1 FOR once, ye critics, let the sportive Muse
2 Her fool's cap wear, spite of the shaking head
3 Of stern-eyed Gravity — for, tho' the Muse
4 To frolic be dispos'd, no song she chants[Page 166]
5 Immoral; nor one picture will she hold,
6 But Virtue may approve it with a smile.
7 Ye sylvan deities! awhile adieu!
8 Ye curling streams! whose banks are fring'd with flowers,
9 Violet and hare-bell, or the king-cup bright,
10 Farewell! for I must leave your rich perfumes
11 To sing the Pin in ever sounding lays:
12 But not that Pin, at whose circumference
13 Rotund, the strong-nerv'd rustic hurls the bowl
14 Ponderous and vast: nor that which window bars
15 From thief nocturnal: nor that other call'd
16 A skittle; chiefly found where alehouse snug
17 Invites mechanic to the flowing cup
18 Of Calvert's mild, o'er-canopied with froth.
19 No — 'tis the Pin so much by ladies us'd;
20 Without whose aid the nymph of nicest taste,
21 Of neatest mould, a slattern would appear.
22 Hail then, thou little useful instrument!
23 Tho' small, yet consequential. For by thee
24 Beauty sets off her charms, as at the glass
25 Lucy, or Phillis, best adapts thy point.
26 Without thy service would the ribband flaunt
27 Loose to the fanning gale, nor on the head
28 Of belle would stand her whimsical attire.
29 The kerchief from her neck of snow would fall
30 With freedom bold, and leave her bosom bare.
31 How would the sempstress trim thy want regret
32 As she her apron forms! And how the man
33 Of law, sagacious, with his spectacles
34 On nose reverted! frequent does he want[Page 167]
35 Thy prompt assistance, to connect his scraps
36 And notes obliterated o'er. Thee oft
37 In alley, path, wide square, and open street,
38 The miser picks, as conscious of thy use;
39 With frugal hand, accompanied with brow
40 Of corrugated bent, he sticks thee safe,
41 Interior on his coat; then creeps along,
42 Well judging thy proportion to a groat.
43 Thro' all thy different storehouses to trace
44 Thy presence, either in the sculptur'd dome,
45 Or tenement clay-built, would ask a pen
46 With points almost as various as thy heads.
47 Where-e'er thou art, or in whatever form,
48 Magnificent in silver, or in brass,
49 Or wire more humble, nightly may'st thou lie
50 Safe on thy cushion'd bed, or kiss the locks
51 Of Chloe, sleeping on the pillow's down.