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And thrusts, with dauntless air, upon the Town, 315
Things called “Poetical” by him alone.
True, they are hitched in verse, and to his aid
He calls Euphrosyne, “ celestial Maid!”
Not she, who erst th’ inspired Minstrel blest,
Swell'd ev'ry movement of his guileless breast, 320
And danced, before his Fancy kindled eye,
In all the glories of effulgency!
But she, whose coarser mien and looser tongue
Prompted the quibbles Peter's lyre hath sung;—
Who hover'd round his jest-distilling quill, 325
Moulding each couplet to her sovereign will.
E’en now she waits thee, Bard of punning races
With smiling eye, and triumph-beaming face;
For myself, I cannot see by what means he will do away their remarks upon the objectionable passages, or free himself from the
stigma they have thrown upon his character.
And, from her hand, she bids thee humbly take
A wreath of weeds, and wear it for her sake. 330
But think, when “ages yet unborn” shall look
Full on the wonders of the “Guinea.” Book;
From thine own tale they there may chance to learn,
That “ low desires in ev'ry bosom burn:”
Then shall the truth appear in plainest guise, 335
And show distinctly the long sought for prize;
Then shall they deem the “low ambition” thine,
The Prince of rhyming ribaldry to shine.
Say, should the lash Satiric weakly miss
A Bard so weak, a strain so gross as this; 340
Where rank obscenity holds place of wit,
Unmeet for sight, for brothels only fit;—
And, passing by, let Vice hold on her course,
Nor scourge the Parodist with keenest force?
No, surely not; while Virtue's cause can fire 345
The Censor's wrath, the Muse's kindling ire!
Shade of the Senior! in these worthless days,
The Son,-forgetful of a Father's bays,
That else had twin'd with vigour round his head,
And twofold honor by descent had shed;— 350
Forgetful of Society's applause, -
That soon or late will vindicate her laws;—
Profanes the talents that a bounteous Heav'n,
To one, unworthy of the trust, had giv'n;
And prompts his jaded fancy to excite 355
Wit unrefin'd, and mirth without delight.
Yet, when the verse Posterity shall see,
That violates the rules of Decency,
'Twill justly spurn the Author of the deed,
And, “viva voce,” cry: “This, Coleman, be thy
With Pasquin's join'd, and Peter Pindar's" name,
(A matchless trio in the lists of Fame,)
* Sometimes he has some humour, never wit,
And if it rarely, very rarely, hit,
Thine shall remain, when e'en the worthless lay That rais'd thee there, like their's have passed away; Then shall it meet alone, of merit lorn, 365
The frown of Virtue, and the sneer of Scorn!”
What daring hand * has seized the trembling lyre,
Flushed with the hopes of all a Poet's fire,
To sing thee, Woman lovely, gentle, kind,
And paint the wonders of thy form and mind! 370
Here was a theme to warm the kindling Muse,
And all the energies of song infuse.
'Tis under so much nasty rubbish laid, To find it out 's the cinder-woman's trade, Who for the wretched remnants of a fire, Must toil all day in ashes and in mire. So lewdly dull his idle works appear, The wretched Texts deserve no comment here. DRYDEN and MULGRAve's Essay on Satire. * Eaton Stannard Barrett, Esq. has published what he is pleased
to call a Poem on Woman, “Vox et preterea nihill”
Here was a theme to bid the mounting soul,
On Fancy's wings, ascend beyond control.
Now, -when the strain should rise, and loud, and
In all the swell of noblest Minstrelsy,+
The tinkling chords emit discordant sound,
And harshest notes disturb the air around.
Barrett! 'twas thine, to touch the jarring strings,
And thine the soul that Fancy never wings. 380
Then, stay thy hand, Pretender! hence, away!
Nor round Parnassian Bowers presume to stray;
The Muse disclaims thee, while th' indignant Fair
Repulse the lay, unworthy of their care.
Enough of metaphor;-and tho' we're told *, 385
(In sooth a curious caution to unfold,)
NOTES. * We are kindly informed in the preface, that it is not a theoretical but a practical essay, and does not require a knowledge of either Spinoza, Leibnitz, or Bolingbroke.
Mais tout esprit n'est pas composé d'une étoffe,
Qui se trouve taillée à faire un Philosophe;