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With hope, and fear, and envy sick,
She gazes on the dubious trick,
As if eternity were laid
Upon a diamond, or a spade.
And I have seen a transient pique
Wake, o'er that soft and girlish cheek,
A chilly and a feverish hue,
Blighting the soil where Beauty grew,
And bidding Hate and Malice rove
In eyes.that ought to beam with love.
Turn we to Fannia—she was fair
As the soft fleeting forms of air,
Shaped by the fancy-fitting theme
For youthful bard's enamor'd dream.
The neck, on whose transparent glow,
The auburn ringlets sweetly flow,
The eye that swims in liquid fire,
The brow that frowns in playful ire ;
All these, when Fannia's early youth
Look'd lovely in its native truth,
Diffused a bright, unconscious grace,
Almost divine, o'er form and face.
Her lip has lost its fragrant dew, .
Her cheek has lost its rosy hue,
Her eye the glad enlivening rays
That glitter'd there in happier days,
Her heart the ignorance of wo
Which Fashion's votaries may not know.
The city's smoke—the noxious air-
The constant crowd--the torch’s glare-
The morning sleep—the noonday call-
The late repast—the midnight ball,
Bid Faith and Beauty die, and taint
Her heart with frand, her face with paint.
And what the boon, the prize enjoy’d,
For fame defaced, and peace destroyed !
Why ask we this? With conscious grace
She criticises silk and lace;
Queen of the modes, she reigns alike
O’er sarcenet, bobbin, net, vandyke,
O’er rouge and ribbons, combs and curls,
Perfumes and patches, pins and pearls;
Feelings and faintings, songs and sighs,
Small-talk and scandal, love and lies.
Circled by beaux behold her sit,
While Dandies tremble at her wit;
The Captain hates “a woman's gab;"
“A devil !” cries the shy Cantab;
The young Etonian strives to fly
The glance of her sarcastic eye,
For well he knows she looks him o'er,
To stamp him “buck,” or dub him “ bore.”
Such is her life-a life of waste,
A life of wretchedness—and taste.
And all the glory Fannia boasts,
And all the price that glory costs,
At once are reckon'd up, in one-
One word of bliss and folly —
Not these the thoughts that could perplex
The fancies of our fickle sex,
When England's favorite, good Queen Bess,
Was Queen alike o'er war and dress.
Then ladies gay play'd chesse—and ballads,
And learnt to dress their hair-and salads;
Sweets—and sweet looks were studied then,
And both were pleasing to the men ;
For cookery was allied to taste,
And girls were taught to blush—and baste.
Dishes were bright—and so were eyes,
And lords made love—and ladies pies.
Then Valor won the wavering field,
By dint of hauberk and of shield;
And Beauty won the wavering heart,
By dint of pickle, and of tart.
The minuet was the favorite dance,
Girls loved the needle—boys the lance ;
And Cupid took his constant post
At dinner, by the boild and roast,
Or secretly was wont to lurk, !!
In tournament, or needle-work.
Oh! 'twas a reign of all delights,
Of hot Sir-loins,--and hot Sir knights; !
Feasting and fighting, hand in hand,
Fatten'd, and glorified the land;
And noble chiefs had noble cheer,
And knights grew strong upon strong beer;
Honor and oxen both were nourishid,
And chivalry—and pudding flourish’d.
I'd rather see that magic face,
That look of love, that form of grace,
Circled by whalebone, and by ruffs,
Intent on puddings, and on puffs,
I'd rather view thee thus, than see
“A Fashionable" rise in thee.
If Life is dark, 'tis not for you,
(If partial Friendship's voice is true)
To cure its griefs, and drown its cares,
By leaping gates, and murdering hares,
Nor to confine that feeling soul,
To winning lovers—or the vole.
If these and such pursuits are thine,
Julia ! thou art no friend of mine!
I love plain dress—I eat plain joints,
I canot play ten guinea points,
I make no study of a pin,
And hate a female whipper-in.
Long years have pass'd with silent pace,
Florence ! since you and I have met; Yet—when that meeting I retrace,
My cheek is pale, my eye is wet; For I was doom'd from thence to rove,
O’er distant tracts of earth and sea, Unaided, Florence !-save by love;
And unremember'd—save by thee ! We met! and hope beguiled our fears,
Hope, ever bright, and ever vain ; We parted thence in silent tears,
Never to meet—in life—again. The myrtle that I gaze upon,
Sad token by thy love devised, Is all the record left of one
So long bewail d—so dearly prized. You gave it in an hour of grief,
When gifts of love are doubly dear ; You gave it—and one tender leaf Glisten’d the while with Beauty's tear.