Изображения страниц

Short breath, attendant sure on sickness green,
With cinders, or with mortar from the wall,
Wretched repast! my fading flesh distain!
In chimney corner close I poking sit,
Nor ever stir spontaneous, scarce when call'd.
J loll, I stretch, I yawn, and from a tub
(Like that whence Burgess preach'd) oatmeal

Oatmeal, unsalutary food if raw! [feeds
More wholesome than velep'd burgout, which
North-British lad, full famous in records
Of England's chronicle for selling kings,
When he o'er hoary hills, or craggy cliffs,
Or rugged rocks, where eagles build their nest,
Rides on a galloway, though small, yet strong;
Voy'ging from Dungbay Head through she-

Barren and bleak, with chequer'd plaid superb,
Intent with clipp'd Jacobuses to buy
French wine in Lusitanian casks ypent,
Which well-paid perjurers vouch all for port,
Though they perhaps the growth of

deaux be,

Prompt to torment some pale unthriving wench
With griping buckthorn, or with lancet sharp
To pierce the slivering arm. So, poets sing,
Sow-gelder erst, to calves, pigs, colts, and lamb
Sworn everlasting foe, with goggling eyes
To stables, sties, or cow-pens, early comes
Protending his fell knife, to thoughtless bulls
Sure ruin. So, in undiscerning night,
Myriads of fairies, by their monarch led,
To infants' cradles, or to nursery rooms,
In serried files march on. Meanwhile the bike,
Secure in innocence, sleeps sound and sale.
The peers and peeresses, with Oberon's sell,
Great Oberon, of Fairy realms supreme,
Within one circle all, in dance and song,
And midnight music, move their tiny feet.
Nurse hears, or thinks she hears, 'twixt sleep
and wake,

Loud sounds, unseen, delightful to the ear:
But fairy fiddles lull again to sleep.
Eftsoons king Oberon and twelve chosen men,
Bour-With scaling ladders of Dutch thread compar
The cradle mount, collecting all their might:
The burthen of the ponderous child they raise,
Inexorable; nor will aught avail
Bright eyes, loud tears, or limbs proportion i
For pigmy brat they change the bouncingbo,
And to their own abodes, where'er they be,
The harmless babe with Io Paans drag.

Chatteau, Margout, or the renown'd Pontack.
Thus while in qualins my heavy moments
A wight, in habit velvet all and gold, creep,
Formal and fine, dread monster! docter hight,
With solemn face into the kitchen stalks.

His bony fingers thrice my pulse assay;
Thrice secrets deep he asks; surpris'd, Í dread
The voice obscene, and hate the sickly sound.
What shall I do? Amaz'd, confounded, dumb
I stand, nor answer give to his demands,
Nauseous to virgin ears; my frizzled hair
Stands upright, to its roof my tongue sticks dry,
Retentive faculty iny bowels lose,

So horrible he seems. His horse-hair wig
Stiffen'd with angry curls, his agate cane
And gilded sword (too oft by cowards worn)
Disastrous deeds forebode; in his right-hand
The desperate pen he takes, which, tinged with

Strange characters and figures dire inscribes,
Illegible to maid, or man, or witch.

Oh, may such plagues averted ever be
From modest spinsters! Lo! behind him sneaks
Another mortal, not unlike himself,
Of jargon full, with terms obscure o'ercharg'd,
Apothecary call'd, whose fatid hands
With power mechanic, and with charmis arcane,
Apollo, god of medicine, has endued.
If he gilt pills, powder, or bolus brown,
Haply into the open mouth convey
Of patient; straight his body to the dose
Obsequious (as erst La Mancha's knight)
Is to a feather-bed well-warm'd convey'd:
Sheets never to be chang'd, and watchful nurse
The captive wretch incarcerate, till Time,
The best physician, set the patient free.

Beware, ye virgins, of your health beware;
Be circumspect to romp or run; ascend
The mountain's airy top; th' empiric crew
Will else oft visit your abode, by fees
Of gold allur'd, and dangerous symptoms find;}

So pass my days. But, when a wake or fr
Conses on, and calls the joyous damsels for.
When swains, in leathern galligaskins clad,
Treat nymphs with cyder, sparkling drink and
In melancholy hall or kitchen wide, [swer
I cough deserted; partner for the dance
None chooses me; none on the beechen bat
My name inscribes; no brawny bachelor
Hangs over me enamour'd. Singly sad,
My woe through three times six revolving yea
I count, no jolly Joe, nor sober Sam,
The matrimonial question e'er propos'd,
Or crooked Sixpence offer'd to divide.
Amidst the horrors of long wintry nights
I sigh, my heart into my white-rann'd shoe
With palpitation sinks. I ponder now
Where rats-bane's sold, and now again the w
I view irresolute, and oft the strength
Of my own garters try. Peevish I pine,
And fret, and rave, and wish; my roving m
Finds no relief, my rolling eyes no sleep.

But, if the stranger Morpheus does inta
My painful limbs, my fancy, still awake,
Thoughtful of man, and eager, in a dream,
Imaginary blisses gives and takes
In vain! awake, I find myself alone,
Unbless'd, alas! and curse the backwards,
Thus do I live, from pleasure quite cut off.
Fairing to me no generous carter brings,
No pears, no gingerbread, though brown, yet

No filberts I, nor walnuts crack, nor squeeze
The china orange through its tawny coat:
Troubles immense, though mightier still re




fy whale-bone hoop, that has so long withstood With tedious lessons and long task to get,
ails, pots, and doors, and with circumference My dismal thoughts employ: or wield my pen
To mark dire characters on paper white:
Not blunter pen or stronger character
Uses the sage, a chiromancer hight,
Sprung from Egyptian king, and swarthy race,
Amenophis, or Poleary, when he,
In search of stolen calf, or money lost,
For wondering ploughman does his art employ;
Or for the wish'd return of sweet-heart dear,
Or apron fine, purloin'd from hawthorn hedge,
For country-maid consults directing stars,
Gemini, Taurus, or chill Capricorn.

Thus while my lingering hours joyless spend
With magisterial look, and solemn step,
Appears my school-master, tremendous wight?
Dreaded by truant boys: how can I 'scape
Th' expected punishment for task ungot?
Aghast I stand, nor fly to covert bench,
Or corner dark, to hide my hapless head;
So great my terror, that it quite bereaves
My limbs the power to fly; slow he ascends
Th' appointed seat, and on his right-hand lies
The bushy rod, compos'd of numerous twigs
Torn from the birchen tree, or bending willows
Which to the flesh of idle boys portends,
For the neglected task, a poignant smart;
And with him comes another nighty elf,
Yelep'd an usher; ah, terrific name
To lesser wights! who if they hapless place
In station wrong pronoun or participle,
Straight, by the magic of his voice, are rais'd
In attitude above their lov'd compeers,
Where they, reluctant, various torments bear,
Till by their dolorous plaints, that pierce the
They draw kind pity, moist-ey'd goddess,
To heal, with balin of sympathy, their woe.
Ye urchins, take, ah ! take peculiar care, [ways,
For, when ye wot not, much he marks your
And in his mind revolves disastrous deeds
Against th' unwary wretch. So story tells,
That chanticleer, on dunghill's top elate,
With haughty step, and watchful eye askance,
Each tiny prominence he views, where haply he
May find conceal'd delicious grub or worn,
To which bis inaw insatiate forebodes
Certain destruction, while, behind or bush,
Or pale encompassing the fariner's yard, [wile
Skulks Reynard, fraught with many a crafty
This lady died in the year 1759, aged 25. The following character of her, by Mr Duncombe,
rtacted from that gentleman's Poem, called "The Feminead," vol. iv. Pearch's Collection of
8, p. 184.

ly virtuous limbs enclos'd, by frequent sparks
f'fire's destroy'd (what will not fire destroy!).
he splinter'd ribs crack, break, and pierce amain
y wounded skin. In rags the canvas hangs;
ie seven-fold circlets of the fluttering hoop,
plifted, yield to every blast of wind,
uthern, or Western, or the bleak North-east,
arth-east, that sinks the hearts of hippish

whale-bone, twitcher, petticoat, and all,
escend with clangor to the rattling hearth.
when of some great church the cupola,
minster of renown'd metropolis,
rk, Canterbury, or the height of Paul's,
sisting long the jaws of ravenous Time,
e summer's thunder, and the winter's wind,
n'd many centuries for its stately strength,
on some fatal, unexpected day,
it by the rapid lightning's forked gleam,
mits the flame; the melted lead runs down:
eir own destruction sapless beaurs increase:
e neighbours with astonishment are seiz'd;
ey stare, they scream, they help, they steal,
they run.

deavours vain! Unconquer'd, unextinct,
mes domincer aloft: far off resounds
wreck of chanceis, and the crush of aisles;
h turrets hasten to the vaults below,
proud cathedrals tumble to the ground.

1. The Copper Farthing. PENNINGTON. APPY the boy, who dwells remote from


ose pocket, or whose rattling-box, contains opper Farthing! He nor grieving hears cheese-cakes cried, nor savoury muttonwith his play-mates, in the dusk of eve, [pies; vell known blacksmith's shop, or churchyard, hies;

re, mindful of the sport that joys his heart, bles, or chuck, he instantly begins, huudissembled pleasure in his face, draw the circle, or to pitch the dump: ile I, confin'd within the hated walls chool, resounding with a clainorous din, till more hated books environ'd, I,

"Nor shall thy much-lov'd Pennington remain
Unsung, unhonour'd in my votive strain.

See where the soft enchantress, wandering o'er
"The fairy ground that Phillips trod before,
"Exalts her chemic wand, and swift behoid
"The basest metal ripen into gold!
"Beneath her magic touch, with wondering eye,
"We view vile copper with pure sterling vie;
"Nor shall the Farthing, sung by her, forbear
"To claim the praises of the smiling Fair;

Till chuck and marble shall no more employ

The thoughtless leisure of the truant boy."

[ocr errors]

'T' ensnare

Tensnare the feather'd race, who, if they stray | A miserable victim, quite decay'd
Beyond the precincts of their mother's ken, With many services, and cleft throughout,
He strait purloins them from her careful wing, All useless lies: ah! sight of saddest woe
With his sharp teeth torments their tender

And with the crimson gore distains their sides,
Relentless; nor can all the piercing cries
Of duckling, chick, or turkey, yet unfledg'd,
His heart obdurate move; instant he tears
Each trembling limb, devours the quivering
Nor leaves a remnant of the bloody feast, [flesh,
Save a few fluttering feathers scatter'd round
(That, with their varied plumage, whilom deck'd
The slaughter'd prey), to tell the hapless tale.
Thus joyless do I spend those hours the sun
Illuminates; and when the silver moon
Her gentle ray dispenses, and invites
The swains and maids to mix in jovial dance
Around the towering may-poles of the green,
Where each gay ploughman does his partner
As love or fate directs; or o'er the lawn [choose
The needle thread, or toss the bounding ball;
All cheerless I, nor dance, nor pieasing sport,
Nor social mirth, nor bowl of nappy ale,
Partake: but on her drooping raven wing,
Sad Melancholy hovers o'er my head,
Pale Envy rankles deep within my breast,
And baneful venom sheds. Grim Horror too
Attends my thoughts, and fills my gloomy mind
With tales of gliding sprites, in milk-white


Array'd, and rattling chains, and yelling ghosts
Irascible! or Fancy, mimic queen,
To swift imagination's eye presents
A group of tiny elves, in circling dance
Or luscious feast employ'd; such elves as danc'd
When Oberon did fajr Titiana wed;
While I, in wishes impotent and vain,
For Liberty, dear object of my hopes,
The tedious moments spend; or if perchance,
Morpheus invok'd, iny heavy eye-lids close,
Dear Liberty still haunts my sleeping thoughts,
And in a short-liv'd dream those joys I taste,
Which waking are denied: and beat the hoop
With dextrous hand, or run with feet as swift
As feather'd arrow flies from archer's bow:
Till, from my slumber wak'd, too soon I find
It was illusion all, and mockery vain.

Thus, comfortless, appall'd, forlorn I pass
The tardy hours, nor of those viands taste,
Which are on other boys full oft bestow'd
In plenteous manner by the liberal hand
Of friend indulgent; apple-pye, or tart,
Or trembling custard of delicious goût,
Or frothy syllabub in copious bowl,
Hard fate for me! Yet harder still betides
Me, hapless youth! My faithful top, that oft
Has cheer'd my drooping spirits, and reviv'd
My saddening thoughts, when o'er the pave-

ment smooth

It spins, and sleeps, and to its master's hand
Does mple justice, now, alas! become
To all the rude inclemencies of weather,
To time and destiny's relentless doom

To wretched me! of every hope bereft,
Of every gleam of comfort. So the wretch,
Who near or Etna or Vesuvius dwells,
Beholds the sulph'rous flames, the molten rocks,
And feels the ground trembling beneath his fext
Till with a horrid yawn it opens wide
Before his eyes, all glaring with affright;
Swallows his cultur'd vines, his gardens, house,
With all his soul held dear, his lovely wi
And prattling babes, the hopes of years to cent;
All, all are lost, in ruin terrible!

$222. The School-boy. By the Rev. Mr. Mex. rice, Author of the Indian Antiquities. W.S ten by him at a very early age.


Multa tulit, fecitque puer.
THRICE happy he, whose hours the cheeri


Of freedom bless; who wantons uncontro
Where Ease invites, or Pleasure's syren voe
Him the stern tyrant with his iron scourge
Annoys not, nor the dire oppressive weight
Of galling chain; but when the blushing a
Purples the East, with eager transport wi
O'er hill, o'er valley, on his panting steed
He bounds exulting, as in full career
With horns, and hounds, and thund'ring-h^

he drives

The flying stag; or when the dusky sh
Of eve, advancing, veil the darken'd sky,
To neighb'ring tavern, blithsome, he res
With boon companion, where they drown


In sprightly bumpers, and the mantling b

Far otherwise within these darksome w.
Whose gates, with rows of triple steel secur
And many a bolt, prohibit all egress,
I spend my joyless days; ere dawn appen
Rous'd from my peaceful slumbers by the st
Of awe-inspiring bell, whose every stroke
Chills my heart-blood, all trembling, I dec
From dreary garret, round whose ancient r
Gaping with hideous chinks, the whistlingt-
Perpetual raves, and fierce descending ras
Discharge their fury-dire lethargic dews
Oppress my drowsy sense; still fancy teer.
With fond ideal joys, and, fir'd with what
Or poets sing, or fabled tale records,
Presents transporting visions; goblets crow.
With juice of nectar, or the food divine
Of rich ambrosia, tempting to the sight!
While in the shade of some emboweringgra
I lie reclin'd, or through Elysian plains
Enraptur'd stray; where every plant and Row:
Send forth an odorous smell, and all the ar
With songs of love and melody resounds.
Meanwhile benumbing cold invades my joit
As with slow faltering footsteps I resort
To where, of antique mould, à lofty deme


ars its tremendous front; here all at once om thousand different tongues a mighty hum ssaults my ear; loud as the distant roar tumbling torrents; or as in some mart public note, for traffic far renown'd, here Jew with Grecian, Turk with African sembled, in one general peal unite dreadful jargon.-Straight on wooden bench ke my seat, and con with studious care appointed tasks; o'er many a puzzling page ng intent, and sage Athenian bard, th dialect, and mood, and tense perplex'd; d conjugations varied without end. When lo! with haughty stride (in size like


[blocks in formation]

And senseless for a time, I stand; but soon,
By friendly jog or neighbouring whisper rous'd,
Obey the dire injunction; straight I loose
Depending brogues, and mount the lofty throne
Indignant, or the back oblique ascend
Of sorrowful compeer: nor long delays
The monarch, from his palace stalking down,
With visage all inflam'd; his sable robe
Sweeping in lengthening folds along the
He shakes his sceptre, and th' impending
Brandishes high; nor tears nor shrieks avail;
But with impetuous fury it descends,
Imprinting horrid wounds, with fatal flow
Of blood attended, and convulsive pangs.

y eye-balls, like two blazing stars, ous rolls, on some unthinking wretch I their baleful influence; whilst his voice, under, or the cannon's sudden burst, times is heard, and thrice the roofs resound!

en paleness gathers in my face, lny limbs a stiffening horror spreads, the dews of death; nor heed my eyes conted function, but in stupid gaze fall monster; from my trembling hands e-worn volume drops; oh, dire presage nt woe! for now the mighty sound, at with dismal tidings, once again my astonish'd ears: transfix'd with awe,

Curs'd be the wretch, for ever doom'd to bear Infernal whippings; he, whose savage hands First grasp'd' these barbarous weapons, bitter



ten (if mighty themes like these allow mble metaphor) the sportive race bling heroes, bent on wanton play, th the shelter of some well-stor'd barn," y an airy circle wheel around; ve, perchance, in private nook conceal'd, Is Grimalkin; instant they disperse long flight, each to his secret cell; y he may 'scape impending fate. s ceas'd the general clamour; all remain at terror wrapt, and thought profound. nwhile, the Pedagogue throughout the dome

Of foul disgrace, and many a dolorous groan
To hapless school-boy!-Could it not suffice
I groan'd and toil'd beneath the merciless weight
By stern, relentless tyranny impos'd;
But scourges too, and cudgels were reserv'd
To goad my harrow'd sides: this wretched life
Loading with heavier ills! a life expos'd
To all the woes of hunger, toil, distress;
Cut off from every genial source of bliss;
From every bland amusement, wont to sooth
The youthful breast; except when father Time,
In joyful change, rolls round the festive hour,
That gives this meagre, pining figure back
To parent fondness, and its native roofs !
Fir'd with the thought, then, then, my tower-
ing soul

Rises superior to its load, and spurns
Its proud oppressors; frantic with delight
My fancy riots in successive scenes [laid
Of bliss and pleasures: plans and schemes are
How best the fleeting moments to improve,
Nor lose one portion of so rare a boon.

But soon, too soon, the glorious scenes are fied,

Scarce one short moon enjoy'd; (oh! transient Of sublunary bliss!) by bitter change, [state And other scenes succeeded, what fierce pangs Then rack my soul! what ceaseless floods of


Rush down my cheeks, while strong convul-
sive throbs
Heave all my frame, and choak the power of
Forlorn I sigh, nor heed the gentle voice
Offriend or stranger, who, with soothing words
And slender gift, would fain beguile my woes:
In vain: for what can aught avail to sooth
Such raging anguish? Oft with sudden glance
Before my eyes in all its horror glares
That well-known form, and oft I seem to hear
The thundering scourge-ah mel e'en now 1
Its deadly venom, raging as the pangs [feel
That tore Alcides, when the burning vest
Prey'd on his wasted sides.-At length, re-

[blocks in formation]

A sullen prisoner, till the wish'd approach
Of joyous holiday or festive play
Releases me: ah! freedom that must end
With thee, declining Sol! All hail, ye sires
For sanctity renown'd, whose glorious names
In large conspicuous characters pourtray'd,
Adorn the annual chronologic page
Of Wing or Partridge; oft, when sore oppress'd
With dire calamities, the glad return
Of your triumphant festivals hath cheer'd
My drooping soul. Nor be thy name forgot,
Illustrious GEORGE! for much to thee I owe
Of heart-felt rapture, as with loyal zeal
Glowing, I pile the crackling bonfire high,
Or hurl the mounting rocket though the air,
Or fiery whizzing serpent; thus thy name
Shall still be honour'd, as thro' future years
The circling Seasons roll their festive round.
Sometimes, by dire compulsive hunger
I spring the neighbouring fence, and scale the
Of apple-tree; or wide, o'er flowery lawns
By hedge or thicket, bend my hasty steps,
Intent, with secret ambush, to surprise
The straw-built nest, and unsuspecting brood
Of thrush or bull-finch; oft with watchful ken |
Eyeing the backward lawns, lest hostile glance
Observe my footsteps, while each rustling leaf
Stirr'd by the gentle gale, alarms my fears:
Then, parch'd beneath the burning heats of


I plunge into the limpid stream that laves
The silent vale; or, on its grassy banks,
Beneath some oak's majestic shade recline,
Envying the vagrant fishes, as they pass,
Their boon of freedom; till the distant sound
Of tolling curfew warns me to depart.
Thus under tyrant-pow'r I groan, oppress'd
With worse than slavery; yet my free-born soul
Her native warmth forgets not, nor will brook
Menace, or taunt, from proud insulting peer;
But sunimons to the field the doughty foe
In single combat, 'midst th' impartial throng,
There to decide our fate: oft too, inflam'd
With mutual rage, two rival armies meet
Of youthful warriors; kindling at the sight,
My soul is fill'd with vast heroic thoughts,
Trusting in martial glory to surpass
Roman or Grecian chief: instant, with shouts,
The mingling squadrons join the horrid fray;
No need of cannon, or the murderous steel,
Wide wasting nature: rage our arms supplies;

By turns from either host; each claims the
Of glorious conquest; nor till night's dan
Involve the sky the doubtful conflict ends.

Thus, when rebellion shook the thrones of

And all th' Eternal Powers in battle met,
| High o'er the rest, with vast gigantic strides,
The godlike leaders on th' embattled plain,
Came towering, breathing forth revenge and
Nor less terrific join'd the inferior hosts bes
Of angel warriors, when encountering h
Tore the rent conclave-flashing with thebe
Of fiery arms, and lightnings, not of Jos;
All heaven resounded, and the astonish'd dep
Of chaos bellow'd with the monstrous roar.

$223. Written in a Lady's Ivory Table-bo 1699,


PERUSE my leaves through every part,
And think thou seest my owner's heart,
Scrawl'd o'er with trifles thus, and quite
As hard, as senseless, and as light;
Expos d to every coxcomb's eyes,
But hid with caution from the wise.
Here you may read, "Dear charming sai
Beneath, "A new receipt for paint:"
Here, in beau-spelling, Tru tel deth;"
There, in her own, "For an el breth:"
Here, "Lovely nymph, pronounce my doo
There," A safe way to use perfume":"
Here, a page fill'd with billet-dous:
On t'other side, "Laid out for shoes."

“Madam, I die without your grace:"
"Item, for half a yard of lace."-
Who that had wit would place it here,
For every peeping fop to jeer?
In pow'r of spittle and a clout,
Whene'er he please to blot it out:
And then, to heighten the disgrace,
Clap his own nonsense in the place.
Whoe er expects to hold his part
In such a book, and such a heart,
If he be wealthy, and a fool,
Is in all points the fittest tool;
Of whom it may be justly said,
He's a gold pencil tipp'd with lead.

§ 224. Mrs. Harris's Petition. 1600.

Fragments of rock are hurl'd, and showers of To their Excellencies the Lords Justic


Obscure the day; nor less the brawny arm
Or knotted club avail; high in the midst
Are seen the mighty chiefs, thro' hosts of foes
Mowing their way; and now with tenfold rage
The combat burns, full many a sanguine]


Distains the field, and many a veteran brave
Lies prostrate; loud triumphant shouts ascend!

The Earls of Berkeley and of Galway.

Ireland, the humble petition of Fra

(Who must starve, and die amaid, ifitmist

[blocks in formation]
« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »