Poems by Matthew Prior

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Dear Cloe, how blubber'd is that pretty Face?
Fire, Water, Woman, are Man's Ruin;
When famed Varelst this little wonder drew,
My noble, lovely, little Peggy,
Since hired for life, thy servile Muse must sing
As Cloe came into the Room t'other Day,
In awful pomp and melancholy state,
On his death-bed poor Lubin lies:
Quoth Richard in jest looking wistly at Nelly,
Dear Thomas, didst thou never pop
If wine and music have the power
In vain you tell your parting lover
No, no; for my virginity,
Matthew met Richard, when or where
But shall we take the Muse abroad,
Richard, who now was half asleep,
Dulce est desipere in loco.
When crowding folks, with strange ill faces,
The train of equipage and pomp of state,
Interr'd beneath this marble stone,
My Lord,
The merchant, to secure his treasure,
When great Augustus govern'd ancient Rome,
How long, deluded Albion, wilt thou lie
Say, dearest Villiers, poor departed friend,
At Mary's tomb (sad sacred place!)
On Exodus III. 14. "I am that I am."
While blooming youth and gay delight
While from our looks, fair nymph, you guess
Spare, generous victor, spare the slave,
Dear Howard, from the soft assaults of love
The merchant, to secure his treasure,
Yes, fairest Proof of Beauty's Pow'r,
When Bibo thought fit from the world to retreat,
Ma petite ame, ma mignonne,
Thy elder Look, Great Janus, cast
What can I say? What Arguments can prove
Que fais tu bergere dans ce beau verger
Did sweeter Sounds adorn my flowing Tongue,
No, I'll endure ten thousand deaths
Forbear to ask Me, why I weep;
Fast by the banks of Cam was Colin bred,
Heavy, O Lord, on my thy judgements lie;
In Heav'n, one Holy-day, You read
It oft to many has successful been
As after noon, one summer's day,
His lamp, his bow, and quiver laid aside,
At dead of night, when stars appear,
Soft Cupid, wanton, amorous boy,
Democritus, dear droll, revisit earth,
Tune., "King John and the Abbot of Canterbury."
Frank carves very ill, yet will palm all the meats;
Thy nags, the leanest things alive,
To John I owed great obligation,
Yes, every poet is a fool;
Nobles and Heralds, by your leave!
Nobles and Heralds, by your leave,
Tway Mice, full Blythe and Amicable,
Fair Susan did her wif-hede well menteine,
Poor Hal caught his death standing under a spout
As doctors give physic by way of prevention,
To me 'twas given to die; to thee 'tis given
Full oft doth Matt. with Topaz dine,
Dum studeo fungi fallentis munere vitae,
Hans Carvel, impotent and old,
Upon the Model of The Nut-Brown Maid. To Cloe.
As Nancy at her toilette sat,
Dear Dick, how e'er it comes into his head,
Let 'em Censure: what care I?
Of all that William rules, or robe
Releas'd from the noise of the butcher and baker
Sure Cloe Just, and Cloe Fair
Beneath a Myrtle's verdant Shade
In sullen Humour one Day Jove
Sly Merry Andrew, the last Southwark fair;
When Nell, given o'er by the doctor, was dying,
Let others from the Town retire,
Hier, l'Amour touche du son
Reader, I was born, and cried;
While cruel Nero only drains
Resolve Me, Cloe, what is This:
I have no hopes, the Duke he says, and dies.
I, My dear, was born to-day
While faster than his costive brain indites
The Trojan swain had judged the great dispute,
The sturdy man, if he in love obtains,
Beyond the fix'd and settl'd Rules
How old may Phyllis be, you ask,
Ye careful Angels, whom eternal Fate
Out from the injured canvas, Kneller, strike
The bewailing of man's miseries hath been elegantly and copiously set forth by many, in the writings as well of philosophers as divines; and it is both a pleasant and a profitable contemplation.
The Argument
The Argument
Reading ends in melancholy,
Why, Harry, what ails you? why look you so sad?
Morella, charming without art,
Since my words, though ne'er so tender,
Love! inform thy faithful creature
Once I was unconfined and free,
Farewell, Amynta, we must part;
Accept, my Love, as true a heart
Nanny blushes when I woo her,
Since we your husband daily see
Phillis, give this humour over,
Whither would my passion run?
Since by ill fate I'm forced away,
Touch the lyre, touch every string;
In vain, alas! poor Strephon tries
Well, I will never more complain,
Cloe beauty has, and wit,
Since, Moggy, I mun bid adieu,
Some kind angel, gently flying,
Haste, my Nannette,
Whilst others proclaim
Strephonetta, why d'ye fly me,
Come, weep no more, for 'tis in vain;
Let perjured fair Amynta know
Phillis, since we have both been kind,
Phillis, this pious talk give o'er,
Still, Dorinda, I adore;
Is it, O love, thy want of eyes,
As the Chameleon, who is known
It always has been a thought discreet
Alexis shun'd his Fellow Swains,
In Virgil's Sacred Verse we find,
Poor, little, pretty, fluttering thing,
Miss Danae, when Fair and Young
Thus Kitty, beautiful and young,
While we to Jove select the holy victim
Say, sire of insects, mighty Sol,
The pride of every grove I chose,
When hungry wolves had trespass'd on the fold,
When Kneller's works, of various grace,
The Sceptics think 'twas long ago
Venus, take my votive glass:
Celia and I the other Day
The merchant, to secure his treasure,
Two mice, dear boy, of genteel fashion,
Her time with equal prudence Silvia shares,
The circling months begin this day
Written three hundred years since.
That all from Adam first began,
Prometheus, forming Mr. Day,
Lysander talks extremely well;
What nymph should I admire or trust,
I sent for Ratcliffe, was so ill,
Hah! how the laurel, great Apollo's tree,
While with labour assiduous due pleasure I mix,
To the tune of King John and the Abbot of Canterbury.
Behind an unfrequented glade,
Tune, "Lady Isabella's Tragedy." or "The Stepmother's cruelty."
Will Piggot must to Coxwould go,
Lords, knights, and squires, the numerous band
When Jove lay bless'd in his Alcmæna's charms,
Spare, gen'rous victor, spare the slave,
Lie Philo untouch'd, on my peaceable shelf,
Of thy judicious Muse's sense,
From publick Noise and factious Strife,
You, Madam, may, with safety go
Dear Chloe, how blubber'd is that pretty face;
See, whilst Thou weep'st, fair Cloe, see
Whilst I am scorch'd with hot desire,
Forgive the muse who, in unhallow'd strains,
Whilst I in prison or in court look down,
In one great now, superior to an age,
The amorous youth, whose tender breast
By Sylvia if thy charming self be meant;
What charms you have, from what high race you sprung,
Howe'er, 'tis well that, while mankind
Here reading how fond Adam was betray'd,
When future ages shall with wonder view
Wiessen and nature held a long contest
Once on a time, in sunshine weather,
Sphinx was a monster that would eat
Honour, I say, or honest Fame,
I know that Fortune long has wanted sight,
Les allemans ne ce soucient pas quel vin its boivent
When Cloe's Picture was to Venus shown;
Thus to the Muses spoke the Cyprian Dame,
Madam, Since Anna visited the muse's seat,
O Death how thou spoil'st the best project of life,
Ovid is the surest guide
Dictate, O mighty judge, what thou hast seen
Whate'er thy countrymen have done
Bless'd be the princes who have fought