Condemned at length to be forgotten quite,
With all the pages which 'twas thine to write.
But thou, at least, mine own especial pen!
Once laid aside, but now assumed again,20
Our task complete, like Hamet's shall be free;
Though spurned by others, yet beloved by me:
Then let us soar to-day; no common theme,
No Eastern vision, no distempered dream
Inspires—our path, though full of thorns, is plain;
Smooth be the verse, and easy be the strain.
Afraid of Shame, unknown to other fears,
When Vice triumphant holds her sov'reign sway,
Obey'd by all who nought beside obey;
When Folly, frequent harbinger of crime,
Bedecks her cap with bells of every Clime;30
When knaves and fools combined o'er all prevail,
And weigh their Justice in a Golden Scale;
E'en then the boldest start from public sneers,
But thou, at least, mine own especial quill
Dipt in the dew drops from Parnassus' hill
Shalt ever honoured and regarded be,
By more beside no doubt, yet still by me.—[MS. M.]
- Cid Hamet Benengeli promises repose to his pen, in the last chapter of Don Quixote. Oh! that our voluminous gentry would follow the example of Cid Hamet Benengeli!
- "This must have been written in the spirit of prophecy."—B., 1816
- And men through life her willing slaves obey. [MS. Second, Third, and Fourth Editions.]
- Unfolds her motley store to suit the time.—[MS. Second, Third, and Fourth Editions.]
- When Justice halts and Right begins to fail.—[MS. Second, Third, and Fourth Editions.]