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Two goldfinches, whose sprightly song Had been their mutual solace long,

Lived happy prisoners there.
They sang as blithe as finches sing
That flutter loose on golden wing,

And frolic where they list;
Strangers to liberty, 'tis true,
But that delight they never knew,

And therefore never missed.
But Nature works in every breast,
With force not easily suppress'd ;

And Dick felt some desires,
That, after many an effort vain,
Instructed him at length to gain

A pass between his wires.
The open windows seem'd † invite
The freeman to a farewell flight:

But Tom was still confined ;
And Dick, although his way was clear,
Was much too generous and sincere

To leave his friend behind, So settling on his cage, by play, And chirp, and kiss, he seemed to say,

You must not live alone ;-
Nor would he quit that chosen stand
Till I, with slow and cautious hand,

Returned him to his own.
O ye, who never taste the joys
Of Friendship, satisfied with noise,

Fandango, ball, and rout !
Blush when I tell you how a bird
A prison with a friend preferred

To liberty without.

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THE POPLAR FIELD.

THE

HE poplars are felled ; farewell to the shade,

And the whispering sound of the cool colonnade ! The winds play no longer and sing in the leaves, Nor Ouse on his bosom their image receives. Twelve years have elapsed since I first took a view Of my favourite field, and the bank where they grew ; And now in the grass behold they are laid, And the tree is my seat that once lent me a shade!

The blackbird has fled to another retreat,
Where the hazels afford him a screen from the heat,
And the scene where his melody charmed me before
Resounds with his sweet-flowing ditty no more.
My fugitive years are all hasting away,
And I must ere long lie as lowly as they,
With a turf on my breast, and a stone at my head,
Ere another such grove shall arise in its stead.
'Tis a sight to engage me, if anything can,
To muse on the perishing pleasures of man ;
Though his life be a dream, his enjoyments, I see,

I
Have a being less durable even than he.

ON THE HIGH PRICE OF FISH.

OCOA-NUT naught,

Fish too dear,
None must be bought

For us that are here :

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No lobster on earth,

That ever I saw,
To me would be worth

Sixpence a claw.

So, dear Madam, wait

Till fish can be got
At a reasonable rate,

Whether lobster or not;
Till the French and the Dutch

Have quitted the seas,
And then send as much

And as oft as you please.

VERSES PRINTED BY HIMSELF, ON A FLOOD

AT OLNEY, 1211 AUGUST 1782.

"O watch the storms, and hear the sky

To shake with cold, and see the plains
In autumn drowned with wintry rains ;
'Tis thus I spend my moments here,
And wish myself a Dutch mynheer ;
I then should have no need of wit,
For lumpish Hollander unfit !
Nor should I then repine at mud,
Or meadows deluged with a flood;
But in a bog live well content,
And find it just my element :
Should be a clod, and not a man ;
Nor wish in vain for Sister Anu,

With charitable aid to drag
My mind out of its proper quag ;
Should have the genius of a boor,
And no ambition to have more.

MARY AND JOHN.

F John marries Mary, and Mary alone,

I and John.

Should John wed a score, oh the claws and the scratches ! It can't be a match :-'tis a bundle of matches.

TO SIR JOSHUA REYNOLDS.

art sublime

Gives perpetuity to time,
And bids transactions of a day,
That fleeting hours would waft away
To dark futurity, survive,
And in unfading beauty live-
You cannot with a grace decline
A special mandate of the Nine-
Yourself, whatever task you choose,
So much indebted to the Muse.

Thus say the sisterhood : We come-
Fix well your pallet on your thumb,
Prepare the pencil and the tints-
We come to furnish you with hints.
French disappointments, British glory,
Must be the subject of the story.

First strike a curve, a graceful bow, Then slope it to a point below; Your outline easy, airy, light, Filled up becomes a paper kite. Let independence, sanguine, horrid, Blaze like a meteor in the forehead : Beneath (but lay aside your graces) Draw six-and-twenty rueful faces, Each with a staring, steadfast eye, Fixed on his great and good ally. France flies the kite-'tis on the wingBritannia's lightning cuts the string. The wind that raised it, ere it ceases, Just rends it into thirteen pieces, Takes charge of every fluttering sheet, And lays them all at George's feet. Iberia, trembling from afar, Renounces the confederate war ; Her efforts and her arts o'ercome, France calls her shatter'd navies home. Repenting Holland learns to mourn The sacred treaties she has torn ; Astonishment and awe profound Are stamp'd upon the nations round; Without one friend, above all foes, Britannia gives the world repose.

PAIRING TIME ANTICIPATED.

A FABLE.

I

SHALL not ask Jean Jacques Rousseau

If birds confabulate or no; 'Tis clear that they were always able To hold discourse, at least in fable;

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