Sonnet To A Friend

Friend of my earliest years and childish days,
My joys, my sorrows, thou with me hast shared,
Companion dear, and we alike have fared
(Poor pilgrims we) through life's unequal ways;
It were unwisely done, should we refuse
To cheer our path as featly as we may,
Our lonely path to cheer, as travellers use,
With merry song, quaint tale, or roundelay;
And we will sometimes talk past troubles o'er,
Of mercies shown, and all our sickness healed,
And in his judgments God remembering love;
And we will learn to praise God evermore
For those glad tidings of great joy revealed
By that sooth messenger sent from above.

Suffer Little Children, And Forbid Them Not, To Come Unto Me

To Jesus our Saviour some parents presented
Their children-what fears and what hopes they must feel!
When this the disciples would fain have prevented,
Our Saviour reproved their unseasonable zeal.

Not only free leave to come to him was given
But 'of such' were the blessed words Christ our Lord spake,
'Of such is composed the kingdom of heaven:'
The disciples, abashëd, perceived their mistake.

With joy then the parents their children brought nigher
And earnestly begged that his hands he would lay
On their heads; and they made a petition still higher,
That he for a blessing upon them would pray.

O happy young children, thus brought to adore him,
To kneel at his feet, and look up in his face;
No doubt now in heaven they still are before him,
Children still of his love, and enjoying his grace.

For being so blest as to come to our Saviour,
How deep in their innocent hearts it must sink!
'Twas a visit divine; a most holy behaviour
Must flow from that spring of which then they did drink.

Choosing A Profession

A Creole boy from the West Indies brought,
To be in European learning taught,
Some years before to Westminster he went,
To a preparatory school was sent.
When from his artless tale the mistress found,
The child had not one friend on English ground,
She, even as if she his own mother were,
Made the dark Indian her peculiar care.
Oft on her favourite's future lot she thought;
To know the bent of his young mind she sought,
For much the kind preceptress wished to find
To what profession he was most inclined,
That where his genius led they might him train;
For nature's kindly bent she held not vain.
But vain her efforts to explore his will;
The frequent question he evaded still:
Till on a day at length he to her came,
Joy sparkling in his eyes; and said, the same
Trade he would be those boys of colour were,
Who danced so happy in the open air.
It was a troop of chimney-sweeping boys,
With wooden music and obstreperous noise,
In tarnished finery and grotesque array,
Were dancing in the street the first of May.

WHEN maidens such as Hester die
Their place ye may not well supply,
Though ye among a thousand try
   With vain endeavour.

A month or more hath she been dead,
Yet cannot I by force be led
To think upon the wormy bed
   And her together.

A springy motion in her gait,
A rising step, did indicate
Of pride and joy no common rate,
   That flush'd her spirit:

I know not by what name beside
I shall it call: if 'twas not pride,
It was a joy to that allied,
   She did inherit.

Her parents held the Quaker rule,
Which doth the human feeling cool;
But she was train'd in Nature's school;
   Nature had blest her.

A waking eye, a prying mind;
A heart that stirs, is hard to bind;
A hawk's keen sight ye cannot blind;
   Ye could not Hester.

My sprightly neighbour! gone before
To that unknown and silent shore,
Shall we not meet, as heretofore,
   Some summer morning--

When from thy cheerful eyes a ray
Hath struck a bliss upon the day,
A bliss that would not go away,
   A sweet forewarning?

Written On The Day Of My Aunt's Funeral

Thou too art dead, ---! very kind
Hast thou been to me in my childish days,
Thou best good creature. I have not forgot
How thou didst love thy Charles, when he was yet
A prating school-boy: I have not forgot
The busy joy on that important day,
When, child-like, the poor wanderer was content
To leave the bosom of parental love,
His childhood's play-place, and his early home,
For the rude fosterings of a stranger's hand,
Hard uncouth tasks, and school-boy's scanty fare.
How did thine eye peruse him round and round,
And hardly know him in his yellow coats[1],
Red leathern belt, and gown of russet blue!
Farewell, good aunt!
Go thou, and occupy the same grave-bed
Where the dead mother lies.
Oh my dear mother, oh thou dear dead saint!
Where's now that placid face, where oft hath sat
A mother's smile, to think her son should thrive
In this bad world, when she was dead and gone;
And where a tear hath sat (take shame, O son!)
When that same child has prov'd himself unkind.
One parent yet is left-a wretched thing,
A sad survivor of his buried wife,
A palsy-smitten, childish, old, old man,
A semblance most forlorn of what he was,
A merry cheerful man. A merrier man,
A man more apt to frame matter for mirth,
Mad jokes, and anticks for a Christmas eve;
Making life social, and the laggard time
To move on nimbly, never yet did cheer
The little circle of domestic friends.

February 1797

Going Into Breeches

Joy to Philip, he this day
Has his long coats cast away,
And (the childish season gone)
Puts the manly breeches on.
Officer on gay parade,
Red-coat in his first cockade,
Bridegroom in his wedding trim,
Birthday beau surpassing him,
Never did with conscious gait
Strut about in half the state,
Or the pride (yet free from sin)
Of my little Manikin:
Never was there pride, or bliss,
Half so rational as his.
Sashes, frocks, to those that need 'em-
Philip's limbs have got their freedom-
He can run, or he can ride,
And do twenty things beside,
Which his petticoats forbad:
Is he not a happy lad?
Now he's under other banners,
He must leave his former manners;
Bid adieu to female games,
And forget their very names,
Puss-in-corners, hide-and-seek,
Sports for girls and punies weak!
Baste-the-bear he now may play at,
Leap-frog, foot-ball, sport away at,
Show his strength and skill at cricket,
Mark his distance, pitch his wicket,
Run about in winter's snow
Till his cheeks and fingers glow,
Climb a tree, or scale a wall,
Without any fear to fall.
If he get a hurt or bruise,
To complain he must refuse,
Though the anguish and the smart
Go unto his little heart,
He must have his courage ready,
Keep his voice and visage steady,
Brace his eye-balls stiff as drum,
That a tear may never come,
And his grief must only speak
From the colour in his cheek.
This and more he must endure,
Hero he in miniature!
This and more must now be done
Now the breeches are put on.

But a few words could William say,
And those few could not speak plain,
Yet thought he was a man one day;
Never saw I boy so vain.


From what could vanity proceed
In such a little lisping lad?
Or was it vanity indeed?
Or was he only very glad?


For he without his maid may go
To the heath with elder boys,
And pluck ripe berries where they grow:
Well may William then rejoice.


Be careful of your little charge;
Elder boys, let him not rove;
The heath is wide, the heath is large,
From your sight he must not move.


But rove he did: they had not been
One short hour the heath upon,
When he was nowhere to be seen;
'Where,' said they, 'is William gone?'


Mind not the elder boys' distress;
Let them run, and let them fly.
Their own neglect and giddiness
They are justly suffering by.


William his little basket filled
With his berries ripe and red;
Then, naughty boy, two bees he killed,
Under foot he stamped them dead.


William had coursed them o'er the heath,
After them his steps did wander;
When he was nearly out of breath,
The last bee his foot was under.


A cruel triumph which did not
Last but for a moment's space,
For now he finds that he has got
Out of sight of every face.


What are the berries now to him?
What the bees which he has slain?
Fear now possesses every limb,
He cannot trace his steps again.


The poor bees William had affrighted
In more terror did not haste
Than he from bush to bush, benighted
And alone amid the waste.


Late in the night the child was found:
He who these two bees had crushed
Was lying on the cold damp ground,
Sleep had then his sorrows hushed.


A fever followed from the fright,
And from sleeping in the dew;
He many a day and many a night
Suffered ere he better grew.


His aching limbs while sick he lay
Made him learn the crushed bees' pain;
Oft would he to his mother say,
'I ne'er will kill a bee again.'

'Our governess is not in school,
So we may talk a bit;
Sit down upon this little stool,
Come, little Mary, sit:

'And, my dear playmate, tell me why
In dismal black you're drest?
Why does the tear stand in your eye?
With sobs why heaves your breast?

'When we're in grief, it gives relief
Our sorrows to impart;
When you've told why, my dear, you cry,
'Twill ease your little heart.'

'O, it is trouble very bad
Which causes me to weep;
All last night long we were so sad,
Not one of us could sleep.

'Beyond the seas my father went,
'Twas very long ago;
And he last week a letter sent
(I told you so, you know)

'That he was safe in Portsmouth bay,
And we should see him soon,
Either the latter end of May,
Or by the first of June.

'The end of May was yesterday,
We all expected him;
And in our best clothes we were dressed,
Susan, and I, and Jim.

'O how my poor dear mother smiled,
And clapped her hands for joy;
She said to me, 'Come here, my child,
And Susan, and my boy.

''Come all, and let us think,' said she,
'What we can do to please
Your father, for to-day will he
Come home from off the seas.

''That you have won, my dear young son,
A prize at school, we'll tell,
Because you can, my little man,
In writing all excel:

''And you have made a poem, nearly
All of your own invention:
Will not your father love you dearly
When this to him I mention?

''Your sister Mary, she can say
Your poetry by heart;
And to repeat your verses may
Be little Mary's part.

''Susan, for you, I'll say you do
Your needlework with care,
And stitch so true the wristbands new
Dear father's soon to wear!'

''O hark!' said James; 'I hear one speak;
'Tis like a seaman's voice.'-
Our mother gave a joyful shriek;
How did we all rejoice!

''My husband's come!' 'My father's here!'
But O, alas, it was not so;
It was not as we said:
A stranger seaman did appear,
On his rough cheek there stood a tear,
For he brought to us a tale of woe,-
Our father dear was dead.'

The Three Friends

Three young girls in friendship met;
Mary, Martha, Margaret.
Margaret was tall and fair,
Martha shorter by a hair;
If the first excelled in feature,
The other's grace and ease were greater;
Mary, though to rival loth,
In their best gifts equalled both.
They a due proportion kept;
Martha mourned if Margaret wept;
Margaret joyed when any good
She of Martha understood;
And in sympathy for either
Mary was outdone by neither.
Thus far, for a happy space,
All three ran an even race,
A most constant friendship proving,
Equally beloved and loving;
All their wishes, joys, the same;
Sisters only not in name.


Fortune upon each one smiled,
As upon a favourite child;
Well to do and well to see
Were the parents of all three;
Till on Martha's father crosses
Brought a flood of worldly losses,
And his fortunes rich and great
Changed at once to low estate;
Under which o'erwhelming blow
Martha's mother was laid low;
She a hapless orphan left,
Of maternal care bereft,
Trouble following trouble fast,
Lay in a sick bed at last.


In the depth of her affliction
Martha now received conviction,
That a true and faithful friend
Can the surest comfort lend.
Night and day, with friendship tried,
Ever constant by her side
Was her gentle Mary found,
With a love that knew no bound;
And the solace she imparted
Saved her dying broken-hearted.


In this scene of earthly things
There's no good unmixëd springs.
That which had to Martha proved
A sweet consolation, moved
Different feelings of regret
In the mind of Margaret.
She, whose love was not less dear,
Nor affection less sincere
To her friend, was, by occasion
Of more distant habitation,
Fewer visits forced to pay her,
When no other cause did stay her;
And her Mary living nearer,
Margaret began to fear her,
Lest her visits day by day
Martha's heart should steal away.
That whole heart she ill could spare her
Where till now she'd been a sharer.
From this cause with grief she pined,
Till at length her health declined.
All her cheerful spirits flew,
Fast as Martha gathered new;
And her sickness waxëd sore,
Just when Martha felt no more.


Mary, who had quick suspicion
Of her altered friend's condition,
Seeing Martha's convalescence
Less demanded now her presence,
With a goodness built on reason,
Changed her measures with the season;
Turned her steps from Martha's door,
Went where she was wanted more;
All her care and thoughts were set
Now to tend on Margaret.
Mary living 'twixt the two,
From her home could oftener go,
Either of her friends to see,
Than they could together be.


Truth explained is to suspicion
Evermore the best physician.
Soon her visits had the effect;
All that Margaret did suspect,
From her fancy vanished clean;
She was soon what she had been,
And the colour she did lack
To her faded cheek came back.
Wounds which love had made her feel,
Love alone had power to heal.


Martha, who the frequent visit
Now had lost, and sore did miss it,
With impatience waxed cross,
Counted Margaret's gain her loss:
All that Mary did confer
On her friend, thought due to her.
In her girlish bosom rise
Little foolish jealousies,
Which into such rancour wrought,
She one day for Margaret sought;
Finding her by chance alone,
She began, with reasons shown,
To insinuate a fear
Whether Mary was sincere;
Wished that Margaret would take heed
Whence her actions did proceed;
For herself, she'd long been minded
Not with outsides to be blinded;
All that pity and compassion,
She believed was affectation;
In her heart she doubted whether
Mary cared a pin for either;
She could keep whole weeks at distance,
And not know of their existence,
While all things remained the same;
But, when some misfortune came,
Then she made a great parade
Of her sympathy and aid,-
Not that she did really grieve,
It was only make-believe;
And she cared for nothing, so
She might her fine feelings show,
And get credit, on her part,
For a soft and tender heart.


With such speeches, smoothly made,
She found methods to persuade
Margaret (who, being sore
From the doubts she felt before,
Was prepared for mistrust)
To believe her reasons just;
Quite destroyed that comfort glad,
Which in Mary late she had;
Made her, in experience' spite,
Think her friend a hypocrite,
And resolve, with cruel scoff,
To renounce and cast her off.


See how good turns are rewarded!
She of both is now discarded,
Who to both had been so late
Their support in low estate,
All their comfort, and their stay-
Now of both is cast away.
But the league her presence cherished,
Losing its best prop, soon perished;
She, that was a link to either,
To keep them and it together,
Being gone, the two (no wonder)
That were left, soon fell asunder;
Some civilities were kept,
But the heart of friendship slept;
Love with hollow forms was fed,
But the life of love lay dead:
A cold intercourse they held
After Mary was expelled.


Two long years did intervene
Since they'd either of them seen,
Or, by letter, any word
Of their old companion heard,
When, upon a day, once walking,
Of indifferent matters talking,
They a female figure met.-
Martha said to Margaret,
'That young maid in face does carry
A resemblance strong of Mary.'
Margaret, at nearer sight,
Owned her observation right;
But they did not far proceed
Ere they knew 'twas she indeed.
She-but, ah! how changed they view her
From that person which they knew her!
Her fine face disease had scarred,
And its matchless beauty marred:
But enough was left to trace
Mary's sweetness-Mary's grace.
When her eye did first behold them
How they blushed!-but when she told them
How on a sick bed she lay
Months, while they had kept away,
And had no inquiries made
If she were alive or dead;-
How, for want of a true friend,
She was brought near to her end,
And was like so to have died,
With no friend at her bedside;-
How the constant irritation,
Caused by fruitless expectation
Of their coming, had extended
The illness, when she might have mended;
Then, O then, how did reflection
Come on them with recollection!
All that she had done for them,
How it did their fault condemn!


But sweet Mary, still the same,
Kindly eased them of their shame;
Spoke to them with accents bland,
Took them friendly by the hand;
Bound them both with promise fast
Not to speak of troubles past;
Made them on the spot declare
A new league of friendship there;
Which, without a word of strife,
Lasted thenceforth long as life.
Martha now and Margaret
Strove who most should pay the debt
Which they owed her, nor did vary
Ever after from their Mary.

In days of yore, as Ancient Stories tell,
A King in love with a great Princess fell.
Long at her feet submiss the Monarch sigh'd,
While she with stern repulse his suit denied.
Yet was he form'd by birth to please the fair,
Dress'd, danc'd, and courted, with a Monarch's air;
But Magic Spells her frozen breast had steel'd
With stubborn pride, that knew not how to yield.


This to the King a courteous Fairy told,
And bade the Monarch in his suit be bold;
For he that would the charming Princess wed,
Had only on her cat's black tail to tread,
When straight the Spell would vanish into air,
And he enjoy for life the yielding fair.


He thank'd the Fairy for her kind advice.-
Thought he, 'If this be all, I'll not be nice;
Rather than in my courtship I will fail,
I will to mince-meat tread Minon's black tail.'


To the Princess's court repairing strait,
He sought the cat that must decide his fate;
But when he found her, how the creature stared!
How her back bristled, and her great eyes glared!
That tail, which he so fondly hop'd his prize,
Was swell'd by wrath to twice its usual size;
And all her cattish gestures plainly spoke,
She thought the affair he came upon, no joke.


With wary step the cautious King draws near,
And slyly means to attack her in her rear;
But when he thinks upon her tail to pounce,
Whisk-off she skips-three yards upon a bounce-
Again he tries, again his efforts fail-
Minon's a witch-the deuce is in her tail.-


The anxious chase for weeks the Monarch tried,
Till courage fail'd, and hope within him died.
A desperate suit 'twas useless to prefer,
Or hope to catch a tail of quicksilver.-
When on a day, beyond his hopes, he found
Minon, his foe, asleep upon the ground;
Her ample tail hehind her lay outspread,
Full to the eye, and tempting to the tread.
The King with rapture the occasion bless'd,
And with quick foot the fatal part he press'd.
Loud squalls were heard, like howlings of a storm,
And sad he gazed on Minon's altered form,-
No more a cat, but chang'd into a man
Of giant size, who frown'd, and thus began:


'Rash King, that dared with impious design
To violate that tail, that once was mine;
What tho' the spell be broke, and burst the charms,
That kept the Princess from thy longing arms,-
Not unrevenged shalt thou my fury dare,
For by that violated tail I swear,
From your unhappy nuptials shall be born
A Prince, whose Nose shall be thy subjects' scorn.
Bless'd in his love thy son shall never be,
Till he his foul deformity shall see,
Till he with tears his blemish shall confess,
Discern its odious length, and wish it less!'


This said, he vanish'd; and the King awhile
Mused at his words, then answer'd with a smile,
'Give me a child in happy wedlock born,
And let his Nose be made like a French horn;
His knowledge of the fact I ne'er can doubt,-
If he have eyes, or hands, he'll find it out.'


So spake the King, self-flatter'd in his thought,
Then with impatient step the Princess sought;
His urgent suit no longer she withstands,
But links with him in Hymen's knot her hands.


Almost as soon a widow as a bride,
Within a year the King her husband died;
And shortly after he was dead and gone
She was deliver'd of a little son,
The prettiest babe, with lips as red as rose,
And eyes like little stars-but such a nose-
The tender Mother fondly took the boy
Into her arms, and would have kiss'd her joy;
His luckless nose forbade the fond embrace-
He thrust the hideous feature in her face.


Then all her Maids of Honour tried in turn,
And for a Prince's kiss in envy burn;
By sad experience taught, their hopes they miss'd,
And mourn'd a Prince that never could be kiss'd.
In silent tears the Queen confess'd her grief,
Till kindest Flattery came to her relief.
Her maids, as each one takes him in her arms,
Expatiate freely o'er his world of charms-
His eyes, lips, mouth-his forehead was divine-
And for the nose-they call'd it Aquiline-
Declared that Cæsar, who the world subdued,
Had such a one-just of that longitude-
That Kings like him compell'd folks to adore them,
And drove the short-nos'd sons of men before them-
That length of nose portended length of days,
And was a great advantage many ways-
To mourn the gifts of Providence was wrong-
Besides, the Nose was not so very long.-


These arguments in part her grief redrest,
A mother's partial fondness did the rest;
And Time, that all things reconciles by use,
Did in her notions such a change produce,
That, as she views her babe, with favour blind,
She thinks him handsomest of human kind.


Meantime, in spite of his disfigured face,
Dorus (for so he's call'd) grew up a pace;
In fair proportion all his features rose,
Save that most prominent of all-his Nose.
That Nose, which in the infant could annoy,
Was grown a perfect nuisance in the boy.
Whene'er he walk'd, his Handle went before,
Long as the snout of Ferret, or Wild Boar;
Or like the Staff, with which on holy day
The solemn Parish Beadle clears the way.


But from their cradle to their latest year,
How seldom Truth can reach a Prince's ear!
To keep the unwelcome knowledge out of view,
His lesson well each flattering Courtier knew;
The hoary Tutor, and the wily Page,
Unmeet confederates! dupe his tender age.
They taught him that whate'er vain mortals boast-
Strength, Courage, Wisdom-all they value most-
Whate'er on human life distinction throws-
Was all comprized-in what?-a length of nose!
Ev'n Virtue's self (by some suppos'd chief merit)
In short-nosed folks was only want of spirit.


While doctrines such as these his guides instill'd,
His Palace was with long-nosed people fill'd;
At Court whoever ventured to appear
With a short nose, was treated with a sneer.
Each courtier's wife, that with a babe is blest,
Moulds its young nose betimes; and does her best,
By pulls, and hauls, and twists, and lugs, and pinches,
To stretch it to the standard of the Prince's.


Dup'd by these arts, Dorus to manhood rose,
Nor dream'd of ought more comely than his Nose;
Till Love, whose power ev'n Princes have confest,
Claim'd the soft empire o'er his youthful breast.
Fair Claribel was she who caus'd his care;
A neighb'ring Monarch's daughter, and sole heir.
For beauteous Claribel his bosom burn'd;
The beauteous Claribel his flame return'd;
Deign'd with kind words his passion to approve,
Met his soft vows, and yielded love for love.
If in her mind some female pangs arose
At sight (and who can blame her?) of his Nose,
Affection made her willing to be blind;
She loved him for the beauties of his mind;
And in his lustre, and his royal race,
Contented sunk-one feature of his face.


Blooming to sight, and lovely to behold,
Herself was cast in Beauty's richest mould;
Sweet female majesty her person deck'd-
Her face an angel's-save for one defect-
Wise Nature, who to Dorus over kind,
A length of nose too liberal had assign'd,
As if with us poor mortals to make sport,
Had given to Claribel a nose too short:
But turn'd up with a sort of modest grace;
It took not much of beauty from her face;
And subtle Courtiers, who their Prince's mind
Still watch'd, and turn'd about with every wind,
Assur'd the Prince, that though man's beauty owes
Its charms to a majestic length of nose,
The excellence of Woman (softer creature)
Consisted in the shortness of that feature.
Few arguments were wanted to convince
The already more than half persuaded Prince;
Truths, which we hate, with slowness we receive,
But what we wish to credit, soon believe.


The Princess's affections being gain'd,
What but her Sire's approval now remain'd?
Ambassadors with solemn pomp are sent
To win the aged Monarch to consent
(Seeing their States already were allied)
That Dorus might have Claribel to bride.
Her Royal Sire, who wisely understood
The match propos'd was for both kingdoms' good,
Gave his consent; and gentle Claribel
With weeping bids her father's court farewell.


With gallant pomp, and numerous array,
Dorus went forth to meet her on her way;
But when the Princely pair of lovers met,
Their hearts on mutual gratulations set,
Sudden the Enchanter from the ground arose,
(The same who prophesied the Prince's nose)
And with rude grasp, unconscious of her charms,
Snatch'd up the lovely Princess in his arms,
Then bore her out of reach of human eyes,
Up in the pathless regions of the skies.


Bereft of her that was his only care,
Dorus resign'd his soul to wild despair;
Resolv'd to leave the land that gave him birth,
And seek fair Claribel throughout the earth.
Mounting his horse, he gives the beast the reins,
And wanders lonely through the desert plains;
With fearless heart the savage heath explores,
Where the wolf prowls, and where the tiger roars,
Nor wolf, nor tiger, dare his way oppose;
The wildest creatures see, and shun, his Nose.
Ev'n lions fear! the elephant alone
Surveys with pride a trunk so like his own.


At length he to a shady forest came,
Where in a cavern lived an aged dame;
A reverend Fairy, on whose silver head
A hundred years their downy snows had shed.
Here ent'ring in, the Mistress of the place
Bespoke him welcome with a cheerful grace;
Fetch'd forth her dainties, spread her social board
With all the store her dwelling could afford.
The Prince, with toil and hunger sore opprest,
Gladly accepts, and deigns to be her guest.
But when the first civilities were paid,
The dishes rang'd, and Grace in order said;
The Fairy, who had leisure now to view
Her guest more closely, from her pocket drew
Her spectacles, and wip'd them from the dust,
Then on her nose endeavour'd to adjust;
With difficulty she could find a place
To hang them on in her unshapely face;
For, if the Princess's was somewhat small,
This Fairy scarce had any nose at all.
But when by help of spectacles the Crone
Discern'd a Nose so different from her own,
What peals of laughter shook her aged sides!
While with sharp jests the Prince she thus derides.


FAIRY.
'Welcome, great Prince of Noses, to my cell;
'Tis a poor place,-but thus we Fairies dwell.
Pray, let me ask you, if from far you come-
And don't you sometimes find it cumbersome?'


PRINCE.
'Find what?'


FAIRY.
'Your Nose-'


PRINCE.
'My Nose, Ma'am!'


FAIRY.
'No offence-
The King your Father was a man of sense,
A handsome man (but lived not to be old)
And had a Nose cast in the common mould.
Ev'n I myself, that now with age am grey,
Was thought to have some beauty in my day,
And am the Daughter of a King.-Your Sire
In this poor face saw something to admire-
And I to shew my gratitude made shift-
Have stood his friend-and help'd him at a lift-
'Twas I that, when his hopes began to fail,
Shew'd him the spell that lurk'd in Minon's tail-
Perhaps you have heard-but come, Sir, you don't eat-
That Nose of yours requires both wine and meat-
Fall to, and welcome, without more ado-
You see your fare-what shall I help you to?
This dish the tongues of nightingales contains;
This, eyes of peacocks; and that, linnets' brains;
That next you is a Bird of Paradise-
We Fairies in our food are somewhat nice.-
And pray, Sir, while your hunger is supplied,
Do lean your Nose a little on one side;
The shadow, which it casts upon the meat,
Darkens my plate, I see not what I eat-'


The Prince, on dainty after dainty feeding,
Felt inly shock'd at the old Fairy's breeding,
But held it want of manners in the Dame,
And did her country education blame.
One thing he only wonder'd at,-what she
So very comic in his Nose could see.
Hers, it must be confest, was somewhat short,
And time and shrinking age accounted for't;
But for his own, thank heaven, he could not tell
That it was ever thought remarkable;
A decent nose, of reasonable size,
And handsome thought, rather than otherwise.
But that which most of all his wonder paid,
Was to observe the Fairy's waiting Maid;
How at each word the aged Dame let fall;
She curtsied low, and smil'd assent to all;
But chiefly when the rev'rend Grannam told
Of conquests, which her beauty made of old.-
He smiled to see how Flattery sway'd the Dame,
Nor knew himself was open to the same!
He finds her raillery now increase so fast,
That making hasty end of his repast,
Glad to escape her tongue, he bids farewell
To the old Fairy, and her friendly cell.


But his kind Hostess, who had vainly tried
The force of ridicule to cure his pride,
Fertile in plans, a surer method chose,
To make him see the error of his Nose;
For, till he view'd that feature with remorse,
The Enchanter's direful spell must be in force.


Midway the road by which the Prince must pass,
She rais'd by magic art a House of Glass;
No mason's hand appear'd, nor work of wood;
Compact of glass the wondrous fabric stood.
Its stately pillars, glittering in the sun,
Conspicuous from afar, like silver, shone.
Here, snatch'd and rescued from th' Enchanter's might,
She placed the beauteous Claribel in sight.


The admiring Prince the chrystal dome survey'd,
And sought access unto his lovely Maid:
But, strange to tell, in all that mansion's bound,
Nor door, nor casement, was there to be found.
Enrag'd he took up massy stones, and flung
With such a force, that all the palace rung;
But made no more impression on the glass,
Than if the solid structure had been brass.
To comfort his despair, the lovely maid
Her snowy hand against her window laid;
But when with eager haste he thought to kiss,
His Nose stood out, and robb'd him of the bliss.
Thrice he essay'd th' impracticable feat;
The window and his lips can never meet.


The painful Truth, which Flattery long conceal'd,
Rush'd on his mind, and 'O!' he cried, 'I yield;
Wisest of Fairies, thou wert right, I wrong-
I own, I own, I have a Nose too long.'


The frank confession was no sooner spoke,
But into shivers all the palace broke.
His Nose of monstrous length, to his surprise
Shrunk to the limits of a common size:
And Claribel with joy her Lover view'd,
Now grown as beautiful as he was good.
The aged Fairy in their presence stands,
Confirms their mutual vows, and joins their hands.
The Prince with rapture hails the happy hour,
That rescued him from self-delusion's power;
And trains of blessings crown the future life
Of Dorus, and of Claribel, his wife.


THE END

Beauty And The Beast

A Merchant, who by generous pains
Prospered in honourable gains,
Could boast, his wealth and fame to share,
Three manly Sons, three Daughters fair;
With these he felt supremely blest.-
His latest born surpass'd the rest:
She was so gentle, good and kind,
So fair in feature, form, and mind,
So constant too in filial duty,
The neighbours called her Little Beauty!
And when fair childhood's days were run,
That title still she wore and won;
Lovelier as older still she grew,
Improv'd in grace and goodness too.-
Her elder Sisters, gay and vain,
View'd her with envy and disdain,
Toss'd up their heads with haughty air;
Dress, Fashion, Pleasure, all their care.


'Twas thus, improving and improv'd;
Loving, and worthy to be lov'd,
Sprightly, yet grave, each circling day
Saw Beauty innocently gay.
Thus smooth the May-like moments past;
Blest times! but soon by clouds o'ercast!


Sudden as winds that madd'ning sweep
The foaming surface of the deep,
Vast treasures, trusted to the wave,
Were buried in the billowy grave!
Our Merchant, late of boundless store,
Saw Famine hasting to his door.


With willing hand and ready grace,
Mild Beauty takes the Servant's place;
Rose with the sun to household cares,
And morn's repast with zeal prepares,
The wholesome meal, the cheerful fire:
What cannot filial love inspire?
And when the task of day was done,
Suspended till the rising sun,
Music and song the hours employ'd,
As more deserv'd, the more enjoy'd;
Till Industry, with Pastime join'd,
Refresh'd the body and the mind;
And when the groupe retir'd to rest,
Father and Brothers Beauty blest.


Not so the Sisters; as before
'Twas rich and idle, now 'twas poor.
In shabby finery array'd,
They still affected a parade:
While both insulted gentle Beauty,
Unwearied in the housewife's duty;
They mock'd her robe of modest brown,
And view'd her with a taunting frown;
Yet scarce could hold their rage to see
The blithe effects of Industry.


In this retreat a year had past,
When happier tidings came at last,
And in the Merchant's smile appear'd
Prospects that all the Cotters cheer'd:
A letter came; its purport good;
Part of his ventures brav'd the flood:
'With speed,' said he, 'I must to town,
'And what, my girls, must I bring down?'
The envious Sisters, all confusion,
Commissions gave in wild profusion;
Caps, hats, and bonnets, bracelets, broaches,
To cram the pockets of the coaches,
With laces, linens, to complete
The order, and to fill the seat.


Such wants and wishes now appear'd,
To make them larger Beauty fear'd;
Yet lest her silence might produce
From jealous Sisters more abuse,
Considerately good, she chose,
The emblem of herself,-a Rose.


The good man on his journey went,
His thoughts on generous Beauty bent.
'If Heav'n,' he said, and breath'd a prayer,
'If Heav'n that tender child should spare,
'Whate'er my lot, I must be bless'd,
'I must be rich:'-he wept the rest.
Timely such feelings!-Fortune still,
Unkind and niggard, crost his will.
Of all his hopes, alas, the gains
Were far o'erbalanc'd by the pains;
For after a long tedious round,
He had to measure back his ground.


A short day's travel from his Cot,
New misadventures were his lot;
Dark grew the air, the wind blew high,
And spoke the gathering tempest nigh;
Hail, snow, and night-fog join'd their force,
Bewildering rider and his horse.
Dismay'd, perplext, the road they crost,
And in the dubious maze were lost.


When glimmering through the vapours drear,
A taper shew'd a dwelling near.
And guess our Merchant's glad surprise,
When a rich palace seemed to rise
As on he mov'd! The knee be bent,
Thankful to Heaven; then nearer went.


But, O! how much his wonder grew,
When nothing living met his view!-
Entering a splendid hall, he found,
With every luxury around,
A blazing fire, a plenteous board,
A costly cellaret, well stor'd,
All open'd wide, as if to say,
'Stranger, refresh thee on thy way!'


The Merchant to the fire drew near,
Deeming the owner would appear,
And pardon one who, drench'd in rain,
Unask'd, had ventured to remain.
The court-yard clock had number'd seven,
When first he came; but when eleven
Struck on his ear as mute he sate,
It sounded like the knoll of Fate.


And yet so hungry was he grown,
He pick'd a capon to the bone;
And as choice wines before him stood,
He needs must taste if they were good:
So much he felt his spirits cheer'd-
The more he drank, the less he fear'd.


Now bolder grown, he pac'd along,
(Still hoping he might do no wrong),
When, entering at a gilded door,
High-rais'd upon a sumptuous floor,
A sofa shew'd all Persia's pride,
And each magnificence beside:
So down at once the Merchant lay,
Tir'd with the wonders of the day.
But had it been a rushy bed,
Tuck'd in the corner of a shed,
With no less joy had it been press'd:
The good man pray'd, and sank to rest.


Nor woke he till the noon of day;
And as he thus enchanted lay,
'Now for my storm-sopp'd clothes,' he cries:
When lo! a suit complete he spies;
'Yes, 'tis all fairy-work, no doubt,
'By gentle Pity brought about!'
Tenfold, when risen, amazement grew;
For bursting on his gazing view,
Instead of snow, he saw fair bowers
In all the pride of summer flowers.
Entering again the hall, behold,
Serv'd up in silver, pearl, and gold,
A breakfast, form'd of all things rare,
As if Queen Mab herself were there.


As now he past, with spirits gay,
A shower of Roses strew'd the way,
E'en to his hand the branches bent:
'One of these boughs-I go content!
'Beauty, dear Beauty-thy request
'If I may bear away, I'm blest.'
The Merchant pull'd-the branches broke!-
A hideous growling while he spoke,
Assail'd his startled ears; and then
A frightful Beast, as from a den,
Rushing to view, exclaimed, 'Ingrate!
'That stolen branch has seal'd thy fate.
'All that my castle own'd was thine,
'My food, my fire, my bed, my wine:
'Thou robb'st my Rose-trees in return,
'For this, base Plunderer, thou shalt mourn!'


'My Lord, I swear upon my knees,
'I did not mean to harm your trees;
'But a lov'd Daughter, fair as spring,
'Intreated me a Rose to bring;
'O didst thou know, my lord, the Maid!'-


'I am no Lord,' Beast angry said,
'And so no flattery!-but know,
'If, on your oath before you go,
'Within three wasted Moons you here
'Cause that lov'd Daughter to appear,
'And visit Beast a volunteer
'To suffer for thee, thou mayest live:-
'Speak not!-do this!-and I forgive.'
Mute and deprest the Merchant fled,
Unhappy traveller, evil sped!


Beauty was first her sire to meet,
Springing impatient from her seat;
Her Brothers next assembled round;
Her straying Sisters soon were found.
While yet the Father fondly press'd
The Child of Duty to his Breast,-
'Accept these Roses, ill-starr'd Maid!
'For thee thy Father's life is paid.'


The Merchant told the tale of Beast;
And loud lamentings, when he ceas'd,
From both the jealous Sisters broke,
As thus with taunting rage they spoke:
'And so thou kill'st thy Father, Miss,
'Proud, sinful creature, heardst thou this?
'We only wish'd a few new clothes;
'Beauty, forsooth, must have her Rose!
'Yet, harden'd Wretch, her eyes are dry,
'Tho' for her Pride our Sire must die!'


'Die! Not for worlds!' exclaim'd the Maid;
'Beast kindly will take me instead:
'And O, a thousand deaths I'd prove
'To shew my Father how I love!'
The Brothers cried, 'Let us away,
'We'll perish, or the Monster slay.'


'Vain hope, my gen'rous Sons, his power
'Can troops of men and horse devour:
'Your offer, Beauty, moves my soul;
'But no man can his fate controul:
'Mine was the fault; you, Love, are free;
'And mine the punishment shall be.'
Beauty was firm! the Sire caress'd
Again his Darling to his breast;
With blended love and awe survey'd,
And each good Brother blest the Maid!


Three months elaps'd, her Father's heart
Heav'd high, as she prepar'd to part;
The Sisters try'd a tear to force,
While Beauty smil'd as she took horse;
Yet smil'd thro' many a generous tear,
To find the parting moment near!
And just as evening's shades came on,
The splendid Palace court they won.
Beauty, now lost in wonder all,
Gain'd with her Sire the spacious hall;
Where, of the costliest viands made,
Behold, a sumptuous table laid!
The Merchant, sickening at the sight,
Sat down with looks of dire affright,
But nothing touch'd; tho' Beauty prest,
And strove to lull his fears to rest.


Just as she spoke, a hideous noise
Announc'd the growling monster's voice.
And now Beast suddenly stalk'd forth,
While Beauty well nigh sank to earth:
Scarce could she conquer her alarms,
Tho' folded in a father's arms.
Grim Beast first question'd fierce, if she
Had hither journey'd willingly?
'Yes,' Beauty cried-in trembling tone:
'That's kind,' said Beast, and thus went on-
'Good Merchant, at to-morrow's dawn,
'I charge and warn you to be gone!
'And further, on life's penalty,
'Dare not again to visit me.
'Beauty, farewell!' he now withdrew,
As she return'd the dread adieu.


Each then their separate pillow prest,
And slumber clos'd their eyes in rest.


As zephyr light, from magic sleep,
Soon as the sun began to peep,
Sprang Beauty; and now took her way
To where her anguish'd father lay,-
But envious time stole swiftly on;
'Begone! lov'd Father! ah! begone!
'The early dew now gems the thorn,
'The sun-beams gain upon the morn.
'Haste, Father, haste! Heaven guards the good!'
In wonder rapt the Merchant stood;
And while dread fears his thoughts employ,
A child so generous still was joy.
'My Father's safe!' she cried, 'blest Heaven!
'The rest is light, this bounty given.'


She now survey'd th' enchanting scene,
Sweet gardens of eternal green;
Mirrors, and chandeliers of glass,
And diamonds bright which those surpass;
All these her admiration gain'd;
But how was her attention chain'd,
When she in golden letters trac'd,
High o'er an arch of emeralds plac'd,
'Beauty's apartment! Enter, blest!
'This, but an earnest of the rest!'


The fair one was rejoic'd to find,
Beast studied less her eye, than mind.
But, wishing still a nearer view,
Forth from the shelves a book she drew,
In whose first page, in lines of gold,
She might heart-easing words behold:
'Welcome Beauty, banish fear!
'You are Queen, and Mistress here:
'Speak your wishes, speak your will,
'Swift obedience meets them still.'


'Alas!' said she, with heartfelt sighs,
The daughter rushing to her eyes,
'There's nothing I so much desire,
'As to behold my tender Sire.'


Beauty had scarce her wish express'd,
When it was granted by the Beast:
A wond'rous mirror to her eye,
Brought all her cottage family.
Here her good Brothers at their toil,
For still they dress'd the grateful soil;
And there with pity she perceiv'd,
How much for her the Merchant griev'd;
How much her Sisters felt delight
To know her banish'd from their sight,
Altho' with voice and looks of guile,
Their bosoms full of joy the while,
They labour'd hard to force a tear,
And imitate a grief sincere.


At noon's repast, she heard a sound
Breathing unseen sweet music round;
But when the evening board was spread,
The voice of Beast recall'd her dread:
'May I observe you sup?' he said;
'Ah, tremble not; your will is law;
'One question answer'd, I withdraw.-
'Am I not hideous to your eyes?'
'Your temper's sweet,' she mild replies.
'Yes, but I'm ugly, have no sense:'-
'That's better far, than vain pretence.'-
'Try to be happy, and at ease,'
Sigh'd Beast, 'as I will try to please.'-
'Your outward form is scarcely seen
'Since I arriv'd, so kind you've been.'


One quarter of the rolling year,
No other living creature near,
Beauty with Beast had past serene,
Save some sad hours that stole between.
That she her Father's life had sav'd,
Upon her heart of hearts was grav'd:
While yet she view'd the Beast with dread,
This was the balm that conscience shed.
But now a second solace grew,
Whose cause e'en conscience scarcely knew.
Here on a Monster's mercy cast,-
Yet, when her first dire fears were past,
She found that Monster, timid, mild,
Led like the lion by the child.
Custom and kindness banish'd fear;
Beauty oft wish'd that Beast were near.


Nine was the chosen hour that Beast
Constant attended Beauty's feast,
Yet ne'er presum'd to touch the food,
Sat humble, or submissive stood,
Or, audience crav'd, respectful spoke,
Nor aim'd at wit, or ribald joke,
But oftner bent the raptur'd ear
Or ravish'd eye, to see or hear.
And if th' appointed hour pass'd by,
'Twas marked by Beauty with a sigh.
'Swear not to leave me,' sigh'd the Beast:
'I swear'-for now her fears were ceas'd,
'And willing swear,-so now and then
'I might my Father see again-
'One little week-he's now alone.'
'Granted!' quoth Beast: your will be done!'
'Your Ring upon the table lay
'At night,-you're there at peep of day:
'But oh,-remember, or I die!'
He gaz'd, and went without reply.


At early morn, she rang to rise;
The Maid beholds with glad surprise:
Summons her Father to her side,
Who, kneeling and embracing, cried,
With rapture and devotion wild,
'O bless'd be Heaven, and blest my Child!'


Beauty the Father now address'd,
And strait to see her Sisters press'd.
They both were married, and both prov'd
Neither was happy or belov'd.
And when she told them she was blest
With days of ease, and nights of rest;
To hide the malice of the soul,
Into the garden sly they stole,
And there in floods of tears they vent
Their hate, and feel its punishment.
'If,' said the eldest, 'you agree,
'We'll make that wench more curs'd than we!
'I have a plot, my sister dear:
'More than her week let's keep her here.
'No more with Monster shall she sup,
'Who, in his rage, shall eat her up.'


And now such art they both employ'd,
While Beauty wept, yet was o'erjoy'd;
And when the stated hour was come,-
'Ah! can you quit so soon your home?'
Eager they question'd-tore their hair-
And look'd the Pictures of Despair.
Beauty, tho' blushing at delay,
Promis'd another week to stay.


Meantime, altho' she err'd from love,
Her conscious heart could ill approve-
'Thy vow was giv'n, thy vow was broke!'
Thus Conscience to her bosom spoke.


Thoughts such as these assail'd her breast,
And a sad vision broke her rest!
The palace-garden was the place,
Which her imaginations trace:
There, on a lawn, as if to die,
She saw poor Beast extended lie,
Reproaching with his latest breath
Beauty's ingratitude in death.


Rous'd from her sleep, the contrite Maid
The Ring upon her toilette laid,
And Conscience gave a sound repose:
Balmy her rest; and when she rose,
The palace of poor Beast she found,
Groves, gardens, arbours, blooming round:
The morning shone in summer's pride,
Beauty for fairer evening sigh'd-
Sigh'd for the object once so fear'd,
By worth, by kindness now endear'd.
But when had past the wonted hour,
And no wish'd footstep pass'd the door;-
When yet another hour lagg'd on,-
Then to the wide canal she ran:
'For there in vision,' said the fair,
'Was stretch'd the object of my care!'
And there, alas! he now was found,
Extended on the flowery ground.
'Ah! fond and faithful Beast,' she cried,
'Hast thou for me perfidious died?
'O! could'st thou hear my fervid prayer,
''Twould ease the anguish of despair.'


Beast open'd now his long-clos'd eyes,
And saw the fair with glad surprise.
'In my last moments you are sent;
'You pity, and I die content.'
'Thou shalt not die,' rejoin'd the Maid;
'O rather live to hate, upbraid-
'But no! my grievous fault forgive!
'I feel I can't without thee live.'


Beauty had scarce pronounc'd the word,
When magic sounds of sweet accord,
The music of celestial spheres
As if from seraph harps she hears;
Amaz'd she stood,-new wonders grew;
For Beast now vanish'd from her view;
And, lo! a Prince, with every grace
Of figure, fashion, feature, face,
In whom all charms of Nature meet,
Was kneeling at fair Beauty's feet.
'But where is Beast?' still Beauty cried:
'Behold him here!' the Prince replied.
'Orasmyn, lady, is my name,
'In Persia not unknown to fame;
'Till this re-humanizing hour,
'The victim of a Fairy's pow'r;-
'Till a deliverer could be found,
'Who, while the accursed spell still bound,
'Could first endure, tho' with alarm,
'And break at last by love the charm!'


Beauty delighted gave her hand,
And bade the Prince her fate command;
The Prince now led through rooms of state,
Where Beauty's family await,
In bridal vestments all array'd,
By some superior power convey'd.


'Beauty,' pronounc'd a heavenly voice,
'Now take from me your princely choice.
'Virtue, to every good beside
'While wit and beauty were denied,
'Fix'd your pure heart! for which, unseen,
'I led your steps; and now a Queen,
'Seated on Persia's glittering throne,
''Tis mine and Virtue's task to crown!


'But as for you, ye Sisters vain,
'Still first and last in envy's train,
'Before fair Beauty's Palace-gate,
'Such Justice has decreed your fate,
'Transform'd to statues you must dwell,
'Curs'd with the single power, to feel-
'Unless by penitence and prayer-
'But this will ask long years of care,
'Of promise and performance too,
'A change of mind from false to true-
'A change I scarce can hope from you.'


Instant the Power stretch'd forth her wand,
Her sceptre of supreme command,
When lo! at her resistless call,
Gay crowds came thronging through the hall,
The blissful hour to celebrate
When Persia's Prince resum'd his state:
At once the dome with music rang,
And virgins danc'd, and minstrels sang;
It was the Jubilee of Youth,
Led on by Virtue and by Truth;
The pride of Persia fill'd the scene,
To hail Orasmyn and his Queen!


THE END

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