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You see me, as I said before,
Which longs with eager zeal to try Run up and down a page or more,
Her trackless path above the sky, Without one word of tribute due
But that the clog upon ber feet, To friendship's altar, and to you.
Restrains her flight, and damps her heat. Accept, then, in or out of time,
From BOILEAU down to his translators, My honest thanks, though writ in rhyme.
Dull paraphrafts, and imitators, And there once paid, (to obligations
All rail at metre at the time Repeated thanks grow ftale vexations,
They write and owe their sense to rhyme. And hurt the liberal donor more,
Had he so maul'd his gentle fue, Than all his lavish gifts before,)
But for that lucky word QUINEAUT? I skip about, as whim prevails,
Or had his strokes been half fo fine, Like your own frisky goats in WALES,
Without that closing name Cotin? And follow where the Muse shall lead,
Yet dares He on this very theme, O'er hedge and ditch, o'er hill or meaj.
His own APCLLO to blaspheme, Well might the * Lordly writer praise
And talk of wars 'twixt rhyme and sense, The first inventor of Ejays,
And murders which ensu'd from thence, Where wanton fancy gaily rambles,
As if they both resolv'd to meet, Walks, paces, gallops, trots, and ambles; Like Theban fons, in mutual heat, And all things may be sung or said,
Forgetful of the ties of brother, While drowsy METHOD's gone to bed,
To maim and massacre each other. And blest the poet, or the rhymist,
'Tis true, sometimes to costive brains, (For surely none of the fublimest)
A couplet costs exceeding pains ; Who prancing in his easy mode;
But where the fancy waits the skill Down this epistolary road,
Of fluent easy dress at will, Firit taught the Muse to play the fool,
The thoughts are oft, like colts which stray A truant from the pedant's school,
From fertile meads, and lose their way, And skipping, like a tasteless Junce,
Clapt up and faften’d in the pound O'er all the UNITIES at once ;
Of measur'd rhyme, and barren sound. (For so we keep but clink and rhyme,
-What are these jarring notes I hear, A fig for Action, PLACE, and Time.)
Grating harsh discord on my ear! But critics, (who still judge by rules,
How Thrill, how coarse, th' unsettled tone, Transmitted down as guides to fools,
Alternate 'twixt a squeak and drone,
Worse than the scrannel pipe of straw,
Will none that horrid fiddle break?
- spare it for GIARDINI's fake. As inconsistent with the law,
'Tis His, and only errs by chance, Which keeps the sober Muse in awe,
Play'd by the hand of ignorance, Who dares not for her life dispense,
From this allusion I infer, With such mechanic chains for fense.
'Tis not the art, but artists ert, Yet men are often apt to blame
And rhyme's a Aiddle, sweet indeed, Those errors they'd be proud to claim, ,
When touch'd by those who well can lead, And if their skill, of pigmy size,
Whose varied notes harmonious flow, To glorious darings cannot rise,
In tones prolong'd from sweeping bow; From critic spleen and pedant phlegm,
But harsh the sounds to ear and mind, Would make all genius creep with them.
From the poor fidler lame and blind, Nay e'en professors of the art,
Who begs in music at your door. To prove their wit betray their heart,
And thrums Jack Latin o'er and o’er.
Some MILTON-mad, (an affectation
Approve no verse, but that which Aows
In epithetic measur'd prose, While the trim bard in easy strains,
With trim expressions daily drest Talks much of fetters, clogs, and chains ;
Stil'n misapply'd, and not confett, He only aims that you should think,
And call it writing in the stile How charmingly he makes them clink.
Of that great Homer of our ise. So have I seen in tragic stride,
Whilom, what time, eft foons and erst, The hero of the Mourning Bride,
(So prose is oftentimes beverft) Sullen and sulky tread the stage :
Sprinkled with quaint fantastic phrase, Till, fixt attention to engage,
Uncouth to ears of modern days, He Alings his fetter'd arms about,
Make up the metre, which they call That all may find ALPHONSO out.
Blank, CLASSICK BLANK, their All in All. Oft have I heard it said by those,
Can only blank admit sublime ? Who moft shou'd blush to be her foes,
Go read and measure DRYDEN's rhyme. That rhyme's impertinent vexation,
Admire the magic of his song, Shackles the brave imagination,
See how his numbers roll along,
With ease and strength and varied pause, * Shaftsbury
Nor cramp'd by sound, nor metre's law..
Is harmony the gift of rhyme?
And BOILEAU leaves it as a rule Read, if you can, your Milton's chime; To all who enter PHOEBUS' school, Where talte, not wantonly severe,
To make the metre strong and fine, May find the measure, not the ear,
Poets write first your second line. As rhyme, rich rhyme, was DRYDIN's choice, 'Tis folly all-No poet flows And blank has MILTON's nobler voice,
In tuneful verse, who thinks in prose; I deem it as the subjects lead,
And all the mighty secret here That either measure will succeed.
Lies in the niceness of the ear. That rhyme will readily admit
E'en in this measure, when the muse, Of fancy numbers, force and wit;
With genuine ease, her way pursues, But though each couplet has its strength,
Though she affect to hide her skill, It palls in works of epic length.
And walks the town in dihabille, For who can bear to read or hear,
Something peculiar will be seen Though not offensive to the ear,
Of air, or grace, in fhape or mien, The mighty BLACKMOR E gravely fing
Which will, though carelesly display'd, Of ARTHUR PRINCE, and ARTHUR KING, Diftinguish MADAM from her maid. Heroic poems without number,
Here, by the way of critie fample, Long, lifeless, leaden, lulling lumber;
I give the precept and example. Nor piry such laborious toil,
Four feet, you know, in ev'ry line And lofs of midnight time and oil ?
Is Prior's measure, and is mine ; Yet glibly runs each jingling line,
Yet Tafte wou'd ne'er forgive the crime Smoother, perhaps, than yours or mine,
To talk of mine with Prior's rhyme. But still, (though peace be to the dead,)
Yet, take it on a Poet's word, The dull, dull poems weigh down lead.
There are who foolishly have err'd, So have I seen upon the road,
And marr'd their proper reputation, A waggon of a mountain's load,
By sticking close to imitation. Broad-whcel'd and drawn by horfes eight,
A double rhyme is often fought Pair'd like great folks who strut in ftate :
At strange expence of time and thought i While the gay steeds, as proud as strong,
And though sometimes a lucky hit Drag the now tottering weight along,
May give a zeft to BUTLER's wit; Each as the steep afcent he climbs,
Whatever makes the measure halt Moves to his bells, and walks in chimes.
Is beauty seldom, oft a fault. T'he Muses dwelt on Ovid's tongue,
For when we see the wit and pains, For Ovid never said, but sung,
The twisting of the stubborn brains, And Pope (for Pope affects the fame)
To cramp the sense within the bound In numbers lispid, for numbers came.
Of some queer double treble sound : Thus, in historic page I've read
Hard is the Muses's travail, and 'tis plain Of fome queen's daughter, fairy-bred,
'Tis pinien d sense, and Ease in PAIN; Who could not either cough or spit,
'Tis like a foot that's wrapt about Without some precious flow of wit,
With Aannel in the racking gout. While her fair lips were as a spout,
But here, methinks, 'tis more than tinde To tumble pearls and diamonds out.
To wave both fimile and rhyme; Yet though dame nature may bestow
For while, as pen and Muses please, This nack of verse, and jingling flow :
I talk so much of ease and easc, (And thousands have that impulse felt,
Though the word's mention'd o'er and o'er, With whom the Muses never dwelt)
I scarce have thought of yours before. Though it may save the laboring brain
'Tis true, when writing to one's friend, From many a thought-perplexing pain,
'Tis a rare science when to end, And while the rhyme presents itself,
As 'tis with wits a common fin Leaves Bysshe untouch'd upon the shelf;
To want th' attention to begin. Yet more demand the critic ear,
So, Sir, (at last indeed) adieu, Than the two catch-words in the rear,
Believe me, as yon'll find me, true; Which stand like watchmen in the close,
And if henceforth, at any time, To keep the verse from being prose,
APOLLO whispers you in rhyme, But when reflection has refin'd
Or Lady Fancy should dispose This boilt'rous bias of the mind.
Your mind to sally out in prose, When harmony enriches fense,
I shall receive, with hallow'd awe, And borrows stronger charms from thence,
The Muse's mail from FưEXNIY's draw.
Some boast, which none could e'er impart,
What precedents for fools to follow
Are Den the Devil and APOLLO!
While the great gawky ADMIRATION,
Intrinsic proper worth neglects,
And copies Errors and Defects.
The man, secure in strength of Parts,
Has no recourse to shuffling Arts,
Seeks not his nature to disguise,
His wit, his faults at once displays,
Careless of envy, or of praise ;
And foibles, which we often find
Just on the surface of the mind, To buckram works of higher tone ;
Strike common eyes, which can't discern
What to avoid, and what to learn.
Errors in wit conspicuous grow,
To use Gay's words, like specks in snow; Prefers this easy down-hill road,
Yet it were kind, at least, to make
'Allowance for the merit's sake; Jack-booted for an Eric chace.
And when such beauties fill the eye, That Bard, as other Bards, divine,
To let the blemishes go by. Who was a sacris to the Nine,
Plague on your philosophic fots ! Dan Prior I mean, with natural ease,
I'll view the fun without its spots. (For what's not nature cannot please)
Wits are peculiar in their mode; Would sometimes make his rhyming bow,
They cannot bear the hackney road
And will contract habitual ways,
Which sober people cannot praise,
And fools admire : Such fools I hate;
-Begone, ye Naves, who imitate.
Poor SPURIOUS ! eager to destroy
And murder hours he can't enjoy,
The lait of witlings, next to dunce, Though sober Maids are wooed in wine,
Would fain tuin Genius all at once, And therefore, as beyond a doubt,
But that the wretch mistakes his aim, You've found my dangling foible out,
And thinks a Libertine the same. Send me nectareous inspiration,
Connected as the hand and glove, Though others read Intoxication,
Is Madam POETRY and LOVE ; For there are those who vainly use
Shall not He then possess his Muse, This grand Elixir of the Muse,
And fetch CORINNA from the stews,
The burthen of his amorous verse,
And charming melter of his purse,
While happy REBUS tells the name 'Bove Pindus, or PLINLIMMON's height.
Of His and Drury's common Flame ? Whilit more of madman than of poet,
How will the wretch at BACCHUS'fhrine, They're drunk indeed, and do not know it.
Betray the cause of wit and wine,
And waste in bawdy, port, and pua,
In taste a very Goth or HUN,
Those little hours, of value more Has best adorn's Eternal Sense,
Than all the round of time before ; And, in his chearful moral page,
When fancy brightens with the flask, Speaks to mankind in every age;.
And the heart speaks without a mask? Tells us, from folks whole situation
Must Thou, whose genius, dull and cool, Makes them the mark of observation,
Is muddy as the stagnant pool ; Example oft gives Folly rise,
Whose torpid soul and suggish brains,
Dullness pervades, ard Wine disdains ;
Must Thou to nightly taverns run,
APOLLO's gueft, and Jonson's son ? And your own HORACE quaftd his wine
And in thy folly's beastly fit, In plen teous draughts at BACCHUS' Trine :
Attempt the fallies of a wit ? Nay, ADDISON would oft unbend,
Art thou the child of PHOEBUS' choir ? T'indulge his genius with a friend;
Think of the Adage Ass and Lyre*. (For fancy, which is often dry,
If thou wouldit really succeed,
And be a mimic wit indeed,
Or like WILL. DAVINANT lose your nose. * Dr. Richard Shepherd, Author of a didactic Poem called The Nuptials,
* Afinus ad Lyrami
O LUCIAX, Sire of antient wit,
PHILOSOPHER, all, all at once, Who wedding HUMOUR, didt beget
And to compleat them all this Dunce? Those doctors in the laughing school,
-All this you'll say is mighty fine, Thore Giant fons of RIDICULE,
But what has this to do with Wine? SWIFT, RAB'lais, and † that favourite Child, Have patience and the Mule ihall tell Who, less excentrically wild,
What you my friend, know tuil as well, Inverts the misanthropic Plır,
Vice in Poets, Wits and Kings, And hating vices, hatcs not Man:
Are catching, imitable things; How do I love thy giling vein!
And frailties ftanding out to view, Which glances at the mimic train
Become the objects fools pursue. Of futs, who proud of modern beaux
Thus have I pictures often seen, Of birth-day suits, and tinsel cloaths,
Where features neither speak nor mean, Affecting cynical grimace
Yet spite of all, the face will strike, With philofophic stupid fare,
And mads us that it should be like, In dirty hue, with naked feet,
When all the near resemblance grows, In rags and tatters, itrole the street ;
From scratch or pimple on the Nose. OSTENSIVELY exceeding wise ;
To Poets then (I mcan not here But Knaves, and Fools, and walking Lies,
The scribbling Drudge, or scribbling Peer, External Mimicry their plan,
Nor those who have the monthly fit, The monkey's copy atter Man.
The Lunatics of modero Wit) Wits too poffefs this affectation,
To Poets Wine is inspiration, And live a life of imitation,
Blockheads get drunk in imitation. Are Slovens, Revellers and Brutes,
As different Liquors different ways Laborious, absent, prattlers, Mutes,
Affect the body, sometimes raise From some example handed down
The fancy to an Eagle's Alight, Of some great Genius of Renown.
And make the heart feel wond'rous If ADDISON, from habit's trick,
Ai other times the circling mug, Could bite his fingers to the quick,
Like LETHE's draught, or opiate drug, Shall not I nibble from design,
Will ftrike the senses on a heap, And be an ADDISON to mine?
When Folks talk wife, who talk asleep ; If Pope most feelingly complains
A whimsical imagination, Of aching head, and throbbing pains,
Might from a whimsical relation, My head and arın his posture hit,
How every Author writes and thinks And I already ache for wit.
Analagous to what he drinks, If Churchill, following nature's call,
While quaint Conjecture's lucky hit, Has head that never aches at all,
Finds out his bev'rage in his Wit. With burning brow, and heavy eye,
Ye goodly dray-nymph Muses, hail ! I'll give my looks and pain the Lye.
MUM, PORTER, STINGO, Mild and STALE, If huge tall words of termination,
And chiefly thou of boasted fame, Which ark a Critic's explanation,
Of Roman and IMPERIAL name ; Come rolling out along with thought,
O Purl! all hail! thy vot’ry steals, And seem to stand just where they ought ;
His stockings dangling at his heels, If language more in grammar drest,
To where some pendant head invites With greater emphalis exprelt,
The Bard to set his own to rights, Unitudied, unaffected flows,
Who seeks thy influence divine, In some great Wit's conversing prose:
And pours libations on thy shrine, If from the tongue the period round
In wormwood draughts of inspiration, Fall into stile, and swell the sound,
To whet his soul for defamation. 'Tis nature which herself displays,
Hail too, your Domes ! whose Master's skill And JOHNSON speaks a Jornson's phrase. Takes up illustrious folks at will, But can you hear, without a smile,
And careless or of place or name, The formal coxcomb ape his style,
Beheads and hangs to public fame Who, most dogmatically wise,
Fine garter’J Knights, blue, red, or green, Attempts to cenfure, and despise,
Lords, Earls and Dukes, nay King, or Queen, Affecting what he cannot reach,
And sometimes pairs them both together, A trim propriety of speech ?
To dangle to the wind and weather ; What though his pompous Language wear
Or claps some mighty General there, The grand decisive solemn Air,
Who has not any head to spare. Where quaint ANTITHESIS prevails,
Or if it more his fancy suit, And sentences are weighed in scales,
Pourtrays or filh, or bird, or brute. Can you bow dow: with reverend awe
And luies the gaping, thirsty guest, Before this puppet king of straw ?
To Scott's entire, or TRUEMAN's beft. Or hush'd in mute contention fit,
Ye chequer'd Domes thrice hail! for hence To hear this CRITIC, POET, WIT,
The fire of Wit, the froth of Sense,
Here gentle Puns, ambiguous Joke, + The late inimitable HENRY FIELDING, Esq.
Burst forth oracular in smoke,
Hence iffue Treatises and Rhymes,
While genius, which too oft disdains The Wit and Wonder of the Times,
To bear e'en honourable chains ; Hence Scandal, Piracies and Lies,
(Such as a sheriff's self might wear Defensive Pamphlets on EXCISE,
Orgrace the wisdom of a may'r) The murd'rous Articles of News,
Turns rebel to dame REASON'S throne And pert THEATRICA REVIEWS.
And holds no judgment like his own. Hither, as to their Urns, repair,
Yet while they fpatrer mutual dirt, Bard, Publisher, and minor Play'r,
In idle threats that cannot hurt, And o'er the Porter's foaming head
Methinks they waste a deal of time, Their venom'd malice nightly shed,
Both fool in prose, and fool in rhyme And aim their batteries of dirt
And when the angry bard exclaims, At Genius, which they cannot hurt.
And calls a thou fand paltry names, Smack not their works, if verse or profe
He doth his critic mighty wrong, Offend your eye, or ear, or nose,
And hurts the dignity of song.
T'he prefatory matter past
A candle stuck in flaring state
Within the nozzle of French plate, And spite of all her inspiration,
Tow’ring aloft with smoaky light, Betrays her alehouse education ?
The snuff and flame of won'drous height; Alas! how very few are found,
(For, virgin yet of amputation, Whofe style tastes neat and full and found !
No force had check'd its inclination)
Sullen address'd with conscious pride,
“ Mean vulgar tools, whose envious aim
" Strikes at the vitals of my flame, But when, obedient to the mode
16 Your rude assaults shall hurt no more, Of panegyric, courtly ode,
- Sce how my beams triumphant foar ! The bard bestrides his annual hack,
" See how I gayly blaze alone In vain I taste, and sip and smack,
“ With strength, with lustre all my own. I find no flavour of the Sack.
“ Lustre, good fir!" the snuffers cried, But while I ramble and refine
" Alas ! how ignorant is pride! On flavour, Style, and Wit and Wine,
" Thy light which wavers round the room, Your Claret, which I would not waste,
16 Shews as the counterfeit of gloom, Recalls me to my proper tafte;
“ Thy snuff which idly tow'rs so high So ending, as 'tis more than time,
" Will waste thy essence by and by, At once my Letter, glass and rhyme,
" Which, as I prize thy luftre dear I take this bumper off to you,
" I fain would lop to make thee clear. Tis SHEPHERD's health-dear friend, adieu. " Boast not, old friend, thy random rays,
“ Thy wafting strength, and quiv'ring blaze,
" You must burn true as well as bright." THE CANDLE AND SNUFFERS. Poets like candles all are puffers,
And critics are the candle snuffers.
AF A B L E.
THE TEMPLE OF FAVOUR,
TO WILLIAM KINRICK.
O author ever spar'd a brother :
Wits are game cocks to one another.”