Page images

Presumptuous maid! with looks intent, Again she stretch'd, again she bent,

Nor knew the gulf between:.
(Malignant Fate sat by and smil'd,)
The slipp'ry verge her feet beguil'd;

She tumbled headlong in.
Eight times emerging from the flood,
She mew'd to ev'ry wat'ry god

Some speedy aid to send.
No Dolphin came, no Nereid stirr'd,
Nor cruel Tom or Susan heard :

A fav'rite has no friend!

From hence, ye Beauties ! undeceiv'd,
Know one false step is ne'er retriev'd,

And be with caution bold:
Not all that tempts your wand'ring eyes,
And heedless hearts, is lawful prize,

Nor all that glisters gold.

[blocks in formation]


Stationers Court.


Corrall, Prister, Charing Cross,

[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]

Quis inepta
Tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus ut teneat se?

Juv. THOUGH grief and fondness in my breast rebel,

When injur'd Thales bids the town farewell, Yet still my calmer thoughts his choice commend, I praise the hermit, but regret the friend, Who now resolyes, from vice and London far, To breathe in distant fields a purer air, And, fix'd on Cambria's solitary shore, Give to St. David one true Briton more.

For who would leave, unbrib'd, Hibernia's land, Or change the rocks of Scotland for the Strand ? There none are swept by sudden fate away, But all whom hunger spares, with age decay: Here malice, rapine, accident, conspire, And now a rabble rages, now a fire; Their ambush here relentless ruffians lay, And here the fell attorney prowls for prey ; Here falling houses thunder on your head, And here a female atheist talks you dead.

While Thales waits the wherry that contains Of dissipated wealth the small remains, On Thames's banks, in silent thought we stood, Where Greenwich smiles upon the silver flood : Vol. II.


Struck with the seat that gave Eliza* birth,
We kneel, and kiss the consecrated earth;
In pleasing dreams the blissful age renew,
And call Britannia's glories back to view;
Behold her cross triumphant on the main,
The guard of commerce, and the dread of Spain,
Ere masquerades debauch'd, excise oppress'd,
Or English honour grew a standing jest.

A transient calm the happy scenes bestow,
And for a moment lull the sense of woe.
At length awaking, with contemptuous frown,
Indignant Thales eyes the neighbouring town.
Since worth,' he cries, ‘in these degenerate days,
Wants ev'n the cheap reward of empty praise;
In those curs'd walls, devote to vice and gain,
Since unrewarded science toils in vain ;
Since hope but soothes to double my distress,
And every moment leaves my little less;
While yet my steady steps no staff sustains,
And life still vigorous revels in my veins;
Grant me, kind Heav'n, to find some happier place,
Where honesty and sense are no disgrace ;
Some pleasing bank where verdant osiers play,
Some peaceful vale with Nature's painting gay;
Where once the harass'd Briton found repose,
And safe in poverty defied his foes;
Some secret cell, ye pow'rs, indulgent give,
Let -

live here, for -- has learn'd to live.
Here let those reign, whom pensions can incite
To vote a patriot black, a courtier white;
Explain their country's dear-bought rights away,
And plead for pirates in the face of day ;
With slavish tenets taint our poison'd youth,
And lend a lie the confidence of truth.

• Let such raise palaces, and manors buy,
Collect a tax, or farm a lottery ;
With warbling eunuchs fill a licens'd stage,
And lull to servitude a thoughtless age.

* Queen Elizabeth, born at Greenwich.

« PreviousContinue »