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BOOK II. SATIRE I.
TO MR. FORTESCUE.
P. rpHERE are (I scarce can think it, but am told)
F. I'd write no more.
P. Not write? but then I think,
P. You could not do a worse thing for your life.
P. What t like sir Richard, rumbling, rough, and fierce,
With arms and George and Brunswick crowd the verse,
Rend with tremendous sound your ears asunder, With gun, drum, trumpet, blunderbuss, and thunder? P
Or nobly wild, with Bndgell's fire and force,
F. Then all your muse's softer art display,
F. Belter be Cibber, I'll maintain it still,
P. What should ail 'em f
P. Each mortal has his pleasure: none deny Scarsdale his bottle, Darty his ham-pie; Ridotta sips and dances, till she see The doubling lustres dance as fast as she: F— loves the senate, Hockley hole his brother like in all else, as one egg to another. I love to pour out all myself, as plain As downright Shippen, or as old Montague: In them, as certain to be lov'd as seen, The soul stood forth, nor kept a thought within; In me what spots (for spots I have) appear, Will prove at least the medinm must be clear. In this impartial glass, my muse intends Fair to expose myself, my foes, my friends; Publish the present age; but where my text Is vice too high, reserve it for the next: My foes shall wish my life a longer date, And every friend the less lament my fate. My head and heart thus flowing through my quill, Verseman or proseman, term me what you will,
Papist or Protestant, or both between,
Satire's my weapon, but I'm too discreet
Slander or poison dread from Delia's rage;
Then, learned sir! (to cut the matter short)
F. Alas, young man! your days can ne'er be long,
F. What? arm'd for virtue when I point the pen, Brand the bold front of shameless guilty men; I)ash the prond gamester in his gilded car; Bare the mean heart that lurks beneath a star; Can there be wanting, to defend her canse, Lights of the church, or guardians of the laws? Could pension'd Boilean lash in honest strain Flatterers and bigots ev'n in Louis' reign? Could lanreat Dryden pimp and friar engage, Yet neither Charles nor James be in a rage? And I not strip the gilding off a knave, Unplac'd, unpension'd, no man's heir or slave? I will, or perish in the generous canse: * Hear this and tremble! you who 'scape the laws. Yes, while I live, no rich or noble knave Shall walk the world in credit to his grave: To virtue only and her friends a friend, The world beside may murmur or commend. Know, all the distant din that world can keep, Rolls o'er my grotto, and but sooths my sleep. There, my retreat the best companions grace, Chiefs out of war, and statesmen out of place. There St. John mingles with my friendly bowl The feast of reason and the flow of soul: And he, whose lightning pierc'd th' Iberian lines, Now forms my quincunx, and now ranks my vines; Or tames the genins of the stubborn plain, Almost as quickly as he conquer d Spain.
Envy must own I live among the great, No pimp of pleasure, and no spy of state; With eyes that pry not, tongue that ne'er repeats; Fond to spread friendships, but to cover heats; To help who want, to forward who excel; This, all who know me, know; who love me, tell; And who unknown defame me, let them be Scribblers or peers, alike are mob to me. This is my plea, on this I rest my canse— What saith my counsel, learned in the laws?
F. Your plea is good; but still J say, beware! T.aws are explain'd by men—so have a care. • •
It stands Od record, that in Richard's times
P. Libels and satires! lawless things indeed!
BOOK II. SATIRE II.
TO MR. BETHEL.
TT7HAT, and how great, the virtue and the art
Hear Bethel's sermon, one not vers'd in schools, But strong in sense, aud wise without the rules.
'Go work, hunt, exercise,' he thus began, 'Then scorn a homely dinner, if you can. Your wine lock'd up, your butler stroll'd abroad. Or fish denied (the river yet unthaw'd), If then plain bread and milk will do the feat, The pleasure lies in yon, and not the meat:
Preach as I please, I doubt our curious men Will choose a pheasant still before a hen;