(Entering as if to announce the Play.)
Ladies and Gentlemen, on Monday night,
For the ninth time--oh accents of delight
To the poor author's ear, when three times three
With a full bumper crowns, his Comedy!
When, long by money, and the muse, forsaken,
He finds at length his jokes and boxes taken,
And sees his play-bill circulate--alas,
The only bill on which his name will pass!
Thus, Vapid, thus shall Thespian scrolls of fame
Thro' box and gallery waft your well-known name,
While critic eyes the happy cast shall con,
And learned ladies spell your Dram. Person.
'Tis said our worthy Managerintends
To help my night, and he, ye know, has friends.
Friends, did I say? for fixing friends, or parts,
Engaging actors, or engaging hearts,
There's nothing like him! wits, at his request.
Are turned to fools, and dull dogs learn to jest;
Soldiers, for him, good "trembling cowards" make,
And beaus, turned clowns, look ugly for his sake;
For him even lawyers talk without a fee,
For him (oh friendship) I act tragedy!
In short, like Orpheus, his persuasive tricks
Make boars amusing, and put life in sticks.
With such a manager we can't but please,
Tho' London sent us all her loud O. P.'s,
Let them come on, like snakes, all hiss and rattle,
Armed with a thousand fans, we'd give them battle;
You, on our side, R. P.upon our banners,
Soon should we teach the saucy O. P.'s manners:
And show that, here--howe'er John Bull may doubt--
In all our plays, the Riot-Act's cut out;
And, while we skim the cream of many a jest,
Your well-timed thunder never sours its zest.
Oh gently thus, when three short weeks are past,
At Shakespeare's altar, shall we breathe our last;
And, ere this long-loved dome to ruin nods,
Die all, die nobly, die like demigods!