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To Phœbus he preferr❜d his case,
The Godhead wou'd have back'd his quarrel;
Own'd, that his quiver and his laurel
The Court was sate, the Culprit there,
And from the gallery stand peeping:
Such as in silence of the night
Come (sweep) along some winding entry, (Styack (n) has often seen the sight) Or at the chapel-door stand centry:
In peaked hoods and mantles tarnish'd,
(n) The Housekeeper.
The Peeress comes. The audience stare,
And doff their hats with due submission: She curtsies, as she takes her chair,
To all the people of condition.
The Bard, with many an artful fib,
Had in imagination fenc'd him, Disprov'd the arguments of Squib (0),
And all that Groom () could urge against him.
But soon his rhetoric forsook him,
Yet something he was heard to mutter,
(0) Groom of the Chamber.
(p) The Steward.
(1) A famous highwayman hanged the week before.
"He once or twice had penn'd a sonnet;
The ghostly prudes with hagged face
"Jesu-Maria! Madam Bridget,
"Why, what can the Viscountess mean? (Cried the square-hoods in woeful fidget) "The times are alter'd quite and clean!
"Decorum's turn'd to mere civility;
"Her air and all her manners show it. "Commend me to her affability'
"Speak to a Commoner and Poet!"
[Here 500 Stanzas are lost.]
And so God save our noble King,
And guard us from long-winded Lubbers, That to eternity would sing,
And keep my Lady from her Rubbers.
STANZAS TO MR. BENTLEY.
[These were in compliment to Mr. Bentley, who drew a set of Designs for Mr. Gray's Poems, particularly a Head-piece to The Long Story.]
IN silent gaze the tuneful choir among,
Half pleas'd, half blushing let the muse admire, While Bentley leads her sister art along,
And bids the pencil answer to the lyre..
See, in their course, each transitory thought Fix'd by his touch a lasting essence take; Each dream, in Fancy's airy colouring wrought, To local symmetry and life awake!
The tardy rhymes that us'd to linger on,
And catch a lustre from his genuine flame.