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Yet Hercules was not so strong,
Nor could have borne it half fo long.
Great statesmen are in this condition;
And Atlas is a politician,
A premier minifter of state;
Alcides one of fecond rate.
Suppose then Atlas ne'er fo wife;
Yet, when the weight of kingdoms lies
Too long upon his fingle shoulders,
Şink down he muft, or find upholders.
Scene, THE ROYAL EXCHANGE.
NOW the keen rigour of the winter's o'er,
No hail defcends, and frofts can pinch no more,
Whilft other girls confefs the genial spring,
And laugh aloud, or amorous ditties fing,
Secure from cold their lovely necks display,
And throw each useless chafing-dish away;
Why fits my Phillis difcontented here,
Nor feels the turn of the revolving year?
Why on that brow dwell forrow and dismay,
Where Loves were wont to sport, and Smiles to play?
PHILLIS. Ah, Corydon ! furvey the 'Change around,
Through all the 'Change no wretch like me is found :
Alas! the day, when I, poor heedlefs maid,
Was to your rooms in Lincoln's-Inn betray'd;
Then how you swore, how many vows you made!
Ye liftening Zephyrs, that o'erheard his love,
Waft the foft accents to the gods above.
Alas! the day; for (oh, eternal fhame!)
I fold you handkerchiefs, and loft my fame.
COR. When I forget the favour you beftow'd,
Red herrings shall be spawn'd in Tyburn Road.
Fleet-street transform'd become a flowery green,
And mafs be fung where operas are feen.
The wealthy cit and the St. James's beau
Shall change their quarters, and their joys forego;
Stock-jobbing this to Jonathan's fhall come,
At the Groom Porter's that play off his plum.
PHIL. But what to me does all that love avail,
If, whilft I doze at home o'er porter's ale,
Each night with wine and wenches you regale?
My live-long hours in anxious cares are past,.
And raging hunger lays my beauty waste.
On templars fpruce in vain I glances throw,
And with fhrill voice invite them as they go.
Expos'd in vain my gloffy ribbands shine,
And unregarded wave upon the twine.
The week flies round; and, when my profit's known,
I hardly clear enough to change a crown.
COR. Hard fate of virtue, thus to be diftreft,
Thou faireft of thy trade, and far the best!
As fruitmens ftalls the fummer-market grace,
And ruddy peaches them; as firft in place
Plum-cake is feen o'er fmaller paftry ware,
And ice on that; fo Phillis does appear
In play house and in park, above the reft
Of belles mechanic, elegantly dreft.
PHIL. And yet Crepundia, that conceited fair, Amidst her toys, affects a faucy air,
And views me hourly with a fcornful eye.
COR. She might as well with bright Cleora vie.
PHIL. With this large petticoat I ftrive in vain
To hide my folly paft, and coming pain ;
'Tis now no fecret; fhe, and fifty more,
Obferve the symptoms 1 had once before:
A fecond babe at Wapping muft be plac'd,
When I scarce bear the charges of the laft.
COR. What I could raife I fent; a pound of plums, Five fhillings, and a coral for his gums; To-morrow I intend him fomething more.
PHIL. I fent a frock and pair of fhoes before.
COR. However, you shall home with me to-night,
Forget your cares, and revel in delight.
I have in store a pint or two of wine,
Some cracknels, and the remnant of a chine.
And now on either fide, and all around,
The weighty fhop-boards fall, and bars refound;
Each ready femftrefs flips her pattins on,
And ties her hood, preparing to be gone.
MIDAS, we are in ftory told,
Turn'd every thing he touch'd to gold:
He chip'd his bread; the pieces round
Glitter'd like fpangles on the ground:
A codling, ere it went his lip in,
Would strait become a golden pippin:
He call'd for drink; you faw him fup
Potable gold in golden cup :
His empty paunch that he might fill,
He fuck'd his victuals through a quill;
Untouch'd it pafs'd between his grinders,
Or 't had been happy for gold-finders:
He cock'd his hat, you would have said
Mambrino's helm adorn'd his head :
Whene'er he chanc'd his hands to lay
On magazines of corn or hay,
Gold ready coin'd appear'd, instead
Of paltry provender and bread;
Hence by wife farmers we are told,
Old hay is equal to old gold;
And hence a critic deep maintains,
We learn'd to weigh our gold by grains:
This fool had got a lucky bit;
And people fancy'd he had wit.
Two gods their skill in musick try'd,
And both chofe Midas to decide;
He against Phoebus' harp decreed,
And gave it for Pan's oaten reed:
The god of wit, to fhew his grudge,.
Clapt affes' ears upon the judge;.
A goodly pair, erect and wide,
Which he could neither gild nor hide.
And now the virtue of his bands
Was loft among Pactolus' fands,
Against whofe torrent while he fwims,
The golden fcurf peels off his limbs :
Fame fpreads the news, and people travel
From far to gather golden gravel;
Midas, expos'd to all their jeers,
Had loft his art, and kept his ears.
THIS tale inclines the gentle reader
To think upon a certain leader;
To whom from Midas down, defcends
That virtue in the fingers' ends.
What elfe by perquifites are meant,
By penfions, bribes, and three per cent.
By places and commissions fold,
And turning dung itself to gold?
By ftarving in the midst of store,
As t'other Midas did before?
None e'er did modern Midas chufe,
Subject or patron of his Mufe,
But found him thus their merit fcan,
That Phoebus muft give place to Pan :
He values not the poet's praife,
Nor will exchange his plumbs for bays.
To Pan alone rich mifers call;
And there's the jeft, for Pan is ALL.
Here English wits will be to feek,
Howe'er, 'tis all one in the Greek.
Befides, it plainly now appears
Our Midas too hath affes' ears;
Where every fool his mouth applies,
And whifpers in a thousand lies;