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British War Poetry in the Age of Romanticism 1793-1815, by Betty T. Bennet, Edited by Orianne Smith

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1795.6
January, 1795
"Portia"
[Mary Robinson]
The Morning Post (January 29, 1795)

I.

Pavement slip'ry; People sneezing;
Lords in ermine, beggars freezing;
Nobles, scarce the Wretched heeding;
Gallant Soldiers—fighting!—bleeding!

II.

Lofty Mansions, warm and spacious;
Courtiers, cringing and voracious:
Titled Gluttons, dainties carving;
Genius, in a garret, starving!

III.

Wives, who laugh at passive Spouses;
Theatres, and Meeting houses;
Balls, where simpring Misses languish;
Hospitals, and groans of anguish.

IV.

Arts and Sciences bewailing;
Commerce drooping, Credit failing!
Placemen, mocking subjects loyal;
Separations; Weddings Royal!

V.

Authors, who can't earn a dinner;
Many a subtle rogue, a winner!
Fugitives, for shelter seeking,
Misers hoarding, Tradesmen breaking!

VI.

Ladies gambling, night and morning;
Fools, the works of Genius scorning!
Ancient Dames for Girls mistaken,
Youthful Damsels—quite forsaken!

VII.

Some in luxury delighting;
More in talking than in fighting;
Lovers old, and Beaux decrepid;
Lordlings, empty and insipid.

VIII.

Poets, Painters, and Musicians;
Lawyers, Doctors, Politicians;
Pamphlets, Newspapers, and Odes,
Seeking Fame, by diff'rent roads.

IX.

Taste and Talents quite deserted;
All the laws of Truth perverted;
Arrogance o'er Merit soaring!
Merit, silently deploring!

X.

Gallant Souls with empty purses;
Gen'rals, only fit for Nurses!
Schoolboys, smit with Martial spirit,
Taking place of vet'ran merit!

XI.

Honest men, who can't get place;
Knaves, who shew unblushing faces;
Ruin hasten'd, Peace retarded!
Candour spurn'd, and Art rewarded!


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Published @ RC

September 2004