Page images
PDF
EPUB

The beasts were summon’d to appear,

Then, when life's winter haltcns on,
And bend before the royal heir.

And youth's fair heritage is gone,
They came ; a day was fix'd; the crowd Dow’rless to court some peasant's arms,
Before their future monarch bow'd.

To guard your wither's age from harms;
A dapper Monkey, pert and vain,

No gratitude to warın his breast,
Stepp'd forth, and thus address'd the train : For blooming beauty once poffeft ;
Why crinçe, my friends, with llavith awe, How will you curse that stubborn pride
Before this pageant king of straw ?

Which drove your bark across the tide,
Shall we anticipate the hour,

And failing before fully's wind, And, ere we feel it, own his pow'r ?

Left sense and happiness behind! The counsels of experience prize,

Corinna, left theie whims prevail, I know the maxims of the wife;

To such as you I write my tale. Subjection let us cast away,

A Colt, for blood and mettled speed And live the monarchs of to-day ;

The choicest of the running breed, 'Tis ours the vacant hand to fpurn,

Of youthful strength and beauty vain, And play the tyrant each in turn.

Refus'd subjection to the rein. So thall he right from wrong discern,

In vain the groom's officious skill And mercy from opprettion learn;

Oppos’d his pride, and check'd his will; At others woes be tauglit to melt,

in vain the master's forming care And loath the ills himtelf has felt.

Restrain'd with threats, or footh'd with pray'ri He spoke his bofom fivell’d with pride; Of freedom proud, and scorning man, The youthful Lion thus replied:

Wild o'er the spacious plains he ran. What madness prompts thee to provoke

Where'er luxuriant nature spread My wrath, and dare th' impending stroke? Her How'ry carpet o'er the mead, Thou wretched fool! can wrongs impart Or bubbling streams foft gliding pass, Compaflion to the feeling heart?

To cool and freshen up the grass, Or teach the grateful breast to glow,

Distaining bounds, he cropt the blade, The hand to give, or cye to How?

And wanton'd in the spoil he made.
Learn’d in the practice of their schools,

In plenty thus the summer pass'd,
From women thou hast drawn thy rules: Revolving winter came at last;
To them return; in such a cause,

The trees no more a thelter yield,
From only fuch expect applause;

The verdure withers from the field, The partial sex I don't condemn,

Perpetual inows invest thc ground, For liking those who copy them.

In icy chains the ítreams are bourd, Wouldst thou the gen'rous lion bind : Cold, nipping winds, and rattling hail, By kindness bribe him to be kind;

His lank unshelter'd lides affail. Good offices their likeness get,

As round he cast his rueful eyes, And payment lessens not the debt;

He saw the thatch'd-roof cottage rise; With multiplying hand he gives

The prospect touch'd his heart with cheer, The good from others he receives ;

And promis'd kind deliv'rance near. Or for the bad makes fair return,

A ftable, erst his scorn and hate,
And
pays
with int'reft scorn for scorn.

Was now become his with'd retreat;
His passion cool, his pride forgot,

A Farmer's welcome yard he fought.
FABLE XII. The Colt and the Farmer.

The master saw his wocful plight,

His linhs that totter'd with his weight: TELL me, Corinna, if you can,

And, friendly, to the stable led, Why so averse, so coy to man?

And saw him litter'd, dress'd and fed. Did Natúre, lavish of her care,

In nothful cafe all night he lay, From her best pattern form you fair,

The servants rose at break of day; That you, ungrateful to her cause,

The market calls-along the road Should mock her gifts, and spurn her laws ? His back must bear the pond'rous load ; And, miser-like, withhold that store,

In vain he ftruggles or complains, Which, by imparting, blesses more?

Inceflant blows reward his pains. Beauty 's a gift by Heaven ailign'd

ro-inorrow varies but his toil; The portion of the female kind;

Chain'd to the plough, he breaks the soil ; For this the yielding maid demands

While scanty meals at night repay Protection at her lover's hands;

The painful labours of the day. And though by wasting years it fade,

Subdued by toil, with anguish rent, Remembrance tells him once 'twas paid. His self-upbraidings found a vent.

And will you then this wealth conceal, Wrerch that I am! he fighing faid, For age to rust, or time to steal ?

By arrogance and folly led : The summer of your youth to rove

Had but my reftive youth been brought A ftranger to the joys of love ?

To learn the kcilon nature taught, 3

Tlien

§ 321.

to

me, relin'd.

up

Then had 1, like my fires of yore,

And swallow'd wisdom with that haste The prize from ev'ry courser bore,

That cits do cuftards at a fcast. While man bestow'd rewards and praise,

Within the thulter of a wood, And females crown'd my latter days.

One evening, as he musing stood, Now lasting fervitude's my lot,

Hard by, upon a leafy spray, My birth contemn'd, my speed forgot;

Nightingale began his lay. Doom'd am I, for my pride, to bear

Sudden he starts, with anser ftung, A living death, from ycar year.

And forecching interrupts the fong:

Port, buy thing! thy airs give o'cr, $ 322. F ABLE X111. Zie Ovlan.ltb. Nigbinga!. And le: ny contemplation foar. Tokuor the mistress' humour right, "l'hat is the inusic of thy voice,

See if her maids are clean and tight; But jarring diffonance, and noise ? If Betty waits without her stars,

Be wife; true harmony thou 'le find She copies but her lady's ways.

Not in the throat, but in the mind; When Miss comes in with boilt'rous fhout, By empty chirping not atrainil, And drops no curt'ly going out,

But by laborious ftudy gain'd. Depend upon 't, mamma is one

Go, read the authors Pipe explodes; Who reads, or drinks too much alone.

Fathom the depths of Cibber's odes; If botiled beer her thirst assuage,

With modern plays improve thy "It; She feels enthufiaftic rage,

Read all the learning Herley writ; And buns with ardour to inherit

And, if thou needs must ting, sing then, The gifts and workings of the spirit.

and emulate the ways of men ; ; If learning crack her giddy brains,

So thalt thou grov,

like No remedy but death remains.

And bring improvement to thy kind. Sum up the various ills of life,

Thou wretch, the little warbler cried, And all are fiveet to such a wife.

Made cf ignorance and pride! At home superior wit the vaunis,

Ask all ihe birds, and they 'll declare And twit's her husband with his wants;

A greater blockhead wings not air. Her rogged offspring ali around,

Read o’cr thyself, thy talents scan, Like pigs, are wallowing on the ground; Science was ouly meant for man. Impatient ever of controul,

No senseless authors mc molest, She koows no order but of soul ;

I mind the duties of my neft; With books hur litter'd foor is prcad,

With careful wing protect my young, Of maineleis authors, never read ;

And cheer their evenings with a long; Foullinen, petticoats, and lace,

Make thort the wcary traseiler's way, Fill up tire intermediate space.

And warble in the poet's lay. Abroad, at visitings, her tongue

Thus, following nature and her laws, Is never still, and always wrong;

From men and birds I claim applause; All mcanings the defines away,

While, nurs'd in pedantry and iloih, And Kunds with truth and fense at bay. An Owl is fcorn'd alike by both.

If c'er she meets a gentle heart, Skill'd in the houlerile's uiiful ait,

§ 323. FAELE XIV. The Sparrow and the Dove, Who makes her family her care,

IT was, as learn'd traditions say, And builds contentment's temple there,

Upon an April's blithetome day, She fiarts at such mistakes in nature,

W'hen pleasure, ever on the wing; And cries, Lord help us! What a creature ! Returu'd, companion of the fpring, Niliffi, if the moral strike,

And cheer'd the birds with am'rous heat, You'll find the fable not uplike.

instructing little bearts to beat ; An Out, prti'd up with felf-conceit, A Sparrow, frolic, gay, and young, Lord learning better than liis meat;

Of bold addrets, and flippint tongue, Old manuscripts he treasur'd up,

Just left his lady of a night, And rummag'd eriy grocer's ihop;

Like him to follow new deliglit. At paltry-cooks was known to ply,

The youth, of many a conyuet vain, Aoj trip for science ev'ry pye.

Flew off to lock the chirping irain ; For modern poetry, and wit,

The chirping train he quickly found, Hchulread all that Blackmore writ;

And with a saucy calc bow'd round. Sointimate with Curl ras grown,

For ev'ry thc his bo om burns, Hi; learned treatures were his own;

And this and that he woos by turns;
Toa!! Lis authors had access,

And here a tigh, and there a bill;
Anel som times would correct the presse And here--ihete eses, to form d to kill!
Inlogic le acquir'd luch knowledge,

And now', with ready tongue, he strings
You'd ficar him fellow of a ceile.c;

Unmeaning, foft, restless things; Alities to crry ait ord fcicace

With vows and duin-me's skills to soo, His dariny genius lid cufiance,

As other pretty flows due

Not

Not that he thought this short essay

Yet friendship forms the bliss above; A prologue needful to his play ;

And, life, what art thou withone love? No, trust me, says our learned letter,

Our hero, who had heard apart, He knew the virtuous fex much better:

Felt something moving in his heart; But these he held as specious arts,

But quickly, with disdain, luppress’d To thew his own fuperior parts;

The virtue rising in his breast; The form of decency to shield,

And first he feign'd to laugh aloud; And give a just pretence to yield.

And next, approaching, smild and bow'd: Thus finithing his courtly play,

Madam, you must not think me rude; He mark'd the fav'rite of a day;

Good inanners never can intrude; With careless impudence drew near,

I vow I come thro' pure good natureAnd whisper'd Hebrew in her car;

(Upon my foul, a charming creature !) A hint, which like the malon's fign,

Are there the conforts of a wife? The conscious can alone divinc.

This careful, cloister'd, moping life? The Hutt'ring nymph, expert at feigning, No doubt, that odious thing, callid Duty, Cricd, Sir!--pray, Sir, explain your meaning, Is a sweet province for a beauty. Go prate to thote that may endure ye

Thou pretty ignorance ! thy will To me this rudeness ! I'll assure ye !

Is measur'd to thy want of skill; Then off the glided like a swallow,

That good old-fashiond dame, thy mother, As faving - you guess where to follow. Has taught thy infant years no other : To such as know the party set,

The greatest ill in the creation 'Tis neediefs to declare they met;

Is sure the want of education. The parson's barn, as authors mention,

But think ye-tell me without feigning Confess’d the fair had apprehension.

Have all these charms no farther meaning ? Her honour there secure from stain,

Dame nature, if you don't forget her, She held all farther trilling vain;

Might teach your ladyship much better. No more affected to be coy,

For shame! reject this mean employment, But ruth'd, licentious, on the joy.

Enter the world and taste enjoyinent, Hist, love! the male companion cried ; Where tiine by circling bliss we measure; Retire a while, I fear we're spied.

Beauty was forin'd alone for pleasure : Nor was the caution vain : he law

Come, prove the blessing, follow me A Turtle rustling in the straw;

Be wise, be happy, and be free. While o'er her callow brood the hung,

Kind Sir, replied our matron chaste, And fondly thus address’d her young:

Your zeal feems pretty much in haste; Ye tender objects of iny care !

I own, the fondness to be blest Peace, peace, ye little helpless pair ;

is a deep thirst in every breast; Anon he comes, your gentle fire,

Of blessings too I have my fore,
all
your

hearts require. Yet quarrel not thould Hcaven give more; For us, his infants, and his bride,

Then prove the change to be expedient, For us, with only love to guide,

And think me, Sir, your most obedient. Our lord assumes an eagle's speed,

Here turning, as to one inferior, And like a lion dares to bleed.

Our gallant fpoke, and (mil'd superior. Nor yet by wint'ry skies confinal,

Methinks, to quit your boasted station He mounts upon the rudest wind,

Requires a world of hesitation ; From danger tears the vital spoil,

Where brats and bonds are held a blessing, And with affection sweetens toil.

The case, I doubt, is paft redressing. Ah cease, too vent'rous, ceafe to dare;

Why, child, suppose the joys I mention In thinc, our dearer safety spare !

Were the incre fruits of my invention, From him, yo cruel falcons, stray;

You 've caufe fufficient for your carriage, And turn, ye fowlers, far away!

In Aying from the curse of marriage ; Should I survive to lee the day

That lly decoy, with varied snares, That tears me from myself away ;

That takes your widgeons in by pairs; That cancels all that Heaven could give, Alike to husband and to wife, The life by which alone I live,

The cure of love, and bane of life; Alas, how more than loft were 1,

The only method of forecaiting, Who in the thought already die

To inake misfortunc firm and latting ; Ye pow'rs whom men and birds obcy, The fin, by Heaven's peculiar sentence, Great rulers of your creatures, say,

Unpardon'd through a life's repentance. Why mourning comes by blits convey'd, It is the double snake that weds And even the liveets of love allay'd ?

A common tail to diff'rent heads, Where grows enjoyinent, tall and fair,

That lead the carcale still astray, Around it twines entangling care;

By dragong cach a different way. White fear for what our fouls polless

of all the ills that may attend me, Enervates ev'ry pow'r tu bless:

From marriage, mighty gods, defend ine!

And brings you

you :

Soft

Give me frank nature's wild demesne, The Source of endless good above And boundless tract of air serene,

Shot down his spark of kindling love; Where fancy, ever wing's for change,

Touch'd by the all-enlivening Hame, Delights to sport, delights to range :

Then motion first exulting came; There, Liberty! to thee is owing

Each atom sought its sep'rate class Whate'er of bliss is worth bestowing;

Through many a fair enamour'd mass ; Delights still varied, and divine,

Love cast the central charn around, Sweet goddess of the hills! are thine.

And with eternal nuptials bound. What say you now, you pretty pink, you ? Then form and order o'er the sky Have I for once spoke reason, think

First train d their bridal pomp on high ; You take me now for no romancer

The sun display'd his orb to light, Come, never study for an answer!

And burnt with hymencal light. Away, cast ev'ry care behind ye,

Hence nature's virgin-womb conceiv'd, And Ay where joy alone fhall find ye.

And with the genial burden hcar'd; yet, return'd our female fencer;

Forth came the oak, her first-born heir,
A question more, or so—and then, Sir. And scal'd the breathing steep of air ;

You've rallied me with sense exceeding, Then infant stems, of various use,
With inuch fine wit, and better breeding; Imbib'd her soft maternal juice;
But pray, Sir, how do you contrive it?

The flow'rs, in early bloom disclos'd,
Do those of your world never wive it? Upon her fragrant breast repos'd ;
“ No, no." How then? “Why, dare I tell? Within her warm embraces grew
« What does the bus'ness full as well."

A race of endless form and hue :
Do you ne'er love: “ An hour at leisure." Then pour'd her lesser offspring round,
Have

you no friendfhips? “ Yes, for pleasure.” | And fondly cloth'd their parent ground. No care for little ones ” “ We get 'em ;

Nor here alone the virtue reign'd, “ The rest the mothers mind and let 'em." By matter's cumb’ring form derain'd;

Thou wretch, rejoin'd the kindling Dove, But thence, subliming and refind,
Quite loft to life, as loft to love !

Aspir'd, and reach'd its kindred Mind.
Whene er misfortune comes, how just! Caught in the fond celestial fire,
And come misfortunc surely muft.

The mind perceiv'd unknown desire ;
In the dread season of dilinay,

And now with kind effufion flow'd,
In that your hour of trial, say,

And now with cordial ardours glow'd,
Who then thall prop your finking heart? Beheld the sympathetic fair,
Who bear amicuion's weightier part?

And lov'd its own resemblance there ;
Say, when the black-brow'd welkin bends, On all with circling radiance shone,
And winter's gloomy form impends,

But cent’ring fix'd on one alone; To mourning turns all transient cheer,

There clasp d the heaven-appointed wife, And blasts the melancholy year;

And doubled every joy of lite. For times at no persuasion tay,

Here ever blefling, ever bleft Nor vice can find perpetual May;

Refdes this beauty of the breait; Then where's that tongue by folly fed,

As from his palace here the god That soul of pertness whither fcd?

Still beams effulgent bliss abroad; All Mrunk within thy lonely nett,

Here gems his own cternal round, Forlorn, abandon d, and unblett.

The ring by which the world is bound; No friends, by cordial bonds allied,

Here bids his seat of empire grow, Shall seek thy cold, unsocial fide;

And builds his little heaven below. No chirping prattlers to delight

The bridal partners thus allied, Shall turn the long-enduring night;

And thus in swect accordance tied, No bride her words of balm impart,

One body, heart, and spirit live, And warm thee at her constant heart.

Enrich'd by ev'ry joy they give ; Freedom, restrain'd by reason's force,

Like echo, from her vocal hold, Is as the fun's unvarying course;

Return'd in music twenty-fold. Benignly 'active, sweetly bright,

Their union, firm and undecay'd, Afording warmth, affording light;

Nor time can shake, nor pow'r invade; But, torn from virtue's facred rules,

| But, as the stem and scion stand Becomes a comet, gaz'd by fools,

Ingrafted by a skilful hand,
Foreboding cares, and storins, and strife, Thcy check the tempeft's wint'ryt rage,
And fraught with all the plagues of life. And bloom and strengthen into age.
Thou fool! by union ev'ry creature

A thousand amities unknown,
Sublists, through universal nature;

And pow'rs perceiv'd by love alone, And this, to beings void of mind,

Endearing looks and chaste defire, Is wedlock of a mcaner kind.

Fan and support the mutual fire; While, womb'd in space, primeval clay Whose fame, perpetual as refin'd, A yet unfathion'd embryo lay,

Is fed by an imn.o.tal mind.

Nor

Nor yet the nuptial sanction ends :

Me too to your protection take, Like Nile it opens, and defcends;

And spare me for my husband's lake. Which, by apparent windings led,

Let one unruffled, calm delight We trace to its celestial head.

The loving and belov'd unite ; The fire, first springing from above,'

One pure Jefire our bofoms warm, Becomes the fource of life and love,

One will direct, one wish inform ; And gives his filial heir to dow

Through life, one mutual aid sustain; In fondness down on fons below:

In death, one peaceful grave contain. Thus, roll'd in one continued tide,

While, tivelling with the darling theme, To time's extremest verge they glide;

Her accents pour'd an endless stream, While kindred streams, on cither hand, The well-known wings a sound impart Branch forth in bleilings o'er the land.

That reach'd her ear, and touch'd her heart; Thce, wretch ! no lisping babc Tall name,

Quick dropp'd the music of her tongue, No late-returning brother claim,

And forth with cager joy she sprung. No kintinan on thy fight rejoice,

As swift her ent’ring confort ficw, No fifter greet thy ent'ring voice ;

And pluin'd, and kindled at the view; With partial cyes no parent see,

Their wings, their souls, embracing meet, And bless their years restor'd in thce.

Their hcarts with answering mealure beat; In age rejected or declin'd,

Half lost in secret sweets, and blessid An alien even among thy kind,

With raptures felt, but ne'er expressid. The partner of thy scorn'd embrace

Straight to her humble roof thc led Shall play the wanton in thy face;

The partner of her (potlefs bed; Each spark unplume thy little pride,

Her young, a flutt'ring pair, arise, All friendship fly thy faithless lide.

Their welcome sparkling in their cyes ; Thy name thall like thy carcase rot,

Transported, to their fire they bound,
In fickness (pur'd, in death forgot.

And hang with speechless action round,
All-giving Pow'r! great Source of life! In pleasure wrapt the parents stand,
Oh hear the parent, hcar the wife!

And see their little wings expand;
That life thou lendest froin above,

The fire his life-sustaining prize Though little, make it large in love;

To cach expecting bill applies, O bid my fécling heart expand

There fondiy pours the wheaten spoil, To ev'ry claim, on ev'ry hand;

With trantport given, tho' won with toil; To those from whom my days I drew,

While, all-collected at the fight, To these ia whom those days renow,

And silent through fupreme delight, To all my kin, however wide,

The Fair high heaven of bliss beguiles, In cordial warmth as blood allied,

And on her lord and infants smiles. To friends with Recly fetters twin'd,

The Sparrow, whose attention hung And to the crucl, not unkind!

Upon the Dove's enchanting tongue, But chief the lord of my desire,

of all his little flights disarm’d, My life, myself, my foul, my fire,

And froin himself by virtue charm’d, Friends, children, all that with can claim, When now he saw what only fecm'd, Chaste paffion clasp, and rapture name

A fact to late a fable deemid, O spare him, sparc him, gracious Pow'r! His Coul to envy he resign'd, O give him to my latest hour!

His hours of fully to the wind; Let me my length of life employ

In secret wish a turtle too,
To give my fole enjoyment joy.

And, fighing to himielf, withdrew.
His love let mutual love excite,
Turn all iny carcs to his delight;

§ 324. FABLE xv. Tbe Female Seduceri. And ev'ry needless blelling ipare,

'Tis jäid of widow, maid, and wife, Wherein my darling wants a share.

That honour is a woman's life; When he with graceful action woos,

Unhappy fex! who only claim And sweetly bills, and fondly coos,

A being in the breath of fame Ah! deck me, to his eyes alone,

Which, tainted, not the quick’ning gales With charms attractive as his own;

That sweep Sabxa's spicy vales, And, in my circling wings careli'd,

Nor all the healing sweets restore, Give all the lover to my brcast.

That breathe along Arabia's thore. Then in our chafe connubial bed,

The trav'ller, if he chance to firay, My bofom pillow'd for his head,

May turn uncensur'd to his way ; His with blissful flumbers close,

Polluted streams again are pure, And ivatch, with me, my lord's repose; And decpest wounds admit a curc. Your peace around his temples twine,

But woman no redemption knows, And love him with a love like mine.

The wounds of honour never closc. And, for I know his gen'rous flanie,

Tho' distant ev'ry hand to guide, Beyond whate'er my sex can claim,

Nor kill'd on life's tempestuous tidc,

If

cyes

« PreviousContinue »