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THE LANDED INTEREST.

(AGE OF BRONZE, Stanza 14.)

ALAS, the country! how shall tongue or pen
Bewail her now uncountry gentlemen ?
The last to bid the cry of warfare cease,
The first to make a malady of peace.
For what were all these country patriots born ?
To hunt, and vote, and raise the price of corn ?
But corn, like every mortal thing, must fall ;
Kings, conquerors—and markets most of all.
And must ye fall with every ear of grain ?
Why would you trouble Buonaparte's reign ?
He was your great Triptolemus; his vices
Destroy'd but realms, and still maintain'd your prices;
He amplified to every lord's content
The grand agrarian alchymy, hight rent.
Why did the tyrant stumble on the Tartars,
And lower wheat to such desponding quarters ?
Why did you chain him on yon isle so lone ?
The man was worth much more upon his throne.
True, blood and treasure boundlessly were spilt,
But what of that? the Gaul may bear the guilt ;
But bread was high, the farmer paid his way,
And acres told upon the appointed day.
But where is now the goodly audit ale ?
The purse-proud tenant, never known to fail ?

The farm which never yet was left on hand ?
The marsh reclaim'd to most improving land ?
The impatient hope of the expiring lease ?
The doubling rental ?—What an evil's peace !
In vain the prize excites the ploughman's skill,
In vain the Commons pass their patriot bill ;
The landed interest—(you may understand
The phrase much better leaving out the land) -
The land self-interest groans from shore to shore,
For fear that plenty should attain the poor.
Up, up again, ye rents ! exalt your notes,
Or else the ministry will lose their votes,
And patriotism, so delicately nice,
Her loaves will lower to the market price ;
For ah ! “the loaves and fishes," once so high,
Are gone—their oven closed, their ocean dry,
And nought remains of all the millions spent,
Excepting to grow moderate and content.
They who are not so, had their turn-and turn
About still flows from Fortune's equal urn;
Now let their virtue be its own reward,
And share the blessings which themselves prepared.
See these inglorious Cincinnati swarm,
Farmers of war, dictators of the farm ;
Their ploughshare was the sword in hireling hands,
Their fields manured by gore of other lands;
Safe in their barns, these Sabine tillers sent
Their brethren out to battle-why? for rent !
Year after year they voted cent per cent,
Blood, sweat, and tear-wrung millions—why? for rent !
They roar'd, they dined, they drank, they swore they

meant

To die for England—why then live ?--for rent !
The peace has made one general malcontent
Of these high-market patriots; war was rent !

Their love of country, millions all mis-spent,
How reconcile ? by reconciling rent !
And will they not repay the treasures lent?
No: down with every thing, and up with rent !
Their good, ill, health, wealth, joy, or discontent,
Being, end, aim, religion-rent, rent, rent !

ITALY.

(BEPPO, Stanzas 41-45.)

With all its sinful doings, I must say,

That Italy's a pleasant place to me, Who love to see the Sun shine every day,

And vines (not nail'd to walls) from tree to tree Festoon'd, much like the back scene of a play,

Or melodrame, which people flock to see,
When the first act is ended by a dance
In vineyards copied from the south of France.

I like on Autumn evenings to ride out,

Without being forced to bid my groom be sure My cloak is round his middle strapp'd about,

Because the skies are not the most secure; I know too that, if stopp'd upon my route,

Where the green alleys windingly allure, Reeling with grapes red waggons choke the way,– In England 'twould be dung, dust, or a dray.

I also like to dine on becaficas,

To see the Sun set, sure he'll rise to-morrow, Not through a misty morning, twinkling weak as

A drunken man's dead eye in maudlin sorrow, But with all Heaven t'himself; that day will break as

Beauteous as cloudless, not be forced to borrow That sort of farthing candlelight which glimmers Where reeking London's smoky caldron simmers.

I love the language, that soft bastard Latin,

Which melts like kisses from a female mouth, And sounds as if it should be writ on satin,

With syllables which breathe of the sweet South, And gentle liquids gliding all so pat in,

That not a single accent seems uncouth, Like our harsh northern whistling, grunting guttural, Which we're obliged to hiss, and spit, and sputter all,

I like the women too (forgive my folly),

From the rich peasant cheek of ruddy bronze, And large black eyes that flash on you a volley

Of rays that say a thousand things at once, To the high dama's brow, more melancholy,

But clear, and with a wild and liquid glance, Heart on her lips, and soul within her eyes, Soft as her clime, and sunny as her skies.

ENGLAND.

(BEPPO, Stanzas 47-49.)

“ ENGLAND! with all thy faults I love thee still,”

I said at Calais, and have not forgot it; I like to speak and lucubrate my fill;

I like the government (but that is not it); I like the freedom of the press and quill ;

I like the Habeas Corpus (when we've got it) ; I like a parliamentary debate, Particularly when ’tis not too late ;

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I like the taxes, when they're not too many ;

I like a seacoal fire, when not too dear; I like a beef-steak, too, as well as any;

Have no objection to a pot of beer; I like the weather, when it is not rainy,

That is, I like two months of every year. And so God save the Regent, Church and King ! Which means that I like all and every thing.

Our standing army, and disbanded seamen,

Poor's rate, Reform, my own, the nation's debt, Our little riots just to show we are free men,

Our trifling bankruptcies in the Gazette,
Our cloudy climate, and our chilly women,

All these I can forgive, and those forget,
And greatly venerate our recent glories,
And wish they were not owing to the Tories.

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