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Like to the house where we act plays,
He made a turning winding maze,
Fitting to harbour acts of sin,
And put a whore and bastard in.
"I've done your work; and now my
Good sir, that you will do me justice.
"Tis true I hither fled for murther;
Let my misfortunes go no further;
Some end all punishments should have,
Birth to the wretch my country gave:
Let it afford me now a grave,
Dismiss my son; at least, if rather
You'd keep the boy, dismiss his father.'
This he might say, and more, or so;
But Minos would not let him go.
At this he was enrag'd, and cried,
'It is in danger wit is tried:
Minos possesses earth and sea;
The sky and fire are left for me.
Pardon my fond attempt, great Jove,
If I approach your seats above.
It is necessity that draws
A new-invented rule for Nature's laws.'
"Thus he began: Full many a feather
With twine of thread he stitch'd together:
(Abundance more than are enough
To make your wife and mine a muff.)
Thus he frames wings, and nothing lacks
To fix the whole, but melted wax:
That was the work of the young boy,
Pleas'd at the fancy of the toy;
Not guessing, ere he was much older,
He should have one upon each shoulder.
To whom his father: Here's the ship
By which we must from Minos slip.
Child, follow me, just as I fly on,
And keep your eye fix'd on Orion :
I'll be your guide; and never fear,
Conducted by a father's care.
The Virgin and Bootes shun:
Take heed lest you approach the Sun;
His flaming influence will be felt,
And the diffusive wax will melt.
The sea by rising fogs discover;
O'er that, be sure, you never hover:
It would be difficult to drag
Your wetted pinions, should they flag.
Between them both the sky is fair,
No winds or hurricanes are there,
But you may fan the fleeting air.'
"Thus speaking, he with whipcord-strings
Fastens, and then extends, the wings:
And, when the youth's completely drest,
Just as the eagle from her nest
By gentle flights her eaglet tries
To dare the Sun, and mount the skies;
The father so his boy prepares,
Not without kiss and falling tears.
In a large plain, a rising height
Gives some assistance to their flight.
With a quick spring and fluttering noise,
They in the sky their bodies poise.
Back on his son the father looks,
Praising his swift and even strokes.
Now dreadless, with bold art supplied,
He does on airy billows ride,
And soar with an ambitious pride.
Mortals, who by the limpid flood
With paticat angle long have stood,
On the smooth water's shining face
See the amazing creatures pass,
Look up astonish'd, whilst the reed
Drops from the hand whose sense is dead.
Roll'd by the wind's impetuous haste
They Samos now and Naxos past,
Paros, and Delos, blest abode
And parent of the Clarian god:
Lebinthus on their right hand lies,
And sweet Calydne's groves arise,
And fam'd Astypalea's fens
Breed shoals of fish in oozy dens:
When the unwary boy, whose growing years
Ne'er knew the worth of cautious fears,
Mounts an ethereal hill, whence he might spy
The lofty regions of a brighter sky;
Far from his father's call and aid
His wings in glittering fire display'd,
Whose ambient heat their plume involves,
And all their liquid bands dissolves.
He sees his loosen'd pinions drop;
On naked arms lies all his hope.
From the vast concave precipice he finds
A swift destruction, sinking with the winds.
Beneath him lies a gaping deep,
Whose womb is equally as steep.
Then, father! father!' he'd have cried:
Tempests the trembling sounds divide,
Whilst dismal fear contracts his breath,
And the rough wave completes his death.
'My son! my son long might the father
There is no track to seek him in the sky.
By floating wings his body found
Is cover'd with the neighbouring ground. His art, though not successful, has its fame, And the Icarian seas preserve his name." If men from Minos could escape, And into birds transform their shape, And there was nothing that could hold them, Provided feathers might be sold them; The thought from madness surely springs To fix a god that's born with wings.
Quoth t'other man, "Sir, if you'll tarry, I'll tell you a tale of my boy Harry, Would make a man afraid to marry. This boy does oft' from paper white In miniature produce a kite. With tender hands the wood he bends, On which the body he extends: Paste made of flour with water mix'd Is the cement by which 'tis fix'd: Then scissors from the maid he'll borrow, With promise of return to-morrow. With those he paper nicely cuts, Which on the sides for wings he puts. The tail, that's an essential part, He manages with equal art; With paper shreds at distance tied, As not too near, nor yet too wide, Which he to fitting length extends, Till with a tuft the fabric ends. Next packthread of the evenest twine, Or sometimes silk, he'll to it join, Which, by the guidance of his hand, Its rise or downfall may command; Or carry messengers to see
If all above in order be.
Then wanton zephyrs fan it till it rise, [skies. And through ethereal rills plough up the azure
"Sometimes in silent shades of night
He'll make it shine with wondrous light
By lantern with transparent folds,
Which flaming wax in safety holds.
This, glittering with mysterious rays,
Does all the neighbourhood amaze.
Then comes the conjurer o' th' place,
With legs asquint aud crooked face,
Who with his spying pole from far
Pronounces it a blazing-star:
That wheat shall fall, and oats be dear,
And barley shall not spring that year:
That murrain shall infect all kine,
And measles will destroy the swine:
That fair maids' sweethearts shall fall dead
Before they lose their maidenhead;
And widows shall be forc'd to tarry
A month at least before they marry.
But, whilst the fool his thought enjoys,
The whole contrivance was my boy's.
Now, mark me, 'twas from such-like things
The poets fram'd out Cupid's wings.
If a child's nature thus can soar,
And all this lies within his power,
His mother surely can do more.
Pray tell me what is to be done,
If she'll with cuckold-makers run.
No watchful care of jealous eye
Can binder, if escape she'll try;
The kite will to her carrion fly."
Where native Modesty the mind secures,
The husband has no need of locks and doors;
The specious comet, fram'd by Jealousy,
Will prove delusion all, and all a lie.
NOT all the herbs by sage Medea found,
This of Sithonian Rhesus is the tent.
On with the pleasing tale your language went,
When a tenth wave did with one flash destroy
The platform of imaginary Troy.
By fear like this I would enforce your stay,
To see what names the waters toss'd away.
I took you cast up helpless by the sea:
Thousands of happy hours you pass'd with me;
No mention made of old Penelope.
On adamant our wrongs we all engrave,
But write our benefits upon the wave.
Why then be gone, the scas uncertain trust;
As I found you, so may you find them just,
Dying Calypso must be left behind,
And all your vows be wafted with the wind."
Fond are the hopes he should be constant now,
Who to his tenderest part had broke his vow.
By artful charms the mistress strives in vain
The loose inconstant wanderer to gain.
Shame is her entrance, and her end is pain.
INDULGENCE Soon takes with a noble mind:
Who can be harsh, that sees another kind?
Most times the greatest art is to comply
In granting that which justice might deny.
We form our tender plants by soft degrees,
And from a warping stem raise stately trees.
To cut th' opposing waves, we strive in vain;
But, if we rise with them, and fall again,
The wish'd-for land with ease we may attain.
Such complaisance will a rough humour bend;
And yielding to one failure save a friend.
Mildness and temper have a force divine,
To make ev'n passion with their nature join.
The hawk we hate, as living still in arms,
And wolves assiduous in the shepherd's harms.
Not Marsan drugs, though mixt with magic sound, The sociable swallow has no fears,
Not philtres studied by Thessalian art,
Can fix the mind, and constancy impart.
Could these prevail, Jason had felt their charms;
Ulysses still had died in Circe's arms.
Continue lovely, if you'll be belov'd:
Virtue from Virtue's bands is ne'er remov'd.
Like Nireus beautiful, like Hylas gay;
By time the blooming outside will decay.
See hyacinth again of form bereft,
And only thorns upon the rose-tree left.
Then lay up stores of learning and of wit,
Whose fame shall scorn the Acherontic pit,
And, whilst those fleeting shadows vainly fly,
Adorn the better part, which cannot die.
Ulysses had no magic in his face;
But then his eloquence had charming grace,
Such as could force itself to be believ'd,
And all the watery goddesses deceiv'd:
To whom Calypso from her widow'd shore
Sends him these sighs, which furious tempests
"Your passage often I by art delay'd,
Oblig'd you more, the more to be betray'd.
Here you have often on this rolling sand
Describ'd your scene of war with slender wand.
Here's Troy, and this circumference its wails:
Here Simoïs gently in the ocean falls :
Here lies my camp: these are the spacious fields
Where to this sword the crafty Dolon yields.
Upon our towers the dove her nest prepares,
And both of them live free from human snares.
Far from loud rage and echoing noise of fights
The softest Love in gentle sound delights.
Smooth mirth, bright smiles, calm peace, and
Are the companions of the Papbian boy:
Such as when Hymen first his mantle spread
All o'er the sacred down which made the bridal bed.
These blandishments keep Love upon the wing,
His presence fresh, and always in the spring:
This makes a prospect endless to the view,
With light that rises still, and still is new;
At your approach, find every thing serene,
Like Paphos honour'd by the Cyprian queen,.
Who brings along her daughter Harmony,
With Muses sprung from Jove, and Graces three.
Birds shot by you, fish by your angle caught,
The golden apples from Hesperia brought,
The blushing peach, the fragrant nectareens,
Laid in fresh beds of flowers and scented greens,
Fair lilies strew'd with bloody muluerries,
Or grapes whose juice made Bacchus reach the
May oftentimes a grateful present make, [skies,
Not for the value, but the giver's sake.
Perhaps she may at vacant hours peruse
The happy product of your casy Muse.
Far from intrigue and scandal be your verse;
But praise of virgin-modesty rehearse;
Mausolus by his consort deified;
How for Admetus blest Alcestis died. Since Overbury's Wife 3, no poets seem T'have chose a wiser or a nobler theme.
You'd help a neighbour, would a friend prefer; Pardon a servant, let all come from her. Thus what you grant if she must recommend, 'Twili make a mutual gift and double friend. So, when pale Want is craving at the door, We send our favourite son to help the poor; Pleas'd with their grateful prayers that he may live,
And find what heavenly pleasure 'tis to give.
Praise a!! her actions, think her dress is fine;
Embroideries with gold, pearl, diamonds, join;
Your wealth does best, when plac'd on beauty,
If she in tabby waves encircled be,
Think Amphytrite rises from the sea.
If by her the purpureal velvet's worn,
Think that she rises like the blush of morn.
And, when her silks afar from Indus come,
Wrought in Chinese or in the Persian loom,
Think that she then like Pallas is array'd,
By whose mysterious art the wheel was made.
Each day admire her different graceful air,
In which she winds her bright and flowing hair.
With her when dancing, let your genius fly:
When in her song the note expires, then die.
If in the autumn, when the wasting year
Its plenty shows, that soon must disappear;
When swelling grape and peach with lovely hue,
And pear and apple, fresh with fragrant dew,
By tempting look and taste perhaps invite
That which we seldom rule, our appetite;
When noxious heat and sudden cold divides
The time o'er which bale iufluence presides;
Her feverish blood should pulse unusual find,
Or vaporous damps of spleen should sink her
Then is the time to show a lover's cares:
Sometimes enlarge her hopes, contract her fears; Give the salubrious draughts with your own hand ; Persuasion has the force of a command.
Watch, and attend; then your reward will prove,
When she recovers, full increase of love.
Far from this love is haughty pride,
Which ancient fables best deride;
Women imperious, void of shame,
And careless of their lovers' fame,
Who of tyrannic follies boast,
Tormenting him that loves them most.
When Hercules, by labours done,
Had prov'd himself to be Jove's son,
By peace which he to Earth had given,
Deserv'd to have his rest in Heaven;
Envy, that strives to be unjust,
Resolv'd to mortify him first;
And, that he should enamour'd be
Of a proud jilt call'd Omphalé,
Who should his heroship expose
By spinning hemp in women's clothes,
Her mind she did vouchsafe one day
Thus to her lover to display:
This poem, supposed to have been written for the earl of Somerset, is the character of a good woman, just the reverse of the lady that his friend married. It is printed with his Characters, &c. and had gone through sixteen editions in 1638. N.
"Come quickly, sir, off with this skin:
Think you I'll let a tanner in?
If you of lions talk, or boars,
You certainly turn out of doors.
Your club's abundantly too thick
For one shall move a fiddle-stick.
What should you do with all those arrows?
I will have nothing kill'd but sparrows.
Heccy, this day you may remember;
For you shall see a lady's chamber.
Let me be rightly understood:
What I intend is for your good.
In boddice I design to lace ye,
And so among my maids I'll place ye.
When you're genteeler grown, and thinner,
May be I'll call you up to dinner.
With arms so brawny, fists so red,
You'll scrub the rooms, or make the bed.
You can't stick pins, or frieze my hair.
Bless me! you've nothing of an air.
You'll never come up to working point:
Your fingers all seem out of joint.
Then, besides, Heccy, I must tell ye,
An idie-hand has empty belly:
Therefore this morning I'll begin,
Try how your clumsiness will spin.
You are my shadow, do you see:
Your hope, your thought, your wish, all be
Invented and control'd by me.
Look up whene'er I laugh; look down
With trembling horrour, if I frown.
Say as I say: servants can't lie.
Your truth is my propriety.
Nay, you should be to torture brought, Were I but jealous you transgrest in thought; Or if from Jove your single wish should crave The fate of not continuing still my slave.
"There is no lover that is wise
Pretends to win at cards or dice.
'Tis for his mistress all is thrown:
Th' ill-fortune his, the good her own.
Melanion, whilom lovely youth,
Fam'd for his valour and his truth,
Whom every beauty did adorn
Fresh as Aurora's blushing morn,
Into the horrid woods is run,
Where he ne'er sees the ray of Sun,
Nor to his palace dares return,
Where he for Psyche's love did burn,
And found correction at her hands
For disobeying just commands;
But must his silent penance do
For once not buckling of her shoe:
A good example, child, for you.
Which shows you, when we have our fool,
We've policy enough to rule :
I might have made you such a fellow,
As should have carried my umbrella,
Or bore a flambeau by my chair,
And bade the mob not come too near;
Or lay the cloth, or wait at table;
Nay, been a helper in the stable.
"To my commands obedience pay
At dead of night, or break of day.
Speed your province; if 'tis I
That bid you run, you ought to fly.
He that love's nimble passion feels
Will soon outstrip my chariot wheels.
Through dog-star's heat he'll tripping go,
Nor leaves be print upon the snow:
The wind itself to him is slow,
He that in Cupid's wars would fight,
Grief, winter, dirty roads, and night,
A bed of earth midst showers of rain,
After no supper, are his gain.
Bright Phoebus took Admetus' pay,
And in a little cottage lay:
All this he did for fear of Jove;
And who would not do more for love?
If entrance is by locks denied,
Then through the roof or window slide.
Leander each night swam the seas,
That he might thereby Hero please.
Perhaps I may be pleas'd to see
Your life in danger, when for me.
You'll find my servants in a row ;
Remember then you make your bow;
For they are your superiors now.
No matter if you do engage
My porter, woman, favourite page,
My dog, my parrot, monkey, black,
Or any thing that does partake
Of that admittance which you lack.
But after all you mayn't prevail,
And your most glittering hopes may fail:
For Ceres does not always yield
The crop intrusted to the field.
Fair gales may bring you to a coast
Where you'll by hidden rocks be lost.
Love is tenacious of its joys,
Gives small reward for great employs;
But has as many griefs in store,
As shells by Neptune cast on shore;
As Athos hares, as Hybla bees,
Olives on the Palladian trees.
And, when his angry arrows fall,
They're not found ting'd with common gall.
You're told I'm not at home, 'tis true:
I may be there, but not for you;
And I may let you see it too.
Perhaps I bid you come at night:
If the door's shut, stay till 'tis light.
Perhaps my maid shall bid you go:
A thing she knows you dare not do.
Your rival shall admission gain,
And laugh to see his foe in pain.
All this and more you must endure,
If you from me expect a cure.
"Tis fitting I should search the wound,
Lest all your danger be not found."
When easy fondness meets with woman's pride,
Nothing which that can ask must be denied.
He that enjoy'd the names of great and brave
Is pleas'd to seem a female and a slave:
The hero, number'd with the gods before,
Is so debas'd as to be man no more.
NOT by the sail with which you put to sea
Can you where Thetis swells conducted be;
To the same port you'll different passage find,
And fill your sheets ev'n with contrarious wind.
You nurs'd the fawn, now grown stag wondrous big,
And sleep beneath the shade you knew a twig.
The bubbling spring, increas'd by floods and rain,
Rolls with impetuous stream, and foams the main:
So Love augments in just degrees; at length
By nutrimental fires it gains its strength.
Daily till midnight let kind looks or song,
Or tales of love, the pleasing hours prolong.
No weariness upon their bliss attends
Whom marriage-vows have render'd more than
So Philomels, of equal mates possest,
With a congenial heat, and downy rest,
And care incessant, hover o'er their nest:
Hence from their eggs (small worlds whence all
Produce a race by Nature taught to sing;
Who ne'er to this harmonious air had come,
Had their parental love stray'd far from home.
By a short absence mutual joys increase:
"Tis from the toils of war we value peace.
When Jove a while the fruitful shower restrains,
The field on his return a brighter verdure gains.
So let not grief too much disturb those hearts,
Which for a while the war or business parts.
'Twas hard to let Protesilaus go,
Who did his death by oracles foreknow.
Ulysses made indeed a tedious stay,
His twenty winters' absence was delay;
But happiness revives with his return,
And Hymen's altars with fresh incense burn:
Tales of his ship, her web, they both recount;
Pleas'd that their wedlock faith all dangers could
Make thou speed back; haste to her longing
She may have real or impending barms.
There are no minutes in a lover's fears:
They measure all their time by months and years.
Poets are always Virtue's friends,
'Tis what their Muse still recommends:
But then the fatal track it shows
Where devious Vice through trouble goes.
They tell us, how a husband's care
Neglected leaves a wife too fair
In hands of a young spark, call'd Paris;
And how the beauteous trust miscarries.
With kindness he receives the youth,
Whose modest looks might promise truth:
Then gives him opportunity
To throw the specious vizard by.
The man had things to be adjusted,
With which the wife should not be trusted;
And, whilst he gave himself the loose,
Left her at home to keep the house.
When Helen saw, his back was turn'd,
The devil a bit the gipsy mourn'd.
Says she, ""Tis his fault to be gone;
It sha'n't be mine to lie alone.
A vacant pillow's such a jest,
That with it I could never rest.
He ne'er consider'd his own danger,
To leave me with a handsome stranger.
Wolves would give good account of sheep,
Left to their vigilance to keep.
Pray who, except 'twere geese or widgeons,
Would hire a hawk to guard their pigeons?
Supposing then it might be said
That Menelaus now were dead:
A pretty figure I should make
To go in mourning for his sake.
She that in widow's garb appears;
Especially when at my years,
May seem to be at her last prayers.
But I'll still have my heart divided
"Twixt one to lose, and one provided.
He that is gone, is gone: less fear
Of wanting him that I have here."
The sequel was the fire of Troy Brought to destruction by this boy. They tell us, how a wife provok'd, And to a brutish husband yok'd, Who, by distracting passion led, Scorns all her charms, and flies her bed, When on her rival she has seiz'd, Seems with a secret horrour pleas'd. They then describe her like some boar Plunging his tusk in mastiff's gore; Or lioness, whose ravish'd whelp Roars for his mother's furious help; Or basilisk when rous'd, whose breath, Teeth, sting, and eye-balls, all are death; Like frantics struck by magic rod Of some despis'd avenging God:
Make her through blood for vengeance run,
Like Progne sacrifice her son;
And like Medea dart those fires
By which Creüsa's ghost expires.
Then let her with exalted rage
Her grief with the same crimes assuage.
To heighten and improve the curse,
Because he's bad, they make her worse.
So Tyndaris dissolves in tears,
When first she of Chryseïs hears;
But, when Lyrnessis captive's led,
And ravish'd to defile her bed,
Her patience lessens by degrees;
But, when at last she Priameïs sees,
Revenge does to Ægystus fly for ease;
In his adulterous arms does plots disclose,
Which fill Mycena with stupendous woes,
And parricide and Hell around her throws.
Ye heavenly powers! the female truth preserve,
And let it not from native goodness swerve;
And let no wanton toys become the cause
Why men should break Hymen's eternal laws;
But let such fables and such crimes remain
Only as fictions of the poet's brain;
Yet marks set up to shun those dangerous shelves On which deprav'd mankind might wreck themselves!
AT first, the stars, the air, the earth, and deep,
Lay all confus'd in one unorder'd heap;
Till Love eternal did each being strike
With voice divine, to march, and seek its like.
Then seeds of Heavens, then air of vaporous sound,
Then fertile Earth circled with waters round,
On which the bird, the beast, the fish, might move,
All center'd in that universal love.
Then man was fram'd with soul of godlike ray,
And had a nobler share of love than they:
To him was woman, crown'd with virtue, given,
The most immediate work and care of Heaven.
Whilst thus my darling thoughts in raptures
Apollo to my sight in vision sprung.
His lyre with golden strings his touch commands,
And wreaths of laurel flourish in his hands.
Says he, "You bard, that of Love's precepts treat,
Your art at Delphi you will best complete.
There's a short maxim, prais'd when understood,
Useful in practice, and divinely good,
'Let each man know himself:' strive to excel: The pleasure of the blest is doing well. VOL. IX.
"Tis wisdom to display the ruling grace. Some men are happy in a charming face: Know it, but be not vain. Some manly show By the exploded gun and nervous bow.
There let them prove their skill; perhaps some
May find that every shot is Cupid's dart.
The prudent lover, if his talent lies
In eloquence, e'nt talkative, but wise;
So mixes words delicious to the ear,
That all must be persuaded who can hear.
He that can sing, let him with pleasing sound,
Though 'tis an air that is not mortal, wound.
Let not a poet my own art refuse:
I'll come, and bring assistance to his Muse."
But never by ill means your fortune push,
Nor raise your credit by another's blush.
The secret rites of Ceres none profane,
Nor tell what gods in Samo-thracia reign.
'Tis virtue by grave silence to conceal
What talk without discretion would reveal.
For fault like this now Tantalus does lie
In midst of fruits and water, starv'd and dry.
But Cytherea's modesty requires
Most care to cover all her lambent fires.
Love has a pleasing turn, makes that seem best Of which our lawful wishes are possest. Andromeda, of Libyc hue and blood, Was chain'd a prey to monsters of the flood: Wing'd Perseus saw her beauty through that cloud. Andromache had large majestic charms; Therefore was fittest grace to godlike Hector's arms. Beauties in smaller airs bear like commands, And wondrous magic acts by slenderest wands. Like Cybele some bear a mother's sway, Whilst infant gods and heroines obey. Some rule like stars by guidance of their eyes, And others please when like Minerva wise. Love will from Heaven, Art, Nature, Fancy, raise Something that may exalt its consort's praise.
There will be little jealousies,
By which Love's art its subjects tries.
They think it languishes with rest,
But rises, like the palm, opprest.
And as too much prosperity
Often makes way for luxury,
Till we, by turn of fortune taught,
Have wisdom by experience bought:
So, when the hoary ashes grow
Around Love's coals, 'tis time to blow:
And then its craftiness is shown,
To raise your cares, to hide its own;
And have you by a rival crost,
Only in hopes you may n't be lost.
Sometimes they say that you are faulty,
And that they know where you were naughtys
And then perhaps your eyes they'd tear,
Or else dilacerate your hair,
Not so much for revenge as fear.
But she perhaps too far may run,
And do what she would have you shun,
Of which there's a poetic story
That, if you please, I'll lay before you.
Old Juno made her Jove comply
For fear, not asking when or why,
Unto a certain sort of matter,
Marrying her son unto his daughter:
And so to bed the couple went,
Not with their own, but friends' consent.
This Vulcan was a smith, they tell us,
That first invented tongs and bellows;