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ON READING THE TRAVELS OF CAPTAIN LEMUEL
[On the publication of Gulliver's Travels, Pope wrote several pieces of humour, intended to accompany the work, which he sent to Swift; and in a letter some time afterwards, dated 8th March, 1726-7, he says: “You received, I hope, some commendatory verses from a Horse and a Lilliputian to Gulliver, and an heroic Epistle of Mrs. Gulliver. The bookseller would fain have printed them before the second edition of the book ; but I would not permit it without your approbation ; nor do I much like them."—It is probable, however, that Swift sent them to the press, as they were printed in the same year (1727,) at Dublin, by and for John Hyde, bookseller in Dame-street, in a small duodecimo of sixteen pages, under the title of Poems occasioned by reading the Travels of Captain Lemuel Gulliver, explanatory and commendatory; from which edition they are here given.]
TO QUINBUS FLESTRIN,
AN ODE BY TITTY TIT, POET LAUREATE TO HIS MAJESTY
TRANSLATED INTO ENGLISH.
Reach thy size!
Propp’d the skies:
See him stride
Lest an host
When he speaks,
THE LAMENTATION OF GLUMDALCLITCH
FOR THE LOSS OF GRILDRIG.
Soon as Glumdalclitch miss'd her pleasing care,
Seem like the lofty barn of some rich swain, When from the thatch drips fast a shower of rain.
In vain she search'd each cranny of the house, Each gaping chink, impervious to a mouse. “ Was it for this (she cried) with daily care Within thy reach I set the vinegar, And fill'd the cruet with the acid tide, While pepper-water worms thy bait supplied; Where twined the silver eel around thy hook, And all the little monsters of the brook! Sure in that lake he droppd; my Grilly's drown'd!” She dragg’d the cruet, but no Grildrig found.
“ Vain is thy courage, Grilly, vain thy boast! But little creatures enterprise the most. Trembling I've seen thee dare the kitten's paw, Nay, mix with children, as they play'd at taw, Nor fear the marbles as they bounding flew; Marbles to them, but rolling rocks to you!
Why did I trust thee with that giddy youth? Who from a page can ever learn the truth? Versed in court-tricks, that money-loving boy To some lord's daughter sold the living toy; Or rent him limb from limb in cruel play, As children tear the wings of flies away. From place to place o'er Brobdingnag I'll roam, And never will return, or bring thee home. But who hath eyes to trace the passing wind ? How then thy fairy footsteps can I find ? Dost thou bewilder'd wander all alone In the green thicket of a mossy stone;
Or, tumbled from the toadstool's slippery round,
“ But ah! I fear thy little fancy roves