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But soft ! no more of this wild stuff!
Once for a frolick is enough; -
So help us Rhyme, at future need,
As we in soberer style proceed.
All subjects of nice disquisition,
Admit two modes of definition :
For every thing two sides has got,
What is it?--and what is it not?
Both methods, for exactness sake,
We with our Bramble mean to take:
And by your leave, will first discuss
It's negative good parts,—as thus. -
A Bramble will not, like a Rose,
To prick your fingers, tempt your nose ,
Whene'er it wounds, the fault's your own,
Let that, and that lets you, alone.
You shut your Myrtles for a time up;
Your Jasmine wants a wall to clime up;
But Bramble, in its humbler station,
Nor weather heeds, nor situation; -
No season is too wet, or dry for't,
No ditch too low, no hedge too high for't.
Some praise, and that with reason too,
The Honey-suckle’s scent and hue ;
But sudden storms, or sure, decay,
Sweep, with it's bloom, it's charms away :
The sturdy Bramble's coarser flower
Maintains it's post, come blast, come shower;
And when time crops it, time subdues
No charms;--for it has none to lose.
Spite of your skill, and care and cost,
Your nobler shrubs are often lost;
But Brambles, where they once get footing,
From age to age continue shooting;
Ask no attention, nor forecasting ;
Not ever-green; but ever-lasting..
Some shrubs intestine hatred cherish,
And plac'd too near each other, perish;
Bramble indulges no such whim;
All neighbours are alike to him;
No stump so scrubby, but he'll grace it;
No crab so sour but he'll embrace it.
Such, and so various negative merits,
The Bramble from it's birth inherits i am
Take we its positive virtues next!
For so at first we split our text.
The more Resentment tugs and kicks,
The closer still the Bramble sticks ;
Yet gently handled, quits its hold;
Like heroes of true British mould:
Nothing so touchy, when they're teased,
No touchiness so soon appeased.
Full in your view, and next your hand,
The Bramble's homely berries stand:
Eat as you list,- none calls you glutton ;
Forbear, -it matters not a button.
And is not, pray, this very quality
The essence of true Hospitality ?
When frank simplicity and sense
Make no parade, take no offence ;
Such as it is, set forth their best,
And let the welcome-add the rest.
The Bramble's shoot, though Fortune lay
Point-blank obstructions in it's way,
For no obstructions will give out;
Climbs up, creeps under, winds about;
Like valour, that can suffer, die,
Do any thing,—but yield, or fly.
While Brambles hints like these can start, .
Am I to blame to take their part >
No, let who will affect to scorn 'em,
My Muse shall glory to adorn ’em;
For as Rhyme did, in my Preamble,
So Reason now cries, Bravo! Bramble !'
A Dissenting Minister, whose Sermons to young women,
should be marked in the Index Expurgatorius of Mora. lity. He published a volume of Poems, in 1786.
Hail! Courtesy, thou gracious power,
Of Heaven-born Chastity the child;
Remote from all that's rude and sour,
Akin to all that's soft and mild !
Earth-bred Politeness is thy feeble ape ;
Without thy soul she only wears the shape.