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When he that takes and he that pays

Are both alike distress'd.

Now all unwelcome at his gates

The clumsy swains alight,
With rueful faces and bald pates -

He trembles at the sight.

And well he may, for well he knows

Each bumpkin of the clan, Instead of paying what he owes,

Will cheat him if he can.

So in they come -each makes his leg

And flings his head before, And looks as if he came to beg,

And not to quit a score.

“ And how does miss and madam do,

The little boy and all ?” “ All tight and well. And how do you,

Good Mr What-d'ye-call ? "

The dinner comes, and down they sit:

Were e'er such hungry folk ? There's little talking, and no wit;

It is no time to joke.

One wipes his nose upon his sleeve,

One spits upon the floor,
Yet, not to give offence or grieve,

Holds up the cloth before.

The punch goes round, and they are dull

And lumpish still as ever ;
Like barrels with their bellies full,

They only weigh the heavier.

At length the busy time begins,

« Come, neighbours, we must wag”. The money chinks, down drop their chins,

Each lugging out his bag.

One talks of mildew and of frost,

And one of storms of hail,
And one of pigs, that he has lost

By maggots at the tail.

Quoth one,

“ A rarer man than you
In pulpit none shall hear :
But yet, methinks, to tell you true,

You sell it plaguy dear."

Oh, why are farmers made so coarse,

Or clergy made so fine ?
A kick, that scarce would move a horse,

May kill a sound divine.

Then let the boobies stay at home;

'T would cost him, I dare say, Less trouble taking twice the sum

Without the clowns that pay.


[Written in October, 1780, on his return from Ramsgate.]

That ocean you have late survey'd,

Those rocks I too have seen ;
But I, afflicted and dismay'd,

You tranquil and serene.

You from the flood-controlling steep

Saw stretch'd before your view,
With conscious joy, the threatening deep,

No longer such to you.

To me, the waves that ceaseless broke

Upon the dangerous coast,
Hoarsely and ominously spoke

Of all my treasure lost.

have past,

Your sea of troubles

And found a peaceful shore ;
I tempest toss’d, and wreck'd at last,

Come home to port no more.

TO SIR JOSHUA REYNOLDS. [“ A poetical effort of the predictive kind," as the poet spor. tively calls this piece, composed in the beginning of 1781. The allusions to the American Senate and United Provinces, and to the armed neutrality in Europe, are sufficiently obvious. ]

DEAR president, whose art sublime
Gives perpetuity to time,
And bids transactions of a day,
That fleeting hours would waft away
To dark futurity, survive,
And in unfading beauty live,
You cannot with a grace decline
A special mandate of the Nine-
Yourself, whatever task you choose,
So much indebted to the muse.

Thus say the Sisterhood, — We come-
Fix well your palette on your thumb,
Prepare the pencil and the tints -
We come to furnish you with hints.
French disappointment, British glory,
Must be the subject of the story.

First strike a curve, a graceful bow,.
Then slope it to a point below ;
Your outline easy, airy, light,
Filld up becomes a paper kite.
Let independence, sanguine, horrid,
Blaze like a meteor in the forehead :
Beneath (but lay aside your graces)
Draw six-and-twenty rueful faces,
Each with a staring, steadfast eye,
Fix'd on his great and good ally.
France flies the kite-'tis on the wing-
Britannia's lightning cuts the string.
The wind that raised it, ere it ceases,
Just rends it into thirteen pièces,
Takes charge of every fluttering sheet,
And lays them all at George's feet.

Iberia, trembling from afar,
Renounces the confederate war.
Her efforts and her arts o'ercome,
France calls her shatter'd navies home:
Repenting Holland learns to mourn
The sacred treaties she has torn;
Astonishment and awe profound
Are stamp'd upon the nations round;
Without one friend, above all foes,
Britannia gives the world repose.


September 16, 1781.
A NOBLE theme demands a noble verse,
In such I thank


fine oysters.
The barrel was magnificently large,
But being sent to Olney at free charge,
Was not inserted in the driver's list,
And therefore overlook'd, forgot, or miss'd ;
For when the messenger whom we despatch'd
Inquired for oysters, Hob his noddle scratch'd ;
Denying that his wagon or his wain
Did any such commodity contain.
In consequence of which, your welcome boon
Did not arrive till yesterday at noon ;
In consequence of which some chanced to die,
And some, though very sweet, were very dry.
Now Madam says, (and what she says must still
Deserve attention, say she what she will,)
That what we call the Diligence, be-case

to London with a swifter pace,
Would better suit the carriage of your gift,
Returning downward with a pace as swift ;
And therefore recommends it with this aim-
To save at least three days, the price the same ;
For though it will not carry or convey
For less than twelve pence, send whate'er you may
For oysters bred upon the salt sea shore,
Pack'd in a barrel, they will charge no more.

News have I none that I can deign to write,
Save that it rain'd prodigiously last night;
And that ourselves were, at the seventh hour,
Caught in the first beginning of the shower ;
But walking, running, and with much ado,
Got home—just time enough to be wet through.
Yet both are well, and, wondrous to be told,
Soused as we were, we yet have caught no cold ;
And wishing just the same good hap to you,
We say, good Madam, and good Sir, Adieu !



[Written “on the shortest day,” 1781 ; and originally intended for an introduction to one of the pieces in the poet's first publication, where, however, it did not appear.] WHEN a bar of pure silver or ingot of gold

Is sent to be flatted or wrought into length, It is pass'd between cylinders often, and rollid

In an engine of utmost mechanical strength.

Thus tortured and squeezed, at last it appears

Like a loose heap of ribbon, a glittering show, Like music it tinkles and rings in your ears,

And warm’d by the pressure is all in a glow.

This process achieved, it is doom'd to sustain

The thump-after-thump of a gold-beater's mallet, And at last is of service in sickness or pain

To cover a pill from a delicate palate.

Alas for the Poet! who dares undertake

To urge reformation of national ill -
His head and his heart are both likely to ache

With the double employment of mallet and mill.

If he wish to instruct, he must learn to delight,

Smooth, ductile, and even, his fancy must flow, Must tinkle and glitter like gold to the sight,

And catch in its progress a sensible glow.

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