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With too much Quickness ever to be taught;
Turn then from Wits ; and look on Simo's Mate,
But what are these to great Atossa's mind ? 115 Scarce once herself, by turns all Womankind ! Who, with herself, or others, from her birth Finds all her life one warfare upon earth : Shines, in exposing Knaves, and painting Fools, Yet is, whate'er the hates and ridicules. No Thought advances, but her Eddy Brain Whisks it about, and down it goes again.
Oppress’d with wealth and wit, abundance fad !
Full sixty years the World has been her Trade,
130 Her every turn with Violence pursued, Nor more a storm her Hate than Gratitude : To that each Passion turns, or foon or late; Love, if it makes her yield, must make her hate : Superiors ? death! and Equals ? what a curse! 135 But an Inferior not dependant? worse. Offend her, and she knows not to forgive; Oblige her, and she 'll hate
you while you live : But die, and she 'll adore you-Then the Buft And Temple rise-then fall again to dust. 140 Last night, her Lord was all that 's good and great ; A Knave this morning, and his Will a Cheat. Strange ! by the Means defeated of the Ends, By Spirit robb’d of Power, by Warmth of Friends, By Wealth of Followers ! without one distress 145 Sick of herself, through very selfishness! Atossa, curs'd with every granted prayer, Childless with all her Children, wants an Heir.
Το VARIATION. After ver. 148. in the MS. This Death decides ; nor lets the blessing fall On any one the hates, but on them all.
To Heirs unknown descends th' unguarded store,
Pictures like these, dear Madam, to design,
155 Chameleons who can paint in white and black ?
“ Yet Chloe fure was form'd without a spot.”Nature in her then err’d not, but forgot. “With every pleasing, every prudent part,
Say, what can Chloe want?”—She wants a Heart. She speaks, behaves, and acts just as she ought; But never, never, reach'd one generous Thought. Virtue she finds too painful an endeavour, Content to dwell in Decencies for ever. So very reasonable, so unmov'd,
165 As never yet to love, or to be lov'd. She, while her Lover pants upon her breast, Can mark the figures on an Indian chest; And when she sees her Friend in deep despair, Observes how much a Chintz exceeds Mohair. 170 Forbid it, Heaven, a Favour or a Debt She e'er should cancel--but Me may forget. Safe is your
secret still in Chloe's ear; But none of Chloe's Thall you ever hear.
Of all her Dears she never slander'd one,
175 But cares not if a thousand are undone. Would Chloe know if you're alive or dead ? She bids her Footman put it in her head, Chloe is prudent-Would you too be wise ? Then never break your heart when Chloe dies. 180
One certain Portrait may (I grant) be seen, Which Heaven has varnish'd out, and made a Queen : The same for ever! and describ'd by all With Truth and Goodness, as with Crown and Ball. Poets heap Virtues, Painters Gems at will, 185 And shew their zeal, and hide their want of skill. 'Tis well—but, Artists ! who can paint or write, To draw the naked is your true delight. That Robe of Quality so struts and swells, None see what Parts of Nature it conceals : 190 Th’exactest traits of Body or of Mind, We owe to models of an humble kind. If Queensberry to strip there 's no compelling, 'Tis from a Handmaid we must take a Helen. From Peer or Bishop 'tis no easy thing
195 To draw the man who loves his God, or King: Alas! I copy, (or my draught would fail) From honeft Mah’met, or plain Parson Hale.
After ver. 198. in the MS.
Fain I'd in Falvia spy the tender Wife;
life : And, for a noble pride, I blush no less, Instead of Berenice to think on Bess.
But grant, in Public Men sometimes are shown,
Shame or Pride, Weakness or Delicacy; all so nice,
205 That each may seem a Virtue, or a Vice.
In Men we various Ruling Passions find;
That, Nature gives; and where the lesson taught
Woman is at heart a Rake:
Yet mark the fate of a whole Sex of Queens !
Thus while immortal Cibber only fings (As Clarke and Hoadly preach) for queens and kings, The Nymph that ne'er read Milton's mighty line,
May, if she love, and merit verse, have mine,
207 in the first Edition,