1738 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Thomas Tickell

John Ward, "An Epistle to Mr. Tickell, desiring him to present the Petition" Gentleman's Magazine 8 (March 1738) 158.



Without an excuse these few verses I send,
Most happy if I can myself recommend.
Your frequent kind service to all, all confess;
Sure Tickell's good-nature to me won't be less.
Now, if you'd oblige me, present to his Grace
Th' enclosed petition, a state of my case;
Wherein you will see, I have very bad skill in
Requesting a favour, tho' scarce worth a shilling.
Yet if you'd correct but a distich or two,
Perhaps, with good luck, my contrivance might do.
And so I'd at last bring the matter to bear,
For my good Lord-lieutenant has a musical ear;
Deriv'd from his father, who, but you well know it,
Was accounted by all wits an excellent poet.
But to come to my point, for this I let pass,
The best time to give it, would be over a glass,
The next time you hap in the castle to dine;
For Horace remarks on the power of wine,
The mind's then more open, the heart is more free,
Humour then will be liked, or it never will be.
Petitions I've read to Lord-lieutenants many,
And sure my lord Devonshire's as good as any.
First, Smedley to Grafton describ'd his hard lot,
Why, Smedley at once a much better place got;
And well you remember some eight years ago,
Fair Carteret reliev'd — but the story you know.
Now if you'd repeat the same pretty design,
And as you gave hers in, wou'd introduce mine,
Your proper address wou'd get the thing done,
And better than mine and my Ode join'd in one.
Cher ami sans, facon, I shou'd thenceforth be muter,
Yet still your most thankful and well-wishing suitor.