[Page 153]

EPISTLE TO HER FRIENDS AT GARTMORE.

1 MY Gartmore friends a blessing on ye,
2 And all that's good still light upon ye!
3 Will you allow this hobbling rhyme
4 To tell you how I pass my time?
5 'Tis true I write in shorten'd measure,
6 Because I scrawl but at my leisure;
7 For why? sublimity of style
8 Takes up a most prodigious while;
9 To count with fingers six or seven,
10 And mind that syllables are even,
11 To make the proper accent fall,
12 La! 'tis the very deuce of all:
13 Alternate verse, too, makes me think
14 How to get t'other line to clink;
15 And then your odes with two lines rhyming,
16 An intermitting sort of chiming,
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17 Just like the bells on birth-days ringing,
18 Or like your friend S. Blamire's singing,
19 Which only pleases those whose ears
20 Ne'er heard the music of the spheres.
21 As for this measure, these trite strains
22 Give me no sort of thought or pains;
23 If that the first line ends with head,
24 Why then the rhyme to that is bed;
25 And so on through the whole essay,
26 For careless ease makes out my say;
27 And if you'll let me tell you how
28 I pass my time, I'll tell you now.
29 First, then, I've brought me up my tea,
30 A medicine which I'd order'd me;
31 Its from the coast of Labrador,
32 Sir Hugh, the gallant Commodore
1. Admiral Sir Hugh Palliser.
33 Brought it to me for my rheumatics,
34 O girls! these aches play me sad tricks;
35 And e'en in London had you found me,
36 You'd found a yard of flannel round me.
37 At eight I rise a decent time!
38 But aunt would say 'tis oftener nine.
39 I come down stairs, the cocoa ready,
40 For you must know I'm turn'd fine lady,
41 And fancy tea gives me a pain
42 Where 'tis not decent to complain.
43 When breakfast's done, I take a walk
44 Where English girls their secrets talk;
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45 But as for you, ye're modest maids,
46 And shun the house to walk i' the shades;
47 Often my circuit's round the garden,
48 In which there's no flower worth a farthing.
49 I sit me down and work a while,
50 But here, I think, I see you smile;
51 At work! quoth you; but little's done,
52 Thou lik'st too well a bit of fun.
53 At twelve, I dress my head so smart,
54 Were there a man he'd lose his heart;
55 My hair is turn'd the loveliest brown,
56 There's no such hair in London town!
57 Nor do I use one grain of powder,
58 Either the violet or the other;
59 Nature adopts me for her child,
60 Fair is her fruit when not run wild.
61 At one, the cloth is constant laid
62 By little Fan, our pretty maid.
63 Round her such native beauty glows,
64 You'd take her cheek to be some rose
65 Just spreading forth its blossom sweet,
66 Where red and white in union meet;
67 She's prettier much than her young lady,
68 But that, you know, full easily may be.
69 "Well, Fanny, do you wish to go
70 To the dance there in the town below?"
71 "Yes; but I dare not ask my mistress."
72 "O! I'll relieve you from that distress!"
73 I ask for her, away she goes,
74 And shines a belle among the beaus.
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75 Now, my good friends, by this you see,
76 Rustics have balls as well as we;
77 And really as to different stations,
78 Or comforts in the various nations,
79 They're more upon an equal par
80 Than we imagine them by far.
81 They love and hate have just the same
82 Feeling of pleasure and of pain;
83 Only our kind of education
84 Gives ours a greater elevation.
85 I oft have listen'd to the chat
86 Of country folks 'bout who knows what!
87 And yet their wit, though unrefin'd,
88 Seems the pure product of the mind.
89 You'd laugh to see the honest wives
90 Telling me how their household thrives;
91 For, you must know, I'm fam'd for skill
92 In the nice compound of a pill.
93 "Miss Sukey, here's a little lass,
94 She's not sae weel as what she was;
95 The peer peer bairn does oft complain,
96 A'd tell ye where, but I think shame."
97 "Nay, speak, good woman, mind not me;
98 The child is not quite well I see."
99 "Nea;" she says, "her belly aches,
100 And Jwohnie got her some worm-cakes;
101 They did nea good though purg'd her well,
102 What is the matter we can't tell;
103 She sadly whets her teeth at neet,
104 And a' the day does nought but freet;
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105 It's outher worms, or wind, or water,
106 Something you know mun be the matter."
107 "My little woman, come to me;
108 Her tongue is very white I see;
109 Come, wrap her little head up warm,
110 And give her this, 'twill do no harm;
111 'Twill give a gentle stool, or so."
112 "Is it a purge?" "No, Peggy, no;
113 Only an easy gentle lotion,
114 To give her once a-day a motion;
115 For Pothecaries late have found
116 Diseases rise from being bound,
117 'Gainst which they've physic in their shop,
118 And many a drug, and useless slop;
119 This here will purify your blood,
120 And this will do your stomach good;
121 This is for vapours when splenetic,
122 And here's a cure for the sciatic;
123 But let her take what I have given,
124 'Twill help to keep your child from heaven."
125 "Lord grant it may! and if it do,
126 Long as I live I'll pray for you."
127 After I've dined, maybe I read,
128 Or write to favourites 'cross the Tweed;
129 Then work till tea, then walk again
130 If it does neither snow nor rain.
131 If e'er my spirits want a flow,
132 Up stairs I run to my bureau,
133 And get your letters read them over
134 With all the fondness of a lover;
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135 This never fails to give me pleasure,
136 For these are Friendship's hoarded treasure,
137 And never fail to make me gay;
138 How oft I bless the happy day
139 Which made us friends and keeps us so,
140 Though now almost five years ago!
141 Trust me, my dear, I would not part
142 With the share, I hope, I've in your heart,
143 For any thing that wealth could give;
144 Without a friend, O who would live!
145 My favourite motto runs "He's poor
146 Who has a world and nothing more;
147 Exchange it for a friend, 'tis gain,
148 A better thing you then obtain."
149 But stop, my journal's nearly done;
150 Through the whole day 'tis almost run.
151 I think I'd sipp'd my tea nigh up,
152 O! yes, I'm sure I drank my cup;
153 I work till supper, after that
154 I play or sing, maybe we chat;
155 At ten we always go to bed,
156 And thus my life I've calmly led
157 Since my return; as Prior says
158 In some of his satiric lays,
159 "I eat, and drink, and sleep, what then?
160 I eat, and drink, and sleep again;
161 Thus idly lolls my time away,
162 And just does nothing all the day!"

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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): EPISTLE TO HER FRIENDS AT GARTMORE.
Themes:
Genres: address; epistle

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Source edition

The Poetical Works of Miss Susanna Blamire “The muse of Cumberland.” Now for the first time collected by Henry Lonsdale, M.D. with a preface, memoir, and notes by Patrick Maxwell, ... Edinburgh: John Menzies, 61 Princes Street; R. Tyas, London; D. Robertson, Glasgow; and C. Thurnam, Carlisle. MDCCCXLII., 1842, pp. 153-158. 

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The text has been typographically modernized, but without any silent modernization of spelling, capitalization, or punctuation. The source of the text is given and all editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. Based on the electronic text originally produced by the ECCO-TCP project, this ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 3.0.

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