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Then must my nurse be pleas'd, and fav'rite maid,
On Jenkin, too, you cast a squinting eye ;
Why are thy chests all lock'd ? on what design? Are not thy worldly goods and treasure mine? 125 Sir, I'm no fool ; nor shall you, by St. John, Have goods and body to yourself alone. One you shall quit, in spite of both your eyes I heed not, I, the bolts, the locks, the spies. If you had wit, you'd say, 'Go where you will, 130 • Dear spouse ! I credit not the tales they tell : • Take all the freedoms of a marry'd life ; " I know thee for å virtuous faithful wife.' Lord ! when you have enough, what need you
care How merrily soever others fare?
135 Though all the day I give and take delight, Doubt not sufficient will be left at night. 'Tis but a just and rational desire, To light a taper at a neighbor's fire.
There's danger too, you think, in rich array,140 And none can long be modest that art gay.
The cat, if you but singe her tabby skin,
Lo thus, my friends, I wrought to my desires
155 And swore the rambles that I took by night, Were all to spy what damsels they bedight : That color brought me many hours of mirth; For all this wit is giv'n us from our birth. Heav'n gave to woman the peculiar grace 160 To spin, to weep, and cully human race. By this nice conduct, and this prudent course, By murm'ring, wheedling, stratagem, and force, I still prevail'd, and would be in the right; Or curtain-lectures made a sestless night. 165 If once my husband's arm was o'er my side, What ! so familiar with your spouse ? (I cry'd;) I levy'd first a tax upon his need; Then let him-'twas a nicesy indeed!
Let all mankind this certain maxim hold, 170
'Tis difficult to do, I must allow, • But I, my dearest! will instruct you how. • Great is the blessing of a prudent wife, 190 • Who puts a period to domestic strife. • One of us two must rule, and one obey ; • And since in man right reason bears the sway, "Let that frail thing, weak woman, have her way.) • The wives of all my family have ruld. 195 · Their tender husbands, and their passions cool'd. • Fye ! 'tis unmanly thus so sigh and groan : .. - What I would you bave me to yourself alone ?
• Why, take me, love ! take all and ev'ry part ! • Here's your revenge ! you love it at your heart. Would I vouchsafe to sell what Nature gave, 201 You little think what custom I could have. But see! I'm all your own--nay hold for
shame ! "What means my dear? indeed—you are to
blame.' Thus with my first three lords I pass'd my life, A very woman, and a very wife.
206 What sums from these old spouses I could raise, Procur’d young husbands in my riper days. Though past my bloom, not yet decay'd was I; Wanton and wild, and chatter'd like a pie. 210 In country dances still I bore the bell, And sung as sweet as ev’ning Philomel. To clear my quail pipe, and refresh my soul, . Full oft I drain'd the spicy nut-brown bowl; Rich luscious wines, that youthful blood improve, And warm the swelling veins to feats of love : 216 For 'tis as sure as cold engenders hail, A liqu’rish mouth must have a lech'rous tail; Wine lets no lover unrewarded go, As all true gamesters by experience know. 220
But oh, good Gods ! whene'er a thought I cast On all the joys of youth and beauty past, To find in pleasures I have had my part, Still warms me to the bottom of my heart, This wicked world was once my dear delight ; 225 Now all my conquests, all my charms good night ;
The flour consum'd, the best that now I can,
. My fourth dear spouse was not exceeding trues
· Now for my fifth lov'd lord, the last and best ; (Kind Heav'n afford him everlasting rest!) Full hearty was his love, and I can shew: 255 The tokens on my ribs, in black and blue ; *