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IN SICKNESS. Written in IRELAND, October 1714. 'TIS
'IS true then why should I repine
To see my life so fast decline ?
But why obscurely here alone,
Where I am neither lov'd nor known?
My state of health none care to learn;
My life is here no foul's concern :
And those with whom I now converse
Without a tear will tend my hearse.
Remov'd from kind Arbuthnot's aid,
Who knows his art, but not his trade,
Preferring his regard for me
Before his credit, or his fee.
Some formal vifts, looks, and words,
What mere humanity affords,
I meet perhaps from three or four,
From whom I once expected more ;
Which those who tend the fick for pay
Can act as decently as they :
But no obliging tender friend
To help at my approaching end.
My life is now a burden grown
To others, ere it be iny own.
Ye formal weepers for the fick,
In your last offices be quick ;
And spare my absent friends the grief
To hear, yet give me no relicf ;
Expir’d to-day, intomb’d to-morrow,
When known, will save a double-forrow.
THE FABLE OF THE BITCHES.
Written in the Year 1715. On an ATTEMPT to repeal the TEST Act.
By all the dogs and curs in town,
Finding her ripen'd time was come,
Her litter teeming from her womb,
Went here and there, and every where,
To find an easy place to lay-her.
At length to Musick's house * she came,
And begg'd like one both blind and lame;
“My only friend, my dear,” said she,
“ You see 'tis inere necessity,
“ Hath sent me to your house to whelp;
“ I 'll die, if you deny your help.”
With fawning whine, and rueful tone,
With artful sigh and feigned groan,
With couchant cringe, and Aattering tale,
Smooth Bawty + did so far prevail,
That Mufick gave her leave to litter ;
But mark what follow'd faith! she bit her.
Whole baskets full of bits and scraps,
And broth enough to fill her paps ;
* The church of England. + A Scotch naine for a bitch; alluding to the kirk.
For, well she knew, her numerous brood,
For want of milk, would fuck her blood.
But when she thought her pains were done,
And now 'twas high time to be gone ;
In civil terms, .“ My friend,” says she,
've had on courtesy ; . “ And now I earnestly desire, « That you would with
cubs retire: “ For, should you stay but one week longer, “ I shall be starv'd with cold and hunger."
The guest reply'd “My friend, your leave " I must a little longer crave;
Stay till my tender cubs can find “ Their way - for now, you see, they 're blind; “ But, when we 've gather'd strength, I swear, “ We'll to our barn again repair.”
The time pass d on; and Musick came,
Her kennel once again to claim ;
But Bawty, lost to shame and honour, ,
Set all her cubs at once upon her ;
Made her retire, and quit her right,
And loudly cry'd -“A bite! a bite !"
Thus did the Grecian wooden horses
Conceal a fatal armed force :
No sooner brought within the walls;.-
But Ilium 's lost, and Priam falls.
HORACE, BOOK III, ODE II.
TO THE EARL OF OXFORD,
LATE LORD TREASURER.
Sent to him when in the Tower, 1776.
Since death pursues the coward as he flies !
The youth in vain would Ay from Fate's attack,
With trembling knees and cerror at his back;
Though fear should lend him pinions like the wind,
Yet swifter fate will seize him from behinch
Virtue repuls’d, yet knows not to repine ;
But shall with unattainted honour shine ;
Nor stoops to take the faff*, nor lays it down,
Just as the rabble please to simile or frown.
Virtue, to crown her favourites, loves to try
Some new unbeaten passage to the sky;
Where Jove a seat among the gods will give
To those who die for meriting to live.
Next, faithful Silence hath a sure reward ;
Within our breast be
He, who betrays his friend, shall never be
Under one roof, or in one fhip, with me.
For who with traitors would his safety trust,
Left, with the wicked, heaven involve the just?
And, though the villain 'scape a while, he feels
Slow vengeance, like a blood-hound, at his heels.
* The ensign of the lord treasurer's office.
THE PROGRESS OF LOVE. 1716.
DESPONDING Phyllis was endued
With every talent of a prude :
She trembled when a man drew near;
Salute her, and the turn’d her ear;
If o’er against her you were plac'd,
She durft not look above
She 'd rather take you to her bed,
Than let you see her dress her head :
In church you hear her, through the croud,
Repeat the absolution loud :
In church, fecure behind her fan,
She durft behold that monster man;
There practis'd how to place her head,
And bit her lips to make them red;
Or, on the mat devoutly kneeling,
Would lift her eyes up to the cieling,
And heave her bosom unaware,
For neighbouring beaux to see it bare.
At length a lucky lover came,
And found admittance to the dame.
Suppose all parties now agreed,
The writings drawn, the lawyer fee'd,
The vicar and the ring bespoke :
Guess, how could such a match be broke