Page images





IR; though (I thank God for it) I do hate

Perfectly all this town; yet there's one state

In all ill things, fo excellently beft,

That hate towards them, breeds pity towards the reft,
Though Poetry, indeed, be fuch a fin,

As I think, that brings dearth and Spaniards in :
Though like the peftilence, and old-fashion'd love,
Ridingly it catch men, and doth remove

Never, till it be ftarv'd out; yet their state

Is poor, difarm'd, like Papifts, not worth hate.

One (like a wretch, which at barre jud❜gd as dead,

Yet prompts him which ftands next, and cannot read,

And faves his life) gives Idiot Actors means,
(Starving himself) to live by's labour'd scenes.
As in foine Organs, Puppits dance above
And bellows pant below, which them do move.

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]





ES; thank my ftars! as early as I knew
This Town, I had the fenfe to hate it too:
Yet here, as ev'n in Hell, there must be still
One Giant - Vice, fo excellently ill,

That all befide, one pities, not abhors;
As who knows Sappho, fmiles at other whores.

I grant that Poetry's a crying fin;

It brought (no doubt) th' Excise and Army in

[ocr errors]

Catch'd like the Plague, or Love, the Lord knows
But that the cure is ftarving, all allow.

Yet like the Papift's, is the Poet's state,
Poor and difarm'd, and hardly worth your hate!



Here a lean Bard, whofe wit could never give
Himself a dinner, makes an Actor live;
The Thief condemn'd, in law already dead,
So prompts, and faves a rogue who cannot read.
Thus as the pipes of fome carv'd Organ move,
The gilded puppers dance and mount above.
Heav'd by the 'breath th' inspiring bellows blow:
Th' infpiring bellows lie and pant below.


One would move love by rythmes; bur witchcraft's charms

Bring not now their old fears, nor their old harms; Rams, and flings now are filly battery,

Pistolets are the best artillery.

And they who write to Lords, rewards to get,
Are they not like fingers at doors for meat?
And they who write, because all write, have ftill
That 'fcufe for writing, and for writing ill.

But he is worst, who beggarly doth chaw
Others wits fruits, and in his ravenous maw

Rankly digested, doth those things out-fpue,
As his own things; and they're his own, 'tis true,
For if one eat my meat, though it be known
The meat was mine, the excrement's his own.


But these do me no harm, nor they which use, to out-ufure Jews, Toutdrink the fea, t'out-fwear the Letanie, Who with fins all kinds as familiar be As Confeffors, and for whofe finful fake

Schoolmen, new tenements in hell muft make ;


VER. 38. Irishmen outswear), The Original fays,
out- - fwear the Letanie.

improved by the Imitator to a juft ftroke of Satire. Dr. Donne's is a low allufion to a licentious quibble used, at that time, by the Enemies of the English Liturgy, who dif liking the frequent

One Sings the Fair; but songs no longer move; No rat is rhym'd to death, nor maid to love: In love's, in nature's fpite, the fiege they hold, And fcorn the flesh, the dev'l, and all but gold.


These write to Lords, fome mean reward to get, 25* As needy beggars fing at doors for meat.

Those write becaufe all write, and fo have still
Excufe for writing, and for writing ill.

Wretched indeed! but far more wretched yet
Is he who makes his meal on others wit:


'Tis chang'd, no doubt, from what it was before,
His rank digeftion makes it wit no more:
Senfe, pak thro' him, no longer is the fame;
For food digested takes another name.

I pass o'er all those Confeffors and Martyrs,
Who live like S-tt-n, or who die like Chartres,
Out-cant old Efdras, or out-drink his heir,
Out- ufure Jews, or Irifhmen out - swear;
Wicked as Pages, who in early years

At fins which Prifca's Confeffor scarce hears.
Ev'n those I pardon, for whofe finful fake
Schoolmen new tenements in hell muft make;

[ocr errors]




invocations in the Letanie, 'called them the taking God's Name in wain, which is the Scripture periphrafis for swearing..

Whofe ftrange fins Canonifts could hardly tell
In which Commandment's large receit they dwell.
But these punish themselves. The infolence
Of Cofcus, only, breeds ny juft offence,
Whom time (which rots all, and makes botches pox,
And plodding on, must make a calf an ox)
Hath made a Lawyer; which (alas) of late;
But fcarce a Poet: jollier of this ftate,

Than are new-benefic'd Minifters, he throws
Like nets or ime twigs wherefoe'er he goes


His title of Barrifter on ev'ry wench, ⠀

And wooes in Language of the Pleas and Bench.
Words, words which would tear

The tender labyrinth of a Maid's foft ear:

More, more than ten Sclayonians fcolding, more

Than when winds in our ruin'd Abbyes roar.


VER. 44. In what Commandment's large contents they dwell.) The Original is more humourous,

In which Commandment's large receit they dwell. As if the Ten Commandments were fo wide, as to ftand ready to receive every thing within them, that either the Law of Na

« EelmineJätka »