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IN THREE CANTOS.
From every annual course let one great day
The eyes might have conspir'd her ruin, To celebrated sports and floral play
And she not known what they were doing. Be set aside ; and, in the softest lays
Foolish it had been, and unkind, Of thy poetic sons, be solemn praise
That they should see, and she be blind. And everlasting marks of honour paid
“ Wise Nature likewise, they suppose, To the true lover, and the Nut-brown Maid."
Has drawn two conduits down our nose :
For from most bodies, Dick, you know,
Some little bits ask leave to flow;
footmen running before coaches, THE PROGRESS OF THE MIND. To tell the inn what lord approaches.
“ By nerves about our palate plac'd, She likewise judges of the taste.
Else (dismal thought!) our warlike men Πάντα γίλως, και πάντα κόνις, και πάντα το μηδέν. Might drink thick port for fine champagne ; Πάντα γάρ εξ αλόγων εστι τα γιγνόμενα. .
And our ill-judging wives and daughters
Mistake small-beer for citron-waters.
“ Hence, too, that she might better bear Canto I.
She sets a drum at either ear:
And, loud or gentle, harsh or sweet, MATTHEW * met Richard +, when or where Are but th' alarums which they beat. From story is not mighty clear :
“ Last, to enjoy her sense of feeling, Of many knotty points they spoke,
(A thing she much delights to deal in,) And pro and con by turns they took,
A thousand little nerves she sends Rats half the manuscript have eat :
Quite to our toes and fingers' ends; Díre hunger! which we still regret,
And these, in gratitude, again 0! may they ne'er again digest
Return their spirits to the brain; The horrours of so sad a feast!
In which their figure being printed, Yet less our grief, if what remains,
(As just before, I think, I hinted,) Dear Jacob ¢, by thy care and pains
Alma, inform'd, can try the case, Shall be to future times convey'd.
As she had been upon the place. It thus begins :
“ Thus, while the judge gives different journies Here Matthew said,
To country council and attornies, “ Alma in verse, in prose the Mind,
He on the bench in quiet sits, By Aristotle's pen defin'd,
Deciding, as they bring the writs. Throughout the body, squat or tall,
The pope thus prays and sleeps at Rome, Is, bona fide, all in all.
And very seldom stirs from home: And yet, slap-dash, is all again
Yet, sending forth his holy spies, In every sinew, nerve, and vein :
And having heard what they advise, Runs here and there, like Hamlet's ghost;
He rules the church's blest dominions, While every where she rules the roast.
And sets men's faith by his opinions. “ This system, Richard, we are told,
“ The scholars of the Stagyrite, The men of Oxford firmly hold.
Who for the old opinion fight, The Cambridge wits, you know, deny
Would make their modern friends confess With ipse dixit to comply.
The difference but from more to less. They say, (for in good truth they speak
The Mind, say they, while you sustain With small respect of that old Greek,)
To hold her station in the brain; That, putting all his words together,
You grant, at least, she is extended : 'Tis three blue beans in one blue bladder.
Ergo the whole dispute is ended. “ Alma, they strenuously maintain,
For, till to-morrow should you plead, Sits cock-horse on her throne, the brain;
From form and structure to the head, And from that seat of thought dispenses
The Mind as visibly is seen Her sovereign pleasure to the senses.
Extended through the whole machine. Two optic nerves, they say, she ties,
Why should all honour then be ta'en Like spectacles, across the eyes ;
From lower parts to load the brain, By which the spirits bring her word,
When other limbs, we plainly see, Whene'er the balls are fix'd or stirr'd,
Each in his way as brisk as he ? How quick at park and play they strike;
For music, grant the head receive it, The duke they court; the toast they like;
It is the artist's hand that gave it; And at St. James's turn their grace
And, though the skull may wear the laurel, From former friends, now out of place.
The soldier's arm sustains the quarrel. “ Without these aids, to be more serious, Besides, the nostrils, ears, and eyes, Her power, they hold, had been precarious: Are not his parts, but his allies;
Ev'n what you hear the tongue proclaim • Himself. + Mr. Shelton. | Tonson.
Comes ab origine from them.
What could the head perform alone,
Still to their size he aim'd his skill : If all their friendly aids were gone?
Else, pr'ythee, who would pay his bill ? A foolish figure he must make;
“ Next, Dick, if Chance herself should vary, Do nothing else but sleep and ake.
Observe, how matters would miscarry : “ Nor matters it, that you can show
Across your eyes, friend, place your shoes; How to the head the spirits go;
Your spectacles upon your toes : Those spirits started from some goal,
Then you and Memmius shall agree Before they through the veins could roll.
How nicely men would walk, or see. Now, we should hold them much to blame,
“ But Wisdom, peevish and cross-grain’d, If they went back, before they came.
Must be oppos’d, to be sustain'd; “ If, therefore, as we must suppose,
And still your knowledge will increase, They came from fingers, and from toes;
As you make other people's less. Or teeth, or fingers, in this case,
In arms and science 'tis the same; Of Num-skull's self should take the place :
Our rival's hurts create our fame. Disputing fair, you grant thus much,
At Faubert's, if disputes arise That all sensation is but touch.
Among the champions for the prize, Dip but your toes into cold water,
To prove who gave the fairer butt, Their correspondent teeth will chatter :
John shows the chalk on Robert's coat. And, strike the bottom of your feet,
So, for the honour of your book, You set your head into a heat.
It tells where other folks mistook : The bully beat, and happy lover,
And, as their notions you confound, Confess that feeling lies all over.
Those you invent get farther ground. “ Note here, Lucretius dares to teach
“ The commentators on old Ari(As all our youth may learn from Creech)
stotle ('tis urg'd) in judgment vary : That eyes were made, but could not view,
They to their own conceits have brought Nor hands embrace, nor feet pursue :
The image of his general thought; But heedless Nature did produce
Just as the melancholic eye The members first, and then the use.
Sees fleets and armies in the sky; What each must act was yet unknown,
And to the poor apprentice ear Till all is mov'd by Chance alone.
The bells sound, • Whittington, lord-mayor.' “ A man first builds a country-seat,
The conjuror thus explains his scheme ; Then finds the walls not good to eat.
Thus spirits walk, and prophets dream; Another plants, and wondering secs
North Britons thus have second-sight; Nor books nor medals on his trees.
And Germans, free from gun-shot, fight. Yet poet and philosopher
“ Theodoret and Origen, Was he, who durst such whims aver.
And fifty other learned men, Blest, for his sake, he human reason,
Attest, that, if their comments find That came at all, though late in season.
The traces of their master's mind, But no man, sure, e'er left his house,
Alma, can ne'er decay nor die : And saddled Ball, with thoughts so wild, This flatly t other sect deny ; To bring a midwife to his spouse,
Simplicius, Theophrast, Durand, Before he knew she was with child.
Great names, but hard in verse to stand. And no man ever reapt his corn,
They wonder men should have mistook Or from the oven drew his bread,
The tenets of their master's book, Ere hinds and bakers yet were born,
And hold, that Alma yields her breath, That taught them both to sow and knead. O’ercome by age, and seiz'd by death. Before they're ask'd, can maids refuse?
Now which were wise ? and which were fools? Can”-“ Pray,” says Dick,“ hold in your Muse. Poor Alma sits between two stools : While you Pindaric truths rehearse,
The more she reads, the more perplext; She hobbles in alternate verse.
The comment ruining the text : “ Verse," Mat reply'd ; " is that my care ?” – Now fears, now hopes, her doubtful fate : “ Go on," quoth Richard, “ soft and fair." But, Richard, let her look to that
“ This looks, friend Dick, as Nature had Whilst we our own affairs pursue. But exercis'd the salesman's trade ;
“ These different systems, old or new, As if she haply had sat down,
A man with half an eye may see, And cut out clothes for all the town;
Were only form’d to disagree. Then sent them out to Monmouth-street,
Now, to bring things to fair conclusion, To try what persons they would fit.
And save much Christian ink's effusion, But every free and licens'd taylor
Let me propose an healing scheme, Would in this thesis find a failure.
And sail along the middle stream; Should whims like these his head perplex,
For, Dick, if we could reconcile How could he work for either sex?
Old Aristotle with Gassendus, His clothes, as atoms might prevail,
How many would admire our toi)! Might fit a pismire, or a whale.
And yet how few would comprehend us ! No, no: he views with studious pleasure
“ Here, Richard, let my scheme commence ; Your shape, before he takes your measure.
Oh! may my words be lost in sense ! For real Kate he made the bodice,
While pleas'a Thalia deigns to write And not for an idea goddess.
The slips and bounds of Alma's fight. No errour near his shop-board lurk’d;
“ My simple syslem shall suppose He knew the folks for whom he work'd :
That Alma enters at the toes;
That then she mounts by just degrees
In dying accents he complains Up to the ancles, legs, and knees;
Of cruel fires, and raging pains. Next, as the sap of life does rise,
The nymph too longs to be alone, She lends her vigour to the thighs;
Leaves all the swains, and sighs for one. And all these under-regions past,
The nymph is warm'd with young desire, She nestles somewhere near the waist ;
And feels, and dies to quench his fire. Gives pain or pleasure, grief or laughter,
They meet each evening in the grove; As we shall show at large hereafter.
Their parley but augments their love : Mature, if not improv'd by time,
So to the priest their case they tell : Up to the heart she loves to climb ;
He ties the knot; and all goes well. From thence, compellid by craft and age,
“ But, U my Muse, just distance keep; She makes the head her latest stage.
Thou art a maid, and must not pcep. “ From the feet upward to the head”
In nine months time, the bodice loose, “ Pithy and short," says Dick, “ proceed." And petticoats too short, disclose “ Dick, this is not an idle notion :
That at this age the active mind Observe the progress of the inotion.
About the waist lies most confin'd; First, I demonstratively prove,
And that young life and quickening sense That feet were only made to move;
Spring from his influence darted thence. And legs desire to come and go,
So from the middle of the world For they have nothing else to do.
The Sun's prolific rays are hurl'd: “ Hence, long before the child can crawl, 'Tis from that seat he darts those beams, He learns to kick, and wince, and sprawl:
Which quicken Earth with genial flames." To hinder which, your midwife knows
Dick, who thus long had passive sat, To bind those parts extremely close ;
Here strok'd his chin, and cock'd his hat; Lest Alma, newly enter'd in,
Then slapp'd his hand upon the board, And stunn'd at her own christening's din, And thus the youth put in his word. Fearful of future grief and pain,
“ Love's advocates, sweet sir, would find him Should silently sneak out again.
A higher place than you assign'd him." Full piteous seems young Alma's case;
“ Love's advocates! Dick, who are those ?" As in a luckless gamester's place,
“ The poets, you may well suppose. She would not play, yet must not pass.
I'm sorry, sir, you have discarded “ Again ; as she grows something stronger, The men with whom till now you herded. And master's feet are swath'd no longer,
Prose-men alone, for private ends, If in the night too oft he kicks,
I thought, forsook their ancient friends. Or shows his loco-motive tricks;
In cor stillavil, cries Lucretius; These first assaults fat Kate repays him ;
If he may be allow'd to teach us. When half asleep, she overlays him.
The self-same thing soft Ovid says, “ Now mark, dear Richard, from the age (A proper judge in such a case,) That children tread this worldly stage,
Horace's phrase is, torret jecur ; Broom-staff or poker they bestride,
And happy was that curious speaker. And round the parlour love to ride;
Here Virgil too has plac'd this passion. Till thoughtful father's pious care
What signifies too long quotation ? Provides his brood, next Smithfield Fair,
In ode and epic, plain the case is, With supplemental hobby-horses :
That Love holds one of these two places." And happy be their infant courses !
“ Dick, without passion or reflection, “ Hence for some years they ne'er stand still : I'll straight demolish this objection. Their legs, you see, direct their will ;
“ First, poets, all the world agrees, From opening morn till setting sun,
Write half to profit, half to please. Around the fields and woods they run ;
Matter and figure they produce; They frisk, and dance, and leap, and play,
For garnish this, and that for use ; Nor heed what Freind or Snape can say.
And in the structure of their feasts, “ To her next stage as Alma Alies,
They seek to feed and please their guests : And likes, as I have said, the thighs,
But one may balk this good intent, With sympathetic power she warms
And take things otherwise than meant. Their good allies and friends, the arms;
Thus, if you dine with my lord-mayor, While Betty dances on the green,
Roast-beef and venison is your fare; And Susan is at stool-ball seen ;
Thence you proceed to swan and bustard, While John for nine-pins does declare,
And persevere in tart and custard : And Roger loves to pitch the bar :
But tulip-leaves and lemon-peel Both legs and arms spontaneous move;
Help only to adorn the meal; Which was the thing I meant to prove.
And painted flags, superb and neat, “ Another motion now she makes :
Proclaim you welcome to the treat. 0, need I name the seat she takes ?
The man of sense his meat devours, His thought quite chang'd the stripling finds; But only smells the peel and flowers; The sport and race no more he minds;
And he must be an idle dreamer, Neglected Tray and pointer lie,
Who leaves the pie, and gnaws the streamer. And covies unmolested fly.
“ That Cupid goes with bow and arrows, Sudden the jocund plain he leaves,
And Venus kecps her coach and sparrows, And for the nympla in secret grieves.
Is all but emblem, to acquaint one,
Such images have sometimes shown
“ Your Horace owns, he various writ,
“ Lucretius keeps a mighty pother With Cupid and his fancy'd mother ; Calls her great queen of Earth and Air, Declares that winds and seas obey her ; And, while her honour he rehearses, Implores her to inspire his verses.
“ Yet, free from this poetic madness,
« Nor e'er can Latin poets prove
« But let your friends in verse suppose,
“ The like may of the heart be said; Courage and terrour there are bred. All those, whose hearts are loose and low, Start, if they hear but the tattoo : And mighty physical their fear is; For, soon as noise of combat near is, Their heart, descending to their breeches, Must give their stomach cruel twitches. But heroes, who o'ercome or die, Have their hearts hung extremely high, The strings of which, in battle's heat, Against their very corslets beat ;
Keep time with their own trumpet's measure, And yield them most excessive pleasure.
“ Now, if 'tis chiefly in the heart
“ This truth more plainly to discover,
“ In scornful sloth Achilles slept,
« Antonius fled from Actium's coast,
« France's fourth Henry we may see
« Bold is the critic who dares prove
“ Examples I could cite you more ; But be contented with these four : For when one's proofs are aptly chosen, Four are as valid as four dozen. One came from Greece, and one from Rome; The other two grew nearer home. For some in ancient books delight; Others prefer what moderns write: Now I should be extremely loth, Not to be thought expert in both."
" But shall we take the Muse abroad, To drop her idly on the road ? And leave our subject in the middle, As Butler did his Bear and Fiddle ? Yet he, consummate master, knew, When to recede, and where pursue :
His noble negligences teach
The man suspects his larly's crying What others toils despair to reach.
(When he last autumn lay a-dying) He, perfect dancer, climbs the rope,
Was but to gain him to appoint her And balances your fear and hope :
By codicil a larger jointure. If, after some distinguish'd leap,
The woman finds it all a trick, He drops his pole, and seems to slip,
That he could swoon when she was sick; Straight gathering all his active strength,
And knows, that in that grief he reckon'd He rises higher half his length.
On black-ey'd Susan for his second. With wonder you approve his slight,
“ Thus having strove some tedious years And owe your pleasure to your fright:
With feign'd desires, and real fears; But like poor Andrew I advance,
And, tir'd with answers and replies False mimic of my master's dance.
Of John affirms, and Martha lies, Around the cord awhile I sprawl,
Leaving this endless altercation, And thence, though low, in earnest fall.
The Mind affects a higher station. “ My preface tells you, I digress'd :
“ Poltis, that generous king of Thrace, He's half absolv'd who has confess'd."
I think, was in this very case. “ I like," quoth Dick, “ your simile,
All Asia now was by the ears, And, in return, take two from me.
And gods beat up for volunteers As masters in the clare obscure
To Greece and Troy; while Poltis sat With various light your eyes allure,
In quiet governing his state. A flaming yellow here they spread,
• And whence,' said the pacific king.. Draw off in blue, or charge in red ;
• Does all this noise and discord spring ? Yet, from these colours oddly mix'd,
• Why, Paris took Atrides' wife.'Your sight upon the whole is fix'd :
• With ease I could compose this strife : Or as, again, your courtly dames
The injur'd hero should not lose, (Whose clothes returning birth-day claims)
Nor the young lover want a spouse. By arts improve the stuffs they vary,
But Helen chang'd her first condition, And things are best as most contrary;
Without her husband's just permission. The gown, with stiff embroidery shining,
What from the dame can Paris hope ? Looks charming with a slighter lining;
She may as well from him elope. The out-, if Indian figure stain,
Again, how can her old good man, The in-side must be rich and plain.
With honour, take her back again? So you great authors have thought fit
From hence I logically gather, To make digression temper wit :
The woman cannot live with cither. When arguments too fiercely glare,
Now, I have two right honest wives, You calm them with a milder air :
For whose possession no man strives : To break their points, you turn their force,
One to Atrides I will send, And furbelow the plain discourse."
And t'other to my Trojan friend. “ Richard," quoth Mat, “these words of thine Each prince shall thus with honour have Speak something sly, and something fine:
What both so warmly seem to crave : But I shall e'en resume my theme,
The wrath of gods and man shall cease, However thou may'st praise or blame.
And Poltis live and die in peace.' “ As people marry now, and settle,
“ Dick, if this story pleaseth thee, Fierce Love abates his usual mettle :
Pray thank Dan Pope, who told it me. Worldly desires, and household cares,
« Howe'er swift Alma's flight may vary, Disturb the godhead's soft affairs :
(Take this by way of corollary) So now, as health or temper changes,
Some limbs she finds the very same, In larger compass Alma ranges.
In place, in dignity, in name : This day below, the next above,
These dwell at such convenient distance, As light or solid whimsies move.
That each may give his friend assistance. So merchant has his house in town,
Thus he who runs or dances begs And country-seat near Bansted-down :
The equal vigour of two legs; From one he dates his foreign letters,
So much to both does Alma trust, Sends out his goods, and duns his debtors : She ne'er regards which goes the first. In t'other, at his hours of leisure,
Teague could make neither of them stay, He smokes his pipe, and takes his pleasure.
When with himself he ran away. “ And now your matrimonial Cupid,
The man who struggles in the fight, Laslı'd on by T'ime, grows tir'd and stupid. Fatigues left arm as well as right ; For story and experience tell us
For, whilst one hand exalts the blow, That man grows old, and woman jealous.
And on the earth extends the foe, Both would their little ends secure;
T'other would take it wondrous ill, He sighs for freedom, she for power :
If in your pocket it lay still. His wishes tend abroad to roam,
And, when you shoot, and shut one eye, And hers to domineer at home.
You cannot think he would deny Thus passion flags by slow degrees,
To lend the other friendly aid, And, ruffled more, delighted less,
Or wink as coward, and afraid. The busy mind does seldom go
No, sir; whilst he withdraws his flame, To those once-charming seats below ;
His comrade takes the surer aim : But, in the breast incamp'd, prepares
One moment if his beams recede, For well-bred feints and future wars.
As soon as e'er the bird is dead,