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TYBURN: TO THE MARINE SOCIETY.
■ Kaow, poppies, this man's easy life,
Serene from cares, unvex'd with strife,
Was oft employ'd in doing good;
A science you ne'er understood:
And charity, ye sons of Pride,
A multitude of faults will bide.
I, at his board, more sense have found,
Than at a hundred dinners round.
Taste, learning, mirth, my western eye
Could often, there, collected spy:
And I have gone well pleas'd to bed,
Revolving what was sung or said.
"And he, who entertain'd them all
With much good liquor, strong and small;
With food in plenty, and a welcome,
Which would become my lord of Melcombe',
Whose soups and sauces duly season'd,
Whose wit well tim'd, and sense well reason'd,
Give Burgundy a brighter stain,
And add new flavour to Champagne—
Shall this man to the grave descend,
I'nown'd, unhonour'd as my friend?
No: by my deity I swear,
Nor shall the vow be lost in air;
While you, and millions such as you,
Are sunk for ever from my view,
And lost in kindred-darkness lie,
This good old man shall never die:
No matter where I place his name,
His love of learning shall be fame."
The design of the Marine Society is in itself so laudable, and has been pursued so successfully for the public good, that I thought it merited a public acknowledgment But, to take off from the flatness of a direct compliment, I have through the whole poem loaded their institution with such reproaches as will show, I hope, in the most striking manner, its real utility.
By authentic accounts, it appears, that from the first rise of this society to the present year 1762, they have collected, clothed, and fitted out for the sea-service, 5452 grown men, 4511 boys: in all 9963 persons: whom they have thus not only saved, in all probability, from perdition and infamy, but rendered them useful members of the community; at a time too when their country stood most in need of their assistance.
It hat been, all examples show it, The privilege of every poet,
from ancient down through modern time, To bid dtad matter live in rhyme;
'This poem was certainly written in 1157; but «reader has only to remember, that Apollo is *« l"i of prophecy as wall u of poetry. Ma.Uet.
With wit enliven senseless rocks;Draw repartee from wooden blocks;Make buzzards senators of note,
And rooks harangue, that geese may vote. These moral fictions, first design'd
To mend and mortify mankind,
Old Esop, as our children know,
Taught twice ten hundred years ago.
His fly, upon the chariot wheel,
Could all a statesman's merit feel;And, to its own importance just,
Exclaim, with Bufo, " What a dust!"
His horse-dung, when the flood ran high,
In Colon's air and accent cry,
While tumbling down the turbid stream,
"Lord love us, how we apples swim!" But further instances to cite,
Would tire the hearers' patience quite.
No: what their numbers and their worth,
How these admire, while those hold forth,
From Hyde-Park on to Clerkenwell,
Let clubs, let coffee-houses tell;
Where England, through the world renown'd,
In all its wisdom may be found:While I, for ornament and use,
An orator of wood produce.
Why should the gentle reader stare f
Are wooden orators so rare?Saint Stephen's Chapel, Rufus' Hall,
That hears them in the pleader bawl,
That hears them in the patriot thunder,
Can tell if such things are a wonder.
So can Saint Dunstan's in the West,
When good Romaine harangues his best,
And tells his staring congregation,
That sober sense is sure damnation;
That Newton's guilt was worse than treason,
For using, what God gave him, reason."A pox of all this prefacing!"
Smart Balbus cries: "come, name the thing >•
That such there are we all agree:What is this wood >" Why—Tyburn-tree. Here then this reverend oak harangue;Who makes men do so, ere they hang.
"Each thing whatever, when aggrlev'd, Of right complains, to be reliev'd. When rogues so rais'd the price of wheat, That few folks could afford to eat, (Just as, when doctors' fees run high. Few patients can afford to die) The poor durst into murmurs break; For losers must have leave to speak: Then, from reproaching, fell to mawling Each neighbour-rogue they found forestalling. As these again, their knaves and setters, Durst vent complaints against their betters ( Whose only crime was in defeating Their scheme of growing rich by cheating e So, shall not I my wrongs relate, An injur'd minister of state?The finisher of care and pain May, sure, with better grace complain. For reasons no less strong and true, Marine Society, of you IOf you, as every carman knows, My latest and most fatal foes.
"My property you basely steal, Which ev'n a British oak can feelj
Feel and resent! what wonder then
It should be felt by British men,
When France, insulting, durst invade
Their clearest property of trade?
For which both nations, at the bar
Of that supreme tribunal, war,
To show their reasons have agreed,
And lawyers, by ten thousands, fee'd;
Who now, for legal quirks and puns,
Plead with the rhetoric of great guns;
And each his client's cause maintains,
By knocking out th' opponent's brains:
While Europe all—but we adjourn
This wise digression, and return.
"Your rules and statutes have undone me:
My surest cards begin to shun me.
My native subjects dare rebel,
Those who were born for me and Hell:
And, but for you, the scoundrel-line
Had, every mother's son, died mine.
A race unnumber'd as unknown,
Whom town or suburb calls her own;
Of vagrant love the various spawn,
From rags and filth, from lace and lawn,
Sons of Fleet-ditch, of bulks, of benches,
Where peer and porter meet their wenches,
For neither health nor shame can wean us,
From mixing with the midnight Venus.
"Nor let my cits be here forgot:
They know to sin, as well as sot.
When Night demure walks forth, array'd
In her thin negligee of shade,
Late risen from their long regale
Of beef and beer, and bawdy tale,
Abroad the common-council sally,
To poach for game in lane or alley;
This gets a son, whose first essay
Will filch his father's till away j
A daughter that, who may retire,
Some few years hence, with her own sire:
And, while his hand is in her placket,
The filial virtue picks his pocket.
Change-alley, too, is grown so nice,
A broker dares refine on vice:With lord-like scorn of marriage-vows,
In her own arms he cuckolds spouse;
For young and fresh while he would wish her,
His loose thought glows with Kitty Fisher;
Or, after nobler quarry running,
Profanely paints her out a Gunning."Now these, of each degree and sort,
At Wapping dropp'd, perhaps at court,
Bred up for me, to swear and lie,
To laugh at Hell, and Heaven defy;These, Tyburn's regimental train,
Who risk their necks to spread my reign,
From age to age, by right divine,
Hereditary rogues, were mine:And each, by discipline severe,
Improv'd beyond all shame and fear,
From guilt to guilt advancing daily,
My constant friend, the good Old-Bailey,
To me made over, late or soon;
•I think, at latest, once a noon:But, by your interloping care,
Not one in ten shall be my share.
"Ere 'tis too late your errour see,
You foes to Britain, and to me.
To me: agreed—But to the nation j
I prove it thus by demonstration.
"First, that there is much good in ill,
My great apostle Mandevile
Has made most clear. Read, if you please,
His moral fable of the bees.
Our reverend clergy next will own,
Were all men good, their trade were gone;
That were it not for useful vice,
Their learned pains would bear no price:
Nay, we should quickly bid defiance
To their demonstrated alliance.
"Next, kingdoms are compos'd, we know,
Of individuals, Jack and Joe.
Now these, our sovereign lords, the rabble,
For ever prone to growl and squabble,
The monstrous many-headed beast,
Whom we must not offend, but feast,
Like Cerberus, should have their sop:
And what is that, but trussing up?
How happy were their hearts, and gay,
At each return of hanging-day?
To see Page" swinging they admire,
Beyond ev'n Madox * on his wire!
No baiting of a bull or bear,
To Perry * dangling in the air!
And then, the being drunk a week,
For joy, some Sheppard ' would not squeak!
But now that those good times are o'er,
How will they mutiny and roar!
Your scheme absurd of sober rules
Will sink the race of men to mules;
For ever drudging, sweating, broiling,
For ever for the public toiling:
Hard masters! who, just when they need 'em,
With a few thistles deign to feed 'em.
"Yet more—for it is seldom known
That fault or folly stands alone—
You next debauch their infant-mind
With fumes of honourable wind;
Which must beget, in heads untry'd,
That worst of human vices, pride.
All who my humble paths forsake,
Will reckon, each, to be a Blake;
There, on the deck, with arms a-kimbo,
Already struts the future Bembow;
By you bred up to take delight in
No earthly things but oaths and fighting.
These sturdy sons of blood and blows,
By pulling Mounsieur by the nose,
By making kicks and cuffs the fashion,
Will put all Europe in a passion.
The grand alliance, now quadruple,
Will pay us home, 'jusqu' au centuple:'
So the French king was heard to cry—And can a king of Frenchmen lie?
"These, and more mischiefs I foresee
From fondling brats of base degree.
As mushrooms that on dunghills rise,
The kindred-weeds beneath despise;
So these their fellows will contemn,
Who, in revenge, will rage at them:
For, through each rank, what more offends,
Than to behold the rise of friends?
Still when our equals grow too great,
We may applaud, but we must hate.
Then, will it be endur'd, when John
Has put my hempen ribbon on,
2 As these arc all persons of note, and well known to our readers, we think any more particular mention of them unnecessary. Mallet.
ZEPHYll; OR, THE STRATAGEM.
To see his ancient messmate Cloud,
By you made turbulent and proud,
And early taught my tree to bilk,
Pass in another all of silk?
"Yet, one more mournful case to put;
A hundred mouths at once you shut!
Half Grub-street, gilene'd in an hour,
Must curse your interposing power!
If my lost sons no longer steal,
What son of hers can earn a meal?
You ruin many a gentle bard,
Who liv'd by heroes that die hard!
Their brother-hawkers too! that sung
How great from world to world they swung;
And by sad sonnets, quaver'd loud,
Drew tears and halfpence from the crowd!
"Blind Fielding too—a mischief on him! I wish my sons would meet and stone him! Sends his Mack squadrons up and down, Who drive my best boys back to town. They find that travelling now abroad, To ease rich rascals on the road, Is grown a calling much unsafe; That there are surer ways by half, To which they have their equal claim, Of earning daily food and fame: So down, at home, they sit, and think How best to rob, with pen and iuk.
"Hence, red-hot letters and essays,
By the John Lilburn of these days;
Who guards his want of shame and sense,
With shield of sevenfold impudence.
Hence cards on Pelham, cards on Pitt,
With much abuse and little wit.
Hence libels against Hardwicke penn'd,
That only hurt when they commend:
Hence oft ascrib'd to Fox, at least
All that defames his name-sake beast.
Hence Cloacina hourly views ^
UnnuimWd labours of the Muse,
That sink, where myriads went before,
And sleep within the chaos hoar:
While her brown daughters, under ground,
Are fed with politics profound.
Each eager hand a fragment snaps,
More excrement than what it wraps.
"These, singly, contributions raise,
Of casual pudding and of praise.
Others again, who form a gang,
Yet take due measures not to bang,
la magazines their forces join,
By legal methods to purloin:
Whose weekly, or whose monthly, feat is
First to decry, then steal, your treatise.
So rogues in France perform their job;
Assassinating, ere they rob.
"But, this long narrative to close:
They who would grievances expose,
In all good policy, no less,
Should show the methods to redress.
If commerce, sinking in one scale,
By fraud or hazard comes to fail;
The task is next, all statesmen know it,
To find another where to throw it,
That, rising there in due degree,
The public may no. loser be.
Thus having heard how you invade,
And, in one way, destroy my trade;
That we at last may part good friends,
liar bow you still may make amends.
"O search this sinful town with care:
What numbers, duly mine, are there!
The full-fed herd of money jobbers,
Jews, Christians, rogues alike and robbers!
Who riot on the poor man's toils,
And fatten by a nation's spoils!
The crowd of little knaves in place,
Our age's envy and disgrace.
Secret and snug, by daily stealth,
The busy vermin pick up wealth;
Then, without birth, control the great!
Then, without talents, rule the state!
"Some ladies too—for some there are,
With shame and decency at war;
Who, on a ground of pale threescore,
Still spread the rose of twenty-four,
And bid a nut-brown bosom glow
With purer white than lilies know:
Who into vice intrepid rush;
Put modest whoring to the blush;
And with more front engage a trooper
Than Jenny Jones, or Lucy Cooper.
Send me each mischief-making nibbler;
'Tis equal, senator or scribbler;
Who, on the self-same spot of ground.
The self-same hearers staring round,
Abjure and join with, praise and blame,
Both men and measures, still the same.
Or serve our foes with all their might,
By proving Britons dare not fight:
Slim, flimsy, fiddling, futile elves,
They paint the nation from themselves j
Less aiming to be wise than witty,
And mighty pert, and mighty pretty.
"Send me each string—save green and blue—
These, brother Tower-hill, wait for you.
But, Lollius, be not in the spleen;
'Tis only Arthur's knights I mean—Not those of old renown'd in fable,
Nor of the round, but gaming-table;
Who, every night, the waiters say,
Break every law they make by day;
Plunge deep our youth in all the vice
Attendant upon drink and dice,
And, mixing in nocturnal battles,
Devour each other's goods and chattels;
While from the mouth of magic box,
With curses dire and dreadful knocks,
They fling whole tenements away,
Fling time, health, fame- vet call it play!
Till, by advice of special friends,
The titled dupe a sharper ends:
Or, if some drop of noble blood
Remains, not quite defil'd to mud,
The wretch, unpity'd and alone,
Leaps headlong to the world unknown!"
ZEPHYR;OR, THE STBATAGBM.
Egregiam vero laudem et spolia amp'a tefertis, Una dola Diviim si Foemina victa duorum est.
ARGUMENT. A certain young lady was surprised, on horseback, by a violent storm of wind and rain from the south-west; which made her dismount, somewhat precipitate\y.
Tiik god, in whose gay train appear Those gales that wake the purple year;Who lights up health, and bloom, and grace In Nature's, and in Mira's face;To speak more plain, the western wind, Had seen this brightest of her kind:Had seen her oft with fresh surprise!And ever with desiring eyes!Much, by her shape, her look, her air, Distinguish'd from the vulgar fair;More, by the meaning soul that shines Through all her charms, and all refines.
Born to command, yet turn'd to please, Her form is dignity, with ease;Then—such a hand, and such an arm, As age or impotence might warm!Just such a leg too, Zephyr knows, The Medicean Venus shows!
So far he sees; so far admires. Each charm is fuel to his fires: But other charms, and those of price, That form the bounds of Paradise, Can those an equal praise command; All turn'd by Nature's finest hand? Is all the consecrated ground With plumpness, firm, with smoothness, round?
The world, but once, one Zeuxis saw,
A faultless form who dar'd to draw:
And then, that all might perfecttae,
All rounded off in due degree,
To furnish out the matchless piece,
Were rifled half the toasts of Greece.
Twas Pitt's white neck; 'twas Delia's thigh;
Twas Waldegrave's sweetly-brilliant eye;
'Twas gentle Pembroke's ease and grace,
And Hervey lent her maiden-face.
But dares he hope, on British ground,
That these may all, in one, be found r
These chiefly that still shun his eye?
He knows not; but he means to try.
Aurora rising, fresh and gay,
Gave promise of a golden day.
Up, with her sister, Mira rose,
Four hours before our London beaux;
For these are still asleep and dead,
Save Arthur's sons—not yet in bed.
A rose, impearl'd with orient dew,
Had caught the passing fair-one's view;
To pluck the bud he saw her stoop,
And try'd, behind, to heave her hoop:
Then, while across the daisy'd lawn
She turn'd, to feed her milk-white fawn.
Due westward as her steps she bore,
Would swell her petticoat, before;
Would subtly steal his face between,
To see—what never yet was seen!
"And sure, to fan it with his wing,
No nine-month symptom e'er can bring:
His aim is but the nymph to please,
Who daily courts his cooling breeze."
But listen, fond believing maid!
When Love, soft traitor, would persuade,
With all the moving skill and grace
Of practis'd passion in hit fata,
Dread his approach, distrust your power— For oh! there is one shepherd's hour:And though he long, his aim to cover, May, with the friend, disguise the lover, The sense, or nonsense, of his wooing Will but adore you into ruin.
But, for those butterflies, the beaux, Who buz around in tinsel-rows, Shake, shake them off, with quick disdain:Where insects settle, they will stain.
Thus, Zephyr oft the nymph assail'd:
As oft his little arts had fail'd:
The folds of silk, the ribs of whale,
Resisted still his feeble gale.
With these repulses vex'd at heart,
Poor Zephyr has recourse to art:
And his own weakness to supply,
Calls in a brother of the sky,
The rude South-west; whose mildest play
Is war, mere war, the Russian way:
A tempest-maker by his trade,
Who knows to ravish, not persuade. The terms of their aerial league,
How first to harass and fatigue,
Then, found on some remoter plain,
To ply her close with wind and rain;
These terms, writ fair, and seal'd and sign'd.
Should Webbe or Stukely wish to find,
Wise antiquaries, who explore
All that has ever pass'd—and more;
Though here too tedious to be told,
Are yonder in some cloud enroll'd,
Those floating registers in air:
So let them mount, and lead them there.
The grand alliance thus agreed,
To instant action they proceed;
For 'tis in war a maxim known,
As Prussia's monarch well has shown,
To break, at once, upon your foe,
And strike the first preventive blow.
With Toro's lungs, in Toro's form,
Whose very how d' ye is a storm,
The dread South-West his part begun.
Thick clouds, extinguishing the Sun,
At his command, from pole to pole
Dark spreading, o'er the fair-one roll;
Who, pressing now her favourite steed,
Adorn'd the pomp she deigns to lead.
O Mira! to the future blind,
Th' insidious foe is close behind:
Guard, guard your treasure, while you can;
Unless this god should be the man.
For lo! the clouds, at his known call,
Are closing round—they burst! they fall 1
While at the charmer all aghast,
He pours whole winter in a blast:
Nor cares, in his impetuous mood,
If natives founder on the flood;
If Britain's coast be left as bare'
As he resolves to leave the fair.
Here, gods resemble human breed;
The world be damn'd—so they succeed. Pale, trembling, from her steed she fled,
With silk, lawn, linen, round her head;
And, to the fawns who fed above,
Unveil'd the last recess of love.
1 The very day on which the fleet under admiral Hawke was blown into Turbay. Mallet,
Each wondering fawn was seen to bound *,
Each branchy deer o'erleap'd his mound,
At sight of that sequesterM glade,
In all its light, in all its shade,
Which rises there for wisest ends,
To deck the temple it defends.
Lo! gentle tenants of the grove,
For what a thousand heroes strove,
When Europe, Asia, both in arms,
Disputed one fair lady's charms.
The war pretended Helen's eyes';
But this, believe it, was the prize.
This rous'd Achilles' mortal ire,
This strung his Homer's epic lyre;
Gave to the world La Mancha's knight,
And still makes bulls and heroes fight.
Yet, though the distant conscious Muse
This airy rape delighted views;
Yet she, for honour guides her lays,
Enjoying yet, disdains to praise,
if Frenchmen always fight with odds,
Are they a pattern for the gods?
Can Russia, can th' Hungarian vampire *,
With whom cast in the Swedes and empire,
Can four such powers, who one assail,
Deserve our praise, should they prevail?
O mighty triumph! high renown!
Two gods have brought one mortal down;
Have clubb'd their forces in a storm,
To strip one helpless female form!
Strip her stark naked; yet confess,
Such charms are Beauty's fairest dress!
But, all-insensible to blame,
The sky-bom ravishers on flame
Enchanted at the prospect stood,
And kiss'd with rapture what they view'd.
^eek S r too had done no less;
Would parsons here the truth confess:
Nay, one brisk peer, yet all-alive,
Would do the same, at eighty-five'.
But how, in colours softly-bright,
Where strength and harmony unite,
To paint the limbs, that fairer show
Thin Massalina's horrow'd snow;
To paint the rose, that, through its shade,
With theirs, one human eye survey'd;
Would zracious Phcebus tell me how,
Wuuld tie the genuine draught avow,
The Muse, a second Titian then,
To Fame might consecrate her pen!
That Titian, Nature gave of old
The queen of beauty to behold,
Like Mira, unadorn'd by dress.
But all complete in nakedness:
Then bade his emulating art
Those wonders to the world impart.
Around the ready Graces stand,
"With each a pencil in her hand ';"
'lmmemor berbarum quos est mirata juvenca.
1 Et fuit ante Helanam, &c. Hor.
4 A certain mischievous demon that delights osch in human blood; of whom there are many ■ones told in Hungary. Mallet.
■ We believe there is a mistake in this reading; for the person best informed and most concerned •man, that it should be only seventy-five. Mallet.
'This line is supplied to perfect the sense and rtimi
Each heightening stroke, each happy line, Awakes to life the form divine;Till, rais'd and rounded every charm, And all with youth immortal warm, He sees, scarce crediting his eyes, He sees a brighter Venus rise!But, to the gentle reader's cost, His pencil, with his life, was lost:And Mira must contented be, To live by Ramsay and by me.
EDWIN AND EMMA.
Mark it, Cesario, it is true and plain.
The spinsters and the knitters in the Sun, [bones,
And the free maids that weave their thread with
Do use to chant it. It is silly sooth,
And dallies with the innocence of love,
Like the old age. Shaksp. Twelfth Night.
Far in the windings of a vale,
Fast by a sheltering wood,
The safe retreat of Health and Peace,
An humble cottage stood.
There beauteous Emma flourish'd fair,
Beneath a mother's eye;
Whose only wish on Earth was now
To see her blest, and die.
The softest blush that Nature spreads
Gave colour to her cheek:
Such orient colour smiles through Heaven,
When vernal mornings break.
Nor let the pride of great ones scorn
This charmer of the plains:
That Sun, who bids their diamonds blaze, To paint our lily deigns.
Long had she fill'd each youth with love.
Each maiden with despair;
And though by all a wonder own'd, Yet knew not she was fair.
Till Edwin came, the pride of swains,
A soul devoid of art;
And from whose eye, serenely mild,
Shone forth the feeling heart.
A mutual flame was quickly caught:
Was quickly too reveal'd:
For neither bosom lodg'd a wish,
That Virtue keeps conceal'd.
What happy hours of home-felt bliss
Did love on both bestow!
But bliss too mighty long to last,
Where Fortune proves a foe.
His sister, who, like Envy form'd,
Like her in mischief joy'd,
To work them harm, with wicked skill.
Each darker art employ'd.
The father too, a sordid man,
Who love nor pity knew, Was all-unfeeling as the clod,
From whence his riches grew.