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How fierce his satire, loosed! restrain'd how
tame ! How tender of the offending young man's fame! How well his worth and brave adventures styled, Just to his virtues, to bis error mild. No page
of thine that fears the strictest view, But teems with just reproof, or praise, as due; Not Eden could a fairer prospect yield, All Paradise without one barren field; Whose wit the censure of his foes has pass’d; The song of Asaph shall for ever last.
What praise for such rich strains shall we allow? What just rewards the grateful Crown bestow? While bees in flowers rejoice, and flowers in dew, While stars and fountains to their course are true; While Judah’s throne and Sion's rock stand fast, The song of Asaph, and the fame, shall last.
Still Hebron's honour'd, happy soil, retains Our Royal hero's beauteous dear remains, Who now sails off with winds nor wishes slack, To bring his sufferings' bright companion back ; But ere such transport can our sense employ, A bitter grief must poison half our joy ; Nor can our coasts restored those blessings see, Without a bribe to envious Destiny ! Cursed Sodom's doom for ever fix the tide Where, by inglorious Chance, the valiant died. Give not insulting Askalon to know, Nor let Gath's daughters triumph in our woe! No sailor with the news swell Egypt's pride, By what inglorious fate our valiant died ! Weep, Arnon! Jordan, weep thy fountains dry, While Zion's rock dissolves for a supply.
Calm were the elements, Night's silence deep, The waves scarce murmuring, and the winds asleep; Yet Fate for ruin takes so still an hour, And treacherous sands the princely bark devour ; Then Death, unworthy, seized a generous race, To virtue's scandal, and the stars' disgrace! Oh! had the indulgent powers vouchsafed to yield, Instead of faithless shelves, a listed field, A listed field of Heaven's and David's foes, Fierce as the troops that did his youth oppose, Each life had on his slaughter'd heap retired, Not tamely, and unconquering, thus expired; But Destiny is now their only foe, And dying, e’en o'er that they triumph too; With loud last breaths their master's 'scape ap
plaud, Ofwhom kind Force could scarce the Fates defraud; Who for such followers lost, О matchless mind ! At his own safety now almost repined ! Say, Royal Sir, by all your fame in arms, Your praise in peace, and by Urania's charms, If all your sufferings past so nearly press’d, Or pierced with half so painful grief your breast?
Thus some diviner Muse her hero forms, Not sooth’d with soft delights, but toss'd in storms; Nor stretch'd on roses in the myrtle grove, Norcrowns his days with mirth, his nights with love; But far removed in thundering camps is found, His slumbers short, his bed the herbless ground; In tasks of danger always seen the first, Feeds from the hedge, and slakes with ice his thirst: Long must his patience strive with Fortune's rage, And long opposing gods themselves engage,
Must see his country flame, his friends destroy'd,
Before the promised empire be enjoy’d:
Such toil of fate must build a man of fame,
And such to Israel's crown the godlike David came.
What sudden beams dispel the clouds so fast,
Whose drenching rains laid all our vineyards waste?
The Spring, so far behind her course delay'd,
On the’ instant is in all her bloom array'd ;
The winds breathe low, the element serene,
Yet mark what motion in the waves is seen!
Thronging and busy as Hyblæan swarms,
Or straggled soldiers summon’d to their arms,
See where the princely bark in loosest pride,
With all her guardian fleet, adorns the tide:
High on her deck the Royal lovers stand,
Our crimes to pardon ere they touch'd our land.
Welcome to Israel and to David's breast !
Here all your toils, here all your sufferings, rest.
did Ziloah rule Jerusalem,
And boldly all Sedition's syrtes stem,
Howe'er encumber'd with a viler pair
Than Ziph and Shimei to assist the chair:
Yet Ziloah's loyal labours so prevail'd
That Faction at the next election fail'd,
When e'en the common cry did Justice sound,
And Merit by the multitude was crown'd:
With David then was Israel's
peace restored, Crowds mourn’d their error, and obey'd their lord.
All human things are subject to decay,
And, when Fate summons, monarchs must obey.
This Flecnoe found, who, like Augustus, young
Was call’d to empire, and had govern'd long ;
In prose and verse was own'd, without dispute,
Through all the realms of Nonsense, absolute.
This aged prince, now flourishing in peace,
And bless'd with issue of a large increase,
Worn out with business, did at length debate
To settle the succession of the state;
And, pondering which of all his sons was fit
To reign, and wage immortal war with Wit,
Cried—- Tis resolved; for Nature pleads that he
Should only rule who most resembles me.
Shadwell alone my perfect image bears,
Mature in dulness from his tender years ;
Shadwell alone, of all my sons, is he
Who stands confirm'd in full stupidity :
The rest to some faint meaning make pretence,
But Shadwell never deviates into sense.
Some beams of wit on other souls may fall,
Strike through, and make a lucid interval;
But Shadwell's genuine night admits no ray,
His rising fogs prevail upon the day.
Besides, his goodly fabric fills the eye,
And seems design'd for thoughtless majesty:
Thoughtless as monarch-oaks that shade the plain,
And, spread in solemn state, supinely reign.
Heywood and Shirley were but types of thee,
Thou last great prophet of Tautology.
Even I, a dunce of more renown than they,
Was sent before but to prepare thy way;
And, coarsely clad in Norwich drugget, came
To teach the nations in thy greater name.
My warbling lute, the lute 1 whilom strung,
When to King John of Portugal I sung,
Was but the prelude to that glorious day,
When thou on silver Thames didst cut thy way,
With well-timed oars before the royal barge,
Swell’d with the pride of thy celestial charge;
And big with hymn, commander of an host,
The like was ne'er in Epsom blankets toss'd.
Methinks I see the new Arion sail,
The lute still trembling underneath thy nail.
At thy well-sharpen’d thumb from shore to shore
The Trebles squeak for fear, the Basses roar:
Echoes from Pissing Alley Shadwell call,
And Shadwell they resound from Aston Hall.
About thy boat the little fishes throng,
As at the morning toast that floats along.
Sometimes, as prince of thy harmonious band,
Thou wield'st thy papers in thy threshing hand.
St. Andre's feet ne'er kept more equal time,
Not e'en the feet of thy own Psyche's rhyme;
Though they in number as in sense excel;
So just, so like tautology, they fell,
That, pale with envy, Singleton forswore
The lute and sword which he in triumph bore,
And vow'd he ne'er would act Villerius more.'