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Shut, shut the Door, good Sohnfatigue I said Tye up the Hnocker, say I'm sick. Im dead.
And now the Poem, which holds so much of the DRAMA, and opens with all the disorder and vexation that
kind of impertinence and flander could occasion, concludes with the utmost calmness and serenity, in the retired enjoyment of all the tender offices of FRIENDSHIP and Piety [388. to the end.]
EPISTLE to Dr. ARBUTHNOT,
SAT I RE S.
P. HUT, shut the door, good John! fatigu’d
I said, Tye up the knocker, say I'm sick, I'm dead, The Dog-star rages ! nay 'tis past a doubt, All Bedlam, or Parnassus, is let out: Fire in each eye, and papers in each hand, 5 They rave, recite, and madden round the land.
NOTES. Ver. 1. Shut, jout the door, good John!] John Searl, his old and faithful servant: whom he has remembered, under that character, in his Will.
What walls can guard me, or what shades can hide?
Is there a Parson, much be-mus'd in beer, 15
scrawls With defp'rate charcoal round his darken'd walls? All fly to Twit’NAM, and in humble strain 21 Apply to me, to keep them mad or vain.
Is there a Bard in durance? turn them free,
NOTES. Ver. 12. Evin Sunday shines no Sabbath-day to me.] The beauty of this line arises from the figurative terms of the predicate alluding to the subject. A secret, in elegant expression, which our Author often practised. : VER, 13. Mint.] A place to which infolvent debtors retired, to enjoy an illegal protection, which they were there suffered to afford one another, from the persecution of their creditors.
Arthur, whose giddy fon neglects the Laws,
damn'd works the cause : Poor Cornus sees his frantic wife elope, 25 And curses Wit, and Poetry, and Pope.
Friend to my Life! (which did not you prolong, The world had wanted many an idle song) What Drop or Nostrum can this plague remove ? Or which must end me, a Fool's wrath or love? 30 A dire dilemma! either way I'm sped. If foes, they write, if friends, they read me dead. Seiz’d and ty'd down to judge, how wretched I! Who can't be silent, and who will not lye: To laugh, were want of goodness and of grace, 35 And to be grave, exceeds all Pow'r of face. I sit with sad civility, I read With honest anguish, and an aching head;
Dear Doctor, tell me, is not this a curse?
VER. 33. Seiz'd and ty'd down to judge,] Alluding to the scene in the Plain- Dealer, where Oldfox gags, and ties down the Widow, to hear his well-pen'd fianzas.
Ver. 38. honest anguish,] i. e. undissembled.
Ibid. an aching head;] Alluding to the disorder he was then so constantly afflicted with.