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January 1795

by
 Pavement slipp'ry, people sneezing,
Lords in ermine, beggars freezing ;
Titled gluttons dainties carving,
Genius in a garret starving.
Lofty mansions, warm and spacious ; Courtiers clinging and voracious ; Misers scarce the wretched heeding ; Gallant soldiers fighting, bleeding.
Wives who laugh at passive spouses ; Theatres, and meeting-houses ; Balls, where simp'ring misses languish ; Hospitals, and groans of anguish.
Arts and sciences bewailing ; Commerce drooping, credit failing ; Placemen mocking subjects loyal ; Separations, weddings royal.
Authors who can't earn a dinner ; Many a subtle rogue a winner ; Fugitives for shelter seeking ; Misers hoarding, tradesmen breaking.
Taste and talents quite deserted ; All the laws of truth perverted ; Arrogance o'er merit soaring ; Merit silently deploring.
Ladies gambling night and morning ; Fools the works of genius scorning ; Ancient dames for girls mistaken, Youthful damsels quite forsaken.
Some in luxury delighting ; More in talking than in fighting ; Lovers old, and beaux decrepid ; Lordlings empty and insipid.
Poets, painters, and musicians ; Lawyers, doctors, politicians : Pamphlets, newspapers, and odes, Seeking fame by diff'rent roads.
Gallant souls with empty purses ; Gen'rals only fit for nurses ; School-boys, smit with martial spirit, Taking place of vet'ran merit.
Honest men who can't get places, Knaves who shew unblushing faces ; Ruin hasten'd, peace retarded ; Candour spurn'd, and art rewarded.

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