« ZurückWeiter »
The triumph, and the vanity,
Fair Freedom ! we may hold theo dear, The rapture of the strife
When thus thy mightiest foes their fear The earthquake-shout of Victory,
In humblest guise have shown.
Oh! ne'er may tyrant leave behind
Thine evil deeds are writ in gore,
Thy triumphs tell of fame no more,
Or deepen every stain. The Desolator desolate!
If thou hadst died as honour dies, The Victor overthrown !
Some new Napoleon might arise, The Arbiter of others' fate
To shame the world again, A Suppliant for his own!
But who would soar the solar height, Is it some yet imperial hope
To set in such a starless night?
Weigh'd in the balance, hero-dust
Is vile as vulgar clay;
To all that pass away;
Some higher sparks should animate,
To dazzle and dismay; Alonehow look'd he round ?
Nor deem'd contempt could thus make mirth Thon, in the sternness of thy strength Of these, the Conquerors of the earth! An equal deed hast done at length, And darker fate hast found :
And She, proud Austria's mournful flower, He fell, the forest-prowlers' prey;
Thy still imperial bride; But thou must eat thy heart away!
How bears her breast the torturing hour?
Still clings she to thy side? The Roman, when his burning heart
Must she too bend, must she too share Was slaked with blood of Rome,
Thy late repentance, long despair, Threw down the dagger- dared depart,
Thou throneless Homicide? In savage grandeur, home.
If still she loves thee, hoard that gem, He dared depart, in utter scorn
'Tis worth thy vanish'd diadem ! Of men that such a yoke had borne, Yet left him such a doom!
Then haste thee to thy sullen Isle,
And gaze upon the sea ;
That element may meet thy smile,
It ne'er was ruled by thee! The Spaniard, when the lust of sway
Or trace with thine all idle hand, Had lost its quickening spell,
In loitering mood, upon the sand,
That Earth is now as free!
That Corinth's pedagogue hath now
Transferr'd his by-word to thy brow.
Thou Timour! in his captive's cage His dotage trifled well:
What thoughts will there be thine, Yet better had he neither known
While brooding in thy prison'd rage ? A bigot's shrine, nor despot's throne.
But one—“The world was mine:”
Unless, like he of Babylon,
Life will not long confine
That' spirit pour'd so widely forth-
So long obey’d-80 little worth !
Or like the thief of fire from heaven,
Wilt thou withstand the shock ?
His vulture and his rock!
Foredoom'd by God-by man accurst, And Earth hath spilt her blood for him, And that last act, though not thy worst, Who thus can hoard his own!
Fiend's arch mock;
And, if a mortal, had as proudly died !
A SA TI RE.
I had rather be a kitten, and cry mew!
Such shameless Bardg we have; and yet, 'tis true,
any production which was not entirely and exclusively my own composition.
With regard to the real talents of many
of the poetical persons whose performances ALL my friends, learned and unlearned, are mentioned or alluded to in the followhave urged me not to publish this Satire ing pages, it is presumed by the author with my name. If I were to be “turnd that there can be little difference of opinion from the career of my humour by quibbles in the public at large; though, like other quick, and paper-bullets of the brain,” I sectaries, each has his separate tabernacle should have complied with their counsel. of proselytes, by whom his abilities are But I am not to be terrified by abuse, or overrated, his faults overlooked, and his bullied by reviewers, with or without arms. metrical canons received without scruple I can safely say that I have attacked none and without consideration. But the unpersonally, who did not commence on the questionable possession of considerable geoffensive. An author's works are public nius by several of the writers here censured, property: he who purchases may judge, renders their mental prostitution more to and publish his opinion if he pleases; and be regretted. Imbecility may be pitied, or, the authors I have endeavoured to comme- at worst, laughed at and forgotten ; permorate may do by me as I have done by verted powers demand the most decided them. I dare say they will succeed better reprehension. No one can wish more than in condemning 'my scribblings, than in the author, that some known and able wrimending their own. But my object is not ter had undertaken their exposure; but to prove that I can write well, but, if pos- Mr. Gipford has devoted himself to Massible, to make others write better.
singer, and, in the absence of the regular As the Poem has met with far more suc- physician, a country-practitioner may, in cess than I expected, I have endeavoured cases of absolute necessity, be allowed to in this edition to make some additions and prescribe his nostrum, to prevent the exalterations to render it more worthy of tension of so deplorable an epidemic, propublic perusal.
vided there he no quackery in his treatment In the first edition of this Satire, published of the malady. A caustic is here offered, anonymously, fourteen lines on the subject as it is to be feared nothing short of actual of Bowles's Pope were written and inserted cautery can recover the numerous patients at the request of an ingenious friend of mine, afflicted with the present prevalent and who has now in the press a volume of distressing rabies for rhyming.-As to the poetry. In the present edition they are Edinburgh Reviewers, it would, indeed, reerased, and some of my own substituted in quire a Hercules to crush the Hydra; but their stead: my only reason for this being if the author succeeds in merely “bruising that which I conceive would operate with one of the heads of the serpent,” though any other person in the same manner-a his own hand should suffer in the encoundetermination not to publish with my name ter, he will be amply satisfied.
Stil) must I hear-shall hoarse Fitz-The cry is up, and Scribblers are my gamo
GERALD bawl Speed, Pegasus !-ye strains of great and His creaking couplets in a tavern-hall,
small, And I not sing, lest, haply, Scotch Reviews Ode, Epic, Elegy, have at you all! Should dub me scribbler, and denounce my I too can scrawl, and once upon a time
I pour'd along the town a flood of rhymePrepare for rhyme - I'll publish, right or A schoolboy - freak, unworthy praise or wrong:
blame: Fools are my theme, let Satire be my song. I printed-older children do the same.
Tis pleasant, sure, to see one's name in print;
A book's a book, altho' there's nothing in't. Oh! Nature's noblest gift-my gray goose- Not that a title's sounding charm can save
Or scrawl or scribbler from an equal grave: Slave of my thoughts, obedient to my will, This LAMB must own, since his patrician Torn from thy parent-bird to form a pen, That mighty instrument of little men! Fail'd to preserve the spurious farce from The pen! foredoom'd to aid the mental
No matter, GEORGE continues still to write, Of brains that labour, big with verse or Tho' now the name is veil'd from public prose,
sight. Though nymphs forsake, and critics may Moved by the great example, I pursue
The self-same road, but make my own The lover's solace, and the author's pride:
review: What wits, what poets dost thou daily raise! Not seek great JEFFREY'8-yet, like him, How frequent is thy use, how small thy
Self-constituted judge of poesy.
A man must serve his time to every trade, But thou, at least, mine own especial pen! Save censure- critics all are ready made. Once laid aside, but now assumed again, Take hackney'd jokes from MILLER, got by Our task complete, like Hamet's shall be
With just enough of learning to misquote, Tho' spurn'd by others, yet beloved by me: A mind well skill'd to find or forge a faultz Then let us soar to-day; no common theme, A turn for punning, call it Attic salt; No eastern vision, no distemper'd dream To JEFFREY go, be silent and discreet, Inspires_our path, though full of thorns, His pay is just ten sterling pounds per sheet:
Fear not to lie, 'twill scem a lucky hit; Smooth be the verse, and easy be the strain. Shrink not from blasphemy, 'twill pass for
Care not for feeling-pass your proper jest, When Vice triumphant holds her sove- and stand a critic, hated yet caress'd.
reign sway, And men, through life her willing slaves,
And shall we own such judgment? noWhen Folly, frequent harbinger of crime, Unfolds her motley store to suit the time; Seek roses in December, ice in June; When knaves and fools combined o'er all Hope constancy in wind, or corn in chaff;
Believe a woman, or an epitaph; When Justice balts, and Right begins to fail, Or any other thing that's false, before E'en then the boldest start from public You trust in critics who themselves are sore;
Or yield one single thought to be misled Afraid of shame, unknown to other fears, By JBFFREY's heart, or LAMB's Bæotian More darkly sin, by Satire kept in awe,
head. And shrink from ridicule, though not from
misplaced, Such is the force of Wit! but not belong Combined usurpers on the throne of Taste; To me the arrows of satiric song ;
To these, when anthors bend in humble awe, The royal vices of our age demand And hail their voice as truth, their word A keener weapon, and a mightier hand.
as law; Still there are follies e'en for me to chase, While these are censors, 'twould be sin to And yield at least amusement in the race:
spare; Laugh when I laugh, I seek no other fame- While such are critics,why should I forbear?
But yet, so near all modern worthies run, O'erTaste awhile these pseudo-bards prevaik 'Tis doubtful whom to seek, or whom to Each country-book-club bows the knee to shun;
Baal, Nor know wo when to spare, or where to And, hurling lawful genius from the throne,
Erects a shrine and idol of its own; Our bards and censors are so much alike. Some leaden calf - but whom it matters not,
From soaring SOUTHEY down to groveling
STOTT. Then should you ask me, why I venture
o'er The path which Pope and GIFFORD trod Behold! in various throngs the scribbbefore;
ling crew, If not yet sicken'd, you can still proceed; For notice eager, pass in long review : Go on; my rhyme will tell you as you read. Each spurs his jaded Pegasus apace,
And rhyme and blank maintain an equal race;
Sonnets on sonnets crowd, and ode on ode; Time was, ere yet in these degenerate days And tales of terror jostle on the road; Ignoble themes obtain'd mistaken praise, Immeasurable measures move along; When Sense and Wit with Poesy allied, For simpering Folly loves a varied song, No fabled Graces, flourish'd side by side, To strange mysterious Dulness still the From the same fount their inspiration drew,
friend, And, rear'd by Taste, bloom'd fairer as Admires the strain she cannot comprehend.
they grew. Thus Lays of Minstrels - may they be the Then, in this happy isle, a Pope's pure strain
last! Sought the rapt soul to charm, nor sought On half-strung harps whine mournful to in vain;
the blast, A polish'd nation's praise aspired to claim, While mountain-spiritsprate to river sprites, And raised the people's, as the poet's fame. That dames may listen to their sound at Like him great DRYDEN pour'd the tide of
nights! song ;
And goblin-brats, of Gilpin Horner's brood, In stream less smooth, indeed, yet doubly Decoy young border-nobles through the strong;
wood, Then CONGREVE'S scenes could cheer, or And skipat every step, Lord knows how high,
Orway's melt And frighten foolish babes, the Lord knows For nature then an English audience felt.
why; But why these names, or greater still, While high-born ladies in their magic cell
Forbidding knights to read who cannot spell, When all to feebler bards resign their place? Despatch a courier to a wizard's grave, Yet to such times our lingering looks are And fight with honest men to shield a knave.
cast, When taste and reason with those times
Next view in state, proud prancing on Now look around,and turn each trifling page, Survey the precious works that please the The golden-crested haughty Marmion,
Now forging scrolls, now foremost in the This truth at least let Satire's self allow,
fight, No dearth of bards can be complain'd of now: Not quite a felon, yet but half a knight, The loaded press beneath her labour groans, The gibbet or the field prepared to graceAnd printers' devils shake their weary bones; mighty mixture of the great and base. While Southby's epics cram the creaking And thinkst thou, Scott! by vain conceit shelves,
perchance, And LITTLB's lyrics shine in hot-press'd On public taste to foist thy stale romance,
To yield thy muse just half-a-crown per line Thus saith the Preacher, “nought beneath No! when the sons of song descend to trade,
Their bays are sear, their former laurels fade. Is new;" yet still from change to change Let such forego the poet's sacred name,
Who rack their brains for lucre,not for fame: What varied wonders tempt us as they pass ! Low may they sink to merited contempt, The cow-pox, tractors, galvanism, and gas And Scorn remunerate the mean attempt! In turns appear, to make the vulgar stare, Such be their meed,auch still the just reward Till the swoln bubble bursts-and all is air. Of prostituted muse and hireling bard! Nor less new schools of poetry arise, For this we spurn Apollo's venal son, Where dull pretenders grapple for the prize: And bid a long “good night to Marmion."
These are the themes that claim our IP still in Berkley Ballads, most uncivil,
Thou wilt devote old women to the devil, These are the bards to whom tho muse The babe unborn thy dread intent may rue :
“God help thee,” SOUTHEY, and thy readers While MILTON, DRYDEN, Pope, alike forgot,
too. Resign their hallow'd bays to WALTER SCOTT.
Next comes the dull disciple of thy school, The time has been, when yet the muse That mild apostate from poetic rule,
was young, The simple WORDSWORTH, framer of a lay When HOMBR swept the lyre and Maro sung, As soft as evening in his favourite May; An epic scarce ten centuries could claim, Who warns his friend "to shake off toil While awe-struck nations hail'd the magic
And quit his books, for fear of growing The work of each immortal bard appears
double;" The single wonder of a thousand years. Who, both by precept and example, shows Empires have moulder'd from the face of That prose is verse,and verse is merely prose,
Convincing all, by demonstration plain, Tongues have expired with those who gave Poetic souls delight in prose insane;
them birth, And Christmas-stories, tortured into rhyme, Without the glory such a strain can give, Contain the essence of the true sublime: As even in ruin bids the language live. Thus when he tells the tale of Betty Foy, Not so with us, though minor bards, content, The idiot mother of "an idiot boy;" On one great work a life of labonr spent: A moon-struck silly lad who lost his way, With eagle-pinion soaring to the skies, And, like his bard, confounded night with Behold the ballad-monger SOUTHEY rise ;
day, To him let CAMOENS, Milton, Tassó, yield, So close on each pathetic part he dwells, Whose annual strains, like armies, take And each adventure so sublimely tells,
That all who view the “idiot in his glory," First in the ranks see Joan of Arc advance, Conceive the Bard the hero of the story. The scourge of England, and the boast of
France ! Though burnt by wicked BEDFORD for a Shall gentle COLERIDGE pass unnoticed witch,
here, Behold her statue placed in Glory's niche; To turgid ode and tumid stanza dear? Her fetters burst, and just released from Though themes of innocence amuse him best,
Yet still obscurity’s a welcome guest. A virgin Phænix from her ashes risen. If Inspiration should her aid refuse Next see tremendous Thalaba come on, To him who takes a Pixy for a Muse, Arabia's monstrous, wild,and wonderous son; Yet none in lofty numbers can surpass Domdaniel's dread destroyer, who o'erthrew The bard who soars to elegize an ass. More mad magicians than the world e'er How well the subject suits his noble mind!
“A fellow-feeling makes us wondrous kind." Immortal Hero! all thy foes o'ercome, For ever reign-the rival of Tom Thumb! Since startled metre fled before thy face, Oh! wonder-working Lewis! Monk, or Well wert thou doom'd the last of all thy
Bard, race !
Who fain wouldst make Parnassus a churchWell might triumphant Genii bear thee
yard ! hence,
Lo! wreaths of yew, not laurel, bind thy Illustrious conqueror of common sense!
brow, Now, last and greatest, Madoc spreads his Thy Muse a sprite, Apollo's sexton thou!
Whether on ancient tombs thou tak'st thy Cacique in Mexico, and Prince in Wales; Tells us strange tales as other travellers do, By gibb’ring spectres hail'd, thy kindred More old than Mandeville's, and not so true.
band; Oh! SOUTHEY, SOUTHEY! cease thy varied Or tracest chaste descriptions on thy page,
To please the females of our modest age, A Bard may chaunt too often and too long: All hail, M. P.! from whose infernal brain As thou art strong in verse, in mercy spare! Thin sheeted phantoms glide, a grisly train; A fourth , alas! were more than we could At whose command, "grim women” throng bear.
in crowds, But if, in spite of all the world can say, And kings of fire, of water, and of clouds, Thou still wilt verscward plod thy weary With small grey mcn,”
"- "wild yægers," way;
and what not,