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Careful obfervers, ftudious of the town,
Shun the misfortunes that difgrace the clown;
Untempted, they contemn the juggler's feats,
Pafs by the Meufe, nor try the thimble's cheats.
When drays bound high, they never cross behind,
Where bubbling yeft is blown by gufts of wind:
And when up Ludgate-hill huge carts move flow,
Far from the ftraining fteeds fecurely go,
Whofe dafhing hoofs behind them fling the mire,
And mark with muddy blots the gazing 'fquire.
The Parthian thus his javelin backward throws,
And as he flies infefts pursuing foes.
The thoughtless wits fhall frequent forfeits pay,
Who 'gainst the fentry's box difcharge their tea.
Do thou fome court or fecret corner feek,
Nor flush with fhame the paffing virgin's cheek.
Yet let me not defcend to trivial fong,
Nor vulgar circumftance my verfe prolong.
Why should I teach the maid, when torrents pour,
Her head to fhelter from the fudden fhower?
Nature will beft her ready hand inform,
With her fpread petticoat to fence the form.
Does not each walker know the warning fign,
When wifps of ftraw depend upon the twine
Crofs the clofe ftreet; that then the paver's art
Renews the ways, deny'd to coach and cart?
Who knows not that the coachman lashing by
Oft' with his flourish cuts the heedlefs eye?
* A cheat commonly practifed in the ftreets with three thimbles and a little ball.
And when he takes his ftand, to wait a fare,
His horfes foreheads fhun the winter's air?'
Nor will I roam where fummer's fultry rays
Parch the dry ground, and spread with duft the ways;
With whirling gufts the rapid atoms rise,
Smoak o'er the pavement, and involve the skies.
Winter my theme confines; whofe nitry wind
Shall cruft the flabby mire, and kennels bind;
She bids the fnow defcend in flaky sheets,
And in her hoary mantle cloath the streets.
Let not the virgin tread these flippery roads,
The gathering fleece the hollow patten
But, if thy footstep flide with clotted frost,
Strike off the breaking balls against the poft.
On filent wheel the paffing coaches roll;
Oft' look behind, and ward the threatening pole.
In harden'd orbs the fchool-boy moulds the fnow,
To mark the coachman with a dextrous throw.
Why do ye, boys, the kennel's furface fpread,
To tempt with faithless pass the matron's tread ?
How can you laugh to fee the damfel fpurn,
Sink in your frauds, and her green flocking mourn ?
At White's the harness'd chairman idly stands,
And fwings around his waist his tingling hands;
The fempftress speeds to Change with red-tipt nofe;
The Belgian stove beneath her footstool glows;
In half-whipt muflin needles useless lie,
And fhuttle-cocks across the counter fly.
Thefe fports warm harmlefs; why then will ye proye, Deluded maids, the dangerous flame of love?
Where Covent-Garden's famous temple ftands,
That boats the work of Jones' immortal hands;
Columns with plain magnificence appear,
And graceful porches lead along the fquare:
Here oft' my courfe I bend; when lo! from far,
I fpy the furies of the foot-ball war:
The 'prentice quits his fhop, to join the crew,
Increafing crouds the flying game purfuc.
Thus, as you roll the ball o'er fnowy ground,
The gathering globe augments with every round.
But whither fhall I run? the throng draws nigh,
The ball now fkims the ftreet, now foars on high;
The dextrous glazier ftrong returns the bound,
And gingling fafhes on the pent-houfe found.
O, roving Mufe! recal that wondrous year,
When winter reign'd in bleak. Britannia's air;
When hoary Thames, with frofted oziers crown'd,
Was three long moons in icy fetters bound.
The waterman, forlorn, along the fhore,
Penfive reclines upon his ufelefs oar;
See harness'd steeds defert the ftony town,
And wander roads unftable, not their own;
Wheels o'er the harden'd waters fmoothly glide,
And rafe with whiten'd tracks the flippery tide;
Here the fat cook piles high the blazing fire,
And scarce the fpit can turn the steer entire ;
Booths fudden hide the Thames, long ftreets appear,
And numerous games proclaim the clouded fair.
So when a general bids the martial train
Spread their encampment o'er the fpacious plain;
Thick rifing tents a canvass city build,
And the loud dice refound through all the field.
"Twas here the matron found a doleful fate:
Let elegiac lay the woe relate,
Soft as the breath of diftant flutes, at hours
When filent evening closes up the flowers;
Lulling as falling water's hollow noife;
Indulging grief, like Philomela's voice.
Doll every day had walk'd these treacherous roads;
Her neck grew warpt beneath autumnal loads
Of various fruit: fhe now a basket bore;
That head, alas! fhall basket bear no more.
Each booth the frequent paft, in queft of gain,
And boys with pleasure heard her thrilling ftrain.
Ah, Doll! all mortals muft refign their breath,
And industry itself submit to death!
The cracking cryftal yields; the finks, the dies,
Her head, chopt off, from her loft fhoulders flies; 390
Pippins the cry'd; but death her voice confounds;
And pip- pip- pip- along the ice refounds.
So, when the Thracian furies Orpheus tore,
And left his bleeding trunk deform'd with gore,
His fever'd head floats down the filver tide,
His yet warm tongue for his loft confort cry'd;
Eurydice with quivering voice he mourn'd,
And Heber's banks Eurydice return'd.
But now the western gale the flood unbinds, And blackening clouds move on with warmer winds; The wooden town its frail foundation leaves,
And Thames' full urn rolls down his plenteous waves;
From every pent-houfe ftreams the fleeting fnow,
And with diffolving froft the pavements flow.
Experienc'd men, inur'd to city ways,
Need not the Calendar to count their days.
When through the town with flow and folemn air,
Led by the noftril, walks the muzzled bear;
Behind him moves majeftically dull,
The pride of Hockley-hole, the furly bull.
Learn hence the periods of the week to name,
Mondays and Thurfdays are the days of game..
When fishy ftall with double ftore are laid;
The golden-belly'd carp, the broad-finn'd maid,
Red-fpeckled trouts, the falmon's filver jowl,
The jointed lobster, and unfcaly foal,
And luscious 'fcallops to allure the taftes
Of rigid zealots to delicious fafts;
Wednesdays and Fridays you 'll obferve from lience,
Days when our fires were doom'd to abstinence.
When dirty waters from balconies drop,
And dextrous damfels twirl the sprinkling mop,
And cleanse the fpatter'd fafh, and ferub the flairs;
Know Saturday's conclufive morn appears.
Succeffive cries the feafons' change declare,
And mark the monthly progrefs of the year.
Hark! how the streets with treble voices ring,
To fell the bounteous product of the Spring!
Sweet-fmelling flowers, and elder's early bud,
With nettle's tender fhoots, to cleanfe the blood;
And, when June's thunder cools the fultry skies,
E'en Sundays are profan'd by mackrel cries.