The Natural History of Selborne
by Gilbert White
INVITATION TO SELBORNE.
See, Selborne spreads her boldest beauties round
The varied valley, and the mountain ground,
Wildly majestic ! What is all the pride,
Of flats, with loads of ornaments supplied ?--
Unpleasing, tasteless, impotent expense,
Compared with Nature's rude magnificenee.
Arise, my stranger, to these wild scenes haste;
The unfinish'd farm awaits your forming taste:
Plan the pavilion, airy, light, and true;
Through the high arch call in the length'ning view;
Expand the forest sloping up the hill;
Swell to a lake the scant, penurious rill;
Extend the vista; raise the castle mound
In antique taste, with turrets ivy-crown'd:
O'er the gay lawn the flow'ry shrub dispread,
Or with the blending garden mix the mead;
Bid China's pale, fantastic fence delight;
Or with the mimic statue trap the sight.
Oft on some evening, sunny, soft, and still,