ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION
Rev. John Langhorne
Anonymous, "Horace, Book II. Ode 14. imitated. To the Rev. Mr. Langhorn" St. James's Chronicle (17 July 1764).
Rev. John Langhorne:
1759: A Gentleman of University College
1763: Rev. Richard Shepherd
1764: Robert Lloyd
1764: Rev. Charles Churchill
1764: Henry James Pye
1764: M. L.
1764: Mary Darwall
1765 ca.: Ralph Griffiths
1766: John Scott of Amwell
1768: Joseph Cockfield
1773: Rev. Percival Stockdale
1778: M. Macgreggor, Esq.
1779: Abraham Portal
1779: William Holland
1780: William Cockin
1783: Mr. Jackson of Dublin
1794: Robert Alves
1804: Rev. William Tooke
1807: Robert Southey
1827: Sir Walter Scott
1830: Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges
1837: William Wordsworth
1860: George Gilfillan
1882: Epes Sargent
1922: Iolo Williams
With how impetuous a Career
Runs out of Sight, the rapid Year!
Believe me, Langhorn, though we pray,
Like my good Grannum, thrice a Day,
Old Age, and Rheums, and Gouts, and Agues,
In spite of Piety will plague us.
Trust me, I mean not to disjoint
Whate'er Religion's Laws appoint;
I only tell you Time is mad,
And gallops over Good and Bad.
Tityus and Geryon, triple-fold,
The Broughton and the Slack of old,
Felt both at last a fatal Day—
And are we half as hard as they?
Assiduous Charon waits on Shore
To ferry all Men fairly o'er,
Nor will Old Square Toes bate the least
To George a King, or thee a Priest.
What, tho' you 'scape the Wind and Rain,
Nor teaze for Gold the fretful Main,
Ne'er be by Grace or Sense forsook,
To cut a Purse, or make a Book;
You soon must quit your Cure, and go
To Messrs. Sysiphus and Co.
Ah! then to please the Maids no more
You'll sing the harmless Sweets of Yore!
You'll — won't you think on many a Day
That you and I have laugh'd away?
And won't you, think you, look askew
Upon the Cypress and the Yew?
Indeed, if Grapes or Barley grow,
Or Snipe or Woodcock fly below,
The Sight of some small Relief may be—
But not a single Trout you'll see.
"I've lost, you'll cry, how clear a Flood!
O odious Cocytaean Mud!
Was it for this I wore my Eyes
In forming artificial Flies?
Was it for this, that better far
I made a Verse than J—y C—?"
When you are dead, and fair and clear
Our Sheets of youthful Song appear,
Your Son will think they serve to show
Your Brains and mine were but so, so!
He'll see how you have slily stole
From Seed and South your Sermons whole;
He'll wonder how you cou'd for Shame!
Then shake his Head — and do the same.