« EelmineJätka »
Can fleep without a Poem in my bead,
274 “ I found him close with Swift-Indeed ? no doubt
(Çries prating Balbus) fomething will come out. 'Tis all in vain, deny it as I will, “ No, such a Genius never can lie ftill; And then for mine obligingly miftakes The firft Lampoon Sir Will..or Bubo makes.
280 Poor guiltlefs I! and can I chuse but smile, When ev'ry Coxcomb knows me by my Style?
Friendships from youth I sought, and seek them ftill:
Be nice no more, but, with a mouth profound,
Then smooth up all, and CAROLINE rehearse.
Leave to Court-sermons, and to birth-day Odes.
a By not making the World bis School he means, he did not form his fyftem of morality, on the principles or practice of men in bufiness,
Curft be the verse, how well foe'er it ftow, That tends to make one worthy man my foe, Give Virtue scandal, Innocence a fear, 285 Or from the soft-ey'd Virgin Ateal a tear! But he who hurts a harmless neighbour's peace, Insults fall'n worth, or Beauty in distress, Who loves a Lye, lame flander helps about, Who writes a Libel, or who copies out : 296 That Fop, whose pride affects a patron's name, Yet absent, wounds an author's honeft fame : Who can your merit felfifbly approve, And how the sense of it without the love ; Who has the vanity to call you friend,
295 Yet wants the honour, injur'd, to defend;
VER. 295. Wbo bas tbe vanity to call you friend, Yet wants the bonour, injur'd, to deferid;] When a great Genius, whose writings have afforded the world much pleasure and instruction, happens to be enviously attacked, or fallly accused, it is natural to think, that a sense of gratitude for so agreeable an obligation, or a sense of that honour refulting to our Country from such a Writer, should raise amongst those who call themselves his friends, a pretty general indignation. But every day's experience News us the very contrary. Some take a malignant satisfaction in the attack; others a foolish pleasure in a literary conflict; and the far greater part look on with a selfish indifference,
Who tells whate'er you think, whate'er you say,
Let Sporus tremble-A. What? that thing of filk, Sporus, that mere white curd of Ass's milk?
306 Satire or sense, alas ! can Sporus feel? Who breaks a butterfly upon a wheel? P. Yet let me flap this bug with gilded wings, This painted child of dirt, that stinks and fings; 310 Whose buzz the witty and the fair annoys, Yet wit ne'er tastes, and beauty ne'er enjoys: So well-bred spaniels civilly delight In mumbling of the game they dare not bite. Eternal smiles his emptiness betray,
315 As shallow streams run dimpling all the way. Whether in florid impotence he speaks, And, as the prompter breathes, the puppet fqueaks; Or at the ear of Eve, familiar Toad, Half froth, half venom, spits himself abroad,
320 VER. 299. Who to the Dean, and silver bell &c ] Meaning the man who would have persuaded the Duke of Chandos that Mr. P. meant him in those circumstances ridiculed in the Epiftle on Taste. See Mr. Pope's Letter to the Earl of Burlington concerning this matter.
VER. 319. See Milton, Book įv.
puns, or politics, or tales, or lies,
Not Fortune's worshiper, nor Fashion's fool, Not Lucre's madman, nor Ambition's tool,
335 Not proud, nor servile; Be one Poet's praise, That, if he pleas'd, he pleas'd by manly ways: That Flatt'ry, ev'n to Kings, he held a shame, And thought a Lye in verse or prose the fame. That not in Fancy's maze he wander'd long, 340 But stoop'd to Truth, and moraliz'd his song:
VER. 320. Half frotb,] Alluding to those frotby excretions, called by the people, Tocd-spies, seen in summer-time hanging upon plants, and emitted by young insects which lie hid in the midft of them, for their preservation, while in their helpless Aate.
VIR 340. That not in Fancy's maze be wander'd long, ] His merit in this will appear very great, if we consider, that in this walls he had all the advantages which the most poetic ImagiHation could give to a great Genius. M. Voltaire, in a MS, lettes,
That not for Fame, but Virtue's better end,
now before me, writes thus from England to a friend in Paris, “ I intend to send you two or three poems of Mr Pope, the “ best poet of England, and at present of all the world. I hope
you are acquainted enough with the English tongue, to be « sensible of all the charms of his works. For my part, I look upon
poem called the Elay on Criticism as superior to “ the Art of poetry of Horace; and his Rape of the Lack is, in « my opinion, above the Lutrin of Despreaux. I never saw « so amiable an imagination, so gentle graces, so great variety, « so much wit, and so refined knowledge of the world, as in “ this little performance." MS. Let. Oft. 15, 1726.
VER. 341. But ftoop'd to Trutb] The term is from falconry; and the allufion to one of those untamed birds of spirit, which sometimes wantons at large in airy circles before it regards, or floops to, its prey.
VER. 350. tbe lye fo oft o'ertbrown] As, that he received subscriptions for Shakespear, that he fet his name to Mr. Broome's verses, &c. which, tho' publicly disproved, were nevertheless Shamelessly repeated in the Libels, and even in that called the Nobleman's Epifle.
VER. 351. Tb' imputed Trap ] Such as profane Pfalms, Court-Poems, and other scandalous things, printed in his Name by Carl and othexs.