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The Eel Pie
by [?]

THEIR noisy mirth the master thither drew,
Who much desired the frolick to pursue;
My friend, said he, I greatly feel surprise,
That you so soon are weary grown of pies;
Have I not heard you frequently declare,
Eel-pie ‘s of all, the most delicious fare?
Quite fickle, certainly, must be your taste;
Can any thing in me so strange be traced?
When I exchange a food which you admire;
You blame and say, I never ought to tire;
You do the very same; in truth, my friend,
No mark of folly ’tis, you may depend,
In lord or squire, or citizen or clown,
To change the bread that’s white for bit of brown:
With more experience, you’ll with me agree,–
My motto ever is–VARIETY.

WHEN thus the master had himself expressed,
The valet presently was less distressed;
Some arguments, howe’er, at first he used;
For, after all–are fully we excused,
When we our pleasure solely have in view;
Without regarding what’s to others due?
I relish change; well, take it; but ’tis best,
To gain the belles with love of gold possessed;
And that appears to me the proper plan;
In truth, our lover very soon began
To practise this advice;–his voice and way
Could angel-sweetness instantly convey.

HIS words were always gilt; (impressive tongue!)
To gilded words will sure success belong.
In soft amours they’re ev’ry thing ’tis plain
The maxim ‘s certain, and our aim will gain;
My meaning doubtless easily is seen;
A hundred times repeated this has been
Th’ impression should be made so very deep,
That I thereon can never silence keep;
And this the constant burden of my song–
To gilded words will sure success belong.

THEY easily persuade the beauteous dame;
Her dog, her maid, duenna, all the same;
The husband sometimes too, and him we’ve shown
‘Twas necessary here to gain alone;
By golden eloquence his soul was lulled;
Although from ancient orators not culled:
Their books retained have nothing of the kind;
Our jealous spouse indulgent grew we find.
He followed e’en, ’tis said, the other’s plan–
And, thence his dishes to exchange began.

THE master and his fav’rite’s freaks around;
Continually the table-talk were found;
He always thought the newest face the best:
Where’er he could, each beauty he caressed;
The wife, the widow, daughter, servant-maid,
The nymph of field or town:–with all he played;
And, while he breathed, the same would always be;
His motto ever was–VARIETY.