
Then swiftly bear aloft my rising song.

The Seraphim, & all the Heavenly pow'r,
Bright in their shapes, but in their virtues more,
Came to the shade where our first parents lay,
They heard him reason, & they heard her pray,
Then struck their Golden harps, & as they flew,
Cry'd, Halelujah, man is made for heaven too.
Go on, my Muse, Go on, & Gratefully express,
The Creatures thanks, in the Creators praise.

To see this pair the fallen powrs came in,
Torturd with malice, & deformd by sin,
They saw this happy pair designd to fill
The realms, from whence they fell by doing ill,
They heard their Joyfull anthems to their God,
& faign they woud have harmd ym if they coud,
Whom they woud harm they impotently curse,
Their strength indeed was great but God was ours.
Go on, My Muse, Go on, & Gratefully express.
The Creatures thanks, in the Creators praise.

I know I cannot speak his mercy's through,
Yet what I can, of what I ought Ile do,
Mean as they are, my notes to him belong,
Mean as it is, he will reward my song.
Go on, my Muse go on, & gratefully express
The Creatures thanks, in the Creators praise.

On such a theam I coud for ever dwell,
Thus lett my voice when I must perish fail
& thus my monument my story tell;
Here lyes a Youth—stay passenger & pray,
Nor pitty him who di'd no common way,
But when his breath was all in hymns bestowd
Sent up his soul to bear 'em to his God.

So lett me end, the twilight does appear,
The heat has left to rarify the air,
The winds it broke grow strong enough to fly,
Yes swiftly fly ye winds, & bear my Lays on high.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

3:16 min read

Thomas Parnell

Thomas Parnell was an Anglo-Irish poet and clergyman who was a friend of both Alexander Pope and Jonathan Swift. He was the son of Thomas Parnell of Maryborough, Queen's County now Port Laoise, County Laoise}, a prosperous landowner who had been a loyal supporter of Cromwell during the English Civil War and moved to Ireland after the restoration of the monarchy. Thomas was educated at Trinity College, Dublin and collated archdeacon of Clogher in 1705. He however spent much of his time in London, where he participated with Pope, Swift and others in the Scriblerus Club, contributing to The Spectator and aiding Pope in his translation of The Iliad. He was also one of the so-called "Graveyard poets": his 'A Night-Piece on Death,' widely considered the first "Graveyard School" poem, was published posthumously in Poems on Several Occasions, collected and edited by Alexander Pope and is thought by some scholars to have been published in December of 1721 (although dated in 1722 on its title page, the year accepted by The Concise Oxford Chronology of English Literature; see 1721 in poetry, 1722 in poetry). It is said of his poetry 'it was in keeping with his character, easy and pleasing, ennunciating the common places with felicity and grace. more…

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