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EPITAPH ON A MISER.

B!
ENEATH this verdant hillock lies,

Demar, the wealthy and the wife.
His beirs, that he might safely rest,
Have

put his carcase in a cheft ;
The very chest, in which, they say,
His other felf, his money, lay.
And, if his heirs continue kind
To that dear self he left behind,
I dare believe, that four in five
Will think his better half alive.

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To STELLA, who collected and transcribed his

poems.

Written in the year 1720.

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A
S, when a lofty pile is rais’d,

We never hear the workmen prais'd,
Who bring the lime, or place the stones ;
But all admire Inigo Jones :
So, if this pile of scatter'd rhymes
Should be approv'd in after times,
If it both pleases and endures,
The merit and the praise are yours.

Thou, Stella, wert no longer young,
When first for thee my harp I ftrung,
Without one word of Cupid's darts,
Of killing eyes, or bleeding hearts :
With friendship and esteem poffeft,
I ne'er admitted love a guest.

In all the habitudes of life,
The friend, the mistress, and the wife,

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30

Variety we still pursue,
In pleasure seek for something new ;
Or else, comparing with the rest,
Take comfort, that our own is beft;
The best we value by the worst,
(As tradesmen shew their trash at first):
But his pursuits are at an end,
Whom Stella chufes for a friend.

A poet starving in a garret,
Conning old topics like a parrot,
Invokes his mistress and his mase,
And stays at home for want of shoes :
Should but his mufe, descending, drop
A slice of bread, and mutton-chop ;
Or kindly, when his credit's out,
Surprise him with a pint of fout* ;
Or patch his broken stocking-Soals,
Or send him in a peek of coals;
Exalted in his mighty mind,
He Aies, and leaves the stars behind ;
Counts all bis labours amply paid,
Adores her for the timely aid.

Or, should a porter make inquiries
For Chloe, Sylvia, Phillis, Iris,
Be told the lodging, lane, and fign,
The bow'rs that hold those nymphs divine ;
Fair Chloe would perhaps be found
With footmen tippling under ground;
The charming Sylvia beating flax,
Hêr houlders mark'd with bloody tracks;
Bright Phillis mendiog ragged smocks ;
And radiant Iris in the pox. 1.''!

These are the goddesses inrollid
In Carl's collection t, new and old,

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40

45

50

A cant word for strong beer.
See an account of Curli in vol viü. -

55

Whose scoundrel fathers would not know 'em,
If they should meet them in a poem.

True poets can depress and raise,
Are lords of infamy and praise ;
They are not scurrilous in satire,
Nor will in panegyric flatter.
Unjuftly poets we asperse;
Truth shines the brighter clad in verse ;
And all the fictions they pursue,
Do but infinuate what is true.

Now, should my praises owe their trath
To beauty, dress, or paint, or youth,
What Stoics call without our pow'r,
They could not be infur'd an hour :
"Twere grafting on an annual stock,
That must our expectation mock,
And, making one luxuriant shoot,
Die the next year for want of root :
Before I could my verses bring,
Perhaps you're quite another thing.

So Mævius, when he drain'd his fcull
To celebrate some suburb-trull,
His fimiles in order fet,
And ev'ry crambo he could get ;
Had
gone

thro all the common places',
Worn out by wits, who rhyme on faces :
Before he could his poem close,
The lovely nymph had lost her nose.

Your virtues fafely I commend ;
They on no accidents depend :
Let malice look with all her eyes,
She dares not say the poet.lies:

Stella, when you these lines transcribe,
Left
you

should take them for a bribe, Resolv'd to mortify your pride, I'll here expose your weaker fade..

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Your spirits kindle to a flame,
Mov'd with the lightest touch of blame;
And when a friend in kindness tries
To thew

you
where

your error lies, Conviction does but more incense; Perverseness is

your

whole defence;
Truth, judgment, wit, give place to spight,
Regardless both of wrong and right;
Your virtues all suspended wait
Till time hath open'd reason's gate ;
And, what is worse, your passion bends
Its force against your nearest friends ;
Which manners, decency, and pride
Have taught you from the world to hide :
In vain; for fee, your friend hath brought
To public light your only fault;
And yet a fault we often find
Mix'd in a noble gen'rous mind;
And may compare to Ætna's fire,
Which, tho' with trembling, all admire ;
The heat that makes the fummit glow,
Enriching all the vales below.
Those who in warmer climes complain
From Phæbus' rays they fuffer pain,
Muit own, that pain is largely paid
By gen'rous wines beneath a shade.

Yet, when I find your paflions rise,
And anger sparkling in your eyes,
I grieve those fpirits should be spent,
For nobler ends by nature meant.
One passion with a diff'rent turn
Makes wit infame, or anger burn.
So the sun's heat with diff'rent pow'rs
Ripens the grape, the liquor fours.
Thus Ajax, when with rage possest
By Pallas breath'd into his breast,

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His valour would no more employ,
Which might alone have conquer'd Troy ;
But, blinded by resentment, seeks
For vengeance on his friends, the Greeks.

You think this turbulence of blood
From Itagnacing preferves the flood,
Which, thus fermenting, by degrees
Exalts the spirits, finks the lees.

Stella, for once you reason wrong;
For, Mould this ferment last too long,
By time subsiding, you may find
Nothing but acid left behind :
From passion you may then be freed,
When peevishness and spleen fucceed.

SAY, Stella, when you copy next,
Will you keep strictly to the text ?
Dare you let these reproaches stand,
And to your failing set your hand ?
Or, if these lines your anger fire,
Shall they in bafer flames expire ?
Whene'er they burn, if burn they must,
They'll prove my accusation just

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* STELLA to Dr Swift on his birth

day, Nov. 30. 1721 +. ST Patrick's Dean, your country's pride,

My early and my only guide,

# This poem fhews the delicacy of Stella's taste. It is the only remaining performance of that improved and lovely woman that I know of in the poetic strain. It was given by Dr Swift to a lady of his acquaintance, who had a great elteem for the virtues and accomplishments of the amiable Stella, altho' she never had the least intimacy with her. The Doctor affured this lady that it was a piece entirely genuine from the hands of Stella, without any fort of correction whai loever. Swift ----See Bons mots de Stella, in vol. iv.; and ber character in Ds Swift's Life, prefised ta val. i.

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