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O MEMORY, thou fond deceiver !
Still importunate and vain;
To former joys recurring ever,
And turning all the past to pain;
THE CLOWN'S REPLY.
JOHN TROT was desired by two witty peers
To tell them the reason why asses had ears.
"An't please you," quoth John, "I'm not given to letters,
Nor dare I pretend to know more than my betters:
Howe'er from this time I shall ne'er see your graces,
As I hope to be saved! without thinking on asses.
Thou, like the world, opprest oppressing,
Thy smiles increase the wretch's woe,
And he who wants each other blessing
In thee must ever find a foe.
EPITAPH ON EDWARD PURDON.
HERE lies poor Ned Purdon, from misery freed,
Who long was a bookseller's hack.
He led such a damnable life in this world,
I don't think he'll wish to come back.
She strove the neighbourhood to please,
With manners wondrous winning;
And never followed wicked ways,-
Unless when she was sinning.
AN ELEGY ON THAT GLORY OF HER SEX, MRS. MARY BLAIZE.
GOOD people all, with one accord
Lament for Madam Blaize,
Who never wanted a good word,
At church, in silks and satins new,
With hoop of monstrous size,
She never slumbered in her pew,—
But when she shut her eyes.
From those who spoke her praise.
The needy seldom passed her door,
And always found her kind;
She freely lent to all the poor,-
Who left a pledge behind.
Her love was sought, I do aver,
By twenty beaux and more;
The king himself has followed her,--
When she has walked before.
But now her wealth and finery fled,
Her hangers-on cut short all;
The doctors found, when she was dead,-
Her last disorder mortal.
Let us lament, in sorrow sore,
For Kent-street well may say,
That had she lived a twelvemonth more,-
She had not died to-day.
INTENDED TO HAVE BEEN SUNG BY MISS HARDCASTLE IN THE COMEDY OF
SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER."
AIR.-The Humours of Ballamagairy.
AH me! when shall I marry me?
Lovers are plenty, but fail to relieve me.
He, fond youth, that could carry me,
Offers to love, but means to deceive me.
But I will rally, and combat the ruiner;
Not a look nor a smile shall my passion discover.
She that gives all to the false one pursuing her
Makes but a penitent, and loses a lover.
PROLOGUE TO “ZOBEIDE,” A TRAGEDY.
SPOKEN BY MR. QUICK IN THE CHARACTER OF A SA LOR.
IN these bold times, when Learning's sons explore
The distant climates and the savage shore;
When wise astronomers to India steer,
And quit for Venus many a brighter here;
While botanists, all cold to smiles and dimpling,
Forsake the fair, and patiently-go simpling;
When every bosom swells with wondrous scenes,
Priests, cannibals, and hoity-toity queens;
Our bard into the general spirit enters,
And fits his little frigate for adventures.
With Scythian stores, and trinkets, deeply laden,
He this way steers his course, in hopes of trading;
Yet ere he lands he 'as ordered me before,
To make an observation on the shore.
Where are we driven? our reckoning sure is lost!
This seems a barren and a dangerous coast.
Lord, what a sultry climate am I under!
Yon ill-foreboding cloud seems big with thunder - [Upper gallery. There mangroves spread, and larger than I've seen 'em-[Pit. Here trees of stately size, and turtles in 'em
Here ill-conditioned oranges abound — And apples takes up one and tastes it], bitter apples, strew the ground:
The place is uninhabited I fear :
I heard a hissing-there are serpents here!
Oh, there the natives are a dreadful race;
The men have tails, the women painted face.
No doubt they're all barbarians.—Yes, 'tis so;
I'll try to make palaver with them though:
'Tis best, however, keeping at a distance.
Good savages, our Captain craves assistance :
Our ship's well stored; in yonder creek we've laid her :
His honour is no mercenary trader.
This is his first adventure; lend him aid,
Or you may chance to spoil a thriving trade.
His goods, he hopes, are prime, and brought from far,
Equally fit for gallantry and war.
What! no reply to promises so ample?
I'd best step back-and order up a sample.
SPOKEN BY MR. LEE LEWES, IN THE CHARACTER OF HARLEQUIN, AT HIS BENEFIT.
HOLD, Prompter, hold! a word before your nonsense!
I'd speak a word or two, to ease my conscience.
My pride forbids it ever should be said
My heels eclipsed the honours of my head;
That I found humour in a piebald vest,
Or ever thought that jumping was a jest.
Whence, and what art thou, visionary birth?
Nature disowns and reason scorns thy mirth.
In thy black aspect every passion sleeps,
The joy that dimples, and the woe that weeps.
How hast thou filled the scene with all thy brood
Of fools pursuing, and of fools pursued!
Whose ins and outs no ray of sense discloses,
Whose only plot it is to break our noses;
Whilst from below the trap-door demons rise,
And from above the dangling deities.
And shall I mix in this unhallowed crew?
May rosined lightning blast me if I do!
No-I will act, I'll vindicate the stage:
Shakespeare himself shall feel my tragic rage.
Off, off, vile trappings! a new passion reigns!
The maddening monarch revels in my veins.
Oh for a Richard's voice to catch the theme!
"Give me another horse! bind up my wounds !-soft; 'twas but
Ay, 'twas but a dream, for now there's no retreating:
If I cease Harlequin, I cease from eating.
'Twas thus that Æsop's stag, a creature blameless,
Yet something vain, like one that shall be nameless,
Once on the margin of a fountain stood,
And cavilled at his image in the flood.
"The deuce confound," he cries, "these drumstick shanks;
They never have my gratitude nor thanks;
They're perfectly disgraceful! strike me dead!
But for a head; yes, yes, I have a head.
How piercing is that eye! how sleek that brow!
My horns!-I'm told horns are the fashion now.”
Whilst thus he spoke, astonished, to his view,
Near, and more near, the hounds and huntsmen drew;
"Hoicks! hark forward!" came thundering from behind.
He bounds aloft, outstrips the fleeting wind;
He quits the woods, and tries the beaten ways;
He starts, he pants, he takes the circling maze.
At length his silly head, so prized before,
Is taught his former folly to deplore;
Whilst his strong limbs conspire to set him free,
And at one bound he saves himself,-like me.
[Taking a jump through the stage-door.
IN IMITATION OF DEAN SWIFT.
LOGICIANS have but ill defined
As rational the human mind;
Reason, they say, belongs to man,
But let them prove it if they can.
Wise Aristotle and Smiglecius,
By ratiocinations specious,
Have strove to prove with great precision,
With definition and division,
Homo est ratione præditum:
But for my soul I cannot credit 'em ;
And must in spite of them maintain
That man and all his ways are vain,
And that this boasted lord of nature
Is both a weak and erring creature;
That instinct is a surer guide
Than reason-boasting mortals' pride;
And that brute beasts are far before 'em :
Deus est anima brutorum.
Who ever knew an honest brute
At law his neighbour prosecute,
Bring action for assault and battery,
Or friend beguile with lies and flattery?
O'er plains they ramble unconfined,
No politics disturb their mind;
They eat their meals and take their sport,
Nor know who's in or out at court;
They never to the levee go,
To treat as dearest friend a foe;
They never importune his Grace,
Nor ever cringe to men in place;
Nor undertake a dirty job,
Nor draw the quill to write for Bob;
Fraught with invective they ne'er go
To folks at Pater-Noster Row ;
No judges, fiddlers, dancing-masters,
No pickpockets, or poetasters,
Are known to honest quadrupeds:
No single brute his fellow leads.
Brutes never meet in bloody fray,
Nor cut each other's throats for pay.
Of beasts, it is confessed, the ape
Comes nearest us in human shape:
Like man he imitates each fashion,
And malice is his ruling passion;
But both in malice and grimaces
A courtier any ape surpasses.
Behold him humbly cringing wait
Upon the minister of state;
View him soon after to inferiors
Aping the conduct of superiors:
He promises with equal air,
And to perform takes equal care.
He in his turn finds imitators :
At court the porters, lacqueys, waiters, Their master's manners still contract, And footmen lords and dukes can act : Thus at the court both great and small Behave alike, for all ape all.
ON THE TAKING OF QUEBEC, AND DEATH OF GENERAL WOLFE.
AMIDST the clamour of exulting joys,
Which triumph forces from the patriot heart,
Grief dares to mingle her soul-piercing voice,
And quells the raptures which from pleasure start.
O Wolfe! to thee a streaming flood of woe,
Sighing, we pay, and think e'en conquest dear;
Quebec in vain shall teach our breast to glow,
Whilst thy sad fate extorts the heart-wrung tear.
Alive, the foe thy dreadful vigour fled,
And saw thee fall with joy-pronouncing eyes:
Yet they shall know thou conquerest, though dead!
Since from thy tomb a thousand heroes rise.
ON A BEAUTIFUL YOUTH STRUCK BLIND BY LIGHTNING.
SURE 'twas by Providence designed,
Rather in pity than in hate,
That he should be, like Cupid, blind,
To save him from Narcissus' fate.
WEEPING, murmuring, complaining,
Lost to every gay delight,
Myra, too sincere for feigning,
Fears the approaching bridal night.
YOUR mandate I got, You may all go to pot; Had your senses been right, You'd have sent before night; As I hope to be saved, I put off being shaved; For I could not make bold, While the matter was cold, To meddle in suds, Or to put on my duds; So tell Horneck and Nesbitt And Baker and his bit, And Kauffman beside, And the Jessamy bride; With the rest of the crew, The Reynoldses two, Little Comedy's face And the Captain in lace. (By the bye, you may tell him, I have something to sell him ; Of use I insist,
When he comes to enlist. Your worships must know That a few days ago,
Yet why impair thy bright perfection,
Or dim thy beauty with a tear?
Had Myra followed my direction,
She long had wanted cause of fear.
IN REPLY TO AN INVITATION TO DINNER AT DR. BAKER'S.
"This is a poem! This is a copy of verses!"
An order went out,
For the foot guards so stout
To wear tails in high taste,
Twelve inches at least :
Now I've got him a scale
To measure each tail,
To lengthen a short tail,
And a long one to curtail.)-
Yet how can I when vext Thus stray from my text? Tell each other to rue Your Devonshire crew, For sending so late To one of my state. But 'tis Reynolds's way From wisdom to stray, And Angelica's whim To be frolic like him.
But, alas! your good worships, how could they be wiser,
When both have been spoiled in to-day's Advertiser ?