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When my Muse officious ventures
On the nation's representers :
Teaching by what golden rules
Into knaves they turn their fools:
How the helm is rul'd by Walpole,
At whose oars, like slaves, they all pull;
Let the vessel split on shelves ;
With the freight enrich themselves :
Safe within my little wherry,
All their madness makes me merry:
Like the watermen of Thames,
I row by, and call them names;
Like the ever-laughing sage,
In a jest I spend my rage :
(l'hough it must be understood,
I would hang them, if I could)
If I can but fill my niche,
I attempt no higher pitch;
Leave to d'Anvers and his mate
Maxims wise to rule the state.
Pulteney deep, accomplish'd St. Johns,
Scourge the villains with a vengeance :
Let me, though the smell be noisome,
Strip their bums; let Caleb * hoise 'en ;
Then apply Alecto's whip,
Till they wriggle, howl, and skip.
Deuce is in you, Mr. Dean :
What can all this passion mean?
Mention courts! you'll ne'er be quiet
On corruptions running riot.
End as it befits your station;
Come to use and application :
Nor with senates keep a fuss.
I submit; and answer thus :
If the machinations brewing,
To complete the publick ruin,
Never once could have the power
To affect me half an hour;
Sooner would I write in buskins,
Mournful elegies on Blueskins *
If I laugh at whig and tory;
I conclude à fortiori,
All your eloquence will scarce
Drive me from my favourite farce.
This I must insist on : for, as
It is well observ'd by Horace t,
Ridicule has greater power
To reform the world, than sour.
Horses thus, let jockies judge else,
Switches better guide than cudgels.
Bastings heavy, dry, obtuse,
Only dulness can produce ;
While a little gentle jerking
Sets the spirits all aworking
Thus, I find it by experiment,
Scolding moves you less than merriment.
I may storm and rage in vain;
It but stupifies your brain.
But with raillery to nettle,
Sets your thoughts upon their mettle ;
Gives imagination scope;
Never lets your mind elope;
Drives out brangling and contention,
Brings in reason and invention.
For your sake, as well as mine,
I the lofty style decline.
I should make a figure scurvy,
And your head turn topsyturvy f.
I, who love to have a fling
Both at senatehouse and king;
* The famous thief, who, while on his trial at the Old Bailey, stabbed Jonathan Wild. H.
“ Ridiculum acri, &c." H. 1 This couplet is wanting in some editions. N.
That they might some better way tread,
To avoid the priblick hatred;
Thought no method more commodious,
Than to show their vices odious;
Which I chose to make appear,
Not by anger, but by sneer.
As my method of reforming,
Is by laughing, not by storming,
(For my friends have always thought
Tenderness my greatest fault)
Would you have me change my style?
On your faults no longer smile;
But, to patch up all our quarrels,
texts from Plutarch's Morals :
Or from Solomon produce
Maxims teaching Wisdom's use?
If I treat you like a crown'd head,
You have cheap enough compounded;
Can you put in higher claims,
Than the owners of St. James ?
You are not so great a grievance,
As the hirelings of St. Stephen's.
You are of a lower class
Than my friend sir Robert Brass.
None of these have mercy found :
I have laugh’d, and lash'd them round.
Have you seen a rocket fly?
You would swear it pierc'd the sky:
It but reach'd the middle air,
Bursting into pieces there;
Thousand sparkles falling down
Light on mapy a coxcomb's crown :
See what mirth the sport creates;
Singes hair, but breaks no pates.
Thus, should I attempt to climb,
Treat you in a style sublime,
Such a rocket is Muse :
Should I lofty numbers choose
Ere I reach'd Parnassus' top,
I should burst, and bursting drop,
All my fire would fall in scraps;
Give your head some gentle raps;
Only make it smart a while:
Then could I forbear to smile,
When I found the tingling pain
Entering warm your frigid brain ;
Make you able upon sight
To decide of wrong and right;
Talk with sense whate'er you please on;
Learn to relish truth and reason ?
Thus we both shall gain our prize :
I to laugh, and you grow wise.
A YOUNG LADY'S COMPLAINT,
FOR THE STAY OF THE DEAN IN ENGLAND,
Blow, ye zephyrs, gentle gales ;
Gently till the swelling sails.
Neptune, with thy trident long,
Trident three fork'd, trident strong:
And ye Nereids fair and gay,
Fairer than the rose in May,
Nereids living in deep caves,
Gently wash'd with gentle waves;
Nereids, Neptune, lull asleep
Ruffling storms, and ruffled deep;
All around, in pompous state,
On this richer Argo wait :
Argo, bring my Golden fleece,
Argo, bring him to his Greece.
Will Cadenus longer stay!
Come, Cadenus, come away;
Come with all the haste of love,
Come unto thy turtle dove.
The ripen'd cherry on the tree
Hangs, and only hangs for thee,
Luscious peaehes, mellow pears,
Ceres with her yellow ears,
And the grape, both red and white,
Grape inspiring just delight;
All are ripe and courting sue,
To be pluck'd and press'd by you,
Pinks bave lost their blooming red,
Mourning hang their drooping head,
Every flower languid seems,
Wants the colour of thy beams,
Beams of wond'rous force and power,
Beams reviving every flower.
Come, Cadenus, bless once more,
Bless again thy native shore,
Bless again this drooping isle,
Make its weeping beauties smile,
Beauties that ihine absence mourn,
Beauties wishing thy return :
Come, Cadenus, come with haste,
Come before the winter's blast;
Swifter than the lightning fly,
Or 1, like Vanessa, die.