Poetical Essays;

Being a
Satirical Poems,
Songs and Acrostics.

By Mrs. Frances O‘Neill.

Printed and Published for the Authoress,
by A. Young; 168 High Holborn,

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This Satire, which is now submitted to the Press, at the ardent request of the Authoresses intimate Friends, is not unworthy of Public Notice. It consists of two Characters, drawn from real Life, and exhibits a true Picture of both, as they are now Living, in a respectable Family, No. 39, Great Charles Street, Berkley Square. ---Kelly is an Irishman, --- Sangster a Scotchwoman.

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Poetical Essays, &c.

To Mr. Kelly, who lives in a respectable Family in Berkley Square.

Kelly’s Birth and Education in Ireland.

In vain dull critic, would you spurn me down,

And reprobate your countrymen in town;

In vain you strive, for lo! I’ll write again,

And silence Irish grinders with my pen:

For one who touch’d me, sure, had better far

Go fight with tygers, or with lions war.

What tho’ repuls’d, the Muse returns again,

Well arm’d with satire in his pregnant pen;

Whoe’er resists his glory lasts not long,

Who braves the power of keen satiric song,

With which, well arm’d my pen severely bang,

An eagle’s talons, or a lion’s fangs;

Thus shall my satire war with old and young,

Nor let an Irish grinder live unsung.

Satire’s my theme, my theme without remorse,

For I, like Toby, I’ve a hobby-horse;

How vain, proud fool, how vain, if I begin

Thy filthy language, and thy stupid grin.

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The modest Muse such horrid vice detests,

At once despising both thy grins and jests;

’Tis mine to curb, thou vain censorious fool,

To curb thy fictious tongue of ridicule;

Thou Irish blockhead still to envy prone,

And skill’d to expose all frailties but thy own;

Read, read my satire, and endure the scourge

To probe thy soul, thy rank offence to purge;

’Tis meet and just for such a growling rogue,

Who swears so loud, and talks the Irish brogue,

Come then, O Muse, we’ll jointly burlesque him,

His gauldy opticks, and his visage grim;

Kelly has sense, for sure that sense was seen,

While yet a silly stripling of sixteen;

For oft at twilight thro’ an evening’s fog,

He found his way o’er Tiperary’s bog,

And oft at night he dash’d thro’ thick and thin,

By many a ditch, but seldom tumbled in.

Gods! with what ease he trampled o’er the clod,

His hands ungloved, and both his feet unshod,

Or hung half-naked o’er the standing pool,

Intent to study without book or school.

Once, as I heard, as rumour tells for truth,

He robb’d an orchard in the prime of youth,

And pass’d the fence high-bounding like a frog,

Without the fear of spring-trap, gun or dog,

Now in the tree, his bold companions round,

He shook a shower of apples o’er the ground;

Scarce from the turf, an apron full they’d got

When lo! from far, the keeper fired a shot!

He heard the noise, and fill’d with dire surprise,

Beheld the fire with his red gauldy eyes;

Below his partners heard the dire alarm,

And fled for safety o’er the well-stock’d farm;

Now past the meadows, now they take the bog,

Pursued at distance by the man and dog;

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But soon they baffled their pursuers sight,

Shelter’d beneath the friendly wings of night,

Our hero still remain’d alone, and now,

Sat all hap-hazard, on the waving bow.

And now, returning from the vain pursuit,

The dog was barking, but the man was mute,

Sagacious, least he scented in the wind,

The hapless wretch whom these had left behind;

The man alarm’d, now stood beneath the tree,

With his long gun, to see what he could see.

The night was warm, the stars now fade away,

Yet faintly shining at th’ approach of day;

Thro’ the dim shade each object stood confest,

Before the doubtful gleam had streak’d the east;

Kelly beheld the gun, alarm’d him more

Than all the dangers he had met before.

The tree was low, the loaded branches rock’d,

The man was near him, and the gun was cock’d,

This Kelly saw, and gave a horrid glare,

With starting eyeballs, and with upright hair;

He could not move, and instant with affright,

Thro’ his old breeches dropt his rouzing s—e;

From leaf to leaf, the substance tumbling down,

Full on the man, it fairly top’d his crown;

But scatter’d in the fall; and here and there,

It clog’d his eyes, and plaister’d all his hair.

He drop’d his gun, and roar’d in sad surprise,

O murder! murder! while he wip’d his eyes.

Kelly rejoiced, and with a furious bound,

He slip’d his hold, and leap’d upon the ground;

In vain the dog might bark, the man might call;

He pass’d the fences, and o’er leaped the wall;

Then o’er the field with nimble feet he pass’d,

Which none could trace because he ran so fast,

Thus for an hour or more nor ever lagg’d,

And as he ran his loaded Pockets wagg’d;

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These every now and then he stop’d and damned,

Long, large and strong with heaps of apples cramm’d.

And now he reach’d his home at break of day,

Where his old mother snored the night away,

Nor could he tell, alas! nor could he guess

What happen’d all his partners in distress;

Whither they fled for safety, what they did,

Or took some apples, or those apples hid;

For in his fright descending from the tree,

He lost all thoughts, nor could he hear or see,

But yet at first, and sure ’twas nothing loth,

He shook the tree, and cramm’d his pockets both;

For then, as now, well practis’d he to grind,

Took every mean advantage he could find.

Now tired with running o’er the twilight lawn,

He spy’d his cottage at the peep of dawn,

’Twas thatch’d with straw, the door of woven twigs,

That safely guards the matron and her pigs,

And ducks and hens all jointly slept together,

That kept them warm as wool in coldest weather.

Now breathless, pale, he enter’d at the door,

And cast his body on the clay-cold floor,

To rest his limbs, his mother rais’d his head,

From the long straw, that form’d his rural bed;

No ’twas not straw, ’twas rushes scatter’d round,

Or fragrant lougher Lougher, a kind of rushes or long grass, of which they make beds in summer. thrown upon the ground.

She rais’d her head, and still the dame kept staring,

With eyes like his, all gauldy, red and blaring,

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He damned her wrinkled face, she damned at him,

His gauldy opticks, and his visage grim,

Irish and English he made use of both,

And in each language mutter’d out an oath,

Then seiz’d her by the heels, devoid of feeling,

While hens were cackling, and while pigs were squeeling,

She without cloaths, yet void of every stitch,

To seek for shelter in a neighb’ring ditch;

He kick’d her out, she roar’d, nor did he mind her,

But damned her limbs, and smack’d the door behind her.

This Kelly once perform’d, and this exprest,

The evil genius ripening in his breast,

Which now matur’d, even to the worst excess,

He sports with pain, and wantons with distress,

Still, still more cruel, more the tyrant now,

Rais’d to a skip than when he drove the plough.

Canto II.

The contention of Kelly and Sangster.

Kelly, Butler, and Sangster, Housekeeper to a certain great family, No. 39, Great Charles- Street, Berkley-Square.—Descrription of Kelly —His employment in the morning—His evil disposition, and how he exerts his power over whom he has authority—His contention with Mrs. Sangster—His unlucky breaking the cup —A Sylph interposes.

Kelly, at nine, just broke from sound repose,

Opes his red eyes, and picks his Irish nose;

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Now in his shoes his stinking feet he cramm’d,

Unforc’d he swore, and unprovok’d he damned;

Just rising from his bed, no creature near,

Now breakfast waits, the bell salutes his ear;

Shuffling he enters, like an awkward clown,

And hawls a chair, and instant pops him down;

Now grins at Sangster, whom his words provoke,

Now sips his tea, and cracks his filthy joke,

Studious in all fair virtue to despise,

To slander merit, and defame the wise:

Well skill’d in bawdy jest, and filthy jeers,

He dwells on both to wound the modest ears;

He grins contempt, and faults her every word;

That term is nonsense, this is most absurd,

Zounds! damn the trollop, now the gabey calf

Distorts his face, to make the servants laugh;

Now sips and craunches, now distends his jaws,

Shuts his red eyes, and grins his own applause,

Then reprobates the King, abuses Pitt,

Heaven keep me dull if this be Irish wit.

And now good Sangster, grumbling side by side,

Pours out the tea, and thus begins to chide:

O, Mr. Kelly, cease, we’ve heard enough

Of filthy love, of damned confounded stuff;

Say to what purpose shall your tongue get loose,

And on the world discharge such rank abuse;

What’s Pitt to us, or what affairs of state

Disturbs your brain? come drink your tea, and eat,

And while she spoke, she now presents the plate.

Thus she, while Kelly’s inmost passions rise,

He gnash’d his teeth, and roll’d his gauldy eyes,

Resembling more a satyr than a man,

In this rough tone he at length began:

Damn your Scotch tongue, damn your impertinence,

You’ve neither manners, wit, or common sense,

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Go to the kitchen, sawney, that’s your place,

There squeeze your dishclout, there collect your grease,

And wash your scurvied hands, and barrack- beaten face;

It best becomes you there to hold your clack,

To clean your coppers, and wind up your jack,

To sieve the cinders in your mean attire,

To sweep the dust, and poke the kitchen fire,

Go skim your broth, your stew-pans scrape and drain,

Collect your fat, and all your fragments glean;

Your call’d the grinder, in that song of songs,

To you, not me, the foul reproach belongs,

You grind your master, and your bills enlarge,

Given up with double interest in the charge,

You cringe and bend where grinding is your guide,

But treat the wretched with contempt and pride,

Go scold and roar, and drink, and lean and lollop,

Crack the foul jest, and play the common trollop,

Studious whate’er is lovely to defame,

And jeer the envied blush of modest shame:

All these are yours, but know foul plague ’tis mine,

To wait, to change the plates, and pour the wine,

Far, far from me be that unworthy task,

To lie and slander under friendship’s mask,

This is thy task, and never-ending theme,

To lie, to swear, to slander and defame.

Sangster, at this, with just resentment burns,

And her flush’d face, grew red and pale by turns,

Anger and hatred in her bosom pent,

Raged in conjunction but could find no vent;

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Then thus, at last, she made her fury known,

In half form’d accents, and a stamm’ring tone:

Damn your red eyes, you noisy grinding rogue,

Your clownish manners, and your Irish brogue,

A vain conceited block, a stupid fool,

An Irish blund’ring butt of ridicule,

Born, as we hear, on Tiperary’s bog,

Go cringe to Pocock, go you Irish dog,

Search England round, could we your equal find!

So prone to practice, and skill’d to grind,

’Tis meet and just your canker’d heart to bear,

And well the song has term’d you what you are.

She spoke, and Kelly’s Irish blood was up,

Fierce from the board he snatch’d a smoaking cup;

This from his hand, with wrath descending full,

Leap’d on the floor rebounding from her skull.

Wide o’er the dame the scalding deluge spread,

Down her fair breast, and o’er her doud-cap’d head,

And reach’d her hair, which studious here to shroud,

Sangster conceal’d beneath this flannel doud,

Because ’twas grey, she wish’d not to be seen,

Where time had ravag’d o’er her hair or skin;

For she, like all her sex, whom God forgive,

Despis’d old age, and yet still she wish’d to live:

This now uncov’ring, all her head was bare.

And shew’d the honors of her hoary hair;

She scream’d, he swore, and adding blows to blows,

Dragg’d her Scotch arms, she pull’d his Irish nose,

Struggling and hawling both continued long,

Both in a rage, both hardy, rough and strong;

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Now to the table where they first had place,

Kelly dragg’d Sangster, Sangster scratch’d his face;

Kelly was mad, his heart was fill’d with ire,

He spit, he spurn’d, his red eyes flash’d like fire,

And just o’erturn’d the teaboard in his rage,

And all the teaboard’s shining equipage;

Now cups and saucers both had felt his power,

Swept to destruction in a shining shower,

Had not some Sylph, unseen by mortal eyes,

To view the conflict, stooping from the skies,

Beheld th’ impending danger from afar,

Perch’d on the summit of a gilded jar,

High in a rich beauset, whose ample space,

Contain’d full many a jar and many a vase

Of curious figures, and crystalian frames,

That from the light reflects a thousand gleams;

From this the Sylph with anxious thought repairs,

For Sylphs, like Ladies, love such pleasing cares,

To guard the board she strech’d her airy length,

Now spreads her pinions, now exerts her strength,

To shove grim Kelly from the board she tries,

And slapp’d his cheeks, and peck’d his gauldy eyes;

Now with her wings she rais’d a mighty wind,

Blew back his hair, and fann’d his neck behind,

Now in his nose her needle upright stood,

She jamm’d his cheek, and shew’d his Irish blood;

This needle, pilfer’d from a lady’s case,

She now exert’s, and maim’d his ugly face;

Meantime, in many a fragment on the floor,

Lay the bright bason he had broke before,

A curious vase, indeed, of finest mould,

From distant China, edg’d with circling gold,

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This broke the set that old Sir George had chosen,

Completely full, in one unblemish’d dozen.

A silver teapot, too, of shining frame,

With stand and spoons, and ewer to hold the cream;

Plates, knives and egg-cups, tea-urn and what not,

And all the rest whom I have now forgot;

Whate’er a teaboard or beauset could grace,

Each bright material, and each shining vase,

All these where purchas’d by his master’s Sire,

And form’d the shining equipage intire,

At vast expence, but not too dearly bought,

Which Kelly us’d as if not worth a groat.

He d—’d the bason, swore ’twas brittle ware,

And kick’d the shining splinters here and there.

At Sangster now by turns, he swears and grins,

Now gripes her shoulders, and now kicks her shins;

Here points his malice, here exerts his spite,

And shews his grinders where he dare not bite;

Shuffling and wrestling both continued yet,

While neither conquer’d, neither could submit;

Yet see Miss Sangster tiring out at length,

No longer now resists the tyrant’s strength,

She lost her center with a sudden smack,

And hides the floor beneath her brawny back,

All this he saw, rejoic’d at what was done,

He roar’d for sport, and clapp’d his hands for fun;

Then rais’d her up, and with a mighty shout,

Wide opes the door, and fairly banged her out:

Thus, freed triumphant from the dire attack,

He bang’d the sounding portal at her back;

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Return’d to breakfast, now he craunch’d his prog,

Now clos’d his gauldy eyes, and snor’d like any hog.

Kelly’s Song, The Irish Grinder.

Come aid me some Muse while I sing,

Miss Sangster, she claims your attention,

But she’s far too good for a king,

Is embellish’d without my invention.

Let Truth then her beauty proclaim,

High praises her wit shall crown, sir,

From the highlands of Scotland she came,

And she lives in some square about town, sir.

Come Muse, then be quick and begin,

But first, you must tell where to find her,

Lock’d up in her room she drinks gin,

With her bandy-legg’d Irishman’s grinder.

Gods! how she presides at her meal,

An excellent cook and a carver,

Had you been behind at her tail,

You might stand with delight and observe her.

While Patrick sits down with an oath,

His optics red, gauldy, and blearing,

On Sangster he fixes them both,

And she answers responsively staring:

To Patrick she always prov’d kind,

No virgin sure ever was kinder;

He bears all the good in her mind,

And he pays all the debt with his grinder.

If to Covent Garden she struts,

Good gods! how she’ll gallop and caper,

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To purchase some apples and nuts,

To make her desert up the cheaper.

For Sangster has lucrative sense,

She beats all the markets quite down, sir,

And pockets the overplus pence,

That in time she may buy a new gown, sir;

For tho’ she has wages enough,

Yet still the main chance she’ll be minding,

Unknown to the world she takes snuff,

And unknown to the world she keeps grinding.

Her tongue, which no modesty guides,

Runs on like a Billingsgate fag, sir,

She shakes her huge haunches, and strides,

While her shoulders alternately wag, sir.

She opens her mouth with such force,

Her language quite moiders her skull, sir,

She tramples about like a horse,

And she bellows as loud as a bull, sir.

She ransacks her cupboards and safes,

Well practis’d in turning and winding;

At others misfortunes she laughs,

And her lifes whole employment is grinding.

But Patrick in business gets on,

His business is mostly in vogue, sir,

For grinding is now all the ton,

And in grinding he tops every rogue, sir.

Yet Sangster is fond of her Teague,

They smile as they mutually prog, sir,

To me he’s an Egypt’s foul plague,

And to her he’s a low servant dog, sir.

Now Thady dont’t yield up your cause,

When once in good humour you find her,

Perhaps, you may gain more applause,

For your bandy-legg’d Irishman’s grinder.

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He’s witty at beauty’s expence,

Tho’ crafty, he looks like a fool, sir;

He tramples on virtue and sense,

With burlesque and low ridicule, sir.

But had I my will of poor Teague,

The weight of my hand he should feel, sir,

Regardless of fellowship’s league,

I’d bedaub him from noddle to heel, sir.

I’d salve his red eyes with a smug, A smug in the Irish language.

I’d brace his bowlegs up in binders,

And teach him to grin like a pug,

When he shew’d all his black, rotton grinders.

To a young Gentleman with a Watch Paper.


To thee this humble off’ring cross’d the seas,

Accept the off’ring, and the humble lays;

To thee the stranger Muse a suppliant came,

Tho’ not a stranger to thy honour’d name,

Then let my Muse thy approbation meet,

And lay this humble off’ring at thy feet;

Behold this little orb encompass’d round,

In which some type of Paradise is found,

A weak resemblance, all thy eye can see,

The paper serpent, and the mimic tree.

How vain to imitate that great Sublime,

Who sung Creation, and the birth of time;

Whose magic pen expressive, bold and warm,

To sound gave substance, and to fancy form,

Who brought the vanish’d Paradise to view,

And painted all the flowery plains anew,

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Where Eve still blooming in her charms appears,

Drawn from the depth of full six thousand years,

Whose serpent in his native form we see,

The tempting fruit, and the forbidden tree;

Those long destroy’d, yet by Milton’s pen,

Thro’ ling’ring ages seem to live again!

O would kind Heaven in one propitious hour,

Give me invention, and my fingers power,

That I might draw fair Eve in all her charms,

Her flowing hair, her neck, and polish’d arms,

Her lovely form all perfect as she stands,

The fairest work of her Creator’s hands,

That I might too that wiley serpent trace,

That type of Hell, that first enslav’d our race

Could I like him, that vast profound unrol,

And paint the living ideas of the soul,

Worthy of thee this little orb should shine,

And Milton’s Paradise should yield to mine.

An Acrostic for a Great Lady.

Lift up, my soul, O Muse, inspire my lays,

And join to sing your favourite lady’s praise,

Descending here with all your charms of sense,

Your brightest beams, and noblest influence.

And thou fair Anne, with genuine virtue warm,

Nature’s chief favourite, blest in mind and form;

Nor thou reject, or scorn my humble lays,

Even thou, whose merit claims the noblest praise.

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Blest in thy sense, and form’d on beauty’s plan,

Art polish’d high, what Nature first began,

Replete with learning, who’d compare with you,

Not Dacier French, or English Montigue.

Amart of charms, where all those virtues meet

Ripe in thy judgment, in thy language sweet,

Deserving praise, whom Heaven has given to shine,

In every virtue, moral and divine.

A Congratulatory Acrostic.

Sir Francis Burdett shouting crouds proclaim,

Illustrious, glorious, ever be thy name;

Ring joy bells, ring the worthy Burdett’s fame.

For thee, thou rising glory of our days,

Rejoic’d, I join ten thousand in thy praise;

Afoe to vice, repressing tyrant laws,

Ne’er sway’d by flattery, interest, or applause.

Come then, my Muse, great Burdett’s worth proclaim,

Illustrious heroe, candidate for fame,

Still may’st thou live, new honours to acquire,

To claim all praises, while all hearts admire.

Be thine the task, to spurn at tyranny,

Unbind the slave and set the prisoner free,

Reward good deeds, even in a low estate,

Defending virtue, vice to reprobate;

Even this Mainwaring sadly vanquish’d found,

Thy peerless fame, this one last action crown’d;

This generous deed thy praises shall extend,

Roll’d on with time, to time’s remotest end.

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A Song.

Tune, The Grinder. Written extempore.

What wonders in London we meet,

What numbers have caught this infection,

Hark, hark how they run thro’ the street,

All eager to see the election.

Mainwaring his prospects are cross’d,

His troops and his votaries routed,

The rabble huzza’d when he lost,

And he fainted twice o’er when they shouted.

Suppress all this rage if you can,

To him you’ve elected be kinder,

Sir Francis Burdett is our man,

And Mainwaring’s a Parliament grinder.

Tally high ho! you know,

Mainwaring’s cast out for a grinder.

All hearts his humanity won,

For him a whole nation advances,

Now hear how they shout as they run,

How they roar and huzza for Sir Francis.

Belov’d by the monarch and clown,

His actions have gain’d him applause, sir,

By him the bastile is put down,

And he’s zealous in his poverty’s cause, sir,

He freed a poor maid in distress,

When tyranny closely confin’d her,

May he live all our wrongs to redress,

And to scourge an unmerciful grinder.

To Mr. C.―― Junius,

On his drawing a young Lady’s Likeness.

O wond’rous youth, at such an early age,

Could we expect the wisdom of a sage!

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Could we the progress just thro’ life begun,

Expect that thou such wonders could’st have done!

Lo! to thy hand th’ obediemt colours came,

And on the canvas rais’d the living frame;

Behold the face where nature’s self inspires

Those eyes that glow, with well dissembled fires.

Could, such a youth, in such perfection draw,

I gaz’d, admir’d, and doubted what I saw;

That plan is just where every grace appears,

And seems the finish’d work of art and years;

’Tis thine fair natures genuine grace to give,

Create new beings, and bid each figure live;

Beauty, frail flower, in all its gaudy prime,

That fears th’ approach of fate, or waste of time;

Tho’ Death destroys, tho’ passing years consume,

In ages hence shall in thy colours bloom;

Beauties may shine in painting or in bust,

When these they represent are laid in dust!

But thou, fair youth, to make thy merits known,

Thou need’st no painted face, or mimic stone;

In these the likeness of a form we find,

But no resemblance of the fairer mind,

Nor art, could we her boundless stores unrol,

Can paint the living ideas of the soul.

Hail, then, fair youth, to whom high Heaven assign’d

The brightest genius, and the noblest mind;

Thy name establish’d, ne’er shall yield to fate,

Who dares even nature thus to emulate.

Without the artists aid, or poets lays,

Thy own fair works shall speak thy lasting praise.

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An Ode for Morning.

The lark began his matin lay,

To hail with notes the rosy dawn,

Fresh rising gales salute the day,

And dry the dew bespangled lawn.

With song resounded every spray,

While far the distant clouds retire,

Before the radiant beams of day,

That rob’d the skies in floating fire;

And now to distance scatter’d round,

The rising light her splendor shed,

Reflected radiance on the ground,

And tipt the hills with crimson red.

Here dew-drops glist’ning on the thorn,

And opening roses meet our eyes,

Before the fragrant breath of morn,

New risen in the eastern skies.

There lofty cedars bending down,

While here the rivers gently glide,

Each seems to view its leafy crown

Reflected in the silver tide.

Sequester’d here from all mankind,

While yet the encreasing day is young,

Let contemplation feed my mind,

And songs of praise employ my tongue.

For soon that beauteous morn decays,

Let us employ these moments right;

Fit emblem of our passing days,

Age is our even, the grave our night.

An Ode for the Evening.

On the sun’s rays,

What mortal eye could gaze,

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Or fix’d sustain his bright meridian glare,

When uncontroll’d

Emblaz’d with beamy gold,

He burns on high along his noon-tide sphere

But now his wheels,

O’er hang the eastern hills,

Now his red orb collected in his fires,

Shorn of his rays,

A fainter light displays,

And from our view in glaring pomp retires.

Long flights of crows

Succeeding rows on rows,

In sable throngs the twilight air divide

Now hov’ring near,

Their native woods appear,

And perch’d beneath their waving branches hide.

Now lab’ring swains

Return’d from sultry plains

With limbs relax’d along the dewy soil,

Beneath some bower

Enjoy the peaceful hour,

At ease, forgetful of their flawed-reproduction1 wordtoil.

The beauteous moon,

Ascending to her noon,

With silver light the absent son supplies,

Her rival beams,

Oppose the dying gleams,

That streak the porches of the western skies.

On my Arrival in London.

Alas! not here I find content,

Tho’ all my raptur’d soul admires

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The stately town, its vast extent,

Its op’ning streets, and shining spires.

Tho’ fraught with grandeur and with pride,

In richest gems, superbly great,

Thro’ the broad streets, on either side,

Ambition stalks in robes of state:

Yet here my Muse no friendship meets,

Her every scheme lies overthrown,

Since thro’ these broad expanded streets,

She moves unnotic’d, and unknown;

Tho’ oft she thrusts her pensive head

Amidst the crowds’ tumultuous din,

No friendly hand extends her bread,

No pleasing voice invites her in.

O, thou who form’d both earth and air,

And rais’d to life this suff’ring frame,

In pity hear my humble prayer,

And sooth me with thy mercy’s beam.

O be that sov’reign power my guide,

Which none can reach or comprehend,

Let every grief and pain subside,

In prospect of a happier end.

An Ode for the Morning.

Youth of the day, delightful morn,

Thy early beams display’d,

On balmy wings of zephyrs borne,

With blushing light the world adorn,

And spread the every shade.

Before thy beam the clouds retire,

The less’ning stars decay,—

Thy glowing light, thy radiant fire,

With life the slumb’ring world inspire,

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For thee combin’d the feather’d race,

A general chorus sings,

To hail thy bright refulgent face;

While floating thro’ th’ etherial space,

Far echoing music rings.

The leaves that sip the silver dew,

The buds and op’ning flowers,

Once more their Heavenly tints renew,

Once more fresh op’ning to our view,

Shake off the pearly showers.

For thee, display’d the tulip’s bloom,

A vivid splendour shews,

For thee, the fragrant gales perfume

The fields, which wonted charms assume,

And varying sweets disclose.

O hear the lamb, in time be wise,

And bless the new-born day,

Ye heedless mortals hear and rise,

While Morning paints the eastern skies,

And rules with mildest sway.

An Ode to Spring.

Hail! daughter of a stormy fire,

Grim Winter wrapp’d in cold attire,

Reluctant yields the reign

To thy fair hand, yet leaves behind

Black remnants of tempestuous wind,

That sweep the blasted plain.

Thy influence breathes at early dawn,

Upon the dew bespangled lawn,

And bids thy charms appear,

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And wave the deep entangled bowers.

And opes the buds, and paints the flowers,

Fair daughters of the year.

Winter now lifts no more on high,

The boreal blast that bars the sky,

With hoarse resounding sweep:

The melting snow forsakes the plains,

And torrents loos’d from icy chains,

Their wonted progress keep.

Thy presence bids the clouds disperse,

And cheers th’ extended universe;

The pregnant breezes blown,

With life the slumb’ring buds inspire,

While the sun shews his purple fire

Along the burning zone.

Still as thou growest in strength and grace,

The charms of Summer warm thy face,

More full thy beauties rise,

Natur’d the modest primrose blows,

While her contrasted charms oppose

The tulip’s vivid dyes.

For thee, thou fairest child of Time,

Thy infant blooms and flow’ry prime,

For thee I tune my lays,

While in this far sequester’d bower,

I pass the solitary hour,

And give thy beauty praise.

Hail, Contemplation, blest retreat,

Thy joys alone supremely great,

Can teach the soaring mind

To reach true bliss, and rise sublime,

Beyond the power of Death and Time,

And leave the world behind.

C2r 27

An Ode to New-Year’s Day.

Awake, awake my soul to Heavenly lays,

This the first morning of the year I sing,

That opes a prospect wide to better days,

A peaceful prospect and a happy king.

A sov’reign’s good should be a subject’s care,

So let it be this prevailing prayer,

Let every faithful subject here unite:

Let faction rage no more,

To plague the happy shore,

Let proud rebellion sink to endless night.

Behold what scenes are op’ning to our view,

The wide unbounded world is all our own,

Britannia’s arms shall conquer and subdue,

Our king shall reign a sov’reign power alone.

What conquests have we gain’d! what glorious spoils!

What never fading laurels for our toils!

This let my Muse record to latest days,

What mighty deeds were done,

What battles fought and won,

By heirs to glory, and immortal praise.

Can you be silent, Muse, while fame resounds?

Launch’d from these shores, our barks of traffic roam,

Ships that have reach’d old ocean’s utmost bounds,

To bear the spoils of either India home;

Loaded with treasure to enrich our isle,

Where arts are nourish’d, where the muses smile,

Where blessings reign, encreasing every hour

Wide o’er the worlds vast round,

Britannia’s fame shall sound,

The nurse of learning, and the seat of power.

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Hail then blest morn, that leads the promis’d years,

When Time his future progress shall unroll,

Britannia’s name proud France shall learn to fear,

And England’s sway shall stretch from pole to pole.

So may it be, let all recording fame,

Admire our actions, and our deeds proclaim;

To Egypt far remote, to worlds unknown,

Let future Nelsons rise,

To bless the Nations eyes,

And guard the glories of the British throne.

An Acrostic for Miss F----- Palmer.

Miss Palmer form’d alone to give delight,

In whom ten thousand nameless charms unite;

Suppliant, my humble Muse attempts thy praise,

Smile on her labours, and approve her lays.

Fair as the morn thine eyes with rays divine,

As the twin stars at even serenely shine;

No fabled goddess drawn with grace and air,

No Cyprian Venus might with thee compare,

Youth’s brightest pattern, virtuous, young and fair.

Polite in manners, amiable and kind,

Adorn’d with ev’ry grace in form and mind;

Learn’d in each art, in science how profound,

More sweet than love with all her beauties crown’d;

Emblem of some fair flower in nature’s pride,

Rob’d in her choicest spoils, in Heaven’s own tinctures dy’d.

C3r 29

Go be thou first in every sphere to shine,

While nymphs admiring shall with envy pine;

Go grace the assembly, ornament the stage,

And gain the applause at once of youth and age.

A Birthday Compliment for a young Gentleman.

For thee, O youth, in life’s encreasing spring,

For thee my humble Muse would gladly sing,

Would gladly rise before the golden sun,

To hail the morn on which thy life begun.

But this the envious gods conspir’d to hide,

And to my ears the joyful news deny’d;

Rumour was silent, fame mislaid her tongue,

Or else this day thou had’st not liv’d unsung.

Know, then, this day I heard the news at noon,

The time was short, I could not write so soon,

From noon till night, alas! too short a time,

To pay one compliment in prose or rhime.

Accept my prayers in these unpolish’d lays:

Heaven crown with bliss thy future days;

May every birthday still thy life extend,

With joys unnumber’d, blessings without end.

For the Same, on his being unfortunately drowned while he was Bathing.

For thee young man,

The accomplish’d plan,

Of all that Nature gave,

I weep as tho’

These floods of woe

Could save thee from the grave.

C3 C3v 30

Thy body dead,

Thy spirit fled,

Eternal life to share,

That essence pure,

From death secure,

Survives we know not where.

To Mr. Laurence, on his inimitable Painting of Lucifer.

O thou with Heavenly science warm,

Great Milton’s self thou dost excel,

Who drew the fiend in horrid form,

And gave his eyes the flames of Hell.

Some airy vision in thy sleep,

Has bid this hideous phantom rise,

And shew’d the wonders of the deep,

Which none can see with mortal eyes.

Not else with ev’ry art replete,

With all the power of paint and rhime,

Could’st thou have look’d thro’ Hell’s black gate,

And pass’d the bounds of place and time.

Now see him rising from the lake,

Th’ Enormous head, and snaky hair,

And the blue fire that seems to break

From either eyes, infernal glare.

Prone on the flood extends his limbs,

Where he by wrath eternal doom’d;

Wide o’er the fiery deluge swims,

That burns with sulphur unconsum’d.

And see, expos’d to mortal sight,

That huge, tremendous, massey shield,

facing C3v
An indoor scene of a man and a woman grappling with one another; an owl is perched on the woman’s shoulder, wings spread.

Struggling and hawling both continued long.

facing C4r C4r 31

Whose orb sustain’d the shock of sight,

When warring angels took the field:

And lo! the spear that Heaven defy’d,

And all the embattl’d holt on high,

When with almighty power he tri’d

To win the empire of the sky.

Hail then, great artist, while alive,

When dead, thy fame shall greater grow,

This work shall still thy race survive,

A lasting wonder in Soho.

An Acrostic.

Join all ye Muses in a glorious cause,

O join to give your patron just applause;

See by his fost’ring hand and bounteous mind,

Each Science nurtur’d, and each art refin’d;

Patron of genius thro’ his length of days,

Heaven’s happy fav’rite, crown’d with lasting praise.

Bless’d in thy learning, just in ev’ry sense,

Art, wisdom, virtue, grace, Benevolence,

Nurs’d in thy soul their brightest charms dispense

Knowledge with all her stores inspire thy mind,

Sublimely noble, generous, good and kind.

To mighty souls my Muse her deep distress,

Needs not the powers of langauge to express;

For real distress, to feeling minds, appears,

Without the aid of eloquence or tears.

To thee, therefore, who never scorn’d the poor,

Or spurn’d the wretched suff’rer from thy door,

To thee the stranger Muse a suppliant came,

Tho’ not a stranger to thy honour’d name,

Nor thou disdain to patronize her song,

And read these lines that to thyself belong;

C4v 32

In future time she hopes to claim thy praise,

Who sings her patron in acrostic lays.

From Heaven descends, even where it first began,

The flame of genius to the breast of man.

That intellectual by Heaven consign’d,

To illume the soul, and dignify the mind;

’Tis thine to boast this bright etherial flame,

Thus at thy natal hour thy genius came;

Blest in the dower, th’ almighty’s hand bestow’d,

Strength’ning with years this genuine virtue glow’d,

Glow’d on thy breast, where thousand charms conspire,

We love thy virtue, and thy charms admire;

But, thou whom wisdom condescends to guide,

Above the reach of flatt’ry or of pride;

May’st thou be gracious, as thou’rt great and wise,

And deign this humble work to patronize.

So may’st thou live, and be for ever blest,

With peace on earth, in Heaven eternal rest.

Once I liv’d well, industry was my pride,

And like Minerva still my work I pli’d.

With good success, alternate now and then,

I us’d my needle, and employ’d my pen.

Now could I write, this I may well observe,

Even write like Otway. I’d like Otway starve!

Amidst a world of wealth, I hardly glean,

A bare subsistance for a life of pain;

Forc’d as I am my hard-earn’d bread to seek,

And work in public Shops from week to week,

The doors set wide, exposd to every eye,

To all the incle’nt air; and freezing sky;

My hands benumb’d, my pulse nearly stopp’d,

My teeth all aching, and my lips all chapp’d.

C5r 33

All this I suffer, patiently to glean

The hard-earn d bread of indigence and pain.


Conspir’d in thee ten thousand charms we find,

Humanely generous, gentle, good and kind;

Asoul with love inspir’d, with virtue warm,

Replete with every grace in mind and form,

Like some fair portrait, or some fair design,

Or plan of beauty, drawn with skill divine;

The prospect charms us as we trace it o’er,

The more we gaze we still admire the more;

Embellish’d nature shines adorn’d by art,

And nameless grace enlivens every part.

Presumptuous Muse pursue the glorious theme,

Otrace her charms, her peerless worth proclaim;

Combin’d in her fair form see every where,

Order and grace, in high perfection fair;

Chaste, meek and pure, refin’d in every sense,

Kind without flattery, good without pretence,

Long may’st thou live, and long in health and peace,

Enjoy the blessings of thy future race;

Those choicest treasures given thee from on high,

Thy lovely babes, thy blooming progeny.


Great Pocock claims the tribute of my praise,

Enough, let simple truth inspire the lays,

C5v 34

On whom my Muse depends for future fame,

Rejecting flattery in so fine a theme,

Give flattery scope on subjects less renown’d,

Even where no genuine beauties can be found.

But Pocock’s honour’d name, his glorious race,

To simplest numbers give the brightest grace.

Pocock whose name on record shall be found,

O’er chiefs and kings for deeds of arms renown’d

Claims high distinction, let my Muse proclaim,

On sounding wings his valour and his fame.

Come then, Britannia let thy colours fly,

Know Pocock rear’d the English standard high.

Be witness then the lasting fame he won,

Transfer that glory down from sire to son;

Bless George and Charlotte thro’ their length of days,

And let their children’s children heir their fame and praise.

An Acrostic for John Palmer Esq. Dead. At Miss Palmer’s Request.

My Muse averse to flattery or offend,

Reassumes her pen to please a generous friend;

And for each fault conspicuous in the rhime,

She pleads both want of wit, and want of time.

Judgment and sense thy every thought extend,

Open thy mind, and in thy bosom blend,

How calm thy front, thy presence how serene,

Nor can th’ applause of thousands make thee vain.

Possess’d of every art to grace the scene,

And charm the sternest critic from his spleen,

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Now while I walk’d, this private wrong

Inspir’d my soul with just disdain,

My Muse unpension’d liv’d so long,

And still she rhym’d and wrote in vain.

My awkward country rustic Muse,

Who greets the world with smiles and thanks,

Behold she for a pension sues,

And supplicates Sir Joseph Banks.

And now my Muse in thought secure,

Had built proud castles in the air;

Already at Sir Joseph’s door,

She found a kind reception there.

His purse and coin we now possess’d,

And ply’d his Grace with all our thanks,

And thus our powerful thoughts suggest,

We fairly dish’d Sir Joseph Banks.

The Muse in flattering lore well skill’d,

The Baron’s house she quickly found,

While sanguine hope her mind fulfill’d,

And utmost expectation crown’d.

Determin’d thus she loudly knocks,

While unsuspicious of her pranks,

A servant waiting, soon unlocks

Thy stately door, Sir Joseph Banks.

My humble Muse I soon sent in,

While I stood propp’d against the wall,

And oft I gave a private grin,

But never loudly laugh’d at all.

And now my Muse salutes that hand,

Whose bounty ne’er deserv’d our thanks,

While trembling in the hall I stand,

To wait thy smiles, Sir Joseph Banks.

But while I stood, even then I rhym’d,

And view’d the spacions fabric round,

D D1v 38

And to the roof my fancy climb’d,

Almost a world from top to ground.

While thus amus’d, an hour I spent,

Till standing had quite tir’d my shanks;

Then soon rememb’ring my intent,

I wish’d to see Sir Joseph Banks.

Thus, once, when youth my bosom warm’d,

Recall’d by fancy like a dream,

I went to see some play perform’d,

Nor can I recollect its name:

In some high box I took my place,

Each Object fix’d my wonder th[e]re,

The people seem’d a pigmy race,

Like insects hov’ring in the air!

The ladies rob’d in splendor gay,

I view’d, and squeez’d among the ranks;

Forgetting here both stage and play,

As I forgot Sir Joseph Banks.

Expecting now some great reward

For this my daring enterprise,

Inspir’d, like some new-titl’d lord,

Ambition rais’d me to the skies.

But what a fall, a direful fall!

Misfortune every prospect blanks,

For here I found no prize at all,

Deni’d and spurn’d by Joseph Banks.

For this great sir, nor can you blame,

When next we meet you in the square,

I’ll soon disrobe your ugly frame,

And leave your limbs expos’d and bare.

With t—d I’ll well bedaub you o’er,

In t—d I’ll sink your bandy shanks,

And every Muse that hears you roar,

Shal jointly plague Sir Joseph Banks.

D2r 39

A Song.

To Miss James.

Ah, thou, my lovely charming maid,

Permit these lines to kiss thy hand,

Whose beauty has my heart betray’d,

Alone the Phœnix of the Strand.

The feather-shop as I’m alive,

’Tis just beside the river Thames,

Unrivall’d shines Maria James.

Number two hundred and seventy five,

Lo! the bright nymyph, divinely fair,

Just in the pride of sweet fifteen,

Can boast a form, a face and air,

Might well compare with Cypria’s queen.

Unclouded as the morning sun,

Her eyes the rival of his beams,

Inspir’d my soul, my heart is won,

And bow’d to fair Maria James.

In love’s perplexing abyss drown’d,

To thee my humble suit I move,

Even thou, whose eyes have power to wound,

And soften every heart to love,

Forgive the bard who vainly warm,

Inspir’d with high ambition, aims

To draw a portrait of thy form,

And all thy charms, Maria James.

What careless eye can round her move,

And with indifference own her fair,

Or, what stern heart, a foe to love,

Can brave the power of beauty there?

Where charms luxuriantly combine,

To set the admiring heart in flames,

Even suppliant kings, before thy shrine

Must own thy power, Maria James.

D2 D2v 40

When Heaven to Nature first gave power,

And bid her form all human kind,

Frailty and weakness prov’d the dower,

And bore the rule in every mind.

But now, to contradict that thought,

This nobler work distinction claims,

In high perfection, free from fault,

She form’d the fair Maria James.

Hear, then, my fair one, what I say,

Be amiable, be meek and mild,

Let still good nature bear the sway,

And to thy friend be reconcil’d:

Let inward spleen ne’er tye that tongue,

Whose every word thy worth proclaims,

Profound in learning, fair and young,

My peerless, sweet Maria James.

An Elegy for a favourite Bird’s Death.

Here, in this room, where once his cage was hung,

From morn till night the little warbler sung;

He sooth’d my list’ning ear, he pleas’d my mind,

And gave us music when we slept or din’d;

Unus’d to range the wood, or skim the lawn,

Or mount the skies to meet the rosy dawn;

Unus’d to perch upon the bending briar,

He knew no bounds beyond his prison’s wire;

Here first he breath’d his happy native air,

Fed by my hand, and nourish’d by my care;

Here first he sung, here first his wings he tried

Inshort excursions—where he liv’d he died.

Dropt from his perch, he sunk upon his breast,

In long oblivion, and eternal rest.

D3r 41

Happy if we could boast a soul within

So pure, so spotless, and so free from sin;

Who knew no guile, but thro’ his length of days,

In his own language sung his maker’s praise.

A New Song, in praise of Miss Elizabeth Wright.

O thou, whose face in charms excels

The noblest plan by art pourtray’d,

Where every grace in triumph dwells,

And every power of beauty sway’d.

That face so form’d to captivate

The admiring gazers with delight,

Employ their tongues to celebrate

The unrivall’d beauty of Miss Wright.

Assist ye Muses while I trace

Those peerless charms that’s all divine,

Furnish’d from Heaven with boundless grace,

In Nature’s choicest treasures shine;

Whose cheek outvies the opening rose,

Whose eyes the diamond’s sparkling light,

Whose breath Arabian odour blows,

Expressive emblem of Miss Wright.

In some fair form could Heaven bestow

Ten thousand thousand charms combin’d;

Yet all these charms are far below

The intrinsic beauty of her mind.

Did art conspire with curious toil,

And all her sparkling gems unite,

Each splendid gem would prove a foil,

Compar’d in charms to sweet Miss Wright.

’Tis not that face, divinely fair,

Arm’d with the attractive Cyprian fires,

D3 D3v 42

Nor the bright ringlets of her hair,

That most my raptur’d soul admires;

A radiant eye, a form divine,

All these our better judgments slight,

What are those charms compar’d to thine,

My all accomplish’d, sweet Miss Wright?

The fragrant glow that paints the morn,

At the first dawn of early day,

Whose vivid dyes the Heavens adorn,

Wide floating o’er the eastern way:

That morn amidst the scented air,

Rob’d in her saffron rays of light,

Is far less fragrant, far less fair,

Than the fair fabric of Miss Wright.

Then hear thou first of womankind,

And breathe compassion on thy slave;

Let tender pity fill thy mind,

And save thy suppliant from the grave.

Who fill’d my heart with love’s alarms,

For whom I languish day and night,

Until I clasp thy heaven of charms,

Thy peerless form, Eliza Wright.

A Song.

Great Homer’s name

Still lives in fame,

Who made his gods and heroes quarrel,

Who rais’d sublime,

Survives thro’ time,

Crown’d with eternal wreaths of laurel.

He well might sing,

Of bards the king,

He gain’d Parnassus’ top by climbing,

While at its base

My Muse takes place,

D4r 43

With humble views and simple rhyming,

My thoughts disturb’d,

My pride is curb’d,

Some secret impulse still bewitching,

I’m thus kept down

By fortune’s frown,

Condemn’d to get my bread by stitching.

Born with a mind

To write inclin’d,

This all the fates conspire to hinder;

In fame obscure,

In coin kept poor,

Gods! how I envy Peter Pindar.

Then, O ye gods,

If Peter nods,

Let me in turn begin my rebus,

With spleenful speed,

Let me proceed

To wake this rambling son of Phœbus.

Some Muse cry’d out,

With thundering shout,

Forbear with disrespect to mention,

This fumbling bard,

Don’t disregard,

For he enjoys the Royal pension.

Zounds! d—n the man

I thus began,

In cockneys sound, I’ll break his winder

I’ll rhyme and write

From morn till night,

To plague this rebus, Peter Pindar.

Well dipt in years,

He now appears,

A bloated pigmy, nothing bigger;

’Twould make you laugh;

When bent in half,

He shews his ugly stunted figure.

D4v 44

So short and strong,

He scours along,

Well form’d and made and shap’d for tumbling

He seems to strut,

A rolling butt,

Or half made stem of Nature’s fumbling.

Then brown with dust,

Like some old bust,

His lips parch’d up, and dry’d like tinder;

No moisture flows,

Even from the nose,

Of thund’ring, blund’ring, Peter Pindar.

It happen’d once,

This roaring dunce,

With many a stride, and many a caper,

Walk’d down the road,

Beneath a load

Of learning’s lumber, pens and paper.

I saw, and smil’d,

He look’d so wild,

At evening now he takes his airing,

With visage grim,

And optic dim,

Half clos’d in sleep, or widely staring,

While wrapt in song,

He mov’d along,

Not bustling crowds his flight could hinder,

Nor noise nor aught,

Could reach the thought

Of soaring, poring, Peter Pindar.

In his Lousiad

What scenes we read,

And well he cites from ancient story,

The morn appears,

He said, with tears,

And Phœbus rose without his glory.

D5r 45

How thro’ the skies,

Sad vapours rise,

Far issuing thro’ Aurora’s portals,

To warn at Rome

Great Cato’s doom,

For gods were then concern’d for mortals.

But now no sign,

From powers divine,

E’er threaten’d in the Palace Royal,

Tho’ every soul,

With hideous growl,

Appear’d repugnant and disloyal.

While firmly bent

On his intent,

The King dooms every head for shaving,

Each meets his fate,

In dire debate,

The men were shav’d, the females raving.—

Devoid of fire,

O Muse retire,

Retire to some sequester’d harbour,

There chaunt thy strains

To groves and plains,

Since Peter’s Muse is turn’d a barber.

What, tho’ my Muse

No fame pursues,

What, tho’ she mourns in dust and cinders,

’Tis best I ween

Than be so keen

As was this shaving Muse of Pindar’s.

This rhyming rogue

So much in vogue,

Yet sure he acted like a sinner,

His Muse is rude,

And would intrude

Even on the royal board at dinner.

D5v 46

Let Pindar curse,

And think I’m worse,

This let King George, himself, determine!

I talk’d of t—d,

But, on my word,

He talk’d of plates that crawl’d with vermine!

Had I been there,

By Mars I’d swear,

Nay, even Jove, or by Mahomet,

This crawling thing,

Alarm’d the King,

And made his Royal Consort vomit!

Let me enlarge,

I’ll bear the charge,

And thus discant upon the matter;

Even York’s good Duke,

At this might puke,

To see it crawling o’er the platter.

My humble Muse,

Let kings refuse,

Expell’d from courts, she’d sweep the cinders,

’Tis better, twice,

Than chaunt of lice,

As did this lousy Muse of Pindar’s.

Now Pitt on chine

Intends to dine,

For him a turkey, nicely roasted,

Well hang’d in chains,

The spit sustains,

Of this the Statesman loudly boasted:

The time was come,

T’ expect him home,

For him his servants all preparing,

Had laid his cloth,

And warm’d his broth,

And thro’ the window still kept staring.

D6r 47

In angry mood,

For want of food,

They heard, from far, his worship chiding;

With hungry speed

He rode his steed,

His appetite encreas’d by riding;

With haughty grin

He enter’d in,

And left his courser in the stable,

Then wip’d his chops,

And down he pops,

Fix’d in a chair before the table.

Would I could taste

This charming feast,

Had I been there, there’s none could hinder,

I’d clear the board,

With dainties stor’d,

And sweep the crumbs to Peter Pindar.

Now where he din’d,

In splendour shin’d,

He might behold whoe’er stood serving,

The chairs were made

With gold inlaid,

Of finest wood, and curious carving.

The carpet such,

There’s none so rich,

Exactly plann’d, and most surprising,

Of brightest dyes,

Like morning skies,

Before Aurora when she’s rising.

Each table bright,

Reflected light,

Now up, now down, the curtains shining,

In gracefull falls,

Adorn the walls,

With fringe of gold and crimson lining.

D6v 48

Each crystal plate,

Superbly great,

In gilded frames, I tell no story,

Seem’d as you pass,

Like seas of glass

Reflecting keenest rays of glory.

The hearth was scrubb’d,

And neatly rubb’d,

A marble mirror, free from cinder;

A place of state,

Where gods might eat,

And yet unsung by Peter Pindar.

This room was fit

For King or Pitt,

The Statesman here his cares might bury;

Here good King George

Might cram and gorge,

And here the Prince of Wales make merry.

Here Pitt sat down,

With gape and frown,

What boots the Statesman now to grumble?

Thus well suppli’d,

For taste and pride,

And well his toothless gums could mumble.

My Muse stands there

With gape and stare,

Close up by Pitt, and there I leave her,

And while he dines,

I’ll pour the wines,

Of richest taste, and finest flavour.

Just as he wish’d,

The dinner dish’d,

Each dainty mess he still kept finding;

While his lank jaws,

In this good cause,

As practis’d like himself, kept grinding.

E1r 49

Now fame was loud,

And thro’ the crow’d

Proclaim’d the rumour from the palace,

Pitt heard and damned,

Yet grumbling cramm’d,

And swore ’twas false report, or malice.

Thus far my Muse

The court pursues,

Nor fear nor power her song could hinder;

She dreads no ill

From sword or quill,

Nor e’en the rage of Peter Pindar.

Then let him frown,

And spurn me down,

Why hand the bard, I care not for him,

A man, like him,

May sink or swim,

Who never acts with just decorum.

I’m not afraid

Of all I’ve said,

What boots the Muse henceforth to slumber?

Even in the street,

The bard I’ll meet,

Nor fear to tell my name and number.

Should Pindar come,

I’ll not stand mum,

To shun my foe looks wond’rous silly;

Sound wind and limb,

I’ll fight like him,

Even as he fought in Piccadilly.

And stand the chance,

Should he advance,

Surround my door, and break my windows!

I’ll soon turn out,

With shout for shout!

To fight and conquer Peter Pindar!

E E1v 50

Thoughts on Eternity.

Eternity! how vast thy tracts extend,

No line can gauge, no genius comprehend

Eternity! within whose vast profound

Our thoughts are lost, our vain conjectures drown’d.

Ye sons of science, who those paths explore,

Sum up your learning, scan her pages o’er;

Rise from the earth, the etherial regions climb,

Gauge the vast deep, and measure space and time,

Pursue the wand’ring planets as they roll,

And view the amazing wonders—

Converse with stars, amidst the vast profound;

Go tell their distance, or their progress bound.

Thro’ Nature’s optic seek for worlds unknown,

Eye the fix’d stars, and pass the burning zone.

But, O, Eternity! thy vast extent

No likeness here, on earth, can represent;

No tongue can tell, no human heart can find,

No genius comprehend, no barrier bind;

Nor mind can reach, nor mortal eye can see

The height, the depth, of vast Eternity;

Search and research, thy boldest thoughts are void,

Thy books are useless, and thy art destroy’d,

Deeper than ocean is thy gulph profound,

Wider than worlds thy never-ending round,

Thy length unbound, suffers no decay,

From thee, tho’ endless ages pass’d away.

More numerous than the herbage on the plain,

Or all the drops the deepest seas contain;

When the prodigious waste of time is o’er,

And years on years, by millions pass before,

E2r 51

When these, and thousands more, their course have run,

Thou vast Eternity! art scarce begun.

An Acrostic.

More fair, more fragrant, than the rising day,

Attir’d in all the sweets of promis’d May;

Rich in the internal beauty of thy mind,

In thee ten thousand nameless charms we find,

Adorn’d with every grace beyond thy kind.

Judgment and learning, sweet enchanting lore,

And grace and virtue drawn from wisdom’s store;

Majestic sweetness tempering in thy mind,

Enliv’ning wit, and manners more refin’d;

Severe in virtue, but in friendship kind.

Another. Miss Elizabeth Humphries.

My lovely fair, so form’d to give delight,

In whom the charms of all thy sex unite,

Some nobler Muse should join thy fame to raise,

Superior beauty claims superior praise.

Enraptur’d now my humble Muse appears,

Lays down this off’ring, fill’d with hopes and fears;

Inspir’d with love, for love I’d plead or pause,

Zealous and ardent still in beauty’s cause,

And if you smile, I ask no more applause.

E2 E2v 52

Heaven form’d the fair with every blessing crown’d,

Unrivall’d beauty, joined with sense profound,

Meekness of mind, sublimity of thought,

Perfection’s mirror, free from every fault.

How sweet the morn, before the solar ray,

Reviving blows, and dries the dews away.

In thee an emblem of that morn we find,

Excell’d by none in either form or mind,

Sublimely noble, and humanely kind.

To Virtue.

Thoughts on Mortality.

As from the sun’s meridian beam,

Within a cool retreat,

I hung, suspended, o’er the stream

That murmurs at my feet.

And now in many a mazy round,

It rises to and fro,

Now murmurs o’er the flowery ground,

And wash’d the plains below.

Now trickling down the gloomy hills,

A length’ning channel spread,

Contract, from far, the vagrant rills,

Within its ample bed.

Now thundering down the craggy steep,

The roaring torrent pours

To where a gulph’s profoundest deep

The foamy wave devours.

There ends its journeying, there its pride,

The dashing waves rebound,

E3r 53

That hurls so far the impetuous tide,

Scarce moves the vast profound.

So to their doom even monarchs haste,

By wild ambition fraught,

Who conquer’d realms, laid nations waste,

In one tremenduous thought.

Yet see the effects of all their pride,

See chiefs of power and might,

Who fain would conquer’d realms bestride,

Absorb’d in endless night.

Virtue alone shall rise sublime,

Resisting, firmly brave,

The jaws of all devouring time,

And lives beyond the grave.

To the Revd Mr. John Hurdis, Professor of Poetry, Oxford.

Hear thou, the praises which thy merits claim

Urivall’d in thy genius, and thy fame;

Reviv’d in thee what genuine grace we find,

Display’d with art peculiar to thy kind;

In thy fair works what genuine graces meet,

Sound in thy judgment, in thy language sweet.

To mighty souls my Muse her deep distress,

Needs not the power of language to express;

Yet could I write, this I may well observe,

Even write like Otway, I’d like Otway starve.

Amidst a world of wealth I hardly glean

A bare subsistance for a life of pain.

Once I had work, industry was my pride,

And, like Minerva, still my hands I ply’d.

E3 E3v 54

’Twas all my joy, alternate, now and then,

To use my needle, and employ my pen.

This alteration makes me wond’rous sad,

Provisions dear, and business grown so bad;

That did I travel till I wore my shoes,

I’d find no comfort for my starving Muse.

An Ode for Lexlip.

Written at Dublin, 17891789.

O may some Muse my breast inspire,

The same who strung the Heavenly lyre,

And chaunt the tuneful tongue,

Of him whose genuine wit confess’d

The flame of genius in his breast,

Who Windsor’s beauty sung.

O would kind Heaven propitious smile,

And send some bard to bless our isle,

Some bard like thee inspir’d,

’Tis sure to court his fav’rite Muse,

Amidst ten thousand charms he’d chuse,

In Lexlip’s shades retir’d.

When gloomy winter clouds the skies,

And bids rude blust’ring tempests rise,

And warblers cease to sing,

And fills with frost the pregnant gale,

Or fleecy snow, or rattling hail,

’Tis here eternal Spring.

Here as we view the enchanting ground,

With diff’rent prospects varied round,

And diff’rent beauties grac’d,

E4r 55

There weaving woods, and rising spires,

At once the wond’ring eye admires,

And here a flowery waste,

Lo! echoing temples, green retreats,

And low-brow’d rocks, and mossy seats,

Repeat each deaf’ning sound

Of sighing storms, and heaving floods,

And whisp’ring winds and gloomy woods,

Far echoing round and round.

Here from that beauteous rising shore,

With thund’ring force and deaf’ning roar,

The impetuous torrent pours,

Prone drown the rock, with echoing sweep,

Till far below th’ unfathom’d deep,

The roaring wave devours.

There the river’s beamy face,

In circling waves from place to place,

Reflects in ruffling forms,

The lofty trees, that smooth and tall,

O’erhang the dashing waters fall,

And wave before the storms.

What boundless scenes that still commands,

Where yonder beauteous fabric stands,

That from its airy brow,

O’erlooks the prospect, far and wide,

The stately town, and circling tide,

That distant roars below.

So when th’ immortal Thunderer sate,

To fill the fix’d decrees of fate,

On Ida’s cloudy head;

He view’d fair Illion’s opening streets,

The circling seas, and crowded fleets,

In one bright level spread.

E4v 56

The first Acrostic.

A Description of the Morning.

From the dull earth the musty vapours fly,

And morn appears to paint the eastern sky,

Night’s shades dispers’d, the dusky clouds retire,

Nocturnal orbs now shine with fainter fire,

Yet dimly seen, now fade, and now expire.

Conspir’d to hail the half enlighten’d sphere,

Ageneral chorus rises thro’ the air;

Responsive echoes answering to the sound,

Repeat the murm’ring music round and round.

On the vast earth the morning breeze invades,

Leaves, flowers and trees, and dries the dewy shades,

Lifts the green herbs, and fans the fragrant meads.

This is my first name, alas! my sex is frail,

Else I had never chang’d it for O’Neill.

A Song. To B- - -ty Mulloy.

Sing, sing her praises shrill and loud,

To thee I pay my vows,

Since even a monarch might be proud

To claim her for a spouse.

Her tongue exceeds a sharp edg’d tool,

A razor, sword or knife,

Vers’d in censorious ridicule,

In mischief, lies, and strife.

She’s dull and heavy as a log,

When’er she moves she falls,

Her body’s bloated like a frog,

And like a toad she crawls.

E5r 57

But when she tries to walk she lags,

And turns her oblique toes,

Then, like a duck, she marching wags,

And stumbles as she goes.

Of sickness now she makes complaint,

And fain would go to bed,

Then shuts her eyes and seems to faint,

And hangs her languid head.

So I have seen a pamper’d cur,

With tricks his mistress cheat,

So lazy grown, he could not stir,

So fat he could not eat.

Another. To B---ty’s Mother.

A death-stricken figure,

That lost all her vigour,

While envy her bosom inspires;

I wish she was hung

In Hell by the tongue,

To share the sad portion of liars.

One evening at night,

I sat without light,

My fire reduc’d to a spark,

All ragged and poor,

She pimp’d at my door,

And she look’d like a ghost in the dark.

A light from next room

Dissipated the gloom,

I look’d at her well thro’ the smoke,

Her spectre-like trunk,

All wither’d and shrunk,

Was wrapt in an old shabby cloak.

E5v 58

Her petticoat black,

And coarse as a sack,

Her visage all ghastly and thin,

Like luna’s half skull,

E’er yet at the full,

She shew’d but her nose, and her chin.

Her voice, when she spoke,

Was the night-raven’s croak,

Pale, haggard and panting for breath,

She seem’d barrack-beaten,

Or spewed when eaten,

Or wing’d for the confines of death.

And now when her face

I could perfectly trace,

To me the foul figure was known,

Quite motionless struck,

With this type of ill-luck,

I stood like an image of stone.

At nothing loth,

When she mutter’d an oath,

I sum’d up my courage and strength,

Quite flat on the floor,

By a smack of my door,

She fell and extended her length.

To Mr. Biss,

On his turning Private Player.

Dear Mr. Biss, I tell you this,

You spout with such a grace,

That I’m in love, if you approve,

I’ll meet you face to face.

E6r 59

Skill’d as you are, each form to wear,

The monarch or the clown,

The sharp revile, the mimic smile,

And well dissembled frown.

The flutt’ring beau, in dress and show,

This semblance you discover,

With grins and bows, and sighs and vows,

You play the whining lover.

Now fierce in fight, some hardy knight

Beneath thy valour falls,

With equal skill you save or kill,

As each occasion calls.

As I pass’d by, I turn’d mine eye,

And peeping thro’ the door,

Far plac’d within, I saw you grin,

And heard you spout and roar.

Now stretch thy mouth from north to south,

And shew thy teeth within,

Now shift thy place, and wreak thy face

In wild distortion’s grin.

So when of old, as Virgil told,

The spoils in battles won,

Of some huge beast the warrior grac’d,

To shew the deeds he’d done.

This wrapt him round, from top to ground,

When he the body skinn’d,

The head before, disdain’d with gore,

Like thee severely grinn’d!

My own Wish.

Would I were on some mountain, far remote,

Where I might round the distant world descry,

E6v 60

With no companion but the capering goat,

The prospect only bounded by the sky.

With pleasure then I view the setting day,

The wide horizon, and the twilight lawn,

Wake with the lark, and join her matin lay,

When with a song she hails the rosy dawn.

For here immerg’d in London’s noisy streets,

Where to and fro the thund’ring coaches roll,

Where contemplation’s eye no pleasure meets,

No calm contentment ever sooths my soul.

An Acrostic.

Permit my praise succeed each glorious aim,

In thee Britannia sees her future fame;

Thine is the merit, thine should be the praise,

Thine be the glory down to latest days.


Young, Printer 168, High Holborn,