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Knew what was handsome, and would do't,
On just occasion, coute qui coute.
He brought him bacon, (nothing lean) 165
Pudding that might have pleas'd a Dean;
Cheese such as men in Suffolk make,
But wish'd'it Stilton for his sake;
Yet, to his guest though no way sparing,
He ate himself the rind and paring.

170 Our courtier scarce could touch a bit, But show'd his breeding and his wit; He did his best to seem to eat, And cry'd, • I vow you're mighty neat : • But, Lord, my friend, this savage scene! 175 • For God's sake, come and live with men :

Consider mice, like men, must die, • Both small and great, both you and I ; " Then spend your life in joy and sport; . (This doctrine, friend, I learn'd at court.)' 180

The veriest hermit in the nation
May yield, God knows, to strong temptation.
Away they came, through thick and thin,
To a tall house near Lincoln's-inn;
('Twas on the night of a debate,

183 When all their Lordships had sat late.)

Behold the place, where if a poet
Shind in description he might show it ;
Tell how the moon-beam trembling falls,
And tips with silver all the walls;
Palladian walls, Venetian doors,
Grotesco roofs, and stucco floors;

190

195)

ut let it (in a word) be said,
Che moon was up, and men a-bed,
Che napkins white, the carpet red:
Che guests withdrawn had left the treat,
And down the mice sat tete a tete.

Our courtier walks from dish to dish, Tastes for his friend of fowl and fish; Tells all their names, lays down the law, 200 - Que ca est bon! Ah goutez ca ! - That jelly's rich, this Malmsey healing, - Pray dip your whiskers and your tail in.' Was ever such a happy swain! He stuffs and swills, and stuffs again. 205 • I'm quite asham'd—'ris mighty rude • To eat so much-but all's so good! • I have a thousand thanks to give• My Lord alone knows how to live.' No sooner said, but from the hall

210 Rush chaplain, butler, dogs, and all : A rat, a rat! clap to the door The cat comes bouncing on the floor. O for the heart of Homer's mice, Or gods to save them in a trice!

215 (It was by Providence they think, For your damn'd stucco has no chink) • An't please your Honor,' quoth the peasant, . This same desert is not so pleasant: «Give me again my hollow tree, . A crust of bread, and liberty!"

221

HORACE, BOOK I. EPISTLE I.

IMITATED.

TO LORD BOLINGBROKE.

ST. JOHN! whose love indulg'd my labors past,
Matures my present, and shall bound my last !
Why will you break the sabbath of my days,
Now sick alike of envy and of praise ?
Public too long, ah! let me hide my age:
See modest Cibber now has left the stage;
Our gen’rals now, retir'd to their estates,
Hang their old trophies o'er the garden gates;
In life's cool ev'ning satiate of applause,
Nor fond of bleeding ev'n in Brunswick's cause. 10

A voice there is, that whispers in my ear, ('Tis Reason's voice, which sometimes one can

hear) 'Friend Pope! be prudent, let your Muse take

, breath, "And never gallop Pegasus to death;

Lest stiff and stately, void of fire, or force, 15 "You limp, like Blackmore, on a Lord Mayor's

horse.' Farewel then, verse, and love, and ev'ry toy, The rhymes and rattles of the man, or boy; What right, what true, what fit, we justly call, Let this be all my care-for this is all : To lay this harvest up, and hoard with haste Wit ev'ry day will want, and most the last.

30

But ask not to what doctors I apply ; Sworn to no master, of no sect am I: As drives the storm, at any door I knock, 25 And house with Montaigne now, or now with

Locke. Sometimes a patriot, active in debate, Mix with the world, and battle for the state ; Free as young Lyttleton, her cause pursue, Still true to virtue, and as warm as true ; Sometimes with Aristippus, or St. Paul, Indulge my candor, and grow all to all ; Back to my native moderation slide, And win my way by yielding to the tide. Long as to him who works for debt, the

day, Long as the night to her whose love's away, Long as the year's dull circle seems to run, When the brisk minor pants for twenty-one; So slow th' unprofitable moments roll, That lock up all the functions of my soul; 40 That keep me from myself, and still delay Life's instant bus’ness to a future day; That task which, as we follow, or despise, The eldest is a fool, the youngest wise ; Which done, the poorest can no wants endure ; 45 And which not done, the richest must be poor.

Late as it is, I put myself to school, And feel some comfort not to be a fool. Weak though I am of limb, and short of sight, Far from a lynx, and not a giant quite,

I'll do what Mead and Cheselden advise,
To keep these limbs, and to preserve these eyes.
Not to go back is somewhat to advance,
And men must walk, at least, before they dance.

Say, does thy blood rebel, thy bosom move 55
With wretched av'rice, or a wretched love ?
Know, there are words and spells which can con-

troul, Between the fits, this fever of the soul ; Know, there are rhymes which, fresh and fresh

apply'd, Will cure the arrant'st puppy of his pride. 60 Be furious, envious, slothful, mad, or drunk, Slave to a wife, or vassal to a punk, A Switz, a High-Dutch, or a Low-Dutch bear ; All that we ask, is, but a patient ear.

'Tis the first virtue, vices to abhor, 65 And the first wisdom, to be fool no more: But to the world no bugbear is so great As want of figure, and a small estate. To either India see the merchant fly, Scar'd at the spectre of pale Poverty!

70 See him with pains of body, pangs of soul, Burn through the tropic, freeze beneath the pole! Wilt thou do nothing for a nobler end, Nothing to make Philosophy thy friend ? To stop thy foolish views, thy long desires, 75 And ease thy heart of all that it admires ? Here, Wisdom calls; · Seek Virtue first, be bold ! * As gold to silver, virtue is to gold. .

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