1728 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Alexander Pope

Anonymous, "A Copy of Verses, said to be omitted, by Accident, in the Last New Miscellany" The Daily Journal (16 April 1728).



At a Court, that was call'd, t' other Day, in the Air,
By the good Guardian Angel, who holds us in Care,
The Genius of Mischief, in sullen Disdain,
Made his Honours, and frown'd, and took Leave to complain.

Is it thus, said the Daemon, You, heav'nly Blades,
Keep your Word, with us, Envoys, L—H—P'S of the Shades?
Vow'd you not, in Revenge for the Sins of this Land,
To allow us free Licence, and hold back your Hand?
Yet, unmindful of Us, or the Promise we claim,
See us frighted to Farys, at one little Name!
See the Graces, and Muses, and Virtues, combin'd,
To unite Beauty, Wisdom, and Force, in one Mind;
Nay, in Hate of our Leader, resolv'd, not to cease,
Till you raise us a Foe, that can charm Hell to Peace,
You, to make him more dreadful, and widen his Scope,
Give him musical Magick, and christen him Pope.
All alarm'd, at his Verse, we have Right to complain,
Lest England shou'd, soon, be Old England, again.
There's Attraction, you know, in a Poet, like This,
That can tempt the whole World into Virtue, like His.

Never fear, cry'd the Angel, — my Promise once given,
You are safe, for this Time, from the Outguards of Heaven;
Pope is gelt, in his Youth, for his Countrymen's Crimes,
And his Lustre dim'd down, to the Dusk of the Times:
God sent Pain, and Impertinence, Wit to controul,
Gave the Devil his Body, and bid Swift take his Soul.