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Receiv'd of wits an undistinguish'd race, • Who first his judgment ask'd, and then a place: Much they extoll'd his pictures, much his seat, And flatter'd every day, and some days eat; 240 Till grown more frugal in his riper days, He paid some bards with port, and some with praise; To some a dry rehearsal was assign'd, Aud others (harder still) he paid in kind. Dryden alone (what wonder!) came not nigh; 245 Dryden alone escap'd this judging eye: But still the great have kindness in reserve, He help'd to bury whom he help'd to starve. May some choice patron bless each grey-goose
quill! May every Bavius have his Bufo still! So when a statesman wants a day's defence, Or envy holds a whole week's war with sense, Or simple pride for flattery makes demands, May dunce by dunce be whistled off my hands! Bless'd be the great! for those they take away, 255 And those they left me for they left me Gay: Left me to see neglected genius bloom, Neglected die, and tell it on his tomb: Of all thy blameless life the sole return My verse, and Queensberry weeping o'er thy urn!
O! let me live my own, and die so too! 261 (To live and die is all I have to do ;) Maintain a poet's dignity and ease, And see what friends, and read what books, I please; Above a patron, though I condescend
265 Sometimes to call a minister my friend. I was not born for courts or great affairs; I pay my debts, believe, and say my prayers; Can sleep without a poem in my head. Nor know if Dennis be alive or dead.
870 Why am I ask'd what next shall see the light? Heav'ns! was I born for nothing but to write? Has life no joys for me? or (to be grave) Have I 10 friend to serve, no soul to save
« I found him close with Swift.”-“ Indeed! no doubt
275 (Cries prating Balbus) something will come out." 'Tis all in vain, deny it as I will; “ No; such a genius never can lie still;" And then for mine obligingly mistakes The first lampoon Sir Will or Bubo makes. 280 Poor guiltless I! and can I chuse but smile, When every coxcomb knows me by my style?
Curst be the verse, how well soe'er it flow, That tends to make one worthy inan my foe, Give virtue scandal, innocence a fear,
285 Or from the soft-ey'd virgin steal a tear! But he who hurts a harmless neighbour's peace, Insults fall’n worth, or beauty in distress, Who loves a lie, lame siander helps about, Who writes a libel, or who copies out;
290 That fop whose pride affects a patron's name, Yet absent wounds an author's honest fame; Who can your merit selfishly approve, And shew the sense of it without the love; Who has the vanity to call you friend,
295 Yet wants the honour, injur'd, to defend; Who tells whate'er you think, whate'er you say, And, if he lie not, must at least betray; Who to the dean and silver bell can swear, And sees at Canons what was never there; 300 Who reads, but with a lust to misapply, Makes satire a lampoon, and fiction lie; A lash like mine no honest man shall dread, But all such babbling blockheads in his stead.
Let Sporus tremble-A. What? that thing of silk, Sporus!' that mere white curd of asses' milk? 306 Satire or sense, alas! can Sporus feel! Who breaks a butterfly upon a wheel?
P. Yet let me flap this bug with gilded wings, This painted child of dirt that stinks and stings; 310 Whose buzz the witty and the fair annoys, Yet wit ne'er tastes, and beauty ne'er enjoys:
So well-bred spaniels civilly delight
825 Amphibious thing! that acting either part, The trilling head or the corrupted heart; Fop at the toilette, Aatterer at the board, Now trips a lady, and now struts a lord. Eve's tempter thus, the Rabbins have exprest, 330 A cherub's face, a reptile all the rest; Beauty that shocks you, parts that none will trust, Wit that can creep, and pride that licks the dust.
Not fortune's worshipper, nor fashion's fool, Not lucre's madman, nor ambition's tool, 385 Not proud nor servile, be one's poet's praise, That if he pleas'd he pleas'd by manly ways; That flattery, ev'n to kings, he keld a shame, And thought a lie in verse or prose the same; That not in fancy's maze he wander'd long,
340 But stoop'd to truth, and moraliz'd his song; That not for fame, but virtue's better end, He stood the furious foe, the timid friend, The damning critic, half-approving wit, The coxcomb hit, or fearing to be hit;
346 Laugh'd at the loss of friends he never had, The dull, the proud, the wicked, and the mad; The distant threats of rengeance on his head, The blow unfelt, the tear he never shed; The tale reviv'd, the lie so oft o'erthrown, 350 Th'imputed trash and dulness not his own;
The morals blacken'd when the writings 'scape,
A. But why insult the poor, affront the great ? 360
P. A knave's a knave to me in crery state; Alike my scorn if he succeed or fail, Sporus at court, or Japhet in a jail; . A hireling scribbler, or a hireling peer, Knight of the post corrupt, or of the shire; • 365 If on a pillory, or near a throne, He gain his prince's ear, or lose his own.
Yet soft by nature, more a dupe than wit, Sappho can tell you how this man was bit: This dreaded satirist Dennis will confess 370 Foe to his pride, but friend to his distress: So humble, he has knock'd at Tibbald's door, Has drunk with Cibber; nay, has rhym'd for
Moore. Full ten years slander'd, did he once reply? Three thousand suns went down on Welsted's lie. . To please a mistress one aspers’d his life; 376 He lash'd him not, but let her be his wife: Let Budgell charge low Grub-street on his quill, And write whate'er he pleas'd, except his will; Let the two Curlls of town and court abuse 380 His father, mother, body, soul, and Muse: Yet why? that father held it for a rule, It was a sin to call our neighbour fool; Tbat harmless mother thought no wife a whore; Hear this, and spare his family, James Moore! 385 Unspotted names, and memorable long! If there be force in virtue or in song, .
Of gentle blood (part shed in honour's cause, While yet in Britain honour had applause)
Each parent sprung-A. What fortune, pray
P. Their own; And better got than Bestia's from the throne. Born to no pride, inheriting no strife, Nor marrying discord in a noble wife, Stranger to civil and religious rage, The good man walk'd innoxious through his age: 995 No courts he saw, no suits would ever try, Nor dar'd an oath, nor hazarded a lie. Unlearn'd, he knew no schoolman's subtle art, No language but the language of the heart. By nature honest, by experience wise,
400 Healthy by temperance and by exercise; His life, though long, to sickness past unknown; His death was instant, and without a groan. O grant me thus to live, and thus to die! Who sprung from kings shall know less joy than I. O friend! may each domestic bliss be thine! 406 Be no unpleasing melancholy mine: Me let the tender office long engage To rock the cradle of reposing age, With lenient arts extend a mother's breath, · 410 Make languor smile, and smooth the bed of death, Explore the thought, explain the asking eye, And keep awhile one parent from the sky! On cares like these, if length of days attend, May Heav'n, to bless those days, preserve my friend, I’reserve him social, cheerful, and serene, 416 And just as rich as when he serv'd a queen.
A. Whether that blessing be denied or given, Thus far was right ;-the rest belongs to Heaven,