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Chorus then.-Buller, awake, man.-Chorus, all of you, I say.
Chorus of Contributors.
And to all other foes of the nation ;
Who prate about conciliation.
DR MULLION. Bravo, Odoherty, Bravissimo !-that is decidedly one of your very best effusions.
ODOHERTY. No blarney to me, mon ami. I have taken my degrees in that celebrated university. In candour, however, and equity, I am bound to say, that I do think it a pretty fairish song, as songs go now-a-days.
NORTH. Why, it must be admitted, that there is an awful quantity of bad songs vented just now.
TICKLER, It must be the case as long as they issue in such shoals; the bad must bear a huge proportion to the good at all times; for they are just the off-throwings of the ephemeral buoyancy of spirit of the day, and as actual buoyancy of spirit generally breeds nonsense, and affectation of it is always stupidity, you must e'en be content with your three grains of wheat in a bushel of chaff.
NORTH. Yes, yes—they must be from their very nature ephemeral. Which of all our songs—I don't mean particularly those of the present company—but of all the songs now written and composed by all the song-writers now extant-will be alive a hundred years hence ?
ODOHERTY. Just as many as are now alive of those written and composed, as you most technically phrase it, a hundred years since.
TICKLER And that is but poor harvest indeed. Look over any of the song-books that contain the ditties of our grandmothers or great-grandmothers, and you will scarcely ever turn up a song familiar to anybody but professed readers.
ODOHERTY. More's the pity. By all that's laughable, the reflection saddens me.“ Pills to purge Melancholy," has become a melancholious book in itself. You read page after page, puzzling yourself to make out the possibility-how any human mouth could by any device have got through the melodies—the uncouth melodies
BULLER. You know Tom D'Urféy's plan? He used to take a country dance, the .. more intricate the better; for, as you see by his dedication, he prided himself on that kind of legerdemain, and then put words to it as well as he could.
ODOHERTY. I know-I know-but I was saying that it is an unpleasant sort of feeling you have about you, when you peruse, like a groping student, songs that you are sure made palace and pot-house ring with jollity and fun in the days of
merry King Charles, and warmed the gallantry of the grenadiers of Britain at the siege of Namur, under hooked-nose Oldglorious, or of
Our countrymen in Flanders
A hundred years ago,
Beneath the great Marlboro'.
NORTH. Ay, " the odour's fled.” They are like uncorked soda-water. Honest Tom D'Urféy, I think I see him now in my mind's eye, Horatio, holding his song-book with a tipsy gravity, and trolling forth
Joy to great Cæsar,
Long life and pleasure, with old Rowley leaning on his shoulder, partly out of that jocular familiarity, which endeared him to the people in spite of all his rascalities, and partly to keep himself steady, humming the bass.
BULLER. Have you seen Dr Kitchener's book?
NORTH. I have, and a good, jovial, loyal book it is. The Doctor is,' by all accounts, a famous fellow-great in cookery, medicine, music, poetry, and optics, on which he has published a treatise.
ODOHERTY. I esteem the Doctor.
NORTH. The devil you do!-after cutting him up so abominably in my Magazine, in an article, you know, inserted while I was in Glasgow, without my knowledge.
ODOHERTY. Why are you always reminding a man of his evil-doings? Consider that I have been white-washed by the Insolvent Court since, and let all my sins go with that white-washing. To cut the matter short, I had a most excellent Cookerybook written, founded on the principles practised in the 99th mess, and was going to treat with Longman's folks about it, when Kitchener came out, and pre-occupied the market. You need not wonder, therefore, at my tickling up the worthy Doctor, who himself enjoyed the fun, being a loyal fellow to the back-bone; a Tory tough and true. We are now the best friends in the world.
MULLION. Well, let that pass—What song-writer of our days, think you, will live ? Moore?
NORTH. Moore! No, he has not the stamina in him at all. His verses are elegant, pretty, glittering, anything you please in that line; but they have defects which will not allow them to get down to posterity. For instance, the querulous politics, on your local affairs, Odoherty, which make them now so popular with a very large class of your countrymen, are mere matters of the day, which will die with the day; for I hope you do not intend to be always fighting in Ireland ?
ODOHERTY. I do not know how that will be-better fighting than stagnating ; but, at all events, I hope we will change the grounds somewhat--I hate monotony ; ! trust that my worthy countrymen will get some new matter of tumult for the next generation.
NORTH. It is probable that they will--and then, you know, Moore's "Oh ! breathe not his name," “ Erin, the tear,” &c. &c. will be just as forgotten as any of the things in Hogg's Jacobite relics.
TICKLER. Which will ever stand, or rather fall, as a menento of the utter perishableness of all party song-writing.
NORTH. And then there's Moore's accursed fancy for showing off learning, and his botany, and zoology, and meteorology, and mythology.
ODOHERTY. · O ay, and the mixed metaphor, and the downright nonsense—the song you quoted just now could be finely amended. What song ?
ODOHERTY. “Erin, the smile, and the tear in thine eyes, blend like the rainbow," &c. Now, that is a washy, watery comparison for my hard-drinking country—I lay £5 that a jug of punch would be a more accurate and truly philosophical em, blem; as thus. There's the Protestant part of the population inferior in quantity, superior in strength, apt to get at the head, evidently the whisky of the compound. The Roman Catholics, greater in physical proportions, but infinitely weaker, and usually very hot, are shadowed forth by the water. The Orangemen, as their name implies, are the fruit, which some palates think too sour, and therefore reject, while others think that it alone gives grateful filavour to the whole.
MULLION. And what's the sugar ?
ODOHERTY. Why, the conciliators dropped in among us to sweeten our acidity-and you know some think that they have supplied with too liberal a hand,- very much at the risk of turning the stomachs of the company.
NORTH. A hopeful illustration—but in truth, Odoherty, your whole conversation is redolent of nothing but drink.
ODOHERTY. I am like Tom Moore's First Angel—the gentleman without a name, and admire compotation, not exactly “ the juice of Earth,” however, as Tom calls it, that being, I take it, ditch-water.
MULLION. You never saw the song Tom intended for this drunken angel of his after his fall?
ODOHERTY. Not I-parade it-Is it not in the poem?
MULLION. No, Denman, who is Moore's doer of late, cut it out, just as he cut up the Fables. I have a copy, however, which I shall sing.
Song of a Fallen Angel over a Bowl of Rum-punch. By T. M. Esq.
Heap on more coal there,
And keep the glass moving,
Though my heart glows with loving.
No skylights-a bumper ;
Push round the jorum.
What are Heaven's pleasures
That so very sweet are?
In long or short metre,
Planked on a wet cloud
Without any breeches,
With hey cow rumble, &c.
Wide is the difference,
My own boozing bullies,
Heap'd to the full is.
Thinks that up “ yonder”
With hey cow rumble, &c.
NORTH. Has written one song, which I hope will live as long as “ the fing of Old England waves lordly in pride,”-that is, I hope, for ever. I mean the Mariners of England.
TICKLER. A glorious song indeed! But Campbell has disgraced himself by a shabby song, in the New Monthly, about the Spaniards. It is not fit for a gentleman like Campbell to fall into the filthy slang of the blackguards of the press, and write low stuff about Prince Hilt, or to call the grand old stainless flag of France, (which he knows-the blackguards do not-is linked with so many splendid recollections) the “ White emblem of white liver.'
DR MULLION. Some of Sir Walter's songs will certainly live.
NORTH. Perhaps—those in his Poems and his Novels, if they are his; but I do not recollect anything particular of any other; and, in point of fact, you never do hear them sung by anybody. Bishop, by the way, has very poorly set County Guy, very poorly indeed.
ODOHERTY. I like Bishop, a worthy pleasant fellow; but, somehow or other, I think his music generally but compilation,-a bar from this body and a bar from that body-curiously indented and dovetailed, I admit, but still only joinery and cabinet-making.
NORTH. Nobody has said a word about Byron.
TICKLER. Dead as Harry the Eighth, and it is a pity. Heavens! who can think that the author of Childe Harold, and Manfred, and Don Juan, should have sunk to what he is now, a scribbler in a dirty magazine, and a patron of the Hunts! It, however, speaks volumes in favour of the morality of the country, after all, when we find, that even genius, such as his, must sink, if it dares oppose what we are still determined to call religion and loyalty.
ODOHERTY, (handing the Island to North.) I have brought down Christian. Would you wish to look at it?
BULLER. Does it sell?
ODOHERTY. Not at all, though the third edition is advertised. I was told at Longman's, that they had not disposed of a hundred. It would have had a better chance with Murray; but he and his lordship have broken, after a furious quarrel. The correspondence between them is said to be curious.
BULLER. Of course we shall have an awful libel on Joannes de Moravia in due time.
ODOHERTY. I hope so, from the bottom of my soul ; for then Murray will take vengeance in turn. I had rather than a tenpenny, and that cash, that we could print Byron's Critique on the Pot of Basil.
TICKLER. Faugh, don't mention it.
NORTH. Christian, I see, is a poor thing, with a good bit here and there in it, but not the least originality. He is the old hero-the Lara, the Conrad, the fellow of whom his lordship found the germ in Miss Lee's Kruitzner, transported to Botany Bay, or thereabouts, where, instead of mosques, and kiosks, and tambourgis, and phingaris, we are entertained with Toobonai, and Boolootoo, Mooa, Figi, Hooni, Licoo, Guatoo, Goostrumfoo, et omne quod endeth in oo. And the womankind are the old womankind, not a bit the worse for the wear.
TICKLER. Yes, and you have the same amazing industry in transferring Bligh's Nara rative, that he has shewn so often before. But the introduction and indeed some other passages, remind us of the better days of Byron.—Listen,
“ The morning watch was come; the vessel lay
ODOHERTY. Very toploftical, to be sure. Commend me to the panegyric on what our friend Fogarty (from whom his lordship appears to have taken the idea) calls “ Tobacco, lord of plants."
But here the herald of the self-same mouth