Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

What waggon loads of courage, wealth and sense, With thee good-humour tempers lively wit; Doth each revolving day import from thence ? Enthron’d with judgment, candour loves to sit; Co us she gives, disinterested friend,

And nature gave thee, open to distress, faith without fraud, and Stuarts without end. A heart to pity, and a hand to bless. When we prosperity's rich trappings wear,

Oft have I heard thee mourn the wretched lot Come not her gen'rous sons and take a share ? Of the poor, mean, despis’d, insulted Scot, Ind if, by some disastrous turn of fate,

Who, might calm reason credit idle tales Change should ensue, and ruin seize the state, By rancour forg'd where prejudice prevails, shall we not find, safe in that hallow'd ground, Or starves at home, or practises, through fear such refuge as the Holy Martyr found?

Of starving, arts which damn all conscience here. Nor less our debt in science, though deny'd When scribblers, to the charge by intrest led, By the weak slaves of prejudice and pride.

The fierce North-Briton foaming at their head, Thence came the Ramsays, names of worthy note, Pour forth invectives, deaf to candour's call, f whom one paints, as well as t'other wrote ; And injur'd by one alien, rail at all; Thence Home, disbanded from the sons of pray’r On Northern Pisgah when they take their stand, for loving plays, though no dull dean was there; To mark the weakness of that holy land, Chence issued forth at great Macpherson's call,

With needless truths their libels to adorn, Chat old, new, epic pastoral Fingal;

And hang a nation up to public scorn; Thence Malloch, friend alike of church and state, Thy gen'rous soul condemns the frantic rage, Df Christ and liberty, by grateful fate

And hates the faithful but ill-natur'd page. lais'd to rewards, which in a pious reign

The Scots are poor, cries surly English pride; All darling infidels should seek in vain;

True is the charge, nor by themselves deny'd. Thence simple bards, by simple prudence taught, Are they not then in strictest reason clear, Co this wise town by simple patrons brought, Who wisely come to mend their fortunes here? in simple manner utter simple lays,

If, by low supple arts successful grown, And take, with simple pensions, simple praise. They sapp'd our vigour to increase their own,

Waft me some Muse to Tweed's inspiring stream, If, mean in want, and insolent in pow'r, Where all the little loves and graces dream, They only fawn'd more surely to devour, Where slowly winding the dull waters creep, Rous'd by such wrongs should reason take alarm, A nd seem themselves to own the power of sleep; And e'en the Muse for public safety arm; Where on the surface lead, like feathers, swims, But if they own ingenuous virtue's sway, There let me bathe my yet unhallow'd limbs, And follow where true honour points the way, As once a Syrian bath'd in Jordan's flood,

If they revere the hand by which they're fed, Wash off my native stains, correct that blood And bless the donors for their daily bread, Which mutinies at call of English pride,

Or by vast debts of higher import bound, And deaf to prudence, rolls a patriot tide.

Are always humble, always grateful found; From solemn thought which overhangs the brow If they, directed by Paul's holy pen, Of patriot care, when things are God knows how; Become discreetly all things to all men, From nice trim points, where honour, slave to rule, That all men may become all things to them; In compliment to folly, plays the fool;

Envy may hate, but justice can't condemn. From those gay scenes where mirth exalts his pow's, “ Into our places, states, and beds they creep;" And easy humour wings the laughing hour; They've sense to get, what we want sense to keep. From those soft better moments, when desire

Once, be the hour accurs’d, accurs'd the place, Beats high, and all the world of man's on fire, I ventur'd to blaspheme the chosen race. When mutual ardours of the melting fair

Into those traps, which men call’d patriots laid, More than repay us for whole years of care; By specious arts unwarily betray'd, At friendship's summons will my Wilkes retreat, Madly I leagu'd against that sacred earth, And see, once seen before, that ancient seat, Vile parricide! which gave a parent birth. That ancient seat, where majesty display'd

But shall I meanly error's path pursue, Her ensigns, long before the world was made! When heavenly truth presents her friendly clue?

Mean narrow maxims, which enslave mankind, Once plung'd in ill, shall I go farther in? Ne'er from its bias warp thy settled mind.

To make the oath was rash; to keep it, sin. Not dup'd by party, nor opinion's slave,

Backward I tread the paths I trod before, Those faculties which bounteous nature gave, And calm reflection hates what passion swore. Thy honest spirit into practice brings,

Converted (blessed are the souls which know Nor courts the smile, nor dreads the frown of kings. Those pleasures which from true conversion flow, let rude licentious Englishmen comply

Whether to reason, who now rules my breast, With tumult's voice, and curse they know not why; Or to pure faith, like Lyttleton and West), Lnwilling to condemn, thy soul disdains

Past crimes to expiate, be my present aim To wear vile faction's arbitrary chains,

To raise new trophies to the Scottish name, And t'rictly weighs, in apprehension clear, To make (what can the proudest Muse do more?) Thirit, as they are, and not as they appear.

E'en faction's sons her brighter worth adore,

To make her glories, stamp'd with honest rhymes, Earth, clad in russet, scorn'd the lively green. In fullest tide roll down to latest times. [thine, The plague of locusts they secure defy,

“ Presumptuous wretch! and shall a Muse like For in three hours a grasshopper must die. An English Muse, the meanest of the nine,

No living thing, whate'er its food, feasts there, Attempt a theme like this? Can her weak strain But the cameleon, who can feast on air. Expect indulgence from the mighty Thane? No birds, except as birds of passage, flew, Shonld he from toils of government retire,

No bee was known to bum, no dove to coo. And for a moment fan the poet's fire,

No streams as amber smooth, as amber clear, Should he, of sciences the moral friend,

Were seen to glide, or heard to warble here. Each curious, each important search suspend, Rebellion's spring, which through the country ra. Leave unassisted Hill of herbs to tell,

Furnish'd, with bitter draughts, the steady can. And all the wonders of a cockle-shell,

No flow'rs embalm'd the air, but one white rose, Having the Lord's good grace before his eyes; Which on the tenth of June by instinct blows, Would not he Home step forth, and gain the prize ? By instinct blows at morn, and, when the shados Or, if this wreath of honour might adorn

Of drizzly eve prevail, by instinct fades. The humble brows of one in England born,

One, and but one poor solitary cave, Presumptuous still thy daring must appear;

Too sparing of her favours, nature gave; Vain all thy tow'ring hopes, whilst I am here." That one alone (hard tax on Scottish pride!)

Thus spake a form, by silken smile, and tone Shelter at once for man and beast supplied. Dull and unvaried, for the laureat known,

Their snares without entangling briers spread; Folly's chief friend, decorum's eldest son,

And thistles, arm'd against th' invader's head, In ev'ry party found, and yet of none.

Stood in close ranks all entrance to oppose, This airy substance, this substantial shade,

Thistles now held more precious than the rose. Abash'd I heard, and with respect obey’d.

All creatures which on nature's earliest plan, From themes too lofty for a bard so mean, Were form’d to lothe, and to be loth'd by man, Discretion beckons to an humbler scene.

Which ow'd their birth to nastiness and spite, The restless fever of ambition laid,

Deadly to touch, and hateful to the sight, Calm I retire, and seek the sylvan shade.

Creatures, which when admitted in the ark, Now be the Muse disrob’d of all her pride,

Their saviour shunn'd, and rankled in the dark, Be all the glare of verse by truth supplied;

Found place within : marking her poisome road And if plain nature pours a simple strain,

With poison's trail, here crawld the bloated teed; Which Bute may praise, and Ossian not disdain, There webs were spread of more than common sit, Ossian, sublimest, simplest bard of all,

And half-starv'd spiders prey'd on half-stare'd fies; Whom English infidels Macpherson call,

In quest of food, efts strove in vain to crawl; Then round my head shall honour's ensigns wave, Slugs, pinch’d with hunger, smear'd the slimy sel; And pensions mark me for a willing slave.

The cave around with hissing serpents rung;

On the damp roof unhealthy vapour hung; Two boys, whose birth beyond all question And Famine, by her children always known, springs

As proud as poor, here fix'd her native throne. From great and glorious, though forgotten, kings, Here, for the sullen sky was overcast, Shepherds of Scottish lineage, born and bred And summer shrunk beneath a wintry blast, On the same bleak and barren mountain's head; A native blast, which, arm'd with hail and rain, By niggard nature doom'd on the same rocks Beat unrelenting on the naked swain, To spin out life, and starve themselves and flocks; The boys for shelter made; behind-the sheep, Fresh as the morning, which, enrob’d in mist, Of which those shepherds every day take keep, The mountain's top with usual dulness kiss'd, Sickly crept on, and with complainings rude, Jockey and Sawney to their labours rose;

On nature seem'd to call, and bleat for food. Soon clad I ween, where nature needs no clothes;

Jockey. Where, from their youth inur’d to winter skies, Sith to this cave, by tempest, we're confia'd, Dress and her vain refinements they despise. And within ken our flocks, under the wind,

Jockey, whose manly high-bon'd cheeks to crown Şafe from the pelting of this perilous storm, With freckles spotted flam'd the golden down, Are laid emong yon thistles, dry and warm, With mnickle art could on the bagpipes play, What, Sawney, if by shepherd's art we try E'en from the rising to the setting day;

To mock the rigour of this cruel sky? Sawney as long without remorse could bawl What if we tune some merry roundelay? Home's madrigals, and ditties from Fingal. Well dost thou sing, nor ill doth Jockey play. Olt at his strains, all natural though rude,

Sawney. The Highland lass forgot her want of food,

Ah, Jockey, ill adviseth thou, I wis, And, whilst she scratch'd her lover into rest, To think of songs at such a time as this. Sunk pleas'd, though hungry, on her Sawney's Sooner shall herbage crown these barren rorien breast.

Sooner shall fleeces clothe these ragged flot grat Far as the eye could reach, no tree was seen,

Sooner shall want seize shepherds of the soiwe!

Ind we forget to live from hand to mouth,

Her hollow cheeks were each a deep-sunk cell, Chan Sawney, out of season, shall impart

Where wretchedness and horror lov'd to dwell; The songs of gladness with an aching heart. With double rows of useless teeth supplied, Jockey.

Her mouth, from ear to ear, extended wide, Still have I known thee for a silly swain: Which, when for want of food her entrails pin'd, Of things past help what boots it to complain? She op’d, and, cursing, swallow'd nought but wind; Nothing but mirth can conquer fortune's spite; All shrivell'd was her skin, and here and there, No sky is heavy, if the heart be light:

Making their way by force, her bones lay bare: Patience is sorrow's salve; what can't be cur'd, Such filthy sight to hide from human view, 30 Donald right arreads, must be endur'd.

O’er her foul limbs a tatter'd plaid she threw. Sawney.

Cease, cried the goddess, cease, despairing swains, Full silly swain, I wot, is Jockey now;

And from a parent hear what Jove ordains ! low didst thou hear thy Maggy's falsehood ? how, Pent in this barren corner of the isle, When with a foreign loon she stole away,

Where partial fortune never deign’d to smile; Didst thou forswear thy pipe and shepherd's lay? Like nature's bastards, reaping for our share Where was thy boasted wisdom then, when I What was rejected by the lawful heir; Applied those proverbs, which you now apply? Unknown amongst the nations of the earth, Jockey.

Or only known to raise contempt and mirth ; O she was bonny! All the Highlands round, Long free, because the race of Roman braves Was there a rival to my Maggy found !

Thought it not worth their while to make us slaves; More precious (though that precious is to all) Then into bondage by that nation brought, Ihan the rare med'cine which we brimstone call, Whose ruin we for ages vainly sought; Or that choice plant, so grateful to the nose, Whom still with unslack'd hate we view, and still, Which in I know not what far country grows, The pow'r of mischief lost, retain the will; Was Maggy unto me; dear do I rue,

Consider'd as the refuse of mankind,
A lass so fair should ever prove untrue.

A mass till the last moment left behind,
Sawney.

Which frugal nature doubted, as it lay,
Whether with pipe or song to charm the ear, Whether to stamp with life, or throw away;
Through all the land did Jamie find a peer? Which, form’d in haste, was planted in this nook,
Curs'd be that year by ev'ry honest Scot,

But never enter'd in creation's book; And in the shepherd's calendar forgot,

Branded as traitors, who for love of gold That fatal year, when Jamie, hapless swain, Would sell their God, as once their king they sold; In evil hour forsook the peaceful plain.

Long have we borne this mighty weight of ill, Jamie, when our young laird discreetly fled, These vile injurious taunts, and bear them still. Was seiz'd and hang'd till he was dead, dead, dead. But times of happier note are now at hand, Jockey.

And the full promise of a better land: Full sorely may we all lament that day;

There, like the sons of Israel, having trod, For all were losers in the deadly fray.

For the fix'd term of years ordain’d by God, Five brothers had I on the Scottish plains, (swains; A barren desart, we shall seize rich plains, Well dost thou know were none more hopeful Where milk with honey flows, and plenty reigns. Five brothers there I lost, in manhood's pride, With some few natives join'd, some pliant few, Two in the field, and three on gibbets died:

Who worship int'rest, and our track pursue, Ah! silly swains, to follow war's alarms!

There shall we, though the wretched people grieve Ah! what hath shepherd's life to do with arms! Ravage at large, nor ask the owners leave. Sawney.

For us, the earth shall bring forth her increase; Mention it not—There saw I strangers clad For us, the flocks shall wear a golden fleece; In all the honours of our ravish'd plaid;

Fat beeves shall yield us dainties not our own, Saw the ferrara, too, our nation's pride,

And the grape bleed a nectar yet unknown; Unwilling grace the awkward victor's side. For our advantage shall their harvests grow, There fell our choicest youth, and from that day And Scotsmen reap what they disdain'd to sow; Mote never Sawney tune the merry lay; (survive, For us, the sun shall climb the eastern hill; Bless'd those which fell! curs'd those which still For us, the rain shall fall, the dew distil; To mourn fifteen renew'd in forty-five.

When to our wishes nature cannot rise,

Art shall be task'd to grant us fresh supplies. Thus plain’d the boys,when from her throne ofturf, His brawny arm shall drudging labour strain, With boils emboss'd, and overgrown with scurf, And for our pleasure suffer daily pain; Vile humours, which in life's corrupted well, Trade shall for us exert her utmost pow'rs, Vix'd at the birth, not abstinence could quell,) Her's all the toil, and all the profit our's; Pae Famine rear'd the head: her eager eyes, For us, the oak shall from his native steep Where hunger ev'n to madness seem'd to rise, Descend, and fearless travel through the deep; Speking aloud her throes and pangs of heart, The sail of commerce, for our use unfurl'd, ng in'd to get loose, and from their orbs to start ; Shall waft the treasures of each distant world;

son,

For us, sublimer heights shall science reach, When they against their lawful monarch rose, For us, their statesmen plot, their churchmen preach; And dar'd the Lord's Anointed to oppose, Their noblest limbs of counsel we'll disjoint,

What if we still rever'd the banish'd race, And, mocking, new ones of our own appoint; And strove the royal vagrants to replace, Devouring war, imprison'd in the north,

With fierce rebellions shook th' unsettled state, Shall at our call, in horrid pomp break forth, And greatly dar'd though cross'd by partial f22; And when, his chariot wheels with thunder hung, These facts, which might, where wisdom held Fell Discord braying with her brazen tongue,

sway, Death in the van, with Anger, Hate, and Fear, Awake the very stones to bar our way, And Desolation stalking in the rear,

There shall be nothing, nor one trace remain Revenge, by Justice guided, in his train,

In the dull region of an English brain. He drives impetuous o'er the trembling plain, Bless'd with that faith, which mountains can reacsa. Shall, at our bidding, quit his lawful prey,

First they shall dupes,next saints, last marlyn praf And to meek, gentle, gen'rous Peace give way. Already is this game of fate begun

Think not, my sons, that this so bless'd estate Under the sanction of my darling son: Stands at a distance on the roll of fate;

That of nature royal as his name, Already big with hopes of future sway,

Is destin'd to redeem our race from shame; E'en from this cave I scent my destin'd prey. His boundless pow'r, beyond example great

, Think not, that this dominion o'er a race,

Shall make the rough way smooth, the enveksi Whose former deeds shall time's last annals grace, straight; In the rough face of peril must be sought,

Shall for our ease the raging floods restrain, And with the lives of thousands dearly bought; And sink the mountain level to the plain. No-fool'd by cunning, by that happy art

Discord, whom in a cavern under ground Which laughs to scorn the blundering hero's heart, With massy fetters their late Patriot bound, Into the snare shall our kind neighbours fall Where her own flesh the furious hag might tex; With open eyes, and fondly give us all.

And vent her curses to the vacant air; When Rome, to prop her sinking empire, bore Where, that she never might be heard of more, Their choicest levies to a foreign shore,

He planted Loyalty to guard the door; What if we seiz’d, like a destroying flood, (blood, For better purpose shall our chief release, Their widow'd plains, and fillid the realm with Disguise her for a time, and call her Peace. Gave an unbounded loose to manly rage,

Lur’d by that name, fine engine of deceit, And scorning mercy, spar'd nor sex nor age; Shall the weak English help themselves to chest; When, for our int'rest too mighty grown,

To gain our love, with honours shall they grace Monarchs of warlike bent possess'd the throne, The old adherents of the Stuart race, What if we strove divisions to foment,

Who pointed out, no matter by what name, And spread the flames of civil discontent,

Tories or Jacobites are still the same, Assisted those who 'gainst their king made head, To soothe our rage, the temporising brood And gave the traitors refuge when they fled; Shall break the ties of truth and gratitude, When restless Glory bade her sons advance, Against their saviour venom'd falsehoods frame, And pitch'd her standard in the fields of France, And brand with calumny their William's name; What if, disdaining oaths, and empty sound, To win our grace, (rare argument of wit

) By which our nation never shall be bound,

To our untainted faith shall they commit Bravely we taught un muzzled war to roam Chome; (Our faith which, in extremest perils tried

, Through the weak land, and brought cheap laurels Disdain'd, and still disdains, to change her side) When the bold traitors leagu'd for the defence That sacred majesty they all approve, Of Law, Religion, Liberty, and Sense,

Who most enjoys, and best deserves their love.

[ocr errors]

GOLDSMITH-A. D. 1729-74.

THE DOUBLE TRANSFORMATION.

A TALE.

secluded from domestic strife,
ack Book-worm led a college life;
A fellowship at twenty-five,
Aade him the happiest man alive;
le drank his glass, and crack'd his joke,
Ind freshmen wonder'd as he spoke.

Such pleasures, unallay'd with care,
Could any accident impair?
Could Cupid's shaft at length transfix
Jur swain, arriv'd at thirty-six ?

had the archer ne'er come down
so ravage in a country town!
Dr Flavia been content to stop
At triumphs in a Fleet-street shop.

had her eyes forgot to blaze ! Or Jack had wanted eyes to gaze; 0!-But let exclamation cease, Her presence banish'd all his peace. So with decorum all things carry'd ; Miss frown'd, and blush’d, and then was married.

Need we expose to vulgar sight
The raptures of the bridal night?
Need we intrude on hallow'd ground,
Or draw the curtains clos'd around?
Let it suffice, that each had charms;
He clasp'd a goddess in his arms;
And, though she felt his usage rough,
Yet in a man 'twas well enough.

The honey-moon like lightning flew;
The second brought its transports too;
A third, a fourth, were not amiss ;
The fifth was friendship mix'd with bliss :
But, when a twelvemonth pass'd away,
Jack found his goddess made of clay;
Found half the charms that deck'd her face
Arose from powder, shreds, or lace;
But still the worst remain'd behind,
That very face had robb’d her mind.

Skill'd in no other arts was she,
But dressing, patching, repartee;
And, just as humour rose or fell,
By turns a slattern or a belle;
Tis true she dress’d with modern grace ;
Half naked at a ball or race;
But when at home, at board or bed,
Five greasy night-caps wrapp'd her head.
Could so much beauty condescend
To be a dull domestic friend?
Could any curtain-lectures bring

o decency so fine a thing?
a short, by night, 'twas fits or fretting;

By day, 'twas gadding or coquetting.
Fond to be seen, she kept a bevy
Of powder'd coxcombs at her levy;
The 'squire and captain took their stations,
And twenty other near relations;
Jack suck'd his pipe, and often broke
A sigh in suffocating smoke;
While all their hours were pass'd between
Insulting repartee or spleen.

Thus as her faults each day were known,
He thinks her features coarser grown;
He fancies every vice she shows,
Or thins her lip, or points her nose:
Whenever rage or envy rise,
How wide her mouth, how wild her eyes!
He knows not how, but so it is,
Her face is grown a knowing phyz;
And, though her fops are wondrous civil,
He thinks her ugly as the devil.

Now, to perplex the ravell’d nooze,
As each a different way pursues,
While sullen or loquacious strife
Promised to hold them on for life,
That dire disease, whose ruthless power
Withers the beauty's transient flower,
Lol the small-pox, whose horrid glare
Levell'd its terrors at the fair;
And, rifling every youthful grace,
Left but the remnant of a face.

The glass, grown hateful to her sight,
Reflected now a perfect fright:
Each former art she vainly tries
To bring back lustre to her eyes.
In vain she tries her paste and creams,
To smooth her skin, or hide its seams;
Her country beaux and city cousins,
Lovers no more, flew off by dozens :
The 'squire himself was seen to yield,
And ev’n the captain quit the field.

Poor madam now condemn'd to hack
The rest of life with anxious Jack,
Perceiving others fairly flown,
Attempted pleasing him alone.
Jack soon was dazzled to behold
Her present face surpass the old;
With modesty her cheeks are dy'd,
Humility displaces pride;
For tawdry finery, is seen
A person ever neatly clean:
No more presuming on her sway,
She learns good-nature every day;
Serenely gay, and strict in duty,
Jack finds his wi a perfect beauty.

31

« AnteriorContinuar »