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True indeed, I should be gladder
Could he learn to mount a ladder.
May he at his latter end
Mount alive, and dead descend !
In him tell me which prevail,
Female vices most, or male?
What produc'd him, can you tell?
Human race, or imps of Hell?
Robin to beggars, with a curse,
Throws the last shilling in his purse ;
And, when the coachman comes for pay,
The rogue must call another day.
Grave Harry, when the poor are pressing,
Gives them a penny, and God's blessing;
But, always careful of the main,
With twopence left, walks home in rain.
Robin from noon to night will prate,
Run out in tongue, as in estate :
And, ere a twelvemonth and a day,
Will not have one new thing to say.
Much talking is not Harry's vice:
He need not tell a story twice :
And, if he always be so thrifty,
His fund may last to five and fifty.
It so fell out, that cautious Harry,
As soldiers use, for love must marry,
Sons of Dr. Lesley. Harry was a colonel in the Spanish service.
And, with his dame, the ocean crossd ;
(All for Love, or the World well Lost!)
Repairs a cabin gone to ruin,
Just big enough to shelter two in;
And in bis house, if any body come,
Will make them welcome to his modicum.
Where Goody Julia milks the cows,
And boils potatoes for her spouse ;
Or darns his hose, or mends his breeches,
While Harry's fencing up his ditches.
Robin, who ne'er his mind could fix
To live without à coach and six,
To patch his broken fortunes, found
A mistress worth five thousand pound;
Swears he could get her in an hour,
If gaffer Harry would endow her;
And sell, to pacify his wrath,
A birth-right for a mess of broth.
Young Harry, as all Europe knows,
Was long the quintessence of beaux;
But, when espous’d he ran the fate
That must attend the married state;
From gold brocade and shining armour,
Was metamorphos'd to a farmer;
His grazier's coat with dirt besmeard;
Nor twice a week will shave his beard,
Old Robin, all his youth a sloven,
At fifty-two, when he grew loving,
Clad in a coat of paduasoy,
A flaxen wig, and waistcoat gay,
Powder'd from shoulder down to flank,
In courtly style addresses Frank;
'Twice ten years older than his wife,
Is doom'd to be a beau for life;
Supplying those defects l.y dress,
Which I must leave the world to guess.
TO BETTY THE GRISETTE. 1730.
Queen of wit and beauty, Betty
the Muse forget ye :
How thy face charms every shepherd,
Spotted over like a leopard I
And thy freckled neck, display'd,
Envy breeds in every maid;
Like a fly-blown cake of tallow,
Or on parchment ink türn'd yellow;
Or a tawny speckled pippin,
Shriveld with a winter's keeping.
And, thy beauty thus despatch'd,
Let me praise thy wit unmatch’d.
Sets of phrases, cut and dry,
Evermore thy tongue supply.
And thy memory is loaded
With old scraps from plays exploded :
Stock'd with repartees and jokes,
Suited to all christian folks :
Shreds of wit, and senseless rhymes,
Blunder'd out a thousand times.
Nor wilt thou of gifts be sparing,
Which can ne'er be worse for wearing.
Picking wit among collegians,
In the playhouse upper regions ;
Where, in eighteenpenny gallery,
Irish nymphs learn Irish raillery:
But thy merit is thy failing,
And thy raillery is railing.
Thus with talents well endued
To be scurrilous and rude ;
When you pertly raise your snout,
Flcer, and gibe, and laugh, and flout;
This among Hibernian asses
For sheer wit and humour passes.
Thus indulgent Chloe, bit,
Swears you have a world of wit.
TO AN AGREEABLE YOUNG LADY, BUT EXTRENÉLY
Death went upon a solemn day
At Pluto's hall his court'to pay:
The phantom, having humbly kist
His grisly monarch's sooty fist,
Presented him the weekly bills
Of doctors, fevers, plagues, and pills.
Plato, observing since the peace
The burial article decrease,
And, vex'd to see affairs miscarry;
Declar'd in council, Death must marry;
Vow'd he no longer could support
Old bachelors about his court;
The interest of his realm had need
That Death should get a numerous breed;
Young Deathlings, who, by práctice'made
Proficient in their father's trade,
With colonies might stock around
His large dominions under ground.
A consult of coquettes below
Was call’d, to rig him out'a beau:
From her own head Megara takes
A periwig of twisted snakes;
Which in the nicest fashion curl'd,
(Like toupets of this upper' world)
With flowers of sulphur powder'd well,
That graceful on his shoulders fell;
An adder of the sable kind
In line direct hung down behind;
The owl, the raven, and the bat,
Clubbid for a feather to his hat;
His coat, a usurer's velvet pall,
Bequeath'd to Pluto, corpse and all.
But, loth his person to expose :
Bare, like a carcase pick'd by crows,
A lawyer o'er his hands and face
Stuck artfully a parchment case.
No new flux d rake show'd fairer skin;
Nor Phyllis after lying in
With snuff was fli'd his ebon box,
Of shin-bones rotted by the pox.
Nine spirits of blaspheming fops,
With aconite anoint his chops;
And give him words of dreadful sounds,
Godd his blood and bad and woods!
Thus furnish'd out, he sent his train
To take a house in Warwick-lane:
The faculty, his humble friends,
A complimental message sends:
Their president in scarlet gown
Harangued, and welcom'd him to town.
But Death had business to dispatch;
His mind was running on his match.
And, hearing much of Daphne's faine,
His majesty of terrours came,
Fine as a colonel of the guards,
To visit where she sate at cards:
She, as he came into the room,
Thought him Adonis in his bloom.
And now her heart with pleasure jumps ;
She scarce remembers what is trumps;
For such a shape of skin and bone
Was never seen, except her own :