Imatges de pÓgina

There were all the worst play-wrights from Dibdin to

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All grinning, as who should "Shan't we be merry?"


With men of light comedy lumb'ring like bears up,
And men of deep tragedy patting their hairs up.
The God, for an instant, sat fix'd as a stone,
Till recov'ring, he said in a good-natur'd tone,
"Oh, the waiters, I see ;-ah, it's all very well,
Only one of you'll do just to answer the bell."
But lord! to see all the great dramatists' faces !
They look'd at each other, and made such grimaces!
Then turning about, left the room in vexation,

And Colman, they say, fairly mutter'd "Damnation !"

The God fell a laughing to see his mistake, But stopp'd with a sigh for poor Comedy's sake; Then gave mine host orders, who bow'd to the floor, And had scarcely back'd out, and shut gently the door, When a hemming was heard, consequential and snapping, And a sour little gentleman walk'd with a rap

in :

He bow'd, look'd about him, seem'd cold, and sat down,
And said, "I'm surprised that you'll visit this town:-
To be sure, there are one or two of us who know you,
But as for the rest, they are all much below you.
So stupid, in gen'ral, the natives are grown,
They really prefer Scotch reviews to their own;
So that what with their taste, their reformers, and stuff,
They have sicken'd myself and my friends long enough."
"Yourself and your friends!" cried the God in high


"And pray, my frank visitor, who may you be?"

"Who be?" cried the other; "why really-this toneWilliam Gifford's a name, I think, pretty well known!" "Oh-now I remember," said Phoebus ;-"ah trueThe Anti-La Cruscan that writes the review :The rod, though 'twas no such vast matter, that fell On that plague of the butterflies,-did very well; *

* Mr. Gifford, in a satire called the Baviad and Mæviad, killed before their time an ephemeral race of poetasters, generated by

And there's something, which even distaste must respect,

In the self-taught example, that conquer'd neglect:

But not to insist on the recommendations

Of modesty, wit, and a small stock of patience,

My visit just now is to poets alone,

And not to small critics, however well known."
So saying he rang, to leave nothing in doubt,
And the sour little gentleman bless'd himself out.

But glad look'd the God at the next who appear'd, For 'twas Campbell, by Poland's pale blessing endear'd; And Montgom'ry was with him, a freeman as true, (Heav'n loves the ideal, which practises too);

the affected fancy of Mr. Merry, a gentleman who signed himself Della Crusca, from the academy of that name, of which he was a member. Mr. Gifford, whose perceptions were all of the commonplace order, had a good common-place judgment, which served him well enough to expose errors discernible by most people. He only betrayed his own ignorance and presumption, when he came to speak of such a poet as Mr. Keats.

And him follow'd Rogers, whose laurel tree shows
Thicker leaves, and more sunny, the older it grows;
Rejoicing he came in the god-send of weather;
Then Scott (for the famous ones all came together);
His host overwhelm'd him with thanks for his novels;
Then Crabbe, asking questions concerning Greek

And Byron, with eager indifference; and Moore

With admiring glad eyes, that came leaping before;

And Keats, with young tresses and thoughts, like the

god's ;

And Shelley, a sprite from his farthest abodes;

Phoebus gave him commissions from Marlowe and

Plato ;

And Landor, whom two Latin poets sent bay to,
(Catullus, they tell me, and Ovid); and with him

Came Southey, who rightly thinks court-odes beneath


And Coleridge, fine dreamer, with lutes in his rhyme;

And Wordsworth, the Prince of the Bards of his Time.

"And now,” said the God,—but he scarcely had spoken, When bang went the door--you'd have thought it was


And in rush'd a mob with a scuffle and squeeze,

Exclaiming, "What! Wordsworth, and fellows like


Nay then, we may all take our seats as we please!"
I can't, if I would, tell you who they all were;
But a whole shoal of fops and of pedants were there,
All the "heart and impart" men, and such as suppose
They write like the Virgils, and Popes, and Boileaus !
The God smiled at first with a turn tow'rds the fire,
And whisper'd "There, tell 'em they'd better retire;"
But lord! this was only to set all their quills up;
The rogues did but bustle; and pulling their frills up,
Stood fixing their faces, and stirr❜d not an inch;

Nay, some took their snuff out, and join'd in a pinch.

Then wrath seiz'd Apollo; and turning again, "Ye rabble," he cried, "common-minded and vain,

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