Page images

If you be wise, then go not far to dine ;
You'll spend in coach-hire more than save in wine.
A coming shower your shooting corns presage,
Old aches * will throb, your hollow tooth will rage;
Sauntering in coffeehouse is Dulman seen;
He damns the climate, and complains of spleen.

Meanwhile the South, rising with dabbled wings,
A sable cloud athwart the welkin flings,
That swill'd more liquor than it could contain,
And, like a drunkard, gives it up again.
Brisk Susan whips her linen from the rope,
While the first drizzling shower is borne aslope :
Such is that sprinkling which some careless quean
Flirts on you from her mop, but not so clean:
You fly, invoke the gods; then, turning, stop
To rail; she, singing, still whirls on her mop.
Not yet the dust had shunn'd th' unequal strife,
But, aided by the wind, fought still for life,

Clogher will show it you. Pray tell me how you like it." Journal to Stella, Oct. 17, 1710. Tell me how my Shower is liked in Ireland. I never knew any thing pass better here. There never was such a Shower since Danac's," &c. Ibid. -"I am writing my poetical description of a Shower in London, and will send it to the Tatler.Ibid.—"The bishop of Clogher says,

I bid him read the London Shaver, and that you both swore it was Shaver, and not Shower. You all lie, and you re puppies, and can't read Presto's hand," &c. Ibid. Nov. 28, 1710.--"My Shower admired with you; why the bishop of Clogher says, he has seen something of mine of the same sort, better than the Shower. I suppose he means The Morning, but it is not balf so good.” Ibid. Nov. 30, 1710.-"Mr. Dopping I have seen, and he tells me coldly, my Shower is liked well enough; there's your Irish judgment." Ibid.

* In the old folio, and first octavo, this word, was used as a dissyllable, “Old a-ches throb," &c. and so it has continued in all the subsequent editions both of the TATLER, and SWIFT'S “ Works," till the collection of the English Poets was published in 1779 by Dr. Johnson,


And wafted with its foe by violent gust,
'Twas doubtful which was rain and which was dust. *
Ah! where must needy poet seek for aid,
When dust and rain at once his coat invade?
Sole coat ! where dust, cemented by the rain,
Erectsf the nap, and leaves a cloudy stain !

Now in contiguous drops the flood comes down,
Threatening with deluge this devoted town.
To shops in crowds the daggled females fly,
Pretend to cheapen goods, but nothing buy.
The Templar spruce, while every spout's abroach,
Stays till 'tis fair, yet seems to call a coach.
The tuck’d-up semstress walks with hasty strides,
While streams run down her oil'd umbrella's sides.
Here various kinds, by various fortunes led,
Commence acquaintance underneath a shed.
Triumphant Tories, and desponding Whigs, I
Forget their feuds, and join to save their wigs. ll
Box'd in a chair the Beau impatient sits,
While spouts run clattering o'er the roof by fits,
And ever and anvn with frightful din
The leather sounds; he trembles from within.
*«• 'Twas doubtful which was sea and which was sky."

GARTH's Dispensary. + Originally thus, but altered when Pope published the “ Miscellanies ;

“ His only coat, where dust, confus'd with rain,

Roughens the nap, and leaves a mingled stain." Written in the first year of the earl of Oxford's ministry. ll As whig and wig only differ by an aspiration which is scarce to be distinguished, it may be thought an exception to SWIFT's remarkable exactness, that he has made them rhyme: but the same thing was afterwards done by Mr. Pope, either upon the Dean's authority, or because he did not think it liable to obje&tion:

“ A joke on Jekyll, or some odd old wling
"Who never chang'd his principles or zvie."

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

So when Troy chairmen bore the wooden steed,
Pregnant with Greeks impatient to be freed,
(Those bully Greeks, who, as the moderns do,
Instead of paying chairmen, ran them through)
Laocoon'struck the outside with his spear,
And each imprison’d hero quak'd for fear,

Now from all parts the swelling kennels flow,
And bear their trophies with them as they go :
Filths of all hues and odour, seem to tell
What street they sail'd from, by their sight and

They, as each torrent drives with rapid force,
From Smithfield to St. Pulchre's shape their course,
And in huge confluence joiu'd at Snowhill ridge,
Fall from the conduit prone to Holborn bridge.
Sweepings from butchers' stalls, dung, guts,

and blood,
Drown'd puppies, stinking sprats, all drench'd

in mud, Dead cats, and turnip-tops come tumbling down

the flood.





WHOEVER pleases to inquire
Why yonder steeple wants a spire,
The grey old fellow, poet Joe, *
The philosopic cause will show.

Mr. Beaumont of Trim. F.


Once on a time a western blast
At least twelve inches overcast,
Reckoning roof, weathercock, and all,
Which came with a prodigious fall;
And tumbling topsyturvy round,
Lit with its bottom on the ground:
For, by the laws of gravitation,
It fell into its

proper station.
This is the little strutting pile,
You see just by the churchyard stile;
The walls in tumbling gave a knock,
And thus the steeple got a shock;
From whence the neighbouring farmer calls
The steeple, Knock; the vicar, Walls.*

The vicar once a week creeps in,
Sits with his knees up to his chin;
Here cons his notes, and takes a whet,
Till the small ragged flock is met.

A traveller, who by did pass,
Observ'd the roof behind the grass
On tiptoe stood, and rear'd his spout,
And saw the parson creeping out;
Was much surprised to see a crow
Venture to build his nest so low.

A schoolboy ran unto't and thought,
The crib was down, the blackbird caught.
A third, who lost his way by night,
Was forc'd for safety to alight,
And stepping o'er thefabric roof,
His horse had like to spoil his hoof.

Warburtont took it in his noddle,
This building was design'd a model ;

• Archdeacon Wall, a correspondent of Swift's. F. + Dr. Swift's curate at Laracor. F.


Or of a pidgeon-house or oven,
To bake one loaf, and keep one dove in.

Then Mrs. Johnson * gave her verdict,
And every one was pleas'd that heard it :
All that you make this stir about
Is but a still which wants a spout.
The reverend Dr. Raymond † guess'd
More probably, than all the rest;
He said but that it wanted room
It might have been a pigmy's tomb.

The doctor's family came by,
And little miss began to cry:
Give me that house in my own hand!
Then madam bade the chariot stand,
Call'd to the clerk, in manner mild,
Pray, reach that thing here to the child :
That thing, I mean, among the kale;
And here's to buy a pot of ale.

The clerk said to her in a heat, * ;?
What! sell my master's country seat,
Where he comes every week from town!
He would not sell it for a crown.
Poh! fellow, keep not such a pother ;
In half an hour thou'lt make another.

Says Nancy, [ I can make for miss
A finer house ten time than this ;
The dean will give me willow sticks,
And Joe my apron-full of bricks.
* Stella. F.

+ Minister of Trim. F. * The waiting woman. F.

[ocr errors][merged small]
« PreviousContinue »