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That with your numbers you our zeal might raise, 27
And, like himself, communicate your joy.
When to your native Heaven you shall repair,
And with your presence crown the blessings there,
Your lute may wind its strings but little higher,
To tune their notes to that immortal choir.
Your art is perfect here; your numbers do,
More than our books, make the rude atheist know,
That there’s a Heaven, by what he hears below.
As in some piece, while Luke his skill expressed,
A cunning angel came, and drew the rest:
So, when you play, some godhead does impart
Harmonious aid, divinity helps art;
Some cherub finishes what you begun, 40
And to a miracle improves a tune.
To burning Rome when frantic Nero played,
Viewing that face, no more he had surveyed
The raging flames; but, struck with strange surprise,
Confessed them less than those of Anna's eyes:
But, had he heard thy lute, he soon had found
His rage eluded, and his crime atoned:
Thine, like Amphion's hand, had waked the stone,
And from destruction called the rising town:
Malice to Music had been forced to yield; 50
Nor could he burn so fast, as thou could'st build.
PICTURE OF SENECA DYING IN A BATH.
By JoRDAIN. AT THE RIGHT HON. THE EARL OF EXETER's AT BURLEIGH HOUSE.
WHILE cruel Nero only drains
The moral Spaniard's ebbing veins,
By study worn, and slack with age,
How dull, how thoughtless is his rage
Beightened revenge he should have took; 5
He should have burnt his tutor's book;
And long have reigned supreme in vice:
One nobler wretch can only rise;
'Tis he whose fury shall deface
The stoic's image in this piece.
For while unhurt, divine Jordain,
Thy work and Seneca's remain,
He still has body, still has soul,
And lives and speaks, restored and whole.
1 WHILE blooming youth, and gay delight
Sit on thy rosy cheeks confessed,
Thou hast, my dear, undoubted right
To triumph o'er this destined breast.
My reason bends to what thy eyes ordain;
For I was born to love, and thou to reign.
2. But would you meanly thus rely
On power, you know I must obey?
Exert a legal tyranny;
And do an ill, because you may?
Still must I thee, as atheists Heaven adore;
Not see thy mercy, and yet dread thy power ?
3 Take heed, my dear, youth flies apace;
As well as Cupid, Time is blind;
Soon must those glories of thy face
The fate of vulgar beauty find;
The thousand loves, that arm thy potent eye,
Must drop their quivers, flag their wings, and die.
4 Then wilt thou sigh, when in each frown
A hateful wrinkle more appears;
And putting peevish humours on,
Seems but the sad effect of years;
Kindness itself too weak a charm will prove,
To raise the feeble fires of aged love.
5 Forced compliments and formal bows
Will show thee just above neglect:
The heat with which thy lover glows,
Will settle into cold respect;
A talking dull platonic I shall turn;
Learn to be civil, when I cease to burn.
6 Then shun the ill, and know, my dear,
Kindness and constancy will prove
The only pillars fit to bear
So vast a weight as that of love:
If thou canst wish to make my flames endure,
Thine must be very fierce, and very pure.
7 Haste, Celia, haste, while youth invites,
Obey kind Cupid's present voice;
Fill every sense with soft delights,
And give thy soul a loose to joys;
Let millions of repeated blisses prove,
That thou all kindness art, and I all love.
8 Be mine, and only mine; take care
Thy looks, thy thoughts, thy dreams to guide
To me alone; nor come so far,
As liking any youth beside:
What men e'er court thee, fly them, and believe,
They’re serpents all, and thou the tempted Eve.
9 So shall I court thy dearest truth,
When beauty ceases to engage;
So thinking on thy charming youth,
I'll love it o'er again in age;
So time itself our raptures shall improve,
While still we wake to joy, and live to love.
AN EPISTLE TO FILEETWOOD SHEPHERD,1 ESQ.
BURLEIGH, MAY 14, 1689.
As once a twelvemonth to the priest,
Holy at Rome, here antichrist,
The Spanish king presents a jennet,
To show his love;—that’s all that’s in it:
For if his holiness would thump
His reverend bum 'gainst horse's rump,
He might be equipped from his own stable
With one more white, and eke more able.
Or as with gondolas, and men, his
Good excellence the Duke of Venice 10
(I wish, for rhyme, it had been the king)
Sails out, and gives the Gulf a ring;
Which trick of state, he wisely maintains,
Keeps kindness up 'twixt old acquaintance:
For else, in honest truth the sea
Has much less need of gold, than he.
Or, not to rove, and pump one's fancy For popish similes beyond sea; As folks from mud-walled tenement Bring landlords pepper-corn for rent: 20
Present a turkey, or a hen 21
To those might better spare them ten;
Even so, with all submission, I
(For first men instance, then apply)
Send you each year a homely letter,
Who may return me much a better.
Then take it, Sir, as it was writ,
To pay respect and not show wit;
Nor look askew at what it saith;
There's no petition in it, 'Faith. 30
Here some would scratch their heads, and try
What they should write, and how, and why;
But I conceive, such folks are quite in
Mistakes, in theory of writing.
If once for principle 'tis laid,
That thought is trouble to the head;
I argue thus: the world agrees,
That he writes well who writes with ease;
Then he, by sequel logical,
Writes best who never thinks at all. 40
Verse comes from Heaven, like inward light;
Mere human pains can ne'er come by 't:
The God, not we, the poem makes;
We only tell folks what he speaks.
Hence when anatomists discourse,
How like brutes' organs are to ours;
They grant, if higher powers think fit,
A bear might soon be made a wit;
And that for any thing in nature,
Pigs might squeak love-Odes, dogs bark satire. 50
Memnon, though stone, was counted vocal;
But 'twas the God, meanwhile, that spoke all.
Rome oft has heard a cross haranguing,
With prompting priest behind the hanging: