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His manners would not let him wait,
Lest we should think ourselves neglected, And so we saw him at out gate
Three days before he was expected. After a week, a month, a quarter,
And day succeeding after day, Says not a word of his departure,
Though not a soul would have him stay. I've said enough to make him blush,
Methinks, or else the Devil's in't; But he cares not for it a rush,
Nor for my life will take the hint. But
you, my dear, may let him know, In civil language, if he stays, How deep and foul the roads may grow,
And that he may command the chaise. Or
you may say " My wife intends, Though I should be exceeding proud, This winter to invite some friends,
And, sir, I know, you hate a crowd." Or, “Mr. Dean-I should with joy
Beg you would here continue still, But we must go to Aghnecloy *
Or, Mr. Moore will take it ill." The house accounts are daily rising;
So much his stay doth swell the bills; My dearest life, it is surprising,
How much he eats, how much he swills. His brace of puppies how they stuff!
And they must have three meals a day, Yet never think they get enough;
His horses too eat all our hay. • The seat of Acheson Moore, esq., in the county of Tyrone,
O! if I could, how I would maul
His tallow face and wainscot paws, His beetle brows, and eyes of wall,
And make him soon give up the cause ! Must I be every moment chid
With * Skinnybonia, Snipe, and Lean? O! that I could but once be rid
Of this insulting tyrant Dean!
ON A VERY OLD GLASS AT MARKET-HILL.
Frail glass! thou bear'st that name as well as 1; Though none can tell, which of us first shall die.
ANSWERED EXTEMPORE BY DR. SWIFT.
Me only chance can kill ; thou, frailer creature, Mays't die, like me, by chance; but must by nature.
ON CUTTING DOWN THE OLD THORN
Ar Market-Hill, as well appears,
By chronicle of ancient date, There stood for many hundred years
A spacious thorn before the gate.
• The Dean used to call lady Acheson by those names. B.
Hither came every village maid,
And on the boughs ber garland hung ; And here, beneath the spreading shade,
Secure from satyrs sate and sung. Sir Archibald *, that valorous knight,
The lord of all the fruitful plain, Would come and listen with delight;
For he was fond of rural strain.
(Sir Archibald, whose favourite name
Shall stand for ages on record, By Scottish bards of highest fame,
Wise Hawthornden and Stirling's lord t.) But time with iron teeth, I ween,
Has canker'd all its branches round; No fruit or blossom to be seen,
Its head reclining toward the ground. This aged, sickly, sapless thorn,
Which must, alas! no longer stand, Behold the cruel Dean in scorn
Cuts down with sacrilegious hand. Dame Nature, when she saw the blow,
Astonish'd, gave a dreadful shriek; And mother Tellus trembled so,
She scarce recover'd in a week.
The Sylvan powers, with fear perplex'd,
In prudence and compassion, sent (For none could tell whose turn was next)
Sad omens of the dire event.
* Sir Archibald Acheson, secretary of state for Scotland. F.
+ Drummond of Hawthornden, and sir William Alexander earl of Stirling, who were both friends to sir Archibald, and famous for their poetry. F.
The magpie, lighting on the stock,
Stood chattering with incessant din ; And with her beak gave many a knock,
To rouze and warn the nymph within. The owl foresaw, in pensive mood,
The ruin of her ancient seat;
To seek a more secure retreat.
Last trolled forth the gentle swine,
To ease her itch against the stump, And dismally was heard to whine,
All as she scrubb'd her meazly rump. The nymph who dwells in every tree,
(If all be true that poets chant) Condemn’d by Fate's supreme decree,
Must die with her expiring plant. Thus, when the gentle Spina found
The thorn committed to her care, Receiv'd its last and deadly wound,
She fled, and vanish'd into air. But from the root a dismal groan
First issuing struck the murderer's ears; And, in a shrill revengeful tone,
This prophecy he trembling heats; “ Thou chief contriver of my fall,
Relentless Dean, to mischief born; My kindred oft thine hide shall gall,
Thy gown and cassock oft be torn.
That she condemn'd me to the fire,
Nor thou, lord Arthur *, shalt
escape; To thee I often call'd in vain, Against that assassin ip crape;
Yet thou could'st tamely see me slain :
Nor, when I felt the dreadful blow,
Or chid the Dean, or pinch'd thy spouse ; Since you could see me treated so
(An old retainer to your house): May that fell Dean, by whose command
Was form'd this Machiavelian ploi, Not leave a thistle on thy land;
Then who will own thee for a Scot?
Pigs and fanaticks, cows and teagues,
Through all my empire I foresee, To tear thy hedges, join in leagues,
Sworn to revenge my thorn and me. And thou, the wretch ordain'd by fate,
Neal Gahagan, Hibernian clown, With hatchet blunter than thy pate,
To hack my hallow'd timber down ; When thou, suspended high in air,
Diest on a more ignoble tree, (For thou shalt steal thy landlord's mare),
Then, bloody caitif! think on me."
Sir Arthur Acheson. F.