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The Jovial Priest’s Confession
by [?]

[Translated from The Latin of Walter De Mapes, Time of Henry II]

I devise to end my days–in a tavern drinking,
May some Christian hold for me–the glass when I am shrinking.
That the cherubim may cry–when they see me sinking,
God be merciful to a soul–of this gentleman’s way of thinking.
A glass of wine amazingly–enlighteneth one’s intervals;
‘Tis wings bedewed with nectar–that fly up to supernals;
Bottles cracked in taverns–have much the sweeter kernels,
Than the sups allowed to us–in the college journals.

Every one by nature hath–a mold which he was cast in;
I happen to be one of those–who never could write fasting;
By a single little boy–I should be surpass’d in
Writing so: I’d just as lief–be buried; tomb’d and grass’d in.

Every one by nature hath–a gift too, a dotation:
I, when I make verses–do get the inspiration
Of the very best of wine–that comes into the nation:
It maketh sermons to astound–for edification.

Just as liquor floeth good–floweth forth my lay so;
But I must moreover eat–or I could not say so;
Naught it availeth inwardly–should I write all day so;
But with God’s grace after meat–I beat Ovidius Naso.

Neither is there given to me–prophetic animation,
Unless when I have eat and drank–yea, ev’n to saturation,
Then in my upper story–hath Bacchus domination
And Phoebus rushes into me, and beggareth all relation.