A Description of a Winter's Morning

The bleak North-west with nipping rigour reigns,
Congeals the Ponds, and crusts the Fields and Plains;
The Sun (in Mists arising) faintly sees
Each Cottage tipt with Snow — the leafless Trees,
Silver'd with Frost — the Fowler, for his Prey,
With stealing steps, explores the roughen'd Way;
The Milk-Maid he, resembling Daphne, spies,
With freshen'd Vigour in her Cheeks and Eyes:
Now curling Smoak from Cottages ascends,
And kindled Fire his failing Heat amends:
The tender Gentry, tim'rous of the Cold,
Cling to their Nests — th' athletick Swain, more bold,
To the near Farm, or distant Market hies,
His Limbs infolded with defensive Prize;
With sturdy Strides he tramples o'er the Mound,
And beats with Iron Hoof, the clatt'ring Ground;
The Houshold Maid industriously prepares
To regulate her necessary Cares;
While th' idle Landlord, or the sottish 'Squire,
Sluggs in the Bed, or hovers o'er the Fire.
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