« PreviousContinue »
One drop of Heav'n's sweet mercy in his cup,
From pools and ditches of the commonwealth, i Sorded and sick’ning at his own success.
810 Ambition, avarice, penury, incurr'd By endless riot, vanity, the lust Of pleasure and variety, despatch As duly as the swallows disappear, The world of wand'ring knights and squires to town. ' London ingulfs them all! The shark is there, 816 And the shark's prey; the spendthrift and the leech That sucks him; there the sycophant, and he Who, with bareheaded and obsequious bows, Begs a warm office, doom'd to a cold jail
820 And groat per diem, if his patron frown. The levee swarms, as if in golden pomp Were character'd on ev'ry statesman's door, “Batter'd and bankrupt fortunes mended here." These are the charms that sully and eclipse 825 The charms of nature.' 'Tis the cruel gripe, That lean, hard-handed poverty inflicts, The hope of better things, the chance to win, The wish to shine, the thirst to be amus’d, That at the sound of Winter's hoary wing 830 Unpeople all our countries of such herds' , Of flutt'ring, loit'ring, cringing, begging, loose, And wanton, vagrants, as make London, vast And boundless as it is, a crowded coop. O thou resort and mart of all the earth,
835 Checker'd with all complexions of mankind, And spotted with all crimes; in whom I see Much that I love, and more that I admire, And all that I abhor; thou freckled fair, That please st and yet shock'st me! I can laugh, 840 And I can weep, can hope and can despond
Feel wrath and pity, when I think on thee!
THE WINTER EVENING.
ARGUMENT OF THE FOURTH BOOK. The post comes in- The newspaper is read-The World contem plated at a distance-Address to Winter-The l'ural amusements of a winter evening compared with the fashionable ones--Address to evening- A brown study-Fall of snow in the evening -The wagoner- A poor family piece-The rural thief-Public houses-The multitude of them censured-The farmer's daughter: what she was,-what she is-The simplicity of country manners almost lost-Causes of the change-Desertion of the country by the rich--Neglect of the magistrates--The militia principally in fault--The new recruit and his transfor mation - Reflection on bodies corporate--The love of rural objects natural to all, and never to be totally extinguished.
daughter: The multitude of themThe rura! thief-Pnk
HARK! 'tis the twanging horn O'er yonder bridge,
Cold and yet cheerful: messenger of grief
30 The popular hárangue, the tart reply, "The logick, and the wisdom, and the wit, And the loud laugh-I long to know them all; I burn to set the imprison'd wranglers free, And give them voice and utt'rance once again.
Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast, Let fall the curtains, wheel the sofa round, And while the bubbling and loud-hissing urn Throws up a steamy column, and the cups, That cheer but not inebriate, wait on each, So let us welcome peaceful ev'ning in. Not such his ev’ning, who with shining face Sweats in the crowded theatre, and squeez'd And bor'd with elbow points through both his sides, Outscolds the ranting actor on the stage: Nor his, who patient stands till his feet throb, Anå his head thumps, to feed upon the breath Of patriots, bursting with hero ick rage, Or placemen, all tranquillity and smiles,
Which not e'en criticks criticise; that holds
'Tis pleasant through the loopholes of retreat,