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Thus, on his Celia's panting breast Fond Celadon his soul express'd; While with delight the lovely maid Received the vows, she thus repaid :
Hope of my age, joy of my youth,
Bless'd miracle of love and truth;
All that could e'er be counted mine,
My love and life, long since are thine:
A real joy I never knew,
Till I believed thy passion true ;
A real grief I ne'er can find,
Till thou provest perjured or unkind.
Content and poverty, and care,
All we abhor, and all we fear,
Bless'd with thy presence I can bear.
Through waters and through flames I'll go,
Sufferer and solace of thy woe:
Trace me some yet unheard-of way,
That I thy ardour may repay,
And make my constant passion known
By more than woman yet has done.
Had I a wish that did not bear
The stamp and image of my dear,
I'd pierce my heart through every vein,
And die, to let it out again.
No; Venus shall my witness be,
(If Venus ever loved like me)
That for one hour I would not quit
My shepherd's arms and this retreat,
To be the Persian monarch's bride,
Partner of all his power and pride;
Or rule in regal state above,
Mother of gods and wife of Jove.'
O happy these of human race!
But soon, alas! our pleasures pass.
He thank'd her on his bended knee,
Then drank a quart of milk and tea,
And leaving her adored embrace,
Hasten’d to court to beg a place ;
While she, his absence to bemoan,
moment he was gone, Calld Thyrsis from beneath the bed, Where all this time he had been hid.
MORAL. WHILE men have these ambitious fancies, And wanton wenches read romances, Our sex will — What? out with it:'-Lie, And their's in equal strains reply. The moral of the Tale I sing (A posey for a wedding ring) In this short verse will be confined; Love is a jest, and vows are wind.
THE CONVERSATION. It always has been thought discreet To know the company you meet; And sure there may be secret danger In talking much before a stranger. Agreed: what then? Then drink your ale; I'll pledge you, and repeat my Tale.
No matter where the scene is fix’d, The persons were but oddly mix’d; When sober Damon thus began, (And Damon is a clever man) "I now grow old, but still from youth Have held for modesty and truth :
The men who by these sea-marks steer
In life's great voyage never err :
Upon this point I dare defy
The world; I pause for a reply.'
Sir, either is a good assistant,
(Said one, who sat a little distant;)
Truth decks our speeches and our books,
And modesty adorns our looks:
But farther progress we must make;
Not only born to look and speak,
The man must act. The Stagirite
Says thus, and says extremely right:
Strict justice is the sovereign guide
That o'er our actions should preside ;
of virtues is confess'd
To regulate and bind the rest;
Thrice happy if you can but find
Her equal balance poise your mind;
All different graces soon will enter,
Like lines concurrent to their centre.'
'Twas thus, in short, these two went on, With
Through many points divinely dark,
And Waterland assaulting Clarke,
Till, in theology half lost,
Damon took up the Evening Post,
Confounded Spain, composed the North,
And deep in politics held forth.
• Methinks we're in the like condition, As at the Treaty of Partition : That stroke, for all King William's care, Begat another tedious war. Matthew, who knew the whole intrigue, Ne'er much approved that mystic league:
In the vile Utrecht Treaty, too,
Poor man! he found enough to do.
Sometimes to me he did apply,
But downright Dunstable was I,
And told him where they were mistaken,
And counsellid him to save his bacon:
But (pass his politics and prose)
I never herded with his foes ;
Nay, in his verses, as a friend,
I still found something to commend :
Sir, I excused bis Nut-brown Maid,
Whate'er severer critics said ;
Too far, I own, the girl was tried ;
The women all were on my side.
For Alma I return’d him thanks ;
I liked her, with her little pranks :
Indeed poor Solomon, in rhyme,
Was much too grave to be sublime.'
Pindar and Damon scorn transition,
So on he ran a new division;
Till out of breath he turn’d to spit ;
(Chance often helps us more than wit)
T' other that lucky moment took,
Just pick'd the time, broke in, and spoke:
Of all the gifts the gods afford,
(If we may take old Tully's word)
The greatest is a friend; whose love
Knows how to praise, and when reprove.
From such a treasure never part,
But hang the jewel on your heart :
And pray, sir, (it delights me) tell,
You know this author mighty well-
• Know him! d'ye question it? Odds fish!
Sir, does a beggar know his dish ?
I loved him, as I told you,
Advised him'-Here a stander-by
Twitch'd Damon gently by the cloak,
And thus, unwilling, silence broke:
Damon, 'tis time we should retire,
talk with, is Matt Prior.'
Patron through life, and from thy birth my friend,
Dorset! to thee this Fable let me send;
With Damon's lightness weigh thy solid worth ;
The foil is known to set the diamond forth :
Let the feign’d Tale this real moral give,
How many Damons, how few Dorsets live.
P. PURGANTI AND HIS WIFE.
AN HONEST BUT A SIMPLE PAIR.
Est enim quiddam, idque intelligitur in omni virtute, quod
deceat : quod cogitatione magis a virtute potest quam reseparari.
Cic. de Off. lib. 1.
BEYOND the fix'd and settled rules
Of vice and virtue in the schools,
Beyond the letter of the law,
Which keeps our men and maids in awe,
The better sort should set before them
A grace, a manner, a decorum ;
Something that gives their acts a light,
Makes them not only just but bright,
And sets them in that
fame Which witty Malice cannot blame.
For 'tis in life as 'tis in painting,
Much may be right, yet much be wanting;