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And lose the husband in the lover!
May that fair bosom never know
What 'tis to feel the restless woe,
Which stings the soul, with vain regret,
Of him, who never can forget!" 1806.
[First printed, December, 1806.]

TO LESBIA.1

1.

LESBIA! since far from you I've rang'd, Our souls with fond affection glow not; You say, 'tis I, not you, have chang'd, I'd tell you why, but yet I know

not.

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2.

Your polish'd brow no cares have crost; And Lesbia! we are not much older, Since, trembling, first my heart I lost, Or told my love, with hope grown bolder.

3. Sixteen was then our utmost age,

Two years have lingering pass'd away, love!

And now new thoughts our minds engage,

At least, I feel dispos'd to stray, love!

4.

'Tis I that am alone to blame,

I, that am guilty of love's treason; Since your sweet breast is still the same, Caprice must be my only reason.

5.

I do not, love! suspect your truth, With jealous doubt my bosom heaves

not;

Warm was the passion of my youth, One trace of dark deceit it leaves not.

6.

7.

No more we meet in yonder bowers; Absence has made me prone to roving; But older, firmer hearts than ours Have found monotony in loving.

8.

Your cheek's soft bloom is unimpair'd, New beauties, still, are daily brightning,

Your eye, for conquest beams prepar'd, The forge of love's resistless lightning.

9.

No, no, my flame was not pretended;

For, oh! I lov'd you most sincerely; And though our dream at last is ended

My bosom still esteems you dearly.

1["The lady's name was Julia Leacroft" (Nole by Miss E. Pigot).]

Arm'd thus, to make their bosoms bleed,
Many will throng, to sigh like me,
love!

More constant they may prove, indeed;
Fonder, alas! they ne'er can be, lovel
1806.
[First printed, December, 1806.]

TO WOMAN.

WOMAN! experience might have told me
That all must love thee, who behold
thee:

Surely experience might have taught
Thy firmest promises are nought;
But, plac'd in all thy charms before me,
All I forget, but to adore thee.
Oh memory! thou choicest blessing,
When join'd with hope, when still pos-
sessing;

But how much curst by every lover
When hope is fled, and passion's over.
Woman, that fair and fond deceiver.
How prompt are striplings to believe her.
How throbs the pulse, when first we view
The eye that rolls in glossy blue,
Or sparkles black, or mildly throws
A beam from under hazel brows!
How quick we credit every oath,
And hear her plight the willing troth!
Fondly we hope 'twill last for aye,
When, lo! she changes in a day.
This record will for ever stand,
"Woman, thy vows are trac'd in sand."1

[First printed, December, 1806.]

1 The last line is almost a literal translation from a Spanish proverb.

[The last line is not "almost a literal trans

AN OCCASIONAL PROLOGUE,

DELIVERED BY THE AUTHOR PREVIOUS
TO THE PERFORMANCE OF
"THE
WHEEL OF FORTUNE" AT A PRIVATE
THEATRE.

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SINCE the refinement of this polish'd age Has swept immoral raillery from the stage;

Since taste has now expung'd licentious

wit,

Which stamp'd disgrace on all an author writ;

Since, now, to please with purer scenes we seek,

Nor dare to call the blush from Beauty's cheek;

* Oh! let the modest Muse some pity claim,

And meet indulgence — though she find not fame.

Still, not for her alone, we wish respect, Others appear more conscious of defect: Tonight no vel'ran Roscii you behold,

all the arts of scenic action old; No COOKE, no KEMBLE, can salute you here,

NO SIDDONS draw the sympathetic tear; To-night you throng to witness the début Of embryo Actors, to the Drama new: ■ Here, then, our almost unfledg'd wings

we try;

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not our pinions, ere the birds can fly:

Failing in this our first attempt to soar, Drooping, alas! we fall to rise no more.

tion from a Spanish proverb," but an adtion of part of a stanza from the Diana of re de Montemajor.

1.

Suthey, in his Letters from Spain, 1797; 891, gives a specimen of the Diana, and ders the lines in question thus

"And Love beheld us from his secret stand, And mark'd his triumph, laughing, to behold

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Had their Prophet possess'd half an atom of sense,

He ne'er would have woman from Paradise driven;

Instead of his Houris, a flimsy pretence, With woman alone he had peopled his Heaven.

3.

me,

To see me trust a writing traced in sand,
To

["I enacted Penruddock, in The Wheel of Fortune, and Tristram Fickle, in Allingham's face of The Weathercock, for three nights, in sone private theatricals at Southwell, in 1806, with great applause. The occasional prologue kr cur volunteer play was also of my comption."- Letters, 1801, v. 455.]

Yet, still, to increase your calamities

more,

Not content with depriving your bodies of spirit,

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'Tis surely enough upon earth to be vex'd,

With wives who eternal confusion are spreading;

"But in Heaven," (so runs the Evangelist's Text,)

"We neither have giving in marriage, or wedding."

7. From this we suppose, (as indeed well we may,)

That should Saints after death, with their spouses put up more, And wives, as in life, aim at absolute

sway,

All Heaven would ring with the conjugal uproar.

8. Distraction and Discord would follow in course,

Nor MATTHEW, nor MARK, nor ST
PAUL, can deny it,

The only expedient is general divorce, To prevent universal disturbance and riot.

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Lord H-4 indeed, may not demur;
Fellows are sage, reflecting men:
They know preferment can occur,
But very seldom, · now and then.

6.
They know the Chancellor has got
Some pretty livings in disposal:

1f" Fight with silver spears" (ie. with bribes). "and thou shalt prevail in all things." Reply of the Pythian Oracle to Philip of Macedon.]

2 The Diable Boiteux of Le Sage, where Asmodeus, the demon, places Don Cleofas on an elevated situation, and unroofs the houses for inspection. [Don Cleofas, clinging to the cloak of Asmodeus, is carried through the air to the summit of S. Salvador.]

3 [On the death of Pitt, in January, 1806, Lord Henry Petty beat Lord Palmerston in the contest for the representation of the University of Cambridge in Parliament.]

[Probably Lord Henry Petty.]

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