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Then, leaving me, whom fure you would not kill!
In yonder thicket exercise your skill:
Shoot there at beasts; but for the human heart,
Your coufin Cupid has the only dart.
Yet turn, O beauteous maid! yet deign to hear, A love-fick Deity's impetuous prayer ;
O let me woo thee as thou would't be woo'd!
First, therefore, be not fo extremely rude.
Tear not the hedges down, nor tread the clover,
Like an hobgoblin, rather than a Lover.
Next, to my father's grotto fometimes come;
At ebbing-tide he always is at home.
Read the Courant with him, and let him know
A little politicks, how matters go
Upon his brother-rivers, Rhine or Po.
As any maid or footman comes or goes,
Pull off your hat, and ask how Daphne does:
These fort of folks will to each other tell,
That you respect me; that, you know, looks well.
Then, if you are, as you pretend, the God
That rules the day, and much upon the road,
You'll find a hundred trifles in your way,
That you may bring one home from Africa;
Some little rarity, fome bird, or beast;
And now and then a jewel from the East;
A lacquer'd cabinet, fome china-ware,
You have them mighty cheap at Pekin fair!
Next, nota bene, you fhall never rove,
Nor take example by your father Jove.
Laft, for the ease and comfort of my life,
Make me your (Lord! what ftartles you?) your wife.
I'm now (they fay) fixteen, or fomething more;
We mortals feldom live above fourfcore :
Fourfcore; you 're good at numbers, let us fee,
Seventeen fuppofe, remaining fixty-three;
Aye, in that span of time, you 'll bury me.
Mean time, if you have tumult, noise, and strife,
(Things not abhorrent to a marry'd life!)
They'll quickly end, you fee; what fignify
A few odd years to you that never die ?
And, after all, you 're half your
You know your bufinefs takes you up all day;
And, coming late to bed, you need not fear,
Whatever noise I make, you 'll sleep, my dear
Or, if a winter-evening fhould be long,
Ev'n read your phyfic-book, or make a fong.
Your steeds, your wife, diachalon, and rhyme,
May take up any honest Godhead's time.
Thus, as you like it, you may love again,
And let another Daphne have her reign.
Now love, or leave, my dear; retreat, or follow:
I Daphne (this premis'd) take thee Apollo.
And may I split into ten thousand trees,
If I give up on other terms than these !
She faid; but what the amorous God reply'd
(So Fate ordain'd) is to our fearch deny'd;
By rats, alas! the manufcript is eat,
O cruel banquet! which we all regret.
Bavius, thy labours must this work restore;
May thy good-will be equal to thy power!
WO mice, dear boy, of genteel fashion,
And (what is more) good education,
Frolic and gay, in infant years,
Equally fhar'd their parents' cares.
The fire of these two babes (poor creature!)
Paid his laft debt to human nature;
A wealthy widow left behind,
Four babes, three males, one female kind.
The fire being under-ground and bury'd,
'Twas thought his spouse would foon have marry'd,
Matches propos'd, and numerous fuitors,
Most tender husbands, careful tutors,
She modeftly refus'd; and fhew'd
She 'd be a mother to her brood..
Mother! dear mother! that endearing thought,.
Has thousand and ten thousand fancies brought.
Tell me, oh! tell me, (thou art now above)
How to describe thy true maternal love,
Thy early pangs, thy growing anxious cares,
Thy flattering hopes, thy fervent pious prayers,,
Thy doleful days and melancholy nights,
Cloyster'd from common joys and just delights :
How thou didst conftantly in private mourn,
And wash with daily tears thy fpoufe's urn;
How it employ'd your thoughts and lucid time,
That your young offspring might to honour climb;
How your firft care, by numerous griefs opprest,
Under the burden funk, and went to reft;
How your dear darling, by confumption's wafte,
Breath'd her laft piety into your breast;
How you, alas! tir'd with your pilgrimage,
Bow'd down your head, and dy'd in good old age.
Though not infpir'd, oh! may I never be
Forgetful of my pedigree, or thee !
Ungrateful howfoe'er, may n't I forget
To pay this small, yet tributary debt!
And when we meet at God's tribunal throne,
Own me, I pray thee, for a pious fon.
But why all this? Is this your fable?
Believe me, Mat, it feems a babble;
If you will let me know th' intent on't,
Go to your Mice, and make an end on't.
Well then, dear brother,
As fure as Hudi's* fword could swaddle,
Two Mice were brought up in one cradle;
Well bred, I think, of equal port,
One for the gown, one for the court:
They parted (did they so, an't please you ?)
Yes, that they did (dear Sir) to cafe you.
One went to Holland, where they huff folk,
T' other to vend his wares in Suffolk.
(That Mice have travel'd in old times,
Horace and Prior tell in rhymes,
Those two great wonders of their ages,
Superior far to all the sages !)
Many days paft, and many a night,
Ere they could gain each other's fight;
At laft, in weather cold, not fultry,
They met at the Three Cranes in Poultry.
After much bufs and great grimace
(Usual you know in fuch a case),
Much chat arose, what had been done,
What might before next fummer's fun ; -
Much faid of France, of Suffolk's goodness,
The gentry's loyalty, mob's rudeness.
That ended, o'er a charming bottle,
They enter'd on this tittle-tattle :
Quoth Suffolk, by pre-eminence
In years, though (God knows) not in sense;
All's gone, dear brother, only we
Remain to raise posterity;
Marry you, brother; I'll go down,
Sell nouns and verbs, and lie alone;
May you ne'er meet with feuds or babble,
May olive-branches crown your table!
Somewhat I'll fave, and for this end,
To prove a brother and a friend.
What I propose is just, I swear it ;
Or may I perish, by this claret!