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IMITATIONS

OF ENGLISH POETS.

Done by the Author in his Youth.

CHAUCER.

W OMEN ben full of ragerie,

V Yet swinken nat sans secresie.
Thilke moral shall ye understond,
From schoole-boy's tale of fayre Irelond:
Which to the fennes hath him betake,
To filch the gray ducke fro the lake.
Right then, there passen by the way
His aunt, and eke her daughters tway.
Ducke in his trowsers hath he hent,
Not to be spied of ladies gent.

But ho! our nephew,' cryeth one, • Ho!' quoth another, 'cozen John;' And stoppen, and lough, and callen outThis silly clerke full low doth lout: They asken that, and talken this, *Lo! here is coz, and here is miss.' But, as he glozeth with speeches soote, The ducke sore tickleth his erse roote: Fore-piece and buttons all to-brest, Forth thrust a white neck, and red crest. • Te-he,' cry'd ladies; clerke nought spake: Miss star'd; and gray duke cryeth Quaake." • O moder, moder,' quoth the daughter. • Be thilke same thing maids longen a'ter? Bette is to pine on coals and chalke, Then trust on mon, whose yerde can talke.'

SPENSER.

THE ALLEY.

TN every town where Thamis rolls his tyde,
1 A narrow pass there is, with houses low;
Where, ever and anon, the stream is ey'd,
And many a boat soft sliding to and fro.
There oft are heard the notes of infant woe,
The short thick sob, loud scream, and shriller

squall:
How can ye, mothers, rex your children so ?
Some play, some eat, some cack against the wall.
And as they crouchen low, for bread and butter

call. And on the broken pavement, here and there, Doth many a stinking sprat and herring lie; A brandy and tobacco shop is near, And hens, and dogs, and hogs are feeding by; And here a sailor's jacket hangs to dry. At every door are sun-burnt matrons seen, Mending old nets to catch the scaly fry, Now singing shrill, and scolding eft between; Scolds answer foul-mouth'd scolds; bad neighbour.

hood I ween.
The snappish cur (the passenger's annoy)
Close at my heel with yelping treble fies;
The whimp'ring girl, and hoarser screaming boy,
Join to the yelping treble, shrilling cries;
The scolding quean to louder notes doth rise,
And her full pipes those shrilling cries confound;
To her full pipes the grunting hog replies;
The grunting hogs alarm the neighbours round,
And curs, girls, boys, and scolds, in the deep base

are drown'd.
Hard by a sty, beneath a roof of thatch,
Dwelt Obloquy, who in her early days
Baskets of fish at Billingsgate did watch,

Cod, whiting, oyster, mackrel, sprat, or plaice:
There learn'd she speech from tongues that never

cease.
Slander beside her, like a magpie, chatters,
With Envy (spitting cat), dread foe to peace;
Like a curs'd cur, Malice before her clatters,
And, vexing every wight, tears clothes and all to

tatters. Her dugs were mark'd by every collier's hand, Her mouth was black as bull-dog's at the stall: She scratched, bit, and spar'd ne lace ne band, And bitch and rogue her answer was to all; Nay, e'en the parts of shame by name would call; Yea, when she passed by or lane or nook, Would greet the man who turn’d him to the wall, And by his hand obscene the porter took, Nor ever did askance like modest virgin look. Such place hath Deptford, navy-building town, Woolwich and Wapping, smelling strong of pitch: Such Lambeth, envy of each band and gown; And Twickenham such, which fairer scenes enrich, Grots, statues, urns, and Jon's dog and bitch. Ne village is without, on either side, All up the silver Thames, or all adown; Ne Richmond's self, from whose tall front are ey'd Vales, spires, meandering streams, and Windsor's

towery pride.

WALLER.
OF A LADY SINGING TO HER LUTE.
TAIR charmer, cease, nor make your voice's prize
T A heart resign'd the conquest of your eyes:
Well might, alas! that threaten'd vessel fail,
Which winds and lightning both at once assail.
We were too blest with these enchanting lays,
Which must be beavenly when an angel plays:

But killing charms your lover's death contrive,
Lest heavenly music should be heard alive,
Orpheus could charm the trees; but thus a tree,
Taught by your hand, can charm no less than he:
A poet made the silent wood pursue,
This vocal wood had drawn the poet too.

ON A FAN OF THE AUTHOR'S DESIGN,

In which was painted the Story of Cephalus and

Procris, with the Motto, 'Aura veni.'

•COME, gentle air !' th' Æolian shepherd said,
U While Procris panted in the secret shade;
• Come, gentle air,' the fairer Delia cries,
While at her feet her swain expiring lies.
Lo, the glad gales o'er all her beauties stray,
Breathe on her lips, and in her bosom play!
Ju Delia's hand this toy is fatal found,
Nor could that fabled dart more surely wound;
Both gifts destructive to the givers prove;
Alike both lovers fall by those they love.
Yet guiltless too this bright destroyer lives,
At random wounds, nor knows the wound she gives;
She views the story with attentive eyes,
And pities Procris, while her lover dies.

COWLEY.

THE GARDEN. INAIN would my muse the flowery treasure sing, I' And humble glories of the youthful spring : Where opening roses breathing sweets diffuse, And soft carnations shower their balmy dews;

Where lilies smile in virgin robes of white,
The thin undress of superficial light,
And varied tulips show so dazzling gay,
Blushing in bright diversities of day.
Each painted flow'ret in the lake below
Surveys its beauties, whence its beauties grow;
And pale Narcissus on the bank, in vain
Transformed, gazes on himself again.
Here aged trees cathedral walks compose,
And mount the hill in venerable rows;
There the green infants in their beds are laid,
The garden's hope, and its expected shade,
Here orange trees with blooms and pendants shine,
And vernal lionours to their autumn join;
Exceed their promise in their ripen'd store,
Yet in the rising blossom promise more.
There in bright drops the crystal fountains play,
By laurels shielded from the piercing day:
Where Daphne, now a tree, as once a maid,
Still from Apollo vindicates her shade,
Still turns her beauties from th' invading beam,
Nor seeks in vain for succour to the stream;
The stream at once preserves her virgin leaves,
At once a shelter from her boughs receives,
Where summer's beauty midst of winter stays,
And winter's coolness spite of summer's rays.

WEEPING.

W HILE Celia's tears make sorrow bright,

VV Proud grief sits swelling in her eyes : The sun, next those the fairest light,

Thus from the ocean first did rise : ' And thus through mists we see the sun, Which else we durst not gaze upon.

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