Page images
PDF
EPUB

Grew loud and mutinous, nor would be gone; But know that thou must render up the dead,

And with high int'rest too !—They are not thine,
Lording it o'er the man, who now too late
Saw the rash error, which he could not mend: But only in thy keeping for a season,
An error fatal not to him alone,

Till the great promis'd day of restitution ;

When loud diffusive sound from brazen trump
But to his future sons, his fortune's heirs,
Inglorious bondage!-Human nature groans Of strong-lung'd cherub, shall alarm thy captives,
Beneath a vassalage so vile and cruel,

And rouse the long, long sleepers into life,
And its vast body bleeds through ev'ry vein. Day-light, and liberty.-

What havoc bast thou made, foul monster, Sin! Then must thy gates fly open, and reveal
Greatest and first of ills! the fruitful parent The mines that lay long forming under ground,
Of woes of all dimensions !- But for thee

In their dark cells immur'd; but now full ripe,
Sorrow had never been.-All noxious things, And pure as silver from the crucible,
Of vilest nature, other sorts of evils,

That twice has stood the torture of the fire
Are kindly circumscrib'd, and have their bounds. And inquisition of the forge. We know
The fierce volcano, from his burning entrails Tl'illustrious deliverer of mankind,
Thai belches molten stone and globes of fire,

The Son of God, thee foil'd.-Him in thy power
Involv'd in pitchy clouds of smoke and stench, Thou could'st not hold: self-vigorous he rose,
Mars the adjacent fields for some leagues round, And, shaking off thy fetters, soon retook
And there it stops. The big-swoln inundation, Those spoils his voluntary yielding lent:
Of mischief more diffusive, raving loud,

(Sure pledge of our releasement from thy thrall!) Buries whole tracks of country, threat'ning more;

Twice twenty days he sojourn d here on earth, But that too has its shore it cannot pass.

And show'd himself alive to chosen witnesses, More dreadful far than these, sin has laid waste, By proofs so strong, that the most slow-assenting Not here and there a country, but a world :

Had not a scruple left. This having done, Dispatching at a wide-extended blow

He mounted up to Heav'n. Methinks I see him Entire mankind; and for their sales defacing Climb the aerial heights, and glide along A whole creation's beauty with rude hands; Athwart the severing clouds: but the faint eye, Blasting the foodful grain, the loaded branches, Flung backward in the chase, soon drops its hold; And marking all along its way withı ruin.

Disabled quite, and jaded with pursuing. Accurred thing !-Oh! where shall fancy find Heaven's portals wide expand to let him in; A proper naine to call thee by, expressive

Nor are his friends shut out: as some great prince Of all thy horrors ?—Pregnant womb of ills!

Not for himself alone procures admission, of temper so transcendently malign,

But for his train; it was his royal will, That toads and serpents of most deadly kind,

That where he is, there should his followers be. Compar'd to thee, are harmless.-Sicknesses Death only lies between !- A gloomy path! Of every size and symptom, racking pains,

Made yet more gloomy by our coward fear: And bluest plagues, are thine !— See how the fiend But nor untrod, nor tedious: the fatigue Profusely scatters the contagion round! (heels, Will soon go off.—Besides, there's no bye-road Whilst deep-mouth'd slaughter, bellowing at her

To bliss.—Then why. like ill-conditiou'd children, Wades deep in blood new-spilt! yet for to-morrow

Start we at transient hardships in the way Shapes out new work of great uncommon daring,

That leads to purer air, and softer skies,
And inly pines till the dread blow is struck.

And a ne'er-setting suu :--Fools that we are !
But hold! I've gone too far; too much discover'd

We wish to be where sweets unwith'ring bloom; My father's nakedness, and nature's shame.

But straight our wish revoke, and will not go. Here let me pause, and drop an honest tear,

So have I seen, upon a summer's even, One burst of filial duty and condolence,

Fast by the riv'let's brink, a youngster play: O'er all those ample deserts Death hath spread, How wishfully he looks to stem the tide! This chaos of mankind.–O great man-eater !

This moment resolute, next unresolv'd: Whose ev'ry day is carnival, not sated yet!

At last he dips his foot; but as he dips Unheard-of epicure! without a fellow !

His fears redouble, and he runs away The veriest gluttons do not always cram;

From th' inoffensive stream, unmindful now Some intervals of abstinence are sought

Of all the flow'rs that paint the further bank, To edge the appetite: thou seekest none.

And smil'd so sweet of late.--Thrice welcome Death! Methinks the countless swarms thou hast devour'd,

That after many a painful bleeding step And thousands that each hour thou gobblest up,

Conducts us to our home, and lands us safe This, less than this, might gorge thee to the full.

On the long-wish'd-for shore.Prodigious change! But ah! rapacious still, thou gap'st for more:

Our bane turn'd to a blessing !--Death, disarm’d, Like one, whole days defrauded of his meals,

Loses his fellness quite: all thanks to him On whom lank hunger lays his skinny hand,

Who scourg'd the venom out! Sure the last end And whets to keenest eagerness his cravings. Of the good inan is peace !-How calm his exit! (As if diseases, massacre and poison,

Night-dews fall not more gently to the ground, Famine, and war, were not thy caterers !)

Nor weary worn-out winds expire so soft.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Behold him in the evening-tide of life,

And each shall have his own.-Hence, ye profane! A life well-spent, whose early care it was

Ask not how this can be ?-Sure the same pow'r His riper years should not upbraid his green: That rear'd the piece at first, and took it down, By unperceiv'd degrees he wears away;

Can re-assemble the loose scatter'd parts, Yet like the sun, seems larger at his setting ! And put them as they were.— Almighty God (High in his faith and hopes), look how he reaches Has done much more ; nor is his arm impair'd After the prize in view! and, like a bird

Through length of days: and what he can, he will That's hamper’d, struggles hard to get away! His faithfulness stands bound to see it done. Whilst the glad gates of sight are wide expanded When the dread trumpet sounds, the slumb'ring dost, To let new glories in, the first fair fruits

Not unattentive to the call, shall wake : Of the fast-coming larvest.-Then, oh then! And ev'ry joint possess its proper place, Each earth-born joy grows vile, or disappears, With a new elegance of form, unknown Shrunk to a thing of nought.-Oh! how he longe To its first state.-Nor shall the conscious soul To have his passport sign’d, and be dismiss'd! Mistake its partner, but amidst the crowd 'Tis done! and now he's happy!—The glad soul Singling its other half, into its arms Has not a wish uncrown'd.-Ev'n the lag flesh Shall rush with all th’impatience of a man (sent, Rests too in hope of meeting once again

That's new come home, who having long been abIts better half, never to sunder more.

With haste runs over ev'ry different room, Nor shall it, hope in vain :--the time draws on In pain to see the whole. Thrice happy meeting! When not a single spot of burial earth,

Nor time, nor death, shall ever part them more. Whether on land, or in the spacious sea,

'Tis but a night, a long and moonless night; But must give back its long-committed dust We make the grave our bed, and then are gone. Inviolate: and faithfully shall these

Thus, at the shut of even, the weary bird Make up the full account; not the least atom Leaves the wide air, and in some lonely brake Embezzled, or mislaid, of the whole tale.

Cowess down, and dozes till the dawn of day; Each soul shall have a body ready-furnish’d; Then claps his well-fledg'd wings, and bears away.

[ocr errors][merged small]

WRITTEN IN A LADY'S IVORY

TABLE-BOOK, 1699.

[ocr errors]

Peruse my leaves through every part, And think thou seest my owner's heart, Scrawld o'er with trifles thus, and quite As hard, as senseless, and as light; Expos'd to every coxcomb's eyes, But hid with caution from the wise. Here you may read, “ Dear charming saint!" Beneath, “ A new receipt for paint;" Here, in beau-spelling, “ Tru tel deth;" There, in her own, " For an el breth ;" Here, “ Lovely nymph, pronounce my doom!" There, “ A safe way to use perfume :" Here, a page fill'd with billet-doux; On t'other side, “ Laid out for shoes"· Madam, I die without your grace"" Item, for half a yard of lace.” Who that had wit would place it here, For every peeping fop to jeer; In power of spittle and a clout, Whene'er he please, to blot it out ; And then, to heighten the disgrace, Clap his own nonser.se in the place? Whoe'er expects to hold his part In such a book, and such a heart, If he be wealthy, and a fool, Is in all points the fittest tool ; Of whom it may be justly said, He's a gold pencil tipp'd with lead.

I keep in my pocket, ty'd about my middle, next to

my smock. So when I went to put up my purse, as God would

have it, my smock was unript, And, instead of putting it into my pocket, down it

slipt; Then the bell rung, and I went down to put my

Lady to bed ; And, God knows, I thought my money was as safe as

my maidenhead. So, when I came up again, I found my pocket feel

very light: But when I search'd, and miss'd my purse, Lord! I

thought I should have sunk outright. Lord! Madain, says Mary, how d'ye do? Indeed,

says I, never worse: But pray, Mary, can you tell what I have done with

my purse? Lord help me! said Mary, I never stirr'd out of

this place; Nay, said I, I had it in Lady Betty's chamber, that's

a plain case. So Mary got me to bed, and cover'd me up warm : However, she stole away my garters, that I might

do myself no harm, So I tumbled and toss'd all night, as you may very

well think, But hardly ever set my eyes together, or slept a wink, So I was adream'd, methought that we went and

search'd the folks round, And in a corner of Mrs. Duke's box, ty’d in a rag,

the money was found. So next morning we told Whittle, and he fell a

swearing; Then my dame Wadgar came ; and she, you know,

is thick of hearing. Dame, said I, as loud as I could bawl, do you know

what a loss I have had ? Nay, said she, my Lord Conway's folks are all

very

sad;

MRS. HARRIS'S PETITION, 1699, To their Excellencies the Lords Justices of Ireland,

the humble petition of Frances Harris, Who must starve, and die a maid, if it miscarries;

Humbly sheweth, That I went to warm myself in Lady Betty's cham

ber, because I was cold; And I had in a purse seven pounds, four shillings,

and sixpence, besides farthings, in money and

goid; So, because I had been buying things for my Lady

last night, I was resolv'd to telt my money, to see if it was right. Now, you must know, because my trunk has a very

bad lock, Therefore all the money I have, which, God knows,

is a very small stock,

For my Lord Dromedary comes a Tuesday without

fail. Pugh! said I, but that's not the business that I ail, Says Cary, says he, I have been a servant this five

and twenty years come spring, And in all the places I liv'd I never heard of such

a thing Yes, says the steward, I remember, when I was at

my Lady Shrewsbury's, Such a thing as this happen'd just about the time

of gooseberries.

So I went to the party suspected, and I found her For that, he said, (an't please your Excellencies) | full of grief,

must petition you. (Now, you must know, of all things in the world, I The premises tenderly consider'd, I desire yon hate a thief.) [about: E.rcellencies' protection,

[lection; However, I am resolv'd to bring the discourse slily And that I may have a share in next Sunday's coMrs. Dukes, said I, here's an ugly accident has And, over and above, that I may liave your Excel. happen'd out:

lencies' letter, 'Tis not that I value the money three skips of a louse; With an order for the chaplain aforesaid, or, instead But the thing I stand upon is the credit of the house. of him, a better; 'Tis true, seven pounds, four shillings, and sixpence, And then your poor petitioner, both night and day, makes a great hole in my wages:

Or the chaplain (for 'tis his trade), as in duty bound, Besides, as they say, service is no inheritance in

shall ever pray.

these ages.

TO THE EARL OF PETERBOROW,

WHO COMMANDED THE BRITISH FORCES IN SPAIS,

Mordanto fills the trump of fame,
The Christian world his deeds proclaim,
And prints are crowded with his name.

In journies he outrides the post,
Sits up till midnight with his host,
Talks politics, and gives the toast ;

Knows every prince in Europe's face,
Flies like a squib from place to place,
And travels not, but runs a race.

Now, Mrs. Dukes, you know, and every body un

derstands, That though 'tis hard to judge, yet money can't go

without hands. The devil take me! said she (blessing herself) if

ever I saw't! So she roar'd like a bedlam, as though I had callid

her all to nanght. So you know, what could I say to her any more? le'en left her, and came away as wise as I was before. Well; but then they would had me gone to the

cunning man! No, said I, 'tis the same thing, the chaplain will be

here anon. So the chaplain came in. Now the servants say he

is my sweetheart, Because he's always in my chamber, and I always

take his part. So as the devil would have it, before I was aware,

out I blunder'd, Parson, said I, can you cast a nativity, when a

body's plunderd! (Now, you must know, he hates to be call'd parson

like the devil!) Truly, says he, Mrs. Nab, it might become you to

be more civil; If your money be gone, as a learned divine says, d'ye see,

[me; You are no text for my handling; so take that from I was never taken for a conjurer before, I'd have

From Paris gazette à-la-main,
This day arriv'd, without his train,
Mordanto in a week from Spain.

A messenger comes all a-reek,
Mordantu at Madrid to seek;
He left the town above a week.

Next day the post-boy winds his horn,
And rides through Dover in the morn:
Mordanto's landed from Leghorn.

Mordanto gallops on alone;
The roads are with his followers strown;
This breaks a girth, and that a bone.

you to know.

His body active as his mind,
Returning sound in limb and wind,
Except some leather lost behind.

A skeleton in outward figure,
His rneagre corpse. though full of vigour,
Would halt behind him, were it bigger.

Lord! said I, don't be angry, I am sure I never

thought you so; You know I honour the cloth; I design to be a

parson's wife; I never took one in your coat for a conjurer in all

my life; With that he twisted his girdle at me like a rope, as who should say,

[away. Now you may go bang yourself for me, and so went Well: I thought I would have swoon'd. Lord !

said I, what shall I do! I have lost my money, and shall lose my true love too! Then my Lord callid me: Harry, said my Lord,

So wonderful bis expedition,
When you have not the least suspicion,
He's with you like an apparition :

Shines in all climates like a star;
In senates bold, and fierce in war;
A land commander, and a tar:

don't cry;

I'll give you something towards thy loss; and, says

my Lady, so will I. Oh! but, said I, what if, after all, the chaplain

won't come to?

Heroic actions early bred in,
Ne'er to be match'd in modern reading,
But by his name-sake Charles of Sweden.

SWIFT.)

2

VANBRUGH'S HOUSE,
BUILT FROM THE RUINS OF WHITEHALL, 1706.
In times of old, when time was young,
And poets their own verses sung,
A verse would draw a stone or beam,
That now would overload a team;
Lead them a dance of many a mile,
Then rear them to a goodly pile.
Each number had its different power:
Heroic strains could build a tower;
Sonnets, or elegies to Chloris,
Might raise a house about two stories ;
A lyric ode would slate ; a catch
Would tile ; an epigram would thatch.

But, to their own or landlord's cost,
Now poets feel this art is lost.
Not one of all our tuneful throng
Can raise a lodging for a song:
For Jove consider'd well the case,
Observ'd they grew a numerous race ;
And, should they build as fast as write,
"Twould ruin undertakers quite.
This evil therefore to prevent,
He wisely chang'd their element:
On earth the god of wealth was made
Sole patron of the building trade;
Leaving the wits the spacious air,
With licence to build castles there:
And, 'tis conceiv'd, their old pretence
To lodge in garrets comes from thence.

Premising thus, in modern way,
The better half we have to say:
Sing, Muse, the house of poet Van
In higher strains than we began.

Van (for 'tis fit the reader know it)
Is both a herald and a poet ;
No wonder then if nicely skilled
In both capacities to build.
As herald, he can in a day
Repair a house gone to decay;
Or, by achievement, arms, device,
Erect a new one in a trice;
And, as a poet, he has skill
To build in speculation still.
Great Jove! he cry'd, the art restore
To build by verse as heretofore,
And make my Muse the architect;
What palaces shall we erect !
No longer shall forsaken Thames
Lament his old Whitehall in flames ;
A pile shall from its ashes rise,
Fit to invade or prop the skies.

Jove smil'd, and, like a gentle god,
Consenting with the usual nod,
Told Van, he knew his talent best,
And left the choice to his own breast.
So Van resolv'd to write a farce;
But, well perceiving wit was scarce,
With cunning that defect supplies;
Takes a French play as lawful prize;
Steals hence his plot and every joke,
Not once suspecting Jove would smoke;

And (like a wag set down to write)
Would whisper to himself, a bite;
Then, from this motley, mingled style,
Proceeded to erect his pile.
So men of old, to gain renown, did
Build Babel with their tongues confounded.
Jove saw the cheat, but thought it best
To turn the matter to a jest:
Down from Olympus too he slides,
Laughing as if he'd burst his sides :
Ay, thought the god, are these your tricks?
Why then old plays deserve old bricks;
And, since you're sparing of your stuff',
Your building shall be small enough.
He spake, and grudging, lent his aid;
Th' experienc'd bricks, that knew their trade,
(As being bricks at second-hand),
Now move,

and now in order stand.
The building, as the poet writ,
Rose in proportion to his wit: .
And first the prologue built a wall
So wide as to encompass all.
The scene a wood produc'd, no more
Than a few scrubby trees before.
The plot as yet lay deep; and so
A cellar next was dug below:
But this a work so hard was found,
Two acts it cost him under ground:
Two other acts, we may presume,
Were spent in building each a room.
Thus far advanc'd, he made a shift
To raise a roof with act the filth.
The epilogue behind did frame
A place not decent here to name.

Now poets from all quarters ran
To see the house of brother Van;
Look'd high and low, walk'd often round;
But no such house was to be found.
One asks the waterman hard-by,
“ Where may the poets palace lie ?"
Another of the Thames inquires,
If he has seen its gilded spires ?
At length they in the rubbish spy
A thing resembling a goose-pye.
Thither in haste the poets throng,
And gaze in silent wonder long,
Till one in rapture thus began
To praise the pile and builder Van:

Thrice happy poet! who mayèt trail
Thy house about thee like a snail;
Or, harness'd to a nag, at ease
Take journeys in it like a chaise ;
Or in a boat, whene'er thou wilt,
Canst make it serve thee for a tilt!
Capacious house! 'tis own’d by all
Thou’rt well contriv'd, though thou art small;
For
every

wit in Britain's isle
May lodge within thy spacious pile.
Like Bacchus thou, as poets feign,
Thy mother burnt, are born again,
Born like a phenix from the flame ;
But neither bulk nor shape the same:

Ss

« PreviousContinue »