MS Wellesley, 142-3*.
A wealthy and a generous Lord
Who kept an hospitable board
Invited me one day to feast.
With every rarity my taste
The cook so well his sauces raised
He never could enough be praised.
The Venison as we did remark
Took sweetness from his lordship's park
The fish in his own ponds were caught
And better than all others thought
To woodcocks taken in his glade.
Some proper compliments were made
And not a bird that cut the air
But met with due applauses there.
The wine thought 'twas not of his growth,
Was praised and his good palate both
At last came in the nice dessert
Extolled for nature and for art.
That done we by example rise
And looking for a while precise
Low bowes on every side were made
With handsome courtsies to them paid
But I this while still kept my place
And watch'd to hear who wou'd say Grace
Till finding though so well we'd Din'd
None were to thankfulnesse inclind'd
His ample Soul we prais'd who thus
With all good things had treated us
I, as I thought unheeded gave
My Praise for what I did receive
But on my Toe my neighbour trod
And Said your breeding Sir is odd
You all things here may praise but God
1988 Ellis d'Alessandro reprints Wellesley, 173; McGovern & Hinnant 137.,
1930 Hampsten prints Wellesley text, 18-9.
Very effective late satire on society's blind pomposity. Finch returns to the technique of the character she used in "Sir Plausible". Her disillusion is restrained and turned into polished terse art; the perspective fits with that of other satire in MS Wellesley and MS Harleian, e.g. "The Misanthrope:" "Life at best . .. ", and "On me then Sir as on a friend"
This is the penultimate poem in the MS Wellesley so I have placed it very late.
Page Last Updated 8 January 2003