by William Somervile
TO DR. — —
When saints were cheap in good Nol's reign,
As sinners now in Drury-Lane,
Wrapp'd up in mysteries profound,
A saint perceiv'd his head turn round:
Whether the sweet and savoury wind,
That should have been discharg'd behind,
For want of vent had upward fled,
And seiz'd the fortress of his head,
Ye sage Philosophers! debate;
I solve no problems intricate.
That he was mad to me is clear,
Else why should he, whose nicer ear
Could never bear church music here,
Dream that he heard the bliss'd above.
Chanting in hymns of joy and love?
Organs themselves, which were of yore
The music of the scarlet whore,
Are now with transport heard. In fine,
Ravish'd with harmony divine,
All earthly blessings he defies,
The guest and favourite of the skies.
At last his too officious friends
The doctor call, and he attends;
The patient cur'd demands his fee:
" Curse on thy f — ing pills and thee,"
Replied the saint: " ah! to my cost
I'm cur'd; but where's the Heav'n I lost?
Go, vile deceiver, get thee hence,
Who'd barter Paradise for sense?
Ev'n so bemus'd, (that is, possess'd)
With raptures fir'd, and more than bless'd,
In pompous epic, towering odes,
I strut with heroes, feast with Gods;
Enjoy by turns the tuneful quire,
For me they touch each golden lyre.
Happy delusion! kind deceit;
Till you, my friend, reveal the cheat:
Your eye severe traces each fault,
Each swelling word, each tinsel thought.
Cur'd of my frenzy, I despise
Such trifles, stripp'd of their disguise,
Convinc'd, and miserably wise.
Last updated October 28, 2017