Impromptu

I

To Lady Winchelsea,
Occasioned by four Satirical Verses on Women Wits,
In The Rape of the Lock
In vain you boast poetic names of yore,
And cite those Sapphos we admire no more:
Fate doomed the fall of every female wit;
But doomed it then, when first Ardelia writ.
Of all examples by the world confessed,
I knew Ardelia could not quote the best;
Who, like her mistress on Britannia’s throne,
Fights and subdues in quarrels not her own.
To write their praise you but in vain essay;
Even while you write, you take that praise away.
Light to the stars the sun does thus restore,
But shines himself till they are seen no more.

42
Rating:

Comment form:

*Max text - 500. Manual moderation.

Similar Poems:

The Answer by Countess of Winchilsea Anne Finch
Countess of Winchilsea Anne Finch
Highlight Actions Enable or disable annotations
Read Poem
0
41
Rating:

An Essay on Criticism: Part 1 by Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope
Si quid novisti rectius istis,
Candidus imperti; si non, his utere mecum
[If you have come to know any precept more correct than these, share it with me, brilliant one; if not, use these with me] (Horace, Epistle I.6.67)
PART 1
Read Poem
0
48
Rating:

An Essay on Criticism: Part 2 by Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope
Of all the causes which conspire to blind
Man's erring judgment, and misguide the mind,
What the weak head with strongest bias rules,
Is pride, the never-failing vice of fools.
Whatever Nature has in worth denied,
She gives in large recruits of needful pride;
For as in bodies, thus in souls, we find
What wants in blood and spirits, swell'd with wind;
Pride, where wit fails, steps in to our defence,
And fills up all the mighty void of sense!
If once right reason drives that cloud away,
Truth breaks upon us with resistless day;
Trust not yourself; but your defects to know,
Make use of ev'ry friend—and ev'ry foe.

Read Poem
0
56
Rating:

An Essay on Criticism: Part 3 by Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope
Learn then what morals critics ought to show,
For 'tis but half a judge's task, to know.
'Tis not enough, taste, judgment, learning, join;
In all you speak, let truth and candour shine:
That not alone what to your sense is due,
All may allow; but seek your friendship too.

Be silent always when you doubt your sense;
Read Poem
0
40
Rating:

Contemplations by Anne Bradstreet
Anne Bradstreet
1
Sometime now past in the Autumnal Tide,
When Phoebus wanted but one hour to bed,
The trees all richly clad, yet void of pride,
Were gilded o’re by his rich golden head.
Their leaves and fruits seem’d painted but was true
Of green, of red, of yellow, mixed hew,
Rapt were my senses at this delectable view.

2
I wist not what to wish, yet sure thought I,
If so much excellence abide below,
How excellent is he that dwells on high?
Whose power and beauty by his works we know.
Sure he is goodness, wisdom, glory, light,
Read Poem
0
82
Rating:

Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot by Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope
Neque sermonibus vulgi dederis te, nec in præmiis spem posueris rerum tuarum; suis te oportet illecebris ipsa virtus trahat ad verum decus. Quid de te alii loquantur, ipsi videant, sed loquentur tamen.
(Cicero, De Re Publica VI.23)

["... you will not any longer attend to the vulgar mob's gossip nor put your trust in human rewards for your deeds; virtue, through her own charms, should lead you to true glory. Let what others say about you be their concern; whatever it is, they will say it anyway."] Shut, shut the door, good John! fatigu'd, I said,
Tie up the knocker, say I'm sick, I'm dead.
The dog-star rages! nay 'tis past a doubt,
All Bedlam, or Parnassus, is let out:
Read Poem
0
53
Rating:

Imitations of Horace by Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope
Ne Rubeam, Pingui donatus Munere
(Horace, Epistles II.i.267)
While you, great patron of mankind, sustain
The balanc'd world, and open all the main;
Your country, chief, in arms abroad defend,
At home, with morals, arts, and laws amend;
Read Poem
0
50
Rating:

The Rape of the Lock: Canto 5 by Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope
She said: the pitying audience melt in tears,
But Fate and Jove had stopp'd the Baron's ears.
In vain Thalestris with reproach assails,
For who can move when fair Belinda fails?
Not half so fix'd the Trojan could remain,
While Anna begg'd and Dido rag'd in vain.
Then grave Clarissa graceful wav'd her fan;
Silence ensu'd, and thus the nymph began.

"Say, why are beauties prais'd and honour'd most,
The wise man's passion, and the vain man's toast?
Why deck'd with all that land and sea afford,
Why angels call'd, and angel-like ador'd?
Why round our coaches crowd the white-glov'd beaux,
Why bows the side-box from its inmost rows?
Read Poem
0
44
Rating:

Verses on the Death of Dr. Swift, D.S.P.D. by Jonathan Swift
Jonathan Swift
Dans l'adversité de nos meilleurs amis nous trouvons quelque chose, qui ne nous déplaît pas.
["In the hard times of our best friends we find something that doesn't displease us."]
As Rochefoucauld his maxims drew
From Nature, I believe 'em true:
They argue no corrupted mind
In him; the fault is in mankind.
Read Poem
0
86
Rating: