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Close in those walls, which Frank's* mistaken zeal,
* Sir Francis Burdett.
And only waited for a prosp'rous gale,
Ruth. Since cruel fate ordains that we should part, Oh! Thyrsis, hear the feelings of my heartMay I become as odious in thy sight* As painted Hags at Drawing-rooms by nightSuch, and so monstrous, let thy Ruth appear, If e'er her conduct give thee cause for fear. Hence with thy doubts, for shame! for surely she Deserves reproach from none, but least from thee.
Thyrsis. Unhappy is the lesser villain's doom, Cut off in fortune's pride, in manhood's bloom ! The crafty statesman, favour'd by his King, Obtains a ribbon-but deserves a string ; And, thinking it the duty of his station To cheat the public, and to starve the nation, Leaves Bridewell, Bot'ny Bay, and Tyburn tree, To friendless unprotected rogues like me !
* Immo ego Sardoïs videar tibi amarior herbis,
Horridior rusco, projectâ vilior algâ ;
Ruth. I busy was with reading Little's muse, When Cousin Bridget brought the dreadful news : “A pretty joke (she cry'd), your Sweetheart Thyrsis, Who left an honest trade to scribble verses," (And looking fiercely with her arms a-kimbo,) “ Has (thank his roguery for it !) got in limbo." The words she utter'd fill’d me with despair, I beat my bosom, and I tore my hair, My face I scarify'd-behold the scars ! And wept aloud, and curs’d my evil stars : My mother thought me in hysteric fits, The Doctor said that I had lost my wits ; And cry'd (while to his mouth he did present his Long amber-headed cane) “ Non compos mentis.”
Thyr. But I must travel far, to climes unknown, * Beneath the scorching or the freezing Zone; Condemn'd, alas ! by Law's unjust decree, My home, my friends, my love! no more to see:We all must reap the harvest that we sow, Good Heav'n! what ills from deeds dishonest flow.
Ruth. Now hear me,Thyrsis, hear the vow I make, To die a faithful virgin for thy sake.
* At nos hinc alii sitientes ibimus Afros :
Pars Scythiam, et rapidum Cretæ veniemus Oasem, &c.
Let eager suitors proffer bars of gold,
Thyr. I know thee, Love ! thou surely wert the
Of some hard judge, or shoulder-tapping dun,
Ruth. O, dread not storms! my sighs shall
waft thee o'er-
Thyr. As to the City 'Prentice, whey and curds, t So to me, gentle maiden! are thy words. As to the longing school-boy, Christmas cheer; To cattle, pastures green and rivers clear;
* Nunc scio quid sit amor. Duris in cotibus illum, &c. + Quale sopor fessis in gramine; quale per æstum
Dulcis aquæ saliente sitim restinguere rivo.
To rosy vicars, revelry and ease ;
I now be curst,
Ruth. This night, my Thyrsis, let us banish care,* Cutlets and bottled ale shall be our fare; Thy head shall find a pillow on my breast, My voice shall hush thy sorrows all to rest : For hark! the gaoler shakes his bunch of keys, And ev'ning Zephyrs die along the trees.
Hic tamen hanc mecum poteras requiescere noctem