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As when in prime of June a burnish'd fly
Then out again he flies, to wing his mazy round.
Another guest there was, of sense refin'd, Who felt each worth, for every worth he had; Serene yet warm, humane yet firm his mind, As little touch'd as any man's with bad: Him through their inmost walks the Muses lad, To him the sacred love of nature lent, And sometimes would he make our valley glad; Whenas we found he would not here be pent, To him the better sort this friendly message sent:
'Come, dwell with us! true son of virtue, come!
* But if, alas! we cannot thee persuade,
* To Jy content beneath our peaceful dome, 'Ne ever more to quit our quiet glade;
'Yet when at last thy toils but ill apaid
* Shall dead thy fire, and damp its heavenly spark, 'Thou wilt be glad to seek the rural shade,
* There to indulge the muse, and nature mark:
* We then a lodge for thee will rear in Hag ley Park .'
Here whilom ligg'd th' Esopus of the age; But call'd by fame, in soul ypricked deep, A noble pride restor'd him to the stage, And rous'd him like a giant from his sleep. Even from his slumbers we advantage reap: With double force th' enliven'd scene he wakes, Yet quits not nature's bounds. He knows to keep Each due decorum: now the heart he shakes, And now with welUurg'd sense the enligbten'd judgment takes.
A bard here dwelt, more fat than bard beseems; Who, void of envy, guile, and lust of gain, On virtue still, mid nature's pleasing themes, Pour'd forth his unpremeditated strain: The world forsaking with a calm disdain, Here laugh'd he careless in his easy seat: Here quaff'd encircled with the joyous train, Oft moralizing sage: his ditty sweet He loathed much to write, ne cared to repeat.
Full oft by holy feet our ground was trod, Of clerks good plenty here you mote espy. A little, round, fat, oily man of God, Was one I chiefly mark'd among the fry; He had a roguish twinkle in his eye, And shone all glittering with ungodly dew, If a tight damsel chanc'd to trippen by; Which when observ'd, he shrunk into his mew, And strait would recollect his piety anew.
Nor be forgot a tribe, who minded nought (Old inmates of the place) but state affairs: They look'd, perdie, as if they deeply thought; And on their brow sat every nation's cares: The world by them is parcel'd out in shares, When in the Hall of Smoke they congress hold, And the sage berry sun-burnt Mocha bears Has clear" d their inward eye: then smoke-enrol I'd, Their oracles break forth mysterious as of old.
Here languid beauty kept her pale-fac'd court: Bevies of dainty dames, of high degree, From every quarter hither made resort; Where, from gross mortal care and business free, They lay, pourd out in ease aud luxury. Or should they a vain shew of work assume, Alas ! and well-a-day! what can it be? To knot, to twist, to range the vernal bloom r But far is cast the distaff, spinning-wheel, and loom..
Their only labour was to kill the time:
And court the vapoury god soft breathing in the wind .
Now must I mark the villany we found,
But ah! too late, as shall eftsoons be shewn.
A place here was, deep, dreary, under ground; 'Where still our inmates, when unpleasing grown,
Biseas'd and loathsome, privily were thrown.
Far from the light of heaven, they languish'd there,
Unpity'd uttering many a bitter groan;
For of those wretches taken was no care: Fierce fiends, and hags of hell, there only nurses were.
Alas! the change! from scenes of joy and rest. To this dark den, where sickness toss'd alway. Here Lethargy, with deadly sleep opprest, Stretch'd on his back, a mighty lubbard, lay, Heaving his sides, and snored night and day; To stir him from his trance it was not eath, And his half-open'd eyne he shut straightway; lie led, I wot, the softest way to death, And taught withouten pain and strife to yield the breath.
Of limbs enormous, but withal unsound, Soft-swoln and pale, here lay the Hydropsy: Unwieldy man; with belly monstrous round, For ever fed with watery supply; For still he drank, and yet he still was dry. And moping here did Hypochondria sit, Mother of spleen, in robes of various dye, "Who vexed was full oft with ugly fit; And some her frantic deem'd, and some her deem'd a wit.
A lady proud she was, of ancient blood, Yet oft her fear her pride made crouchen low: She felt, or fancy'd in her fluttering mood, All the diseases which the spittles know, And sought all physic which the shops bestow, And still new leaches and new drugs would try, Her humour ever wavering to and fro: For sometimes she would laugh, and sometimes cry, Then sudden waxed wroth ; and all she knew not why.
Fast by her side a listless maiden pin'd, With aching head, and squeamish heart-burnings; Pale, bloated, cold, she seem'd to hate mankind, Yet lov'd in secret all forbidden things. And here the Tertian shakes his chilling wings. The sleepless Gout here counts the crowing cocks, A wolf now gnaws him, now a serpent stings; Whilst Apoplexy cramm'd Intemp'rance knocks Down to the ground at once, as butcher felieth ox.
HYMN ON SOLITUDE.
T TAIL, mildly pleasing Solitude,
Companion of the wise and good;
Oh! how T love with thee to walk,
A thousand shapes you wear with ease,
A lover now, with all the grace
Thine is the balmy breath of morn,
Descending angels bless thy train,
Oh, let me pierce thy secret cell,
ON THE DEATH OF HIS MOTHER. V^E fabled muses, [ your aid disclaim, -1 Your airy raptures, and your fancied flame: True genuine woe my throbbing breast inspires, Love prompts my lays, and filial duty fires;