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Į studied a Fortnight, before I could find,
As I rode in my Chariot, a Thought to my Mind,
And resolv'd the next Winter, (for that is my Timo,
When the Days are at shortest,) to get it in Rhime;
'Till then it was lock'd in my Box at Parnassus:
When that subtil Companion, in Hopes to sur-
pass us, Conveys out my Paper of Hints by a Trick, (For I think, in my Conscience, he deals with old
Nick.) And from my own Stock provided with Topicks, He gets to a Window beyond both the Tropicks; There out of my Sight, just against the North Zone, Writes down my Conceịts, and calls them his own; And you, like a Cully, the Bubble can swallow: Now, who but Delany that writes like Apollo High Treason by Statute. But here you obje&, He only stole Hints, but the Verse is correct. Tho’the Thought be Apollo's, 'tis finely express d. So a Thief steals my Horse, and has him well
dress’d, Now, whereas the said Criminal seems past Re
pentance, We Phæbus think fit to proceed to the Sentence;
Since Delany has dar'd, like Prometheus his Sire, To climb to our Region, and thence to steal Fire; We order a Vulture in Shape of the Spleen,
prey on his Liver, but not to be seen. And we order our Subjects of ev'ry Degree, To believe all his Verses were written by mé; And, under the Pain of our highest Displeasure, To call nothing his, but the Rhime and the Mea
sure. And lastly, for Stella just out of her Prime, I'm too much reveng'd already by Time. In return to ļaep Scorn, I sent her Diseases, But will now be her Friend, whenever the pleases. And the Gifts I bestow'd her will find her a Lover, Tho’ she lives to be grey as a Badger all over,
S, when a beauteous Nymph decays,
We say, she's past her Dancing-Days;
So, Poets lose their Feet by Time,
And can no longer dance in Rhyme.
Your annual Bard had rather chose
To celebrate your Birth in Profe.
Yet, merry Folks, who want by chance
A Pair to make a Country-Dance,
Call the old House-keeper, and get her
To fill a Place, for want of better.
While Sberidan is off the Hooks,
And Friend Delany at his Books,
That Stella may avoid Disgrace
Once more the D- -n supplies their Place,
BEAUTY and Wit, too fad a Truth,
Have always been confin'd to Youth;
The God of Wit, and Beauty's Queen,
He Twenty-one, and she Fifteen :
No Poet ever sweetly sung,
Unless he were like Phoebus, young;
Nor ever Nymph inspir’d to Rhyme,
Unless, like Venus, in her Prime.
At Fifty-fix, if this be true,
Am I a Poet fit for you?
Or at the Age of Forty-three,
Are you a Subje& fit for me
Adieu bright Wit, and radiant Eyes;
You must be grave, and I be wise.
Our Fate in vain we would oppose,
But I'll be still your Friend în Prose;
Esteem and Friendship to express,
Will not require poetick Dress;
And if the Muse deny her Aid
To have them sung, they may be said,
BUT, Ștella say, what evil Tongue
Reports you are no longer young?
That, Time fits with his Scythe to mow,
Where erst fate Cupid with his Bow;
That half your Locks are turn’d to grey;
I'll ne'er believe a Word they say.
'Tis true, but let it not be known,
My Eyes are somewhat dimmish grown;
For Nature, always in the Right,
To your Decays adapts my Sight ;
And Wrinkles undistinguish'd pass,
For I'm asham'd to use a Glass;
And till I see them with these Eyes,
Whoever says you have them, lyes,
No Length of Time can make you quit
Honour and Virtue, Sense and Wịt:
Thus you may still be young to me,
While I can better bear than sec;
Oh, ne'er may Fortune Thew her Spight,
To make me deaf, and mend my Sight.
Somnia quæ mentes ludunt volitantibus umbris, &c.
Written in the Year 1724.
Hose Dreams that on the filent Night intrude,
And with false fitting Shades our Minds de-
Jove never fends us downward from the Skies,
Nor can they from infernal Mansions rise;
But are all mere Produđions of the Brain,
And Fools consult Interpreters in vain.