« PreviousContinue »
On trifles fome are earnestly abfurd,
You'll think the world depends on ev'ry word.
What, is not every mortal free to speak?
I'll give my reafons, tho' I break my neck.
And what's the question?-if it fhines or rains,
Whether 'tis twelve or fifteen miles to Staines.
The wretch reduc'd to rags by every vice,
Pride, projects, races, miftreffes, and dice,
The rich rogue fhuns, though full as bad as he,
And knows a quarrel is good husbandry.
"Tis ftrange, cries Peter, you are out of pelf, .
I'm fure I thought you wiser than myself;
Yet gives him nothing - but advice too late,
Retrench, or rather mortgage your estate,
I can advance the fum,-'tis beft for both;
But henceforth cut your coat to match your cloth.
A minifter, in mere revenge and sport,
Shall give his foe a paltry place at court.
The dupe for every royal birth-day buys
New horfes, coaches, cloaths, and liveries;
Plies at the levee, and diftinguifh'd there
Lives on the royal whisper for a year;
His wenches fhine in Bruffels and Brocade!
And now the wretch, ridiculously mad,
Draws on his banker, mortgages and fails,
Then to the country runs away from jails:
There ruin'd by the court he fells a vote
To the next burgefs, as of old he bought;
Rubs down the fteeds which once his chariot bore.
Or fweeps the town, which once he ferv'd before.
But, by this roving meteor led, I tend Beyond my theme, forgetful of my friend. Then take advice; I preach not out of time, When good lord Middlesex is bent on rhyme.
Their humour check'd, or inclination crofs'd, Sometimes the friendship of the great is loft. Unless call'd out to wench, be sure comply, Hunt when he hunts, and lay the Fathers by: For your reward you gain his love, and dine On the best venison and the best French wine, Nor to lord ****** make the observation, How the twelve peers have anfwer'd their creation, Nor in your wine or wrath betray your trust, Be filent ftill, and obftinately juft: Explore no fecrets, draw no characters, For echo will repeat, and walls have ears: Nor let a bufy fool a fecret know, A fecret gripes him till he lets it go: Words are like bullets, and we wish in vain, When once discharg'd, to call them back again.
Defend, dear Spence, the honeft and the civil, But to cry up a rascal- that's the devil. Who guards a good man's character, 'tis known, At the fame time protects and guards his own. For as with houfes 'tis with people's names, A fhed may fet a palace all on flames; The fire neglected on the cottage preys, But mounts at last into a general blaze.
'Tis a fine thing, fome think, a lord to know;
I wish his tradefmen could but think fo too.
He gives his word—then all your hopes are gone:
He gives his honour-then you're quite undone.
His and fome women's love the fame are found;
You rafhly board a firefhip, and are drown'd.
Moft folks fo partial to themselves are grown,
They hate a temper differing from their own.
The grave abhor the gay, the gay the fad,
And formalifts pronounce the witty mad:
The fot, who drinks fix bottles in a place,
Swears at the flinchers who refuse their glass.
Would you not pass for an ill-natur’d man,
every humour that you can.
Pope will inftruct you how to pass away
Your time like him, and never lofe a day;
From hopes or fears your quiet to defend,
To all mankind as to yourself a friend,
And, facred from the world, retir'd, unknown,
To lead a life with mortals like his own.
When to delicious Pimperne I retire,
What greater blifs, my Spence, can I defire?
Contented there my eafy hours I fpend
maps, globes, books, my bottle, and a friend.
There can I live upon my income still,
E'en though the houfe fhould pafs the Quakers bill:
Yet to my fhare fhould fome good prebend fall,
I think myself of fize to fill a ftall.
For life or wealth let Heaven my lot affign,
A firm and even foul fhall ftill be mine.
VIDA's ART OF POETRY.
To the Right Honourable PHILIP, Earl STANHOPE, Viscount MAHON, and Baron ELVASTON, this Tranflation is dedicated, by his Lordship's humble Servant and Chaplain,
IVE me, ye facred Muses, to impart
The hidden fecrets of your tuneful art;
Give me your awful myfteries to fing,
Unlock, and open wide, your facred spring;
While from his infancy the Bard I lead,
And fet him on your mountain's lofty head;
Direct his course, and point him out the road
To fing in epic strains an hero or a God.
What youth, whofe generous bofom pants for praise,
Will dare with me to beat thofe arduous ways?
O'er high Parnaffus' painful fteeps to go,
And leave the groveling multitude below:
Where the glad Mufes fing, and form the choir,
While bright Apollo ftrikes the filver lyre,
Approach thou firft, great Francis, nor refuse
pay due honours to the facred Muse;
While Gallia waits for thy aufpicious reign,
'Till age completes the monarch in the man;
Meantime the Mufe may bring fome small relief,
To charm thy anguish, and fufpend thy grief;
While guilty Fortune's ftern decrees detain
Thee and thy brother in the realms of Spain;
Far, far tranfported from your native place,
Your country's, father's, and your friend's embrace!
Such are the terms the cruel Fates impofe
On your great father, struggling with his woes,
Such are their hard conditions :---They require
The fons, to purchase, and redeem the fire.
But yet, brave youth, from grief, from tears abftain,
Fate may relent, and heaven grow mild again;
At laft perhaps the glorious day may come,
The day that brings our royal exile home;
When, to thy native realms in peace
The ravish'd crowds fhall hail their paffing lord;
When each tranfported city fhall rejoice,
And nations blefs thee with a public voice;
To the throng'd fanes the matrons shall repair;
Abfolve their vows, and breathe their fouls in prayer.
Till then, let every Muse engage thy love,
With me at large o'er high Parnaffus rove,
Range every bower, and sport in every grove.
First then obferve, that verse is ne'er confin'd
To one fixt measure, or determin'd kind;
Though at its birth it fung the Gods alone,
And then Religion claim'd it for her own;
In facred strains addrefs'd the Deity,
And spoke a language worthy of the sky;
New themes fuccecding Bards began to chufe,
And in a wider field engag'd the Mufe;