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And buy a rope, that future times may tell
Thou hast at least bestow'd one penny well.
"Right," cries his Lordship, "for a rogue in need To have a Taste is insolence indeed:
In me 'tis noble, suits my birth and state,
My wealth unwieldy, and my heap too great.”
Then, like the Sun, let Bounty spread her ray,
And shine that superfluity away.
Oh Impudence of wealth! with all thy store,
How dar'st thou let one worthy man be poor?
Shall half the new-built churches round thee fall?
Make Quays, build Bridges, or repair White-hall:
Or to thy Country let that heap be lent,
As M**o's was, but not at five per cent.
Who thinks that Fortune cannot change her mind, Prepares a dreadful jest for all mankind. And who stands safest? tell me, is it he That spreads and swells in puff'd Prosperity, Or blest with little, whose preventing care In peace provides fit arms against a war?
Thus BETHEL spoke, who always speaks his thought, And always thinks the very thing he ought: His equal mind I copy what I can,
And, as I love, would imitate the Man.
In South-sea day's not happier, when surmis'd
The Lord of Thousands, than if now Excis'd;
In forest planted by a Father's hand,
Than in five acres now of rented land.
Content with little I can piddle here,
On broccoli and mutton, round the year;
But ancient friends (tho' poor, or out of play),
That touch my bell, I cannot turn away.
'Tis true, no Turbots dignify my boards,
But gudgeons, flounders, what my Thames affords:
To Hounslow-heath I point, and Bansted-down,
Thence comes your mutton, and these chicks my own:
From yon old walnut-tree a show'r shall fall;
And grapes, long ling'ring on my only wall,
And figs from standard and espalier join;
The dev❜l is in you if you cannot dine:
Then cheerful healths (your Mistress shall have place),
And, what's more rare, a Poet shall say Grace.
Fortune not much of humbling me can boast:
Tho' double tax'd, how little have I lost?
My Life's amusements have been just the same,
Before, and after Standing Armies came.
My lands are sold, my father's house is gone;
I'll hire another's; is not that my own,
And yours, my friends? thro' whose free-op'ning gate
None comes too early, none departs too late;
(For I, who hold sage Homer's rule the best,
Welcome the coming, speed the going guest).
"Pray heav'n it last! (cries SWIFT!) as you go on;
I wish to God this house had been your own:
Pity! to build, without a son or wife:
Why, you'll enjoy it only all your life."
Well, if the use be mine, can it concern one,
Whether the name belong to Pope or Vernon?
What's Property? dear Swift! you see it alter
From you to me, from me to Peter Walter;
Or, in a mortgage, prove a Lawyer's share;
Or, in a jointure, vanish from the heir;
Or, in pure equity (the case not clear)
The Chanc'ry takes your rents for twenty year:
At best, it fall to some ungracious son,
Who cries, "My father's damn'd, and all's my own.”
Shades, that to BACON could retreat afford,
Become the portion of a booby Lord;
And Helmsley, once proud Buckingham's delight,
Slides to a Scriv'ner or a city Knight.
Let lands and houses have what Lords they will,
Let Us be fix'd, and our own masters still.
THE FIRST EPISTLE OF THE FIRST
BOOK OF HORACE
ST. JOHN, whose love indulg'd my labours past,
Matures my present, and shall bound my last!
Why will you break the Sabbath of my days?
Now sick alike of Envy and of Praise.
Public too long, ah let me hide my Age!
See Modest Cibber now has left the Stage:
Our Gen'rals now, retir'd to their Estates,
Hang their old Trophies o'er the Garden gates,
In Life's cool Ev'ning satiate of Applause,
Nor fond of bleeding, ev'n in BRUNSWICK'S cause.
A voice there is, that whispers in my ear,
('Tis Reason's voice, which sometimes one can hear)
"Friend Pope! be prudent, let your Muse take breath,
And never gallop Pegasus to death;
Lest stiff, and stately, void of fire or force,
You limp, like Blackmore on a Lord Mayor's horse.'
Farewell, then Verse, and Love, and ev'ry Toy.
The Rhymes and Rattles of the Man or Boy;
What right, what true, what fit we justly call,
Let this be all my care-for this is All:
To lay this harvest up, and hoard with haste
What ev'ry day will want, and most, the last.
But ask not, to what Doctors I apply?
Sworn to no Master, of no Sect am I:
As drives the storm, at any door I knock:
And house with Montaigne now, or now with Locke.
Sometimes a Patriot, active in debate,
Mix with the World, and battle for the State,
Free as young Lyttelton, her Cause pursue,
Still true to Virtue, and as warm as true:
Sometimes with Aristippus, or St. Paul,
Indulge my candour, and grow all to all;
Back to my native Moderation slide,
And win my way by yielding to the tide.
Long, as to him who works for debt, the day,
Long as the Night to her whose Love's away,
Long as the Year's dull circle seems to run,
When the brisk Minor pants for twenty-one:
So slow th' unprofitable moments roll,
That lock up all the Functions of my soul;
That keep me from myself; and still delay
Life's instant business to a future day:
That task, which as we follow, or despise,
The eldest is a fool, the youngest wise:
Which done, the poorest can no wants endure;
And which not done, the richest must be poor.
Late as it is, I put myself to school,
And feel some comfort, not to be a fool.
Weak tho' I am of limb, and short of sight,
Far from a Lynx, and not a Giant quite;
I'll do what Mead and Cheselden advise,
To keep these limbs, and to preserve these eyes.
Not to go back, is somewhat to advance,
And men must walk at least before they dance.
Say, does the blood rebel, thy bosom move
With wretched Av'rice, or as wretched Love?
Know, there are Words, and Spells, which can con
Between the fits this Fever of the soul:
Know there are Rhymes, which fresh and fresh apply'd,
Will cure the arrant'st Puppy of his Pride.
Be furious, envious, slothful, mad, or drunk,
Slave to a Wife, or Vassal to a Punk,
A Switz, a High-Dutch, or a Low-Dutch Bear;
All that we ask is but a patient Ear.
'Tis the first Virtue, Vices to abhor;
And the first Wisdom, to be Fool no more.
But to the world no bugbear is so great,
As want of figure, and a small Estate.
To either India see the Merchant fly,
Scar'd at the spectre of pale poverty!
See him, with pains of body, pangs of soul,
Burn through the Tropic, freeze beneath the Pole!
Wilt thou do nothing for a nobler end,
Nothing, to make Philosophy thy friend?
To stop thy foolish views, thy long desires,
And ease thy heart of all that it admires?
Here, Wisdom calls: "Seek Virtue first, be bold!
As Gold to Silver, Virtue is to Gold."
There, London's voice: "Get Money, Money still!
And then let Virtue follow, if she will."
This, this the saving doctrine, preach'd to all,
From low St. James's up to high St. Paul!
From his whose quill stands quiver'd at his ear,
To him who notches sticks at Westminster.
Barnard in spirit, sense, and truth abounds;
"Pray, then, what wants he?" Fourscore thousand
A Pension, or such Harness for a slave.