« AnteriorContinuar »
TO IRIS, IN BOW STREET, COVENT GARDEN.1
Say, cruel Iris, pretty rake,
Dear mercenary beauty,
Expressive of my duty?
My heart, a victim to thine eyes,
Should I at once deliver,
The gift who slights the giver?
A bill, a jewel, watch, or toy,
If gems or gold impart a joy,
I'll give—but not the full blown rose,
Such short liv'd offerings but disclose A transitory passion.
1 See The Bee, p. 50.
I'll give thee something yet unpaid,
Not less sincere than civil; I'll give thee—ah! too charming maid,
I'll give thee—to the devil.2
This poem is taken from Menagiana, vol. iv. p. 200.
'ETRENE A IRIS.
'Four témoignage de ma flamme,
Iris, du meilleur de mon âme
Je vous donne à ce nouvel an
Non pas dentelle, ni ruban,
Non pas essence, ni pommade,
Quelques boites de marmalade,
Un mouchoir, des gans, un bouquet,
Non pas heures, ni chapelet,
Quoi donc t attendez, je vous donne
O! fille plus belle que bonne,
Qui m'avez toujours refusé.
Le point si souvent proposé,
Je vous donne. Ah! le puis-je dire 1
Oui: c'est trop souffrir le martyre,
Il est temps de m'émanciper,
Patience va m'échapper.
Fussiez-vous cent fois plus aimable,
Belle Iris, je vous donne ... au diable.'
THE LOGICIANS REFUTED.
IN IMITATION OF DEAN SWIFT.
Logicians have but ill defin'd
As rational the human mind;
Reason, they say, belongs to man,
But let them prove it if they can.
Wise Aristotle and Smiglesius,
By ratiocinations specious,
Have strove to prove with great precision,
With definition and division,
Homo est ratione preditum;
But for my soul I cannot credit 'em.
And must in spite of them maintain,
That man and all his ways are vain;
And that this boasted lord of nature
Is both a weak and erring creature.
That instinct is a surer guide
Than reason, boasting mortals' pride;
And that brute beasts are far before 'em,
Deus est anima brutorum.
Who ever knew an honest brute
At law his neighbour prosecute,
Bring action for assault and battery,
Or friend beguile with lies and flattery?
O'er plains they ramble unconfin'd,
No politics disturb their mind;
They eat their meals, and take their sport,
Nor know who's in or out at court,
They never to the levee go
To treat as dearest friend a foe:
They never importune his grace,
Nor ever cringe to men in place;
Nor undertake a dirty job,
Nor draw the quill to write for Bob,1
Fraught with invective they ne'er go,
To folks at Paternoster-row:
No judges, fiddlers, dancing-masters,
No pickpockets, or poetasters,
Are known to honest quadrupeds,
No single brute his fellows leads.
Brutes never meet in bloody fray,
Nor cut each others' throats for pay.
Of beasts, it is confess'd, the ape
Comes nearest us in human shape,
Like man he imitates each fashion.
And malice is his ruling passion:
But both in malice and grimaces
A courtier any ape surpasses.
Behold him humbly cringing wait
Upon the minister of state:
View him soon after to inferiors,
Aping the conduct of superiors:
1 Sir Robert Walpole.
He promises with equal air,
ON A BEAUTIFUL YOUTH STRUCK BLIND BY LIGHTNING.
IMITATED FROM THE SPANISH.1
Sure 'twas by providence design'd, Rather in pity than in hate,
1 See The Bee, p. 8, ed. 1759.