« PreviousContinue »
THE PROGRESS OF POETRY.
Has fed without restraint or trouble,
But, when the must be turn'd to graze,
lank and spare :
Such is the poet fresh in pay
poet e'er could fing a note ? Nor Pegasus could bear the load Along the high celestial road;
The steed, oppress’d, would break his girila,
But view him in another scene,
guts and belly full of wind;
THE SOUTH SEA PROJECT. 1721.
What magick makes our moncy rise,
Or do these jugglers cheat our eyes?
- 'Tis here again :
Thus in a bason drop a shilling,
Then fill the veílel to the brim ; You shall observe, as you are filling,
The ponderous metal seems to swim : It rises both in bulk and height,
Behold it swelling like a sop; The liquid medium cheats your fight ; Behold it mounted to the
top ! In stock three hundred thousand pounds;
I have in view a lord's estate ; My manors all contiguous round;
A coach and fix, and serv'd in plate ! Thus, the deluded bankrupt raves ;
Puts all upon a desperate bet ; Then plunges in the Southern waves,
Dipt over head and ears in debt. So, by a calenture misled,
The mariner with rapture fees, On the smooth ocean's azure bed,
Enamel'd fields and verdant trees : With
eager haste he longs to rove In that fantastic scene, and thinks It must be some enchanted grove ;
And in he leaps, and down he sinks. Five hundred chariots, just bespoke,
Are funk in these devouring waves, The horses drown'd, the harness broke, And here the owners find their
Like Pharaoh, by direétors led;
They with their spoils went safe before ;
Lay shatter'd on the Red-Sea fhore.
adventurer o'er the deep An eagle's flight and state assumes,
And scorns the middle-way to keep. On paper wings he takes his flight,
With wax the father bound them fast; The wax is melted by the height,
And down the towering boy is cast. A moralist might here explain
The rashness of the Cretan youth ; Describe his fall into the main,
And from a fable form a truth. His wings are his paternal rent,
He melts the wax at every flame ; His credit funk, his money spent,
In Southern Seas he leaves his name. Inform us, you that beft can tell,
Why in yon' dangerous gulph profound, Where hundreds and where thousands fell,
Fools chiefly float, the wife are drown'd? So have I seen from Severn's brink
A flock of geef jump down together : Swim, where the bird of Jove would fink,
And, swimming, never wet a feather.
But, But, I affirm, 'tis falfe in fact,
Directors better knew their tools; We fee the nation's credit crackt,
Each knave hath made a thoufand fools. One fool
may from another win, And then get off with money stor'd ; But, if a sbarper once comes in,
He throws at all, and sweeps the board. As fishes on each other prey,
The great ones fwallowing up the small;
The whale directors cat up all.
Making by fecond-hand their offers;
With each a million in his coffers. So, when upon a moon-thine night
An afs was drinking at a stream;
By intercepting every beam :
(Cries out a fage among the croud); An ass hath swallowd up the moon !
(The moon lay safe behind the cloud), Each poor subscriber to the sea
Sinks down at once, and there he lies; Directors fall as well as they,
Their fall is but a trick to rise.