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BOOK II. SATIRE I.

TO MR. FORTESCUE.

P. rpHERE are (I scarce can think it, but am told)
*** There are, to whom my satire seems too bold;
Scarce to vise Peter complaisant enough,
And something said of Chartres much too rough.
The lines are weak, another's pleas'd to say;
Lord Fanny spins a thousand such a day.
Timorous by nature, of the rich in awe,
I come to counsel learned in the law:
Yon'll give me, like a friend, both sage and free,
Advice; and (as you use) without a tee.

F. I'd write no more.

P. Not write? but then I think,
And for my soul I cannot sleep a wink.
I nod in company, I wake at night,
Fools rush into my head, and so I write.

P. You could not do a worse thing for your life.
Why, if the night seems tedious -take a wife:
Or rather truly, if your point be rest,
Lettuce and cowslip wine; probatum est.
But talk with Celsus, Celsus will advise
Hartshorn, or something that shall close your eyes.
Or, if you needs must write, write Caesar's praise,
Yon'll gain at least a knighthood, or the bays.

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,
Paint angels trembling round his falling horse?

F. Then all your muse's softer art display,
Let Carolina smooth the tuneful lay,
Lull with Amelia's liquid name the nine,
And sweetly flow through all the royal line,
P. Alas! few verses touch their nicer ear;
They scarce can bear their lanreat twice a year:
And justly Caesar scorns the poet's lays;
It is to history he trusts for praise.

F. Belter be Cibber, I'll maintain it still,
Than ridicule all taste, blaspheme quadrille,
Abuse the city's best good men in metre,
And langh at peers that put their trust in Peter.
Xv'n those you touch not, hate yon.

P. What should ail 'em f
F. A hundred smart in Tim on and in Balaam:
The fewer still you name, you wound the more;
Bond is but one, but Harpax is a score.

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,
Like good Erasmus in an honest mean,
In moderation placing all my glory,
"While Tories call me Whig, and Whigs a Tory.

Satire's my weapon, but I'm too discreet
To run a-muck, and tilt at all 1 meet;
I only wear it in a land of Hectors/*
Thieves, supercargoes, sharpers, and directors.
Save but our army! and let Jove incrust
Swords, pikes, and guns, with everlasting rust?
Peace is my dear delight—not Flenry's more:
But touch me, and no minister so sore.
Whoe'er offends, at some unlucky time
Slides into verse, and hitches in a rhyme,
Sacred to ridicule his whole life long,
And the sad burthen of some merry song.

Slander or poison dread from Delia's rage;
Hard words or hanging, if your judge be Page.
From furious Sappho scarce a milder fate,
P-x'd by her love, or libell'd by her hate.
Its proper power to hurt, each creature feels;
Bulls aim their horns, and asses lift their heels;
Tis a bear's talent not to kick, but hug;
And no man wonders he's not stung by pug.
So drink with Walters, or with Chartres eat,
They'll never poison yon, they'll only cheat.

Then, learned sir! (to cut the matter short)
Whate'er my fate, or well or ill at court;
Whether old-age, with faint but cheerful ray,
Attends to gild the evening of my day,
Or Death's black wing already be display'd,
To wrap me in the universal shade;
Whether the darken'd room to muse invite,
Or whiten'd wall provoke the skewer to write:
In durance, exile, Bedlam, or the Mint,
Like Lee or Budgell, I will rhyme and print.

F. Alas, young man! your days can ne'er be long,
In flower of age you perish for a song!
Plums and directors, Shylock and his wife,
Will club their testers, now, to take your life I

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
A man washang'd for very honest rhymes;
Consult the statute, quart. I think it is,
Edwardi Hxt. or prim, et quint. Eliz.
See libels, satires—here you have it—read*

P. Libels and satires! lawless things indeed!
But grave epistles, bringing vice to light,
Such as a king might read, a bishop write,
Such as sir Robert would approve—

F. Indeed!
The case is alter'd—you may then proceed;
In such a case the plaintiff will be hiss'd,
My lords the judges laugh, and yon're dismiss'd.

BOOK II. SATIRE II.

TO MR. BETHEL.

TT7HAT, and how great, the virtue and the art
"» To live on little with a cheerful heart
(A doctrine sage, but truly none of mine);
Let's talk, my friends, but talk before we t^ine.
Not when a gilt buffet's reflected pride
Turns you from sound philosophy aside;
Not when from plate to plate your eye-balls roll,
And the brain dances to the mantling bowl.

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;

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