Designed to be spoken at Alnwick

by John Cunningham

John Cunningham


" T O Alnwick's lofty seat, a silvan scene!
To rising hills from distance doubly green,
Go — (says the God of Wit,) my standard bear,
These are the mansions of the great and fair,
'Tis my Olympus now; go, spread my banners there. "

Led by fond hope, the pointed path we trace,
And thank'd our patron for the flowery place;
Here — we behold a gently waving wood!
There — we can gaze upon a wandering flood!
The landscape smiles! — the fields gay fragrance wear!
Soft scenes are all around — refreshful air!
Slender repast indeed, and but camelion fare!

A troop, at certain times compell'd to shift,
And from their northern mountains turn'd adrift;
By tyrant managers awhile consign'd,
To fatten on what forage they can find;
With lawless force our liberty invades,
And fain would thrust us from these favourite shades;
But we (since prejudice erects her scale,
And puffs and petty artifice prevail)
To stronger holds with cool discretion run,
And leave the conquerors to be — undone.

With gratitude, still we'll acknowledge the favours
So kindly indulg'd to our simple endeavours;
To the great and the fair we rest thankfully debtors,
And wish we could say, we gave place to our betters.

Last updated September 05, 2017