Philip Hayes
(1738 - 1797)

Hayes : Fields were overspread with flowers : illustration

Fields were overspread with flowers
(A.T.B.)
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Published in The Muses' Delight, 1786.
Lyrics: "From England's Helicon"

Fields were overspread with flowers,
Fairest choice of Flora's treasure;
Shepherds there had shady bowers,
Where they oft repos'd with pleasure;
Meadows flourished fresh and gay,
Where the wanton herds did play.

Springs more clear than crystal streams
Seated were the groves among;
Thus nor Titan's scorching beams,
Nor the earth's drought could shepherds wrong;
Fair Pomona's fruitful pride
Did the budding branches hide.

Flocks of sheep fed on the plains,
Harmless sheep that roamed at large;
Here and there sat pensive swains,
Waiting on their wandering charge;
Pensive while their lasses smiled,
Lasses which had them beguil'd.

Hills with trees were richly dight,
Valleys stored with Vesta's wealth;
Both did harbour sweet delight,
Nought was there to hinder wealth;
Thus did heaven grace the soil,
Not deform'd with workman's toil.

Purest plot of earthly mould
Might that land be justly named;
Art by nature was controlled,
Art which no such pleasure framed;
Fairer place was never seen,
Fittest place for beauty's queen.