Samuel Johnson wrote poetry as well as dictionaries - and all manner of literature that paid his way. Here in an extract from 'Irene' he reflects on Spring in England. In the moonlight nature looks new from the maker's hand. Let's pray this Lent for an awareness of being created by a smiling, unoffended God, and be grateful for his ever-ready forgiveness. Irene means peace. And let's look for a darker sky than in a well-lit street to see how the moon spreads her mild radiance! See how the moon, through all th' unclouded sky, Spreads her mild radiance, and descending dews Revive the languid flow'rs; thus nature shone New from the maker's hand, and fair array'd In the bright colours of primeval spring; When purity, while fraud was yet unknown, Play'd fearless in th' inviolated shades. This elemental joy, this gen'ral calm, Is, sure, the smile of unoffended heav'n.
From Irene by Samuel Johnson.