Author:

A Ballad

To that dear nymph, whose pow’rful name
Does every throbbing nerve inflame
(As the soft sound I low repeat,
My pulse unequal measures beat),
Whose eyes I never more shall see,
That once so sweetly shin’d on thee;
Go, gentle wind! and kindly bear
My tender wishes to the fair.
Hoh, ho, ho, &c.

Amidst her pleasures let her know
The secret anguish of my woe,
The midnight pang, the jealous hell,
Does in this tortur’d bosom dwell:
While laughing she, and full of play,
Is with her young companions gay;
Or hearing in some fragrant bower
Her lover’s sigh, and beauty’s power.
Hoh, ho, ho, &c.

Lost and forgotten may I be!
Oh may no pitying thought of me
Disturb the joy that she may find,
When love is crown’d and fortune kind:
May that bless’d swain (whom yet I hate)
Be proud of his distinguish’d fate:
Each happy night be like the first;
And he be bless’d as I am curs’d.
Hoh, ho, ho, &c.

While in these pathless woods I stray,
And lose my solitary way;
Talk to the stars, to trees complain,
And tell the senseless words my pain:
But madness spares the sacred name,
Nor dares the hidden wound proclaim;
Which, secret rankling, sure and slow,
Shall close in endless peace my woe.
Hoh, ho, ho, &c.

When this fond heart shall ache no more,
And all the ills of life are o’er
(If gods by lovers’ prayers are mov’d,
As ev’ry god in heaven has lov’d);
Instead of bright Elysian joys,
That unknown something in the skies,
In recompense of all my pain,
The only heaven I’d obtain,
May I, the guardian of her charms,
Preserve that paradise from harms.
Hoh, ho, ho, &c.

Verses Addressed To The Imitator Of The First Satire Of The Second Book Of Horace

In two large columns on thy motley page
Where Roman wit is strip’d with English rage;
Where ribaldry to satire makes pretence,
And modern scandal rolls with ancient sense:
Whilst on one side we see how Horace thought,
And on the other how he never wrote;
Who can believe, who view the bad, the good,
That the dull copyist better understood
That spirit he pretends to imitate,
Than heretofore that Greek he did translate?
Thine is just such an image of his pen,
As thou thyself art of the sons of men,
Where our own species in burlesque we trace,
A sign-post likeness of the human race,
That is at once resemblance and disgrace.
Horace can laugh, is delicate, is clear,
You only coarsely rail, or darkly sneer;
His style is elegant, his diction pure,
Whilst none thy crabbed numbers can endure;
Hard as thy heart, and as thy birth obscure.
If he has thorns, they all on roses grow;
Thine like thistles, and mean brambles show;
With this exception, that, though rank the soil,
Weeds as they are, they seem produc’d by toil.
Satire should, like a polish’d razor, keen,
Wound with a touch, that’s scarcely felt or seen:
Thine is an oyster-knife, that hacks and hews;
The rage, but not the talent to abuse;
And is in hate, what love is in the stews.
‘Tis the gross lust of hate, that still annoys,
Without distinction, as gross love enjoys:
Neither to folly, nor to vice confin’d,
The object of thy spleen is humankind:
It preys on all who yield, or who resist:
To thee ’tis provocation to exist.

But if thou seest a great and generous heart,
Thy bow is doubly bent to force a dart.
Nor dignity nor innocence is spar’d,
Nor age, nor sex, nor thrones, nor graves, rever’d.
Nor only justice vainly we demand,
But even benefits can’t rein thy hand;
To this or that alike in vain we trust,
Nor find thee less ungrateful than unjust.
Not even youth and beauty can control
The universal rancour of thy soul;
Charms that might soften superstition’s rage,
Might humble pride, or thaw the ice of age.
But how should’st thou by beauty’s force be mov’d,
No more for loving made than to be lov’d?
It was the equity of righteous Heav’n,
That such a soul to such a form was giv’n;
And shows the uniformity of fate,
That one so odious should be born to hate.
When God created thee, one would believe
He said the same as to the snake of Eve;
To human race antipathy declare,
‘Twixt them and thee be everlasting war.
But oh! the sequel of the sentence dread,
And whilst you bruise their heel, beware your head.
Nor think thy weakness shall be thy defence,
The female scold’s protection in offence.
Sure ’tis as fair to beat who cannot fight,
As ’tis to libel those who cannot write.
And if thou draw’st thy pen to aid the law,
Others a cudgel, or a rod, may draw.
If none with vengeance yet thy crimes pursue,
Or give thy manifold affronts their due;
If limbs unbroken, skin without a stain,
Unwhipt, unblanketed, unkick’d, unslain,
That wretched little carcase you retain,
The reason is, not that the world wants eyes,
But thou’rt so mean, they see, and they despise:
When fretful porcupine, with ranc’rous will,
From mounted back shoots forth a harmless quill,
Cool the spectators stand; and all the while
Upon the angry little monster smile.
Thus ’tis with thee: — while impotently safe,
You strike unwounding, we unhurt can laugh.
Who but must laugh, this bully when he sees,
A puny insect shiv’ring at a breeze?
One over-match’d by every blast of wind,
Insulting and provoking all mankind.
Is this the thing to keep mankind in awe,
To make those tremble who escape the law?
Is this the ridicule to live so long,
The deathless satire and immortal song?
No: like the self-blown praise, thy scandal flies;
And, as we’re told of wasps, it stings and dies.
If none do yet return th’intended blow,
You all your safety to your dulness owe:
But whilst that armour thy poor corse defends,
‘Twill make thy readers few, as are thy friends:
Those, who thy nature loath’d, yet lov’d thy art,
Who lik’d thy head, and yet abhorr’d thy heart:
Chose thee to read, but never to converse,
And scorn’d in prose him whom they priz’d in verse
Ev’n they shall now their partial error see,
Shall shun thy writings like thy company;
And to thy books shall ope their eyes no more
Than to thy person they would do their door.
Nor thou the justice of the world disown,
That leaves thee thus an outcast and alone;
For though in law to murder be to kill,
In equity the murder’s in the will:
Then whilst with coward-hand you stab a name,
And try at least t’assassinate our fame,
Like the first bold assassin’s be thy lot,
Ne’er be thy guilt forgiven, or forgot;
But, as thou hat’st be hated by mankind,
And with the emblem of thy crooked mind
Mark’d on thy back, like Cain by God’s own hand,
Wander, like him, accursed through the land.

The Reasons That Induced Dr S To Write A Poem Call’D The Lady’s Dressing Room

The Doctor in a clean starch’d band,
His Golden Snuff box in his hand,
With care his Di’mond Ring displays
And Artfull shews its various Rays,
While Grave he stalks down — — Street
His dearest Betty — to meet.
Long had he waited for this Hour,
Nor gain’d Admittance to the Bower,
Had jok’d and punn’d, and swore and writ,
Try’d all his Galantry and Wit,
Had told her oft what part he bore
In Oxford’s Schemes in days of yore,
But Bawdy, Politicks nor Satyr
Could move this dull hard hearted Creature.
Jenny her Maid could taste a Rhyme
And greiv’d to see him lose his Time,
Had kindly whisper’d in his Ear,
For twice two pound you enter here,
My lady vows without that Summ
It is in vain you write or come.
The Destin’d Offering now he brought
And in a paradise of thought
With a low Bow approach’d the Dame
Who smileing heard him preach his Flame.
His Gold she takes (such proofes as these
Convince most unbeleiving shees)
And in her trunk rose up to lock it
(Too wise to trust it in her pocket)
And then return’d with Blushing Grace
Expects the Doctor’s warm Embrace.
But now this is the proper place
Where morals Stare me in the Face
And for the sake of fine Expression
I’m forc’d to make a small digression.
Alas for wretched Humankind,
With Learning Mad, with wisdom blink!
The Ox thinks he’s for Saddle fit
(As long ago Freind Horace writ)
And Men their Talents still mistakeing,
The stutterer fancys his is speaking.
With Admiration oft we see
Hard Features heighten’d by Toupée,
The Beau affects the Politician,
Wit is the citizen’s Ambition,
Poor Pope Philosophy displays on
With so much Rhime and little reason,
And thô he argues ne’er so long
That, all is right, his Head is wrong.
None strive to know their proper merit
But strain for Wisdom, Beauty, Spirit,
And lose the Praise that is their due
While they’ve th’impossible in view.
So have I seen the Injudicious Heir
To add one Window the whole House impair.
Instinct the Hound does better teach
Who never undertook to preach,
The frighted Hare from Dogs does run
But not attempts to bear a Gun.
Here many Noble thoughts occur
But I prolixity abhor,
And will persue th’instructive Tale
To shew the Wise in some things fail.
The Reverend Lover with surprize
Peeps in her Bubbys, and her Eyes,
And kisses both, and trys–and trys.
The Evening in this Hellish Play,
Beside his Guineas thrown away,
Provok’d the Preist to that degree
he swore, the Fault is not in me.
Your damn’d Close stool so near my Nose,
Your Dirty Smock, and Stinking Toes
Would make a Hercules as tame
As any Beau that you can name.
The nymph grown Furious roar’d by God
The blame lyes all in Sixty odd
And scornfull pointing to the door
Cry’d, Fumbler see my Face no more.
With all my Heart I’ll go away
But nothing done, I’ll nothing pay.
Give back the Money–How, cry’d she,
[I lock’d it in the Trunk stands there
And break it open if you dare.]
Would you palm such a cheat on me!
For poor 4 pound to roar and bellow,
Why sure you want some new Prunella?
[What if your Verses have not sold,
Must therefore I return your Gold?
Perhaps your have no better Luck in
The Knack of Rhyming than of —
I won’t give back one single Crown,
To wash your Band, or turn your Gown.]
I’ll be reveng’d you saucy Quean
(Replys the disapointed Dean)
I’ll so describe your dressing room
The very Irish shall not come.
She answer’d short, I’m glad you’l write,
You’l furnish paper when I shite.

Epistle From Mrs. Yonge To Her Husband

Think not this paper comes with vain pretense
To move your pity, or to mourn th’offense.
Too well I know that hard obdurate heart;
No softening mercy there will take my part,
Nor can a woman’s arguments prevail,
When even your patron’s wise example fails.
But this last privilege I still retain;
Th’oppressed and injured always may complain.
Too, too severely laws of honor bind
The weak submissive sex of womankind.
If sighs have gained or force compelled our hand,
Deceived by art, or urged by stern command,
Whatever motive binds the fatal tie,
The judging world expects our constancy.
Just heaven! (for sure in heaven does justice reign,
Though tricks below that sacred name profane)
To you appealing I submit my cause,
Nor fear a judgment from impartial laws.
All bargains but conditional are made;
The purchase void, the creditor unpaid;
Defrauded servants are from service free;
A wounded slave regains his liberty.
For wives ill used no remedy remains,
To daily racks condemned, and to eternal chains.
From whence is this unjust distinction grown?
Are we not formed with passions like your own?
Nature with equal fire our souls endued,
Our minds as haughty, and as warm our blood;
O’er the wide world your pleasures you pursue,
The change is justified by something new;
But we must sigh in silence — and be true.
Our sex’s weakness you expose and blame
(Of every prattling fop the common theme).
Yet from this weakness you suppose is due
Sublimer virtue than your Cato knew.
Had heaven designed us trials so severe,
It would have formed our tempers then to bear.
And I have borne (oh what have I not borne!)
The pang of jealousy, the insults of scorn.
Wearied at length, I from your sight remove,
And place my future hopes in secret love.
In the gay bloom of glowing youth retired,
I quit the woman’s joy to be admired,
With that small pension your hard heart allows,
Renounce your fortune, and release your vows.
To custom (though unjust) so much is due;
I hide my frailty from the public view.
My conscience clear, yet sensible of shame,
My life I hazard, to preserve my fame.
And I prefer this low inglorious state
To vile dependence on the thing I hate —
But you pursue me to this last retreat.
Dragged into light, my tender crime is shown
And every circumstance of fondness known.
Beneath the shelter of the law you stand,
And urge my ruin with a cruel hand,
While to my fault thus rigidly severe,
Tamely submissive to the man you fear.
This wretched outcast, this abandoned wife,
Has yet this joy to sweeten shameful life:
By your mean conduct, infamously loose,
You are at once my accuser and excuse.
Let me be damned by the censorious prude
(stupidly dull, or spiritually lewd),
My hapless case will surely pity find
From every just and reasonable mind.
When to the final sentence I submit,
The lips condemn me, but their souls acquit.
No more my husband, to your pleasures go,
The sweets of your recovered freedom know.
Go: court the brittle friendship of the great,
Smile at his board, or at his levee wait;
And when dismissed, to madam’s toilet fly,
More than her chambermaids, or glasses, lie,
Tell her how young she looks, how heavenly fair,
Admire the lilies and the roses there.
Your high ambition may be gratified,
Some cousin of her own be made your bride,
And you the father of a glorious race
Endowed with Ch——l’s strength and Low—r’s face.

Ballad, On A Late Occurrence

Ungodly papers ev’ry week
Poor simple souls persuade
That courtiers good for nothing are,
Or but for mischief made.
But I who know their worthy hearts,
Pronounce that we are blind,
Who disappoint their honest schemes,
Who would be just and kind.
For in this vile degen’rate age
‘Tis dangerous to do good;
Which will, when I have told my tale,
Be better understood.
A puppy, gamesome, blithe, and young,
Who play’d about the court,
Was destin’d by unlucky boys,
To be their noonday’s sport.
With flatt’ring words they him entic’d,
(Words such as much prevail!)
And then with cruel art they tied
A bottle to his tail.
Lord Hervey at a window stood,
Detesting of the fact;
And cried aloud with all his might,
"I know the bottle’s crack’d.
"Do not to such a dirty hole
Let them your tail apply;
Alas! you cannot know these things
One half so well as I.
"Harmless and young, you don’t suspect
The venom of this deed;
But I see through the whole design, —
It is to make you bleed."
This good advice was cast away;
The puppy saw it shine;
And tamely lick’d their treach’rous hands,
And thought himself grown fine.
But long he had not worn the gem,
But as Lord Hervey said,
He ran and bled; the more he ran,
Alas! the more he bled.
Griev’d to the soul, this gallant lord
Tripp’d hastily down stairs;
With courage and compassion fir’d,
To set him free prepares.
But such was his ingratitude
To this most noble lord,
He bit his lily hand quite through,
As he untied the cord.
Next day the Maids of Honour came,
As I heard people tell;
They wash’d the wound with brinish tears,
— And yet it is not well.
Oh! gen’rous youth, my counsel take,
And warlike acts forbear;
Put on white gloves, and lead folks out,
— For that is your affair.
Never attempt to take away
Bottles from others’ tails,
For that is what no soul will bear
From Italy to Wales.

A Man In Love

L’Homme qui ne se trouve point, et ne se trouvera jamais.

The man who feels the dear disease,
Forgets himself, neglects to please,
The crowd avoids, and seeks the groves,
And much he thinks when much he loves;
Press’d with alternate hope and fear,
Sighs in her absence, sighs when near.
The gay, the fond, the fair, the young,
Those trifles pass unseen along,
To him a pert insipid throng.
But most he shuns the vain coquette;
Contemns her false affected wit:
The minstrel’s sound, the flowing bowl,
Oppress and hurt the amorous soul.
‘Tis solitude alone can please,
And give some intervals of ease.
He feeds the soft distemper there,
And fondly courts the distant fair;
To balls the silent shade prefers,
And hates all other charms but hers.
When thus your absent swain can do,
Molly, you may believe him true.

Verses Written In A Garden

See how the pair of billing doves
With open murmurs own their loves;
And, heedless of censorious eyes,
Pursue their unpolluted joys;
No fears of future want molest
The downy quiet of their nest:
No int’rest join’d the happy pair,
Securely blest in Nature’s care,
While her dictates they pursue;
For constancy is Nature too.
Can all the doctrine of the schools,
Our maxims, our religious rules,
Can learning to our lives ensure,
Virtue so bright, or bliss so pure?

Saturday, The Small-Pox

FLAVIA.

The wretched FLAVIA on her couch reclin’d,
Thus breath’d the anguish of a wounded mind ;
A glass revers’d in her right hand she bore,
For now she shun’d the face she sought before.

‘How am I chang’d ! alas ! how am I grown
‘A frightful spectre, to myself unknown !
‘Where’s my Complexion ? where the radiant Bloom,
‘That promis’d happiness for Years to come ?
‘Then with what pleasure I this face survey’d !
‘To look once more, my visits oft delay’d !
‘Charm’d with the view, a fresher red would rise,
‘And a new life shot sparkling from my eyes !

‘Ah ! faithless glass, my wonted bloom restore;
‘Alas ! I rave, that bloom is now no more !
‘The greatest good the GODS on men bestow,
‘Ev’n youth itself, to me is useless now.
‘There was a time, (oh ! that I could forget !)
‘When opera-tickets pour’d before my feet ;
‘And at the ring, where brightest beauties shine,
‘The earliest cherries of the spring were mine.
‘Witness, O Lilly ; and thou, Motteux, tell
‘How much Japan these eyes have made ye sell.
‘With what contempt ye you saw me oft despise
‘The humble offer of the raffled prize ;
‘For at the raffle still the prize I bore,
‘With scorn rejected, or with triumph wore !
‘ Now beauty’s fled, and presents are no more !

‘For me the Patriot has the house forsook,
‘And left debates to catch a passing look :
‘For me the Soldier has soft verses writ ;
‘For me the Beau has aim’d to be a Wit.
‘For me the Wit to nonsense was betray’d ;
‘The Gamester has for me his dun delay’d,
‘And overseen the card, I would have play’d.
‘The bold and haughty by success made vain,
‘Aw’d by my eyes has trembled to complain:
‘The bashful ‘squire touch’d by a wish unknown,
‘Has dar’d to speak with spirit not his own ;
‘Fir’d by one wish, all did alike adore ;
‘Now beauty’s fled, and lovers are no more!

‘As round the room I turn my weeping eyes,
‘New unaffected scenes of sorrow rise !
‘Far from my sight that killing picture bear,
‘The face disfigure, and the canvas tear !
‘That picture which with pride I us’d to show,
‘The lost resemblance but upbraids me now.
‘And thou, my toilette! where I oft have sat,
‘While hours unheeded pass’d in deep debate,
‘How curls should fall, or where a patch to place :
‘If blue or scarlet best became my face;
‘Now on some happier nymph thy aid bestow ;
‘On fairer heads, ye useless jewels glow !
‘No borrow’d lustre can my charms restore ;
‘Beauty is fled, and dress is now no more !

‘Ye meaner beauties, I permit ye shine ;
‘Go, triumph in the hearts that once were mine ;
‘But midst your triumphs with confusion know,
”Tis to my ruin all your arms ye owe.
‘Would pitying Heav’n restore my wonted mien,
‘Ye still might move unthought-of and unseen.
‘But oh ! how vain, how wretched is the boast
‘Of beauty faded, and of empire lost !
‘What now is left but weeping, to deplore
‘My beauty fled, and empire now no more !

‘Ye, cruel Chymists, what with-held your aid !
‘Could no pomatums save a trembling maid ?
‘How false and trifling is that art you boast ;
‘No art can give me back my beauty lost.
‘In tears, surrounded by my friends I lay,
‘Mask’d o’er and trembled at the sight of day;
‘MIRMILLO came my fortune to deplore,
‘(A golden headed cane, well carv’d he bore)
‘Cordials, he cried, my spirits must restore :
‘Beauty is fled, and spirit is no more !

‘GALEN, the grave ; officious SQUIRT was there,
‘With fruitless grief and unavailing care :
‘MACHAON too, the great MACHAON, known
‘By his red cloak and his superior frown ;
‘And why, he cry’d, this grief and this despair ?
‘You shall again be well, again be fair ;
‘Believe my oath; (with that an oath he swore)
‘False was his oath; my beauty is no more!

‘Cease, hapless maid, no more thy tale pursue,
‘Forsake mankind, and bid the world adieu !
‘Monarchs and beauties rule with equal sway ;
‘All strive to serve, and glory to obey :
‘Alike unpitied when depos’d they grow ;
‘Men mock the idol of their former vow.

‘Adieu ! ye parks ! — in some obscure recess,
‘Where gentle streams will weep at my distress,
‘Where no false friend will in my grief take part,
‘And mourn my ruin with a joyful heart ;
‘There let me live in some deserted place,
‘There hide in shades this lost inglorious face.
‘Ye, operas, circles, I no more must view !
‘My toilette, patches, all the world adieu!

A Hymn To The Moon

Written in July, in an arbour

Thou silver deity of secret night,
Direct my footsteps through the woodland shade;
Thou conscious witness of unknown delight,
The Lover’s guardian, and the Muse’s aid!
By thy pale beams I solitary rove,
To thee my tender grief confide;
Serenely sweet you gild the silent grove,
My friend, my goddess, and my guide.
E’en thee, fair queen, from thy amazing height,
The charms of young Endymion drew;
Veil’d with the mantle of concealing night;
With all thy greatness and thy coldness too.

The Lover: A Ballad

At length, by so much importunity press’d,
Take, C—-, at once, the inside of my breast;
This stupid indiff’rence so often you blame,
Is not owing to nature, to fear, or to shame:
I am not as cold as a virgin in lead,
Nor is Sunday’s sermon so strong in my head:
I know but too well how time flies along,
That we live but few years, and yet fewer are young.

But I hate to be cheated, and never will buy
Long years of repentance for moments of joy,
Oh! was there a man (but where shall I find
Good sense and good nature so equally join’d?)
Would value his pleasure, contribute to mine;
Not meanly would boast, nor would lewdly design;
Not over severe, yet not stupidly vain,
For I would have the power, tho’ not give the pain.

No pedant, yet learned; no rake-helly gay,
Or laughing, because he has nothing to say;
To all my whole sex obliging and free,
Yet never be fond of any but me;
In public preserve the decorum that’s just,
And shew in his eyes he is true to his trust;
Then rarely approach, and respectfully bow,
But not fulsomely pert, nor yet foppishly low.

But when the long hours of public are past,
And we meet with champagne and a chicken at last,
May ev’ry fond pleasure that moment endear;
Be banish’d afar both discretion and fear!
Forgetting or scorning the airs of the crowd,
He may cease to be formal, and I to be proud.
Till lost in the joy, we confess that we live,
And he may be rude, and yet I may forgive.

And that my delight may be solidly fix’d,
Let the friend and the lover be handsomely mix’d;
In whose tender bosom my soul may confide,
Whose kindness can soothe me, whose counsel can guide.
From such a dear lover as here I describe,
No danger should fright me, no millions should bribe;
But till this astonishing creature I know,
As I long have liv’d chaste, I will keep myself so.

I never will share with the wanton coquette,
Or be caught by a vain affectation of wit.
The toasters and songsters may try all their art,
But never shall enter the pass of my heart.
I loath the lewd rake, the dress’d fopling despise:
Before such pursuers the nice virgin flies:
And as Ovid has sweetly in parable told,
We harden like trees, and like rivers grow cold.

Epistle From Arthur Grey, The Footman, To Mrs. Murray, After His Condemnation For Attempting To Commit Violence.

Read, lovely nymph, and tremble not to read,
I have no more to wish, nor you to dread;
I ask not life, for life to me were vain,
And death a refuge from severer pain.
My only hope in these last lines I try —
I would be pitied, and I then would die.
Long had I liv’d as sordid as my fate,
Nor curs’d the destiny that made me wait
A servile slave: content with homely food,
The gross instinct of happiness pursued:
Youth gave me sleep at night and warmth of blood.
Ambition yet had never touch’d my breast;
My lordly master knew no sounder rest;
With labour healthy, in obedience blest.
But when I saw — oh! had I never seen
That wounding softness, that engaging mien!
The mist of wretched education flies,
Shame, fear, desire, despair, and love arise,
The new creation of those beauteous eyes.
But yet that love pursu’d no guilty aim;
Deep in my heart I hid the secret flame:
I never hop’d my fond desire to tell,
And all my wishes were to serve you well.
Heav’ns! how I flew when wing’d by your command,
And kiss’d the letters giv’n me by your hand.
How pleas’d, how proud, how fond I was to wait,
Present the sparkling wine, or change the plate!
How, when you sung, my soul devour’d the sound,
And ev’ry sense was in the rapture drown’d!
Though bid to go, I quite forgot to move;
— You knew not that stupidity was love!
But oh! the torment not to be express’d,
The grief, the rage, the hell, that fir’d this breast,
When my great rivals, in embroidery gay,
Sate by your side, or led you from the play!

I still contriv’d near as I could to stand
(the flambeau trembling in my shaking hand);
I saw, or thought I saw, those fingers press’d,
For thus their passion by my own I guess’d,
And jealous fury all my soul possess’d.
Like torrents, love and indignation meet,
And madness would have thrown me at your feet.
Turn, lovely nymph (for so I would have said),
Turn from those triflers who make love a trade;
This is true passion in my eyes you see;
They cannot, no — they cannot love like me;
Frequent debauch has pall’d their sickly taste,
Faint their desire, and in a moment past;
They sigh not from the heart, but from the brain;
Vapours of vanity and strong champagne.
Too dull to feel what forms like yours inspire,
After long talking of their painted fire,
To some lewd brothel they at night retire;
There, pleas’d with fancy’d quality and charms,
Enjoy your beauties in a strumpet’s arms.
Such are the joys those toasters have in view,
And such the wit and pleasure they pursue;
— And is this love that ought to merit you?
Each opera night a new address begun,
They swear to thousands what they swear to one.
Not thus I sigh — but all my sighs are vain —
Die, wretched Arthur, and conceal thy pain:
‘Tis impudence to wish, and madness to complain.
Fix’d on this view, my only hope of ease,
I waited not the aid of slow disease;
The keenest instruments of death I sought,
And death alone employ’d my lab’ring thought.
This all the night — when I remember well
The charming tinkle of your morning bell!
Fir’d by the sound, I hasten’d with your tea,
With one last look to smooth the darksome way —
But oh! how dear that fatal look has cost!
In that fond moment my resolves were lost.
Hence all my guilt, and all your sorrows rise —
I saw the languid softness of your eyes;

I saw the dear disorder of your bed;
Your cheeks all glowing with a tempting red;
Your night-clothes tumbled with resistless grace,
Your flowing hair play’d careless down your face
Your night-gown fasten’d with a single pin;
— Fancy improv’d the wondrous charms within!
I fix’d my eyes upon that heaving breast,
And hardly, hardly, I forbore the rest:
Eager to gaze, unsatisfied with sight,
My head grew giddy with the near delight!
— Too well you know the fatal following night!
Th’extremest proof of my desire I give,
And since you will not love, I will not live.
Condemn’d by you, I wait the righteous doom.
Careless and fearless of the woes to come.
But when you see me waver in the wind,
My guilty flame extinct, my soul resign’d,
Sure you may pity what you can’t approve,
The cruel consequence of furious love.
Think the bold wretch, that could so greatly dare,
Was tender, faithful, ardent, and sincere;
Think when I held the pistol to your breast, —
Had I been of the world’s large rule possess’d, —
That world had then been yours, and I been blest;
Think that my life was quite below my care,
Nor fear’d I any hell beyond despair. —
If these reflections, though they seize you late,
Give some compassion for your Arthur’s fate:
Enough you give, nor ought I to complain:
You pay my pangs, nor have I died in vain.