Will quickly dispel the black clouds that hang o’er ye,
And make you so bright, that you’ll sing tory rory,
And make a new ballad worth ten of John Dory:
(Though I work your cure, yet he’ll get the glory.)
I’m now in the back school-house, high up one story,
Quite weary with teaching, and ready to mori.
My candle’s just out too, no longer I’ll pore ye,
But away to Clem Barry’s,—there’s an end of my story.
[Footnote 1: Dr. Richard Helsham.]
[Footnote 2: See “The Country Life,” i, 140.]
A REPLY, BY SHERIDAN, TO DELANY
I like your collyrium,
Take my eyes, sir, and clear ye ’um,
’Twill gain you a great reputation;
By this you may rise,
Like the doctor so wise,
Who open’d the eyes of the nation.
And these, I must tell ye,
Are bigger than its belly;—
You know, there’s in Livy a story
Of the hands and the feet
Denying of meat,—
Don’t I write in the dark like a Tory?
Your water so far goes,
’Twould serve for an Argus,
Were all his whole hundred sore;
So many we read
He had in his head,
Or Ovid’s a son of a whore.
For your recipe, sir,
May my lids never stir,
If ever I think once to fee you;
For I’d have you to know,
When abroad I can go,
That it’s honour enough, if I see you.
[Footnote 1: Probably Dr. Davenant.]
ANOTHER REPLY, BY SHERIDAN
My pedagogue dear, I read with surprise
Your long sorry rhymes, which you made on my eyes;
As the Dean of St. Patrick’s says, earth, seas, and skies!
I cannot lie down, but immediately rise,
To answer your stuff and the Doctor’s likewise.
Like a horse with a gall, I’m pester’d with flies,
But his head and his tail new succour supplies,
To beat off the vermin from back, rump, and thighs.
The wing of a goose before me now lies,
Which is both shield and sword for such weak enemies.
Whoever opposes me, certainly dies,
Though he were as valiant as Conde or Guise.
The women disturb me a-crying of pies,
With a voice twice as loud as a horse when he neighs.
By this, Sir, you find, should we rhyme for a prize,
That I’d gain cloth of gold, when you’d scarce merit frize.
TO THOMAS SHERIDAN
Dear Tom, I’m surprised that your verse did
But your rhyme was not double, ’cause your sight was but single.
For, as Helsham observes, there’s nothing can chime,
Or fit more exact than one eye and one rhyme.
If you had not took physic, I’d pay off your bacon,
But now I’ll write short, for fear you’re short-taken.
Besides, Dick forbid me, and call’d me a fool;
For he says, short as ’tis, it will give you a stool.