1820 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

John Hamilton Reynolds

W. W., "Peter Bell v. Peter Bell" Morning Chronicle (31 July 1820).



Two Pieces! Two Ballads! Two Bells!
Ah, which is the serious Poem?
The Tales which Simplicity tells,
Are the tales for my heart — when I know 'em.

But the Lyrics in these match so well,
And so like is the innocent metre;
That I'm bother'd to death with each BELL,
And lost between PETER and PETER.

Will no one in tenderness lend
A hand for the positive story;
Or some wretch in the shape of a friend,
May waddle away with the glory!

But my mind must some notion be gleaning,
So I'll venture the verses to class;
The burlesque, by its having a meaning,
The real, by its having an ass!

I pity Simplicity's Poet!
I pity its Tradesmen in town!
'Tis a dead loss, and few so well know it,
As Longman, Hurst, Ress, Orme and Brown!