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IMITATIONS
I

OF

ENGLISH PO E T S.

Done by the Author in his Youth.

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1.

CHAUCER. W

OMEN ben full of Ragerie,

Yet swinken nat fans secresie, Thilke moral shall

ye

understond,
From Schoole-boy's Tale of fayre Irelond:
Which to the Fennes hath him betake,
To filch the gray Ducke fro the Lake,
Right then, there passen by the way
His Aunt, and eke her Daughters tway.
Ducke in his Trowses hath he hent,
Not to be spied of Ladies gent.
• But ho! our Nephew, (crieth one)
Ho! quoth another, Cozen John;"
And stoapen, and lough, and callen out, -
This filly Clerk full low doth lout :
They asken that, and talken this,
" Lo here is Coz, and here is Miss."
But, as he glozeth with speeches foote,
The Ducke sore tickleth his Erse roote :
Fore-piece and buttons all-to-brest,
Forth thrust a white neck, and red crest,

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Te-he,

Te-he, cry'd Ladies; Clerke nought fpake :
Miss star'd; and gray Ducke cryeth Quake.
“ O Moder, Moder, (quoth the daughter)
“ Be thilke same thing Maids longen a'ter?
Bette is to pine on 'coals and chalke,
" Then tiuk on Mon, whose yerde can talke.”

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II.

SPENSER.

THE ALLEY.

I
IN
N every Town where Thamis rolls his Tyde,

A narrow Pass there is, with Houses low;
Where ever and anon, the Stream is ey'd,
And many a Boat, soft sliding to and fro.
There oft are heard the notes of Infant Woe,

S
The short thick Sob, loud Scream, and thriller Squall :
How can ye, Mothers, vex your children so?
Some play, fome eat, fome cack against the wall,
And as they crouchen low, for bread and butter call.

II.
And on the broken pavement, here and there,
Doth many a stinking sprat and herring lie;
A brandy and tobacco shop is near,
And hens, and dogs, and hogs are feeding by ;
And here a failor's jacket hangs to dry.
At every door are sun-burnt matrons seen,

15 Mending old nets to catch the scaly fry,

Now

IO

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IMITATIONS OF ENGLISH POETS.

345
Now singing fhrill, and fcolding eft between;
Scolds answer foul-mouth'd scolds; bad neighbourhood
I ween.

III.
The snappish cur (the passengers annoy)
Close at my heel with yelping treble flies ;
The whimp’ring girl, and hoarser-screaming boy,
Join to the yelping treble, shrilling cries;
The scolding Quean to louder notes doth rise,
And lier full pipes those thrilling cries confound;
To her full pipes the grunting hog replies;
The grunting hogs alarm the neighbours round,
And curs, girls, boys, and scolds, in the deep base are
drown'd.

IV.
Hard by a Sty, beneath a roof of thatch,
Dwelt Obloquy, who in her early days
Baskets of fish at Billinsgate did watch,

30
Cod, whiting, oyster, mackrel, sprat, or plaice :
There learn'd she speech from tongues that never cease.
Slander beside her, like a Magpie, chatters,
With Enry, (spitting Cat) dread foe to peace;
Like a curs'd Cur, Malice before her clatters,

35 And, vexing every wight, tears clothes and all to tatters.

V.
Her dugs were mark’d by every Collier's hand,
Her mouth was black as bull-dog's*at the stall :
She scratched, bit, and spar'd ne lace ne band,
And bitch and rogue her answer was to all ;
Nay, e'en the parts of shame by name would call :

Yea,

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Yea, when she passed by or lane or nook,
Would greet the man who turn'd him to the Wall,
And by his hand obscene the porter took,
Nor ever did alkance like modest Virgin look. 45

VI.
Such place hath Deptford, navy-building town,
Woolwich and Wapping, smelling strong of pitch;
Such Lambeth, envy of each band and gown,
And Twickenham such, which fairer scenes enrich,
Grots statues, urns, and Jo-n's Dog and Bitch.
Ne village is without, on either side,
All up the silver Thames, or all adown;
Ne Richmond's self, from whose tall front are ey'd
Vales, spires, meandering streams, and Windsor's towery
pride.

III.
WALLER.

50

OF A LADY SINGING TO HER LUTE.

AIR Charmer, cease, nor make FA

your

voice's prize A heart resign’d the conquest of your eyes : Well might, alas! that threat'ned vessel fail, Which winds and lightning both at once affail. We were too blest with these inchanting lays, 5 Which must be heavenly when an Angel plays : But killing charms your lover's death contrive, Left heavenly musick should be heard alive. Orpheus could charm the trees, but thus a tree, Taught by your hand, can charm no less than he : A Poet made the filent wood pursue, This vocal wood had drawn the Poet too.

On

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On a fan of the Author's design, in which was

painted the story of CEPHALUS and PROCRIS,
with the Motto, AURA VENI.
OME, gentle air! th Æolian shepherd said,

While Procris panted in the secret shade;
Come, gentle Air, the fairer Delia cries,
While at her feet her swain expiring lies.
Lo the glad gales o’er all her beauties stray,
Breathe on her lips, and in her bosom play!
In Delia's hand this toy is fatal found,
Nor could that fabled dart inore surely wound:
Both gifts destructive to the givers prove;
Alike both lovers fall by those they love.
Yet guiltless too this bright destroyer lives,
At random wounds, nor knows the wound she gives :
She views the story with attentive eyes,
And pities Procris, while her lover dics.

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IV.

COWLE Y.

THE GARDE N.

fing,
And humble glories of the youthful Spring :
Where opening Rofes breathing sweets diffuse,
And soft Carnations shower their balmy dews;
Where Lilies smile in virgin robes of white,

5 The thin undress of superficial Light,

And

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