תמונות בעמוד
PDF

Sumptuously kept at bed and board,
And he (so Nab has given her word)
Shall from all vermin save her.

Nab much exults at this success,
And, overwhelm'd with joy,

Her lady fondly does caress,

And tells her, Fubb can do no less
Than all her foes destroy.

But vain such hopes; the mice that fled Return now Grim's discarded:

Whilst Fubb till ten, on silken bed,

Securely lolls his drowsy head,
And leaves cheese unregarded.

Nor rats nor mice the lap-dog fear,
Now uncontroll'd their theft is:

And whatso'er the vermin spare,

Nab and her dog betwixt them share, Nor pie nor pippin left is.

Meanwhile, to cover their deceit,
At once, and slander Grim ;

Nab says, the cat comes, out of spite,

To rob her lady every night,
So lays it all on him.

Nor corn secure in garret high,
Nor cheesecake safe in closet;
The cellars now unguarded lie,

On every shelf the vermin prey;
And still Grimalkin does it.

The gains from corn apace decay’d,
No bags to market go :

Complaints came "rom the dairy-maid,

The mice had spoil'd her butter trade,
And eke her cheese also.

With this same lady once there liv'd
A trusty servant maid,

Who, hearing this, full much was griev'd,

Fearing her lady was deceiv'd,
And hasten’d to her aid.

Much art she us’d for to disclose
And find out the deceit:

At length she to the lady goes,

Discovers her domestic foes,
And opens all the cheat.

Struck with the sense of her mistake,
The lady, discontented,

Resolves again her cat to take,

And ne'er again her cat forsake,
Lest she again repent it.

THE WIDOW AND HER CAT.

A FABLE."

A WIDow kept a favourite cat,
At first a gentle creature;

But, when he was grown sleek and fat,

With many a mouse, and many a rat,
He soon disclos'd his nature.

The fox and he were friends of old,
Nor could they now be parted ;

They nightly slunk to rob the fold,

Devour'd the lambs, the fleeces sold ;
And puss grew lion-hearted.

He scratch'd the maid, he stole the cream,
He tore her best lac'd pinner;

Nor chanticleer upon the beam,

Nor chick, nor duckling, 'scapes, when Grim Invites the fox to dinner.

The dame full wisely did decree,
For fear he should dispatch more,

That the false wretch should worried be ;

But, in a saucy manner, he
Thus speech'd it like a Lechmere: *

1 In Tindal's Continuation of Rapin, xvii. 454, this fable is said to be by Prior or Swift. In Boyer's Political State, 1720, p. 519, where it is applied to the Duke of Marlborough, it is said to be by Swift or Prior.—N.

[ocr errors]

“Must I, against all right and law,
Like polecat vile be treated 2

I, who so long with tooth and claw

Have kept domestic mice in awe,
And foreign foes defeated

“Your golden pippins, and your pies,
How oft have I defended !

'Tis true, the pinner, which you prize,

I tore in frolic; to your eyes
I never harm intended.

[ocr errors]

“Of this we'll grant you stand acquit,
But not of your outrages:

Tell me, perfidious ! was it fit

To make my cream a perquisite,
And steal, to mend your wages?

“So flagrant is thy insolence,
So vile thy breach of trust is,

That longer with thee to dispense,

Were want of power, or want of sense— Here, Towzer —do him justice.”

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

READING ends in melancholy;
Wine breeds vices and diseases;

Wealth is but care, and love but folly;
Only friendship truly pleases.

My wealth, my books, my flask, my Molly;
Farewell all, if friendship ceases.

II.

SET BY MIR. PURCELL,

WHITHER would my passion run ?
Shall I fly her, or pursue her?

Losing her, I am undone ;
Yet would not gain her, to undo her.

Ye tyrants of the human breast,
Love and reason cease your war,

And order death to give me rest;
So each will equal triumph share.

[graphic]
« הקודםהמשך »