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THE FIRST PART IMITATED IN THE YEAR 1714, BY DR. SWIFT;
THE LATTER PART ADDED AFTERWARDS.
I'VE often wish'd that I had clear
For life, six hundred pounds a-year,
A handsome house to lodge a friend,
A river at my garden's end,
A terrace-walk, and half a rood
Of land, set out to plant a wood.
Well, now I have all this and more,
I ask not to increase my store;
But here a grievance seems to lie,
All this is mine but till I die;
I can't but think 'twould sound more clever,
To me and to my heirs for ever.
If I ne'er got or lost a groat,
By any trick, or any fault;
And if I pray by reason's rules,
And not like forty other fools:
As thus," Vouchsafe, oh gracious Maker!
To grant me this and t'other acre :
Or, if it be thy will and pleasure,
Direct my plough to find a treasure :"
But only what my station fits,
And to be kept in my right wits;
Hercule si, quod adest, gratum juvat: hâc prece
Pingue pecus domino facias, et cætera, præter
Ingenium; utque soles, custos mihi maximus adsis.
Ergo ubi me in montes et in arcem ex urbe re-
(Quid prius illustrem Satiris Musâque pedestri?)
Nec mala me ambitio perdit, nec plumbeus Auster,
Autumnusque gravis, Libitinæ quæstus acerbæ.
Matutine pater, seu Jane libentiùs audis,
Unde homines operum primos vitæque labores
Instituunt (sic Dîs placitum) tu carminis esto
Principium. Romæ sponsorem me rapis: Eia,
Ne prior officio quisquam respondeat, urge:
Sive Aquilo radit terras, seu bruma nivalem
Interiore diem gyro trahit, ire necesse est.
Postmodo, quod mî obsit, clarè certumque locuto,
Luctandum in turbâ; facienda injuria tardis.
Quid vis, insane? et quas res agis? improbus ur-
Ver. 30. on this side Trent ;] He was perpetually expressing his discontent at his Irish preferment, and forming schemes for exchanging it for a smaller in England; and courted Queen Caroline and Sir Robert Walpole to effect such a change. A negociation had nearly taken place between the Dean and a Mr. Talbot for the living of Burfield, in Berkshire. Mr. Talbot himself informed me of this negociation. Burfield is in the neighbourhood of Bucklebery, Lord Bolingbroke's seat. Warton.
Preserve, Almighty Providence!
Just what you gave me, competence :
And let me in these shades compose
Something in verse as true as prose;
Removed from all the ambitious scene,
Nor puff'd by pride, nor sunk by spleen.
In short, I'm perfectly content,
Let me but live on this side Trent;
Nor cross the Channel twice a-year,
To spend six months with statesmen here.
I must by all means come to town,
"Tis for the service of the crown.
"Lewis, the Dean will be of use,
Send for him up, take no excuse."
The toil, the danger of the seas;
Great ministers ne'er think of these;
Or let it cost five hundred pound,
No matter where the money's found.
It is but so much more in debt,
And that they ne'er consider'd yet.
"Good Mr. Dean, go change your gown,
Let my Lord know you're come to town."
I hurry me in haste away,
Not thinking it is Levee-day;
And find his Honour in a pound,
Hemm'd by a triple circle round,
Chequer❜d with ribbons blue and green :
How should I thrust myself between ?
Some wag observes me thus perplex'd
And smiling, whispers to the next,
Iratis precibus; tu pulses omne quod obstat,
Ad Mæcenatem memori si mente recurras.
Hóc juvat, et melli est; ne mentiar: at simul atras
Ventum est Esquilias, aliena negotia centum
Per caput et circa saliunt latus. Ante secundam
Roscius orabat sibi adesses ad Puteal cras.
De re communi scribæ magnâ atque novâ te
Orabant hodie meminisses, Quinte, reverti.
Imprimat his cura Mæcenas signa tabellis.
Dixeris, Experiar: Si vis, potes, addit et instat.
Ver. 82. And, Mr. Dean] Very happily turned from Si vis potes. Warton.
"I thought the Dean had been too proud,
To justle here among a crowd."
Another in a surly fit,
Tells me I have more zeal than wit,
"So eager to express your love,
You ne'er consider whom you shove,
But rudely press before a Duke."
I own, I'm pleased with this rebuke,
And take it kindly meant to show
What I desire the world should know.
I get a whisper, and withdraw:
When twenty fools I never saw
Come with petitions fairly penn'd,
Desiring I would stand their friend.
This, humbly offers me his caseThat, begs my interest for a placeA hundred other men's affairs,
Like bees, are humming in my ears.
"To-morrow my appeal comes on,
Without your help the cause is gone"-
"The Duke expects my Lord and you,
About some great affair, at two”-
66 Put my Lord Bolingbroke in mind,
To get my Warrant quickly sign'd:
Consider 'tis my first request."-
Be satisfied, I'll do my best :-
Then presently he falls to teaze,
"You may be certain, if you please;
I doubt not, if his Lordship knew-
And, Mr. Dean, one word from you"-