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WRITTEN IN COMMEMORATION OF HIS MAJESTY'S HAPPY
I RANSACK’d, for a theme of song,
Much ancient chronicle, and long;
I read of bright embattled fields,
Of trophied helmets, spears, and shields,
Of chiefs, whose single arm could boast
Prowess to dissipate a host;
Through tomes of fable and of dream
I sought an eligible theme,
But none I found, or found them shared
Already by some happier bard.
To modern times, with truth to guide
My busy search, I next applied ;
Here cities won and fleets dispersed
Urged loud a claim to be rehearsed,
Deeds of unperishing renown,
Our fathers' triumphs and our own.
Thus as the bee, from bank to bower,
Assiduous sips at every flower,
But rests on none till that be found
Where most nectareous sweets abound,
So I, from theme to theme display'd
In many a page historic stray'd,
Siege after siege, fight after fight,
Contemplating with small delight,
(For feats of sanguinary hue
Not always glitter in my view,)
Till, settling on the current year,
I found the far sought treasure near.
A theme for poetry divine,
A theme to ennoble even mine,
In memorable Eighty-nine.
The spring of eighty-nine shall be
An æra cherish'd long by me,
Which joyful I will oft record,
And thankful at my frugal board;
For then the clouds of eighty-eight,
That threaten’d England's trembling state
With loss of what she least could
Her sovereign's tutelary care,
One breath of Heaven, that cried -Restore!
Chased, never to assemble more:
And far the richest crown on earth,
If valued by its wearer's worth,
The symbol of a righteous reign
Sat fast on George's brows again.
Then peace and joy again possess'd
Our Queen's long-agitated breast;
Such joy and peace as can be known
By sufferers like herself alone,
Who losing, or supposing lost,
The good on earth they valued most,
For that dear sorrow's sake forego
All hope of happiness below,
Then suddenly regain the prize,
And flash thanksgivings to the skies !
0, Queen of Albion, queen of isles ! Since all thy tears were changed to smiles, The
eyes, that never saw thee, shine With joy not unallied to thine, Transports not chargeable with art Illume the land's remotest part,
And strangers to the air of courts,
Both in their toils and at their sports,
The happiness of answer'd prayers,
That gilds thy features, show in theirs.
If they who on thy state attend,
Awe-struck, before thy presence bend,
'Tis but the natural effect
Of grandeur that ensures respect ;
But she is something more than Queen
Who is beloved where never seen.
THE COCK-FIGHTER'S GARLAND,
May, 1789. Muse_hide his name of whom I sing, Lest his surving House thou bring
For his sake into scorn, Nor speak the School from which he drew The much or little that he knew,
Nor Place where he was born.
That such a man once was, may seem
Worthy of record, (if the theme
credit win,) For proof to man, what Man may prove, If Grace depart, and Demons move
The source of guilt within.
This man (for since the howling wild
Disclaims him, Man he must be styled)
Wanted no good below;
Gentle he was, if gentle birth
Could make him such ; and he had worth,
If wealth can worth bestow.
In social talk and ready jest
He shone superior at the feast,
And qualities of mind
Illustrious in the eyes of those
Whose gay society he chose
Possess'd of every
kind. Methinks I see him powder'd red, With bushy locks his well-dress'd head
Wing'd broad on either side, The mossy
rose-bud not so sweet; His steeds superb, his carriage neat
As luxury could provide.
Can such be cruel? Such can be
Cruel as hell, and so was he;
A tyrant entertain'd
With barbarous sports, whose fell delight
Was to encourage mortal fight
'Twixt birds to battle train'd. One feather'd champion he possessid, His darling far beyond the rest,
Which never knew disgrace,
Nor e'er had fought, but he made flow
The life-blood of his fiercest foe,
The Cæsar of his race.
It chanced, at last, when, on a day,
He push'd him to the desperate fray,
His courage droop'd, he fled.
The Master storm’d, the prize was lost,
And, instant, frantic at the cost,
He doom'd his favourite dead.
He seized him fast, and from the pit
Flew to the kitchen, snatch'd the spit,
And, bring me cord, he cried;
The cord was brought, and, at his word,
To that dire implement the bird
Alive and struggling, tied.
The horrid sequel asks a veil,
And all the terrors of the tale
That can be, shall be, sunk.-
Led by the sufferer's screams aright
His shock'd companions view the sight
And him with fury drunk.
All, suppliant, beg a milder fate
For the old warrior at the grate :
He, deaf to pity's call,
Whirl'd round him rapid as a wheel
His culinary club of steel,
Death menacing on all.
But vengeance hung not far remote,
For while he stretch'd his clamorous throat
And heaven and earth defied, Big with a curse too closely pent That struggled vainly for a vent,
He totter'd, reel'd, and died.
'Tis not for us, with rash surmise,
To point the judgements of the skies;
But judgements plain as this,
That, sent for Man's instruction, bring
A written label on their wing,
'Tis hard to read amiss.