Page images

Pit, box, and gallery, in convulfions hurl'd,
Thou stand it unhook amidst a bursting world,
Who fhames a Scribbler? break one




Soft were my numbers: who could take offence. While pure defcription held the place of fenfe? Like gentle Fanny's was my flowvery theme, A painted miltrefs, or a purling ftream. 99 Yet then did Gilcon draw his venal quill; 1 with'd the man a dinner, and fate still. Yet then did Dennis rave in furious fret ; I never anfwer'd, I was not in debt. If want provok'd, or madness made them print, 155 95 wag'd no war with Bedlam or the Mint.

He fpins the flight, felf-pleafing thread anew:
Deftroy his fib or foghittry, in vain,
The creature's at his dirty work again,
Thron'd on the centre of his thin defigns,
Proud of a vast extent of flimfy lines!
Whom have I hurt? has Poet yet, or Peer,
Loft the arch'd eyebrow, or Parnaffian încer?
And has not Colly fill his lord, and whore?
His butchers Henley, his free-mafons Moor?"
Does not one table Favius fill admit?
Still to one Bishop Philips feem a wit?
Still Sappho A. Hold; for Cod's fake—you'll


Did fome more fober critic come abroad; If wrong, fimil'd; if right, I kifs'd the rod.. Pains, reading, fudy, are their just pretence, And all they want is fpirit, tafte, and fenfe. 100 Commas and points they fet exactly right, And 'twere a fin to rob them of their mite. Yet ne'er one fprig of laurel grac'd thefe ribalds, From flafhing Bentley down to pidling Tibalds: Each wight, who reads not, and but fcans and fpelis, 165

No names--be calm-learn prudence of a friend:
I too could write, and I am twice as tall;

But foes like thefe-P. One Flatterer's worse than

Each Word-catcher, that lives on fyllables,
105 Ev'n fuch finall Critics fome regard may claim,
Preferv'd in Milton's or in Shakespeare's name.
Pretty! in amber to obferve the forms

Of hairs, or ftraws, or dirt, or grubs, or worms! 170
The things we know are neither rich nor rare,
110 But wonder how the devil they got there.

Of all mad creatures, if the learn'd are right,
It is the flaver kills, and not the bite.
A fool quite angry is quite innocent:
Alas! 'tis ten times wo fe when they repent,
One dedicates in high heroic profe,
And ridicules beyond a hundred foes:
One from all Grub-street will my fame defend,
And, more abufive, calls himself my friend.
This prints my letters, that expects a bribe,
And others roar aloud, "Subfcribe, fubfcribe!"
There are, who to my perfon pay their court:

Were others angry: 1 excus'd them too;
Well might they rage, I gave them but their due.
A man's true merit 'tis not hard to find;
But each man's fecret standard in his mind,
That cafting-weight pride adds to emptiness,
This, who can gratify? for who can guefs?
The Bard whom pilfer'd paftorals renown,
Who turn a Perlian tale for half a crown,
eye!"-Juft writes to make his barrennefs appear,

I cough like Horace, and, though lean, am hort.
Ammon's great fon one fhoulder had too high,
Such Ovid's nofe, and, "Sir! you have an
Go on, obliging creature, make me fee
All that difgrac'd my betters, met in me.
Say for my comfort, languishing in bed,
"Juft fo immortal Maro held his head;"
And when I die, be sure you let me know
Great Homer dy'd three thousand years ago.

Why did I write? what fin to me unknown
Dipp'd me in ink, my parents', or my own?
As yet a child, nor yet a fool to fame,




And ftrains from hard-bound brains, eight lines a

He, who, fill wanting, though he lives on theft,
Steals much, fpends little, yet has nothing left:
And he, who, now to fenfe, now nonfenfe leaning,

125 Means not, but blunders round about a meaning:
And he, whofe fuftian's fo fublimely bad,

I lfp'd in numbers, for the numbers came.
11.ft no calling for this idle trade,
No duty broke, no father difobey'd:
The Mufe but ferv'd to cafe fome friend, not
To help me through this long disease, my life;
To fecond, Arbuthnot! thy art and care,
And teach, the being you preferv'd, to bear.
But why then publish? Granville the polite, 135
And knowing Walth, would tell me I could write;
Well-natur'd Garth inflm'd with early praife,
And Congreve lov'd, and Swift endur'd my lays;
The courtly Talbot, Somers, Sheffield read,
Ev'n mitred Rochefter would nod the head,
And St. John's felf, (great Dryden's friends before)
With open arms received one poet morë.
Happy my ftudies, when by thefe approv'd!
Happier their Author, when by these belov'd!
From there the world will judge of men and books,

Not from the Burnets, Oldmixons, and Cooks.




It is not poetry, but profe run mad:
All thefe, my modeft Satire bad tranflate,
And own'd that nine fuch poets made a Tate.
130 How did they fume, and itamp, and rear, and chafe !
wife; And fwear, not Addifon himfelf was fafe.
Peace to all fuch! but were there one whofe fires
True Genius kindles, and fair fame infpires;
Bleft with each talent and each art to please,
Aud born to write, converfe, and live with cafe:
Should fuch a man, too fond to rule alone,
Bear, like the Turk, no brother near the throne,
View him with fcornful, yet with jealous eyes,
And hate for arts that caus'd himself to rife;
Dann with faint praife, affent with civil leer,
And, without fneering, teach the reft to fneer;
Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike,
Juft hint a fault, and hesitate diflike;
Alike referv'd to blame, or to commend,
A timorous foc, and a suspicious friend;
Dreading even fools, by flatterers befieg'd,
And fo obliging, that be ne'er obliged;





Like Cato, give his little Senate laws,
And fit attentive to his own applaufe;
While Wits and Templars every sentence raife,
And wonder with a foolish face of praise-
Who but must laugh, if such a man there be ?
Who would not weep, if Atticus were he!

What though my name stood rubric on the

Why am I ask'd what next shall see the light? 210 Heavens! was I born for nothing but to write ? Has Life no joys for me? or (to be grave) Have I no friend to ferve, no foul to fave? "I found him clofe with Swift-Indeed? no doubt 275

walls," (Cries prating Balbus) fomething will come out." 215 Tis all in vain, deny it as I will.

220 fong.

Or plaifter'd pofts, with claps, in capitals?
Or fmoaking forth, a hundred hawkers' load,
On wings of winds came flying all abroad?
I fought no homage from the race that write;
I kept, like Afian Monarchs, from their fight:
Poems I heeded (now berhym'd fo long)
No more than thou, great George! a birth-day
I ne'er with wits or witlings pafs'd my days,,
To spread about the itch of verse and praise;
Nor, like a puppy, daggled through the town,
To fetch and carry fing-fong up and down;
Nor at Rehearsals fweat, and mouth'd, and cry'd,
With handkerchief and orange at my fide;
But, fick of fops, and poetry, and prate,
To Bufo left the whole Caftalian ftate.


[ocr errors]

"No, fuch a Genius never can lie ftill;"
And then for mine obligingly mistakes
The first Lampoon Sir Will or Bubo makes.
Poor, guiltlefs I! and can I choose but smile,
When every Coxcomb knows me by my Style?
Curst be the verse, how well foe'er it flow,
That tends to make one worthy man my foe,
Give Virtue fcandal, Innocence a fear,
Or from the foft-ey'd Virgin steal a Tear!
But he who hurts a harmless neighbour's peace,
Infults fall'n Worth, or Beauty in diftrefs,

Who loves a Lie, lame flander helps about,



Who writes a Libel, or who copies out:
That Fop, whofe pride affects a patron's name,


230 Yet abfent, wounds an author's honeft fame:
Who can your merit felfishly approve,


Proud as Apollo on his forked hill,
Sate full-blown Bufo, puff'd by every quill;
Fed with foft Dedication all day long.
Horace and he went hand in hand in fong,
His Library (where bufts of Poets dead
And a true Pindar flood without a head)
Receiv'd of wits an undistinguish'd race,
Who firft his judgment afk'd, and then a place;
Much they extoll'd his pictures, much his feat,
And flatter'd every day, and sometimes eat;
Till, grown more frugal in his riper days,
He paid fome bards with port, and fome with praife,
To fome a dry rehearsal was affign'd,
And others (harder ftill) he paid in kind.

And fhew the fenfe of it without the love;


Who has the vanity to call you friend,
Yet wants the honour, injur'd, to defend ;
Who tells whate'er you think, whate'er you say,
And, if he lie rot, muft at leaft betray;
Who to the Dean and filver bell can fwear,
And fees at Cannons what was never there;
Who reads but with a luft to mifapply,
240 Make Satire a Lampoon, and Fiction Lie.
A lafh like mine no honeft man shall dread,
But all fuch babbling blockheads in his stead.
Let Sporus tremble-A. What? that thing of filk,

Dryden alone (what wonder?) came not nigh, 245 Sporus, that mere white curd of Afs's milk?

Dryden alone efcap'd this judging eye:
But ftill the Great have kindness in referve,
He help'd to bury whom he help'd to ftarve.
May fome choice patron blefs each grey

May every Bavius have his Bufo ftill!
So when a Statefman wants a day's defence,
Or Envy holds a whole week's war with Senfe,
Or fimple pride for flattery makes demands,
May durce by dunce be whistled off my hands!
Bleft be the Great! for those they take away,
And thofe they left me; for they left me Gay:
Left me to fee neglected genius bloom,
Neglected die, and tell it on his tomb:
Of all thy blamelefs life the fole return



Satire of fenfe, 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 ftings;
Whofe buzz the witty and the fair annoys,
Yet wit ne er taftes, and beauty ne'er enjoys:
So well-bred fpaniels civilly delight
In mumbling of the game they dare not bite.
Eternal fmiles his emptiness betray,




As fhallow ftreams run dimpling all the way. 255 Whether in florid impotence he speaks, And, as the prompter breathes, the puppet squeaks; O at the ear of Eve, familiar Toad, 320 Half froth, half venom, fpits himself abroad, In puns, or politics, or tales, or lies,

My Verie, and Queensberry weeping o'er thy urn! Or fpite, or imut, or rhymes, or blafphemies.

Oh let me live my own, and die fo too!

(To live and die is all I have to do:)

Maintain a Poet's dignity and ease,

260 His wit all fee-faw, between that and this,
Now high, now low, now mafter up, now mifs,
And he hirnfelf one vile Antithefis.
Amphibious thing! that, acting either part,

And fee what friends, and read what books I pleafe: The trifling head! or the corrupted heart,

Above a Patron, though I condescend
Sometimes to call a Minister my fr end.

I was not born for Courts or great affairs:

3 pay my debts, believe. and fay my prayers;
Can fleep without a Poem in my head,
Nor know, if Dennis be alive or dead.

[blocks in formation]

Not Fortune's worshipper, nor Fashion's fool,
Not Lucre's madman, nor Ambition's tool,
Not proud, nor fervile; be one Poet's Praife,
That, if he pleas'd, he pleas'd by manly ways:
That Flattery, e'en to Kings, he held a fhame,
And thought a Lie in verfe or profe the fame;
That not in Fancy's maze he wander'd long,
But loop'd to ruth, and moraliz'd his fong:
That not for Fame, but Virtue's better end,
He stood the furious foc, the timid friend,
The damning critic, half approving wit,
The coxcomb hit, or fearing to be hit;
Laugh'd at the lofs e filends he never had,
The dull, the proud, the wicked, and the mad;
The diftant threats of vengeance on his head,
The blow unfelt, the tear he never shed;
The tale reviv'd, the lie fo oft o'erthrown,
Th' imputed trash, and dullness not his own;
The morals blacken'd when the writings 'fcape,
The libel'd person, and the pictur'd shape;
Abufe, on all he lov'd, or lov'd him, fpread,
A friend in exile, or a father dead;

Let the two Curlls of Town and Court, abufe 380 335 His father, mother, body, foul and mufe. Yet why that Father held it for a rule,


It was a fin to call our neighbour fool:

That harmles Mother thought no wife a whore:
Hear this, and fpare his family, James Moore! 385
340 Unfpotted names, and memorable long!
If there be force in Virtue, or in Song.



[blocks in formation]

The good man walk'd innoxious through his age.

No Courts he faw, no fuits would ever try,
Nor dar'd an Oath, nor hazarded a Lie.
Unlearn'd, he knew no fchoolman's fubtle art,
355 No language, but the language of the heart.
By Nature honeft, by Experience wife!
Healthy by temperance, and by exercise;
His life, though long, to sickness paft unknown,
His death was inftant, and without a groan.



3600 grant me thus to live, and thus to die!

Who fprung from Kings shall know lefs joy than I.


The whisper, that, to greatnefs ftill too near,
Perhaps, yet vibrates on his Sovereign's ear-
Welcome for thee, fair Virtue! all the paft:
For thee, fair Virtue! welcome e'en the last!
A. But why infult the poor, affront the great?
P. A knave 's a knave, to me, in every ftate:
Alike my fcorn, if he fucceed or fail,
Sporus at court, or Japhet in a jail;
A hireling fcribbler, or a hireling peer,
Knight of the post corrupt, or of the shire;
If on a Pillory, or near a Throne,
He gain his Prince's ear, or lofe his own.
Yet foft by nature, more a dupe than wit,
Sappho can tell you how this man was bit:
This dreaded Sat'rift Dennis will confefs
Foe to his pride, but friend to his difirefs:
So humble, he has knocked at Thibbald's door,
Has drunk with Cibber, nay has rhym'd for Moor.
Full ten years flander'd, did he once reply?
Three thousand funs went down on Welfted's lie.
To please hie mistress, one aspers'd his life;
He lafh'd him not, but let her be his wife :
Let Budgell charge low Grug-ftreet on his quill,
And write whate'er he pleas'd, except his Will;

O Friend! may each domeftic blifs be thine! Be no unpleafing Melancholy mine:


365 Me, let the tender office long engage,
To rock the cradle of repofing Age,
With lenient arts extend a Mother's breath,
Make Languor fmile, and smooth the bed of Death,
Explore the thought, explain the alking eye,
And keep a while one parent from the sky!
On cares like thefe if length of days attend,
May Heaven, to blefs thofe days, preferve my friend,


Preferve him focial, chearful, and ferene,
And just as rich as when he ferv'd a Queen!
A Whether that bleffing be deny'd or given,
Thus far was right, the reft belongs to Heaven,





[blocks in formation]

The Soul food forth, nor kept a thought within;
In me what (pots (for fpots I have) appear,
Will prove at least the Medium nu be clear.
In this impartial glafs, my Mufe intends


HERE are (I fearce can think it, but am Fair to expofe myfelf, my foes, my friends;

[ocr errors]

There are, to whom my Satire feems too bold:
Scarce to wife Peter complaifant enough,
And fomething faid of Chartres much too rough.
The lines are weak, another pleas'd to fay,
Lord Fanny fpins a thousand fuch a day.
Timorous by nature, of the Rich in awe,
I come to Council learned in the Law:
You'll give me, like a friend both fage and free,
Advice; and (as you use) without a Fee.

F. I'd write no more..

P. Not write? but then I think,
And for my foul I cannot fleep a wink.
I nod in company, I wake at night,
Fools rufh into my head, and fo I write.

Publish the prefent age; but where my text
Is Vice too high, referve it for the rext:
My foes fhall with my life a longer date,
ind every friend the leís lament my fate.
5My head and heart thus flowing through my quill,
Verfman or Profeman, term me what you will,
Papift or Proteftant, or both between,
Like good Erafmus in an honeft mean,
In moderation placing all my glory,

Io While Tories call me Whig, and Whigs a Tory.
Satire 's my weapon, but I'm too difercet
To run a-muck, and tilt at all I meet;

F. You could not do a worse thing for your life.

Why, if the nights feem tedious-take a wife:
Or rather truly, if your point be rest,
Lettuce and cowflip wine; "Probatum'est.”
But talk with Celfus, Celfus will advife
Hartshorn, or fomething that shall clofe your eyes.


Or, if you needs must write, write Cæfar's Praise,
You'll gain at least a Knighthood, or the Bays.
P. What? like Sir Richard, rumbling, rough and

With Arms and George and Brunswick crowd
Rend with tremendous found your ears afunder,
With Gun, Drum, Trumpet, Blunderbufs,

Or nobly wild, with Budgell's fire and force,
Paint Angels trembling round his falling Horfe?
F. Then all your Mufe's fofter art display,
Let Carolina ímooth the tuneful lay,
Lull with Amelia's liquid name the Nine,
And fweetly flow through all the Royal Line.






I only wear it in a land of He&ors,
Thieves, Supercargoes, Sharpers, and Directors.
Save but our army and let Jove incruft
Swords, pikes, and guns, with everlling rust!
Peace is my dear delight-not Fleury's more: 75
But touch me, and no minifter fo fore
Whoe'er offends, at fome unlucky time
Slides into verfe, and hitches-in a rhyme,
Sacred to ridicule his whole life long,
And the fad burthen of fome merry fong

Slander or Poifon dread from Delia's rage;
Hard words or hanging, if your Judge be Page.
From furious Sappho fearce a milder fate,
P.x'd by her love, or libell'd by her hate.
Its proper power to hurt, each creature feels: 85
Bulls aim their horns, and Affes lift their heels;
Tis a Bear's talent not to kick, but hug;
And no man wonders he's not ftung by Pug.
and 30 drink with Walters, or with Chartres eat,
They'll never poifon you, they'll only cheat. go
Then, learned Sir! (to cut the matter fhort)
Whate'er my fate, or well or ill at Court;
Whether Old-age, with faint but cheartul ray,
30 Attends to gild the Evening of my day,

P. Alas! few ve fes touch their nicer ear;
They fearce can bear their Laureate twice a year;
And justly Cæfar fcorns the Poet's lays,
It is to Hiftory he trufts for Praise.

F. Better be Cibber, I'll maintain it ftill,
Than ridicule all Tafte, blafpheme Quadrilic,
Abufe the City's beft good men in metre,
And laugh at Peers that put their truft in Peter,
Iv'n thofe you touch not, hate you,

P. What should ail 'em?
F. A hundred fmart in Timon and in Balaam :
The fewer ftill you name, you wound the more;
Bond is but one, but Harpax is a feore.

P. Each mortal has his pleafure: none deny
Scarfdale his Bottle, Darty his Ham-pyc;
Ridotta fips and dances, till she

The doubling Luftres dance as fast as the:
Floves the Senate, Hockleyhole his brother,
Like in ail eife, as one Egg to another.




Or Death's black wing already be difplay'd,
To wrap me in the univerfal fhade;
Whether the darken'd room to mufe invite,
Or whiten'd wall provoke the skewer to write:
In durance, exile, Bedlam, or the Mint,
Like Lee or Budgell, I will rhyme and print. 100
F. Alas, young man! your days can ne'er be

In flower of Age you perifh for a fong!
40 Plums and Directors, Shylock and his Wife,
Will club their Tefters, now, to take your life!
P. What? arm'd for Virtue when I point the

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


[blocks in formation]

Or tames the Genius of the ftubborn plain,
Almoft as quickly as he conquer'd Spain.
Envy must own, I live among the Great,
No Pimp of pleasure, and no Spy of state;
With eyes that pry not, tongue that ne'er repeats;

Fond to spread friendships, but to cover heats;
To help who want, to forward who excel;
This, all who know me, know; who love


Not when a gils Buffet's reflected pride
Turns you from found Philofophy afide;
Not when from plate to plate your eye balls roll,
And the brain dances to the mantling bowl.

Hear Bethel's Sermon, one not vers'd in fchools,
But Atrong in fenfe, and wife without the rules. 10
Go work, hunt, exercife! (he thus began)
Then fcorn a homely dinner, if you can.

Your wine lock'd up, your Butler firoll'd abroad,
Or fifh deny'd (the river yet unthaw'd),
If then plain bread and milk will do the feat,
The pleafure lies in you, and not the meat.

[ocr errors]


Preach as I pleafe, I doubt our curious men
Will choose a pheasant still before a hen;
Yet hens cf Guinea full as good I hold,
Except you eat the feathers green and gold.
Of carps and mullets why prefer the great,
(Though cut in pieces ere my Lord can cat)
Yet for fmall Turbots fuch efteem profefs?
Becaufe God made thefe large, the other lefs.
Oldfield, with more than Harpy throat endued, 25
Cries, Send me, Gods! a whole Hog barbe-

cued !"


Oh blaft it, South-winds! till a stench exhale
Rank as the ripenefs of a rabbit's tail.
By what Criterion do you eat, d'ye think,
If this is priz'd for fweetness, that for ftink?
When the tir'd glutton labours through a treat,
He finds no relish in the fweeteft meat,
He calls for fomething bitter, fomething four,
And the rich feast concludes extremely poor :
Cheap eggs, and herbs, and olives, ftill we fee; 35
140 Thus much is left of old Simplicity!
The Robin-red-breaft till of late had rest,
And children facred held a Martin's neft,
Till Beccaficos fold so dev'lish dear



And who unknown defame me, let them be
Scribblers or Peers, alike are Mob to me.
This is my Plea, on this I rest my caufe-
What faith my Council, learned in the laws?
F. Your Plea is good; but ftill I fay, beware!
Laws are explain'd by men-so have a care.
It stands on record, that in Richard's times
A man was hang'd for very honest rhymes;
Confult the Statute, "quart." I think, it is,
"Edwardi fext." or "prim. et quint. Eliz.",
See Libels, Satires-here you have it-read.
P. Libels and Satires! Lawlefs things indeed!
But grave Epifles, bringing Vice to light,
Such as a King might read, a Bifhop write,
Such as Sir Robert would approve--

To one that was, or would have been, a Peer. 40
Let me extol a Cat, on oyfters fed,

I'll have a Party at the Bedford-lead;
Or ev'n to crack live Crawfish recommend;
I'd never doubt at Court to make a friend.


'Tis yet in vain, I own, to keep a pother
About one vice, and fall into the other:
Between Excefs and Famine lies a mean;
Plain, but not fordid; though not spiendid, clean.
Avidien, or his Wife, (no matter which
F. Indeed? For him you 'il calla dog, and her a bitch)
155 Sell their prefented partridges, and fruits,
And humbly live on rabbits, and on roots:
One half-pint bottle ferves them both to dine,
And is at once their vinegar and wine.
Put on fome lucky day (as when they found

The Cafe is alter'd-you may then proceed;
In fuch a cafe the Plaintiff will be hifs'd,
My Lords the judges laugh, and you're dismiss'd.






A loft Bank bill, or heard their fon was drown'd),,
At fuch a feaft, old vinegar to fpare,

Is what two fouls fo generous cannot bear :
Oil, though it ftink, they drop by drop impart,
But fowfe the cabbage with a bounteous heart. 60.
He knows to live, who keeps the middle ftate,
And neither leans on this fide, nor on that;
Nor ftops, for one bad cork, his butler's pay,
Swears, like Albutius, a good cook away;
Nor lets, like Nævius, every error país,

HAT, and how great, the Virtue and the The mufty wine, foul cloth, or greafy glafs.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
« EelmineJätka »