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To dark futurity, survive,
And in unfading beauty live, -
You cannot with a grace decline
A special mandate of the nine,
Yourself, whatever task you choose,
So much indebted to the muse.

Thus say the sisterhood :--We come ;
Fix well your pallet on your thumb,
Prepare the pencil and the tints,
We come to furnish you with hints.
French disappointment, British glory,
Must be the subject of the story.

First strike a curve, a graceful bow, Then slope it to a point below; Your outline easy, airy, light, Fill’d up becomes a paper kite. Let independence, sanguine, horrid, Blaze like a meteor in the forehead: Beneath (but lay aside your graces) Draw six-and-twenty rueful faces, Each with a staring, stedfast eye, Fix'd on his great and good ally. France flies the kite—'t is on the wingBritannia's lightning cuts the string. The wind that raised it, ere it ceases, Just rends it into thirteen pieces, Takes charge of every fluttering sheet, And lays them all at George's feet.

Iberia, trembling from afar, Renounces the confederate war ; Her efforts and her art o'ercome, France calls her shatter'd navies home; Repenting Holland learns to mourn The sacred treaties she has torn; Astonishment and awe profound Are stamp'd upon the nations round; Without one friend, above all foes, Britannia gives the world repose.



The genius of the Augustan age

His head among Rome's ruins rear'd,
And bursting with heroic rage,

When literary Heron appear’d.
Thou hast, he cried, like him of old

Who set the Ephesian dome on fire,
By being scandalously bold,

Attain'd the mark of thy desire;
And for traducing Virgil's name

Shalt share his merited reward ;
A perpetuity of fame,

That rots, and stinks, and is abhorr’d.


June 22, 1782.
If reading verse be your delight,
'Tis mine as much, or more, to write;
But what we would, so weak is man,
Lies oft remote from what we can.
For instance, at this very time,
I feel a wish, by cheerful rhyme,
To soothe my friend, and, had I power,
To cheat him of an anxious hour;
Not meaning (for, I must confess,
It were but folly to suppress)
His pleasure or his good alone,
But squinting partly at my own.
But though the sun is flaming high
In the centre of yon arch, the sky,
And he had once (and who but he ?)
The name for setting genius free,
Yet whether poets of past days

Yielded him undeserved praise, * Nominally by Robert Heron, but written by John Pinkerton.



And he by no uncommon lot
Was famed for virtues he had not;
Or whether, which is like enough,
His Highness may have taken huff,
So seldom sought with invocation,
Since it has been the reigning fashion
To disregard his inspiration,
I seem no brighter in my wits,
For all the radiance he emits,
Than if I saw, through midnight vapour,
The glimmering of a farthing taper.
Oh for a succedaneum, then,
To accelerate a creeping pen!
Oh for a ready succedaneum,
Quod caput, cerebrum, et cranium
Pondere liberet exoso,
Et morbo jam caliginoso !
'Tis here; this oval box well fill'd
With best tobacco, finely mill’d,
Beats all Anticyra's pretences
To disengage the encumber'd senses.

Oh Nymph of Transatlantic fame,
Where'er thine haunt, whate'er thy name,
Whether reposing on the side
Of Oroonoquo's spacious tide,
Or listening with delight not small
To Niagara's distant fall,
'Tis thine to cherish and to feed
The pungent nose-refreshing weed,
Which, whether pulverized it gain
A speedy passage to the brain,
Or whether, touch'd with fire, it rise
In circling eddies to the skies,
Does thought more quicken and refine
Than all the breath of all the nine;
Forgive the bard, if bard he be,
Who once too wantonly made free,
To touch with a satiric wipe
That symbol of thy power, the pipe ;
So may no blight infest thy plains,
And no unseasonable rains;

And so may smiling peace once more
Visit America's sad shore;
And thou, secure from all alarms,
Of thundering drums, and glittering arms,
Rove unconfined beneath the shade
Thy wide-expanded leaves have made;
So may thy votaries increase,
And fumigation never cease.
May Newton with renew'd delights
Perform thine odoriferous rites,
While clouds of incense half divine
Involve thy disappearing shrine ;
And so may smoke-inhaling Bull
Be always filling, never full.



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She came-she is gone—we have met

And meet perhaps never again ; The sun of that moment is set,

And seems to have risen in vain; Catharina has fled like a dream,

(So vanishes pleasure, alas !) But has left a regret and esteem

That will not so suddenly pass.
The last evening ramble we made,

Catharina, Maria, and I,
Our progress was often delay'd

By the nightingale warbling nigh.
We paused under many a tree,

And much she was charm’d with a tone Less sweet to Maria and me,

Who so lately had witness'd her own. My numbers that day she had sung,

And gave them a grace so divine, As only her musical tongue

Could infuse into numbers of mine.


The longer I heard, I esteem'd

The work of my fancy the more,
And even to myself never seem'd

So tuneful a poet before.
Though the pleasures of London exceed

In number the days of the year,
Catharina, did nothing impede,

Would feel herself happier here; For the close-woven arches of limes

On the banks of our river, I know, Are sweeter to her many times

Than aught that the city can show. So it is, when the mind is imbued

With a well-judging taste from above, Then, whether embellish'd or rude,

'Tis nature alone that we love. The achievements of art may amuse,

May even our wonder excite,
But groves, hills, and valleys diffuse

A lasting, a sacred delight.
Since then in the rural recess

Catharina alone can rejoice, May it still be her lot to possess.

The scene of her sensible choice ! To inhabit a mansion remote

From the clatter of street-pacing steeds, And by Philomel's annual note

To measure the life that she leads. With her book, and her voice, and her lyre,

To wing all her moments at home,
And with scenes that new rapture inspire,

As oft as it suits her to roam,
She will have just the life she prefers,

With little to hope or to fear,
And ours would be pleasant as hers,

Might we view her enjoying it here.

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