1729 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Leonard Welsted

Thomas Cooke, in "The Battle of the Poets" Tales, Epistles, Odes, Fables (1729) 130-32.



Pope, as recover'd by some magic Gift,
Once more in Arms appear'd sustain'd by Swift;
Whose Art restor'd the Hero to the Plain,
Unkind restor'd him but to fall again.
So from the Wounds of Love a Beau I've seen
Fresh flutt'ring by the Pill of * * *
But hear'd, e're many Suns, the Wretch complain
Of the cur'd Emp'ric, and returning Pain.
Welsted with Vigilance observ'd his Course,
And for the Fight collected all his Force;
Forward he sprung to meet the approaching Foe,
Eager his Antagonist to know,
Resolv'd with him to try his Fate,
With him of whom Report had spoke so great.
Pope met him near, and the Assault began,
Just to the Counsel of the sable Man;
But Welsted, to distinguish Right from Wrong,
Proceeded to the Merits of his Song,
When fled the maudlin and unmeaning Lay,
As Darkness flys before the Face of Day.
Pope sees the Danger, and incites the Croud,
Who for their Chief grow mutinous and loud.
That Hour, O! sacred Bard, had seen thy Name
Eras'd unjustly from the Book of Fame
By barb'rous Numbers, who conspir'd thy Fall,
Ill judging, noisy, and malicious, all,
Had not the God, who judg'd the Strife of Song,
Preserv'd Thee harmless form the treach'rous Throng.
With Patience wait the Day when thou shalt shine,
In thy meridian Glory, all divine.