Philip Hayes
(1738 - 1797)

Hayes : O happy plains : illustration

O happy plains
(T.T.B.)
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Published in The Muses' Delight, 1786.
Lyrics: John Gay

O happy plains, remote from war's alarms
And all the ravages of hostile arms!
And happy shepherds who, secure from fear,
On open downs preserve your fleecy care!
Whose spacious barns groan with increasing store,
And whirling flails disjoint the crackling floor;
No barb'rous soldier, bent on cruel spoil,
Spreads desolation o'er your fertile soil;
No trampled steed lays waste the ripen'd grain,
Nor crackling fires devour the promis'd gain;
Nor flaming beacons cast their blaze afar,
The dreadful signal of invasive war;
No trumpet's clangour wounds the mother's ear,
And calls the lover from his swooning fair.