[Page 86]


1 In sullen Humour one Day Jove
2 Sent Hermes down to Ida's Grove,
3 Commanding Cupid to deliver
4 His Store of Darts, his total Quiver;
5 That Hermes shou'd the Weapons break,
6 Or throw 'em into Lethe's Lake.
7 Hermes, You know, must do his Errand:
8 He found his Man, produc'd his Warrant:
9 Cupid, your Darts this very Hour
10 There's no contending against Power.
11 How sullen Jupiter, just now
12 I think I said: and You'll allow,
13 That Cupid was as bad as He:
14 Hear but the Youngster's Repartée.
15 Come Kinsman (said the little God)
16 Put off your Wings; lay by your Rod;
17 Retire with Me to yonder Bower;
18 And rest your self for half an Hour:
19 'Tis far indeed from hence to Heav'n:
20 And You fly fast: and 'tis but Seven.
21 We'll take one cooling Cup of Nectar;
22 And drink to this Celestial Hector
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23 He break my Darts, or hurt my Pow'r!
24 He, Leda's Swan, and Danae's Show'r!
25 Go, bid him his Wife's Tongue restrain;
26 And mind his Thunder, and his Rain.
27 My Darts? O certainly I'll give 'em:
28 From Cloe's Eyes He shall receive 'em.
29 There's One, the Best in all my Quiver,
30 Twang! thro' his very Heart and Liver.
31 He then shall Pine, and Sigh, and Rave:
32 Good Lord! what Bustle shall We have!
33 Neptune must straight be sent to Sea;
34 And Flora summon'd twice a-day:
35 One must find Shells, and t'other Flow'rs,
36 For cooling Grotts, and fragrant Bow'rs,
37 That Cloe may be serv'd in State:
38 The Hours must at Her Toilet wait:
39 Whilst all the reasoning Fools below,
40 Wonder their Watches go too slow.
41 Lybs must fly South, and Eurus East,
42 For Jewels for Her Hair and Breast:
43 No Matter tho' their cruel Haste
44 Sink Cities, and lay Forrests waste.
45 No Matter tho' This Fleet be lost;
46 Or That lie wind-bound on the Coast.
47 What whis'pring in my Mother's Ear!
48 What Care, that Juno shou'd not hear!
49 What Work among You Scholar Gods!
50 Phoebus must write Him am'rous Odes:
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51 And Thou, poor Cousin, must compose
52 His Letters in submissive Prose:
53 Whilst haughty Cloe, to sustain
54 The Honour of My mystic Reign,
55 Shall all his Gifts and Vows disdain;
56 And laugh at your Old Bully's Pain.
57 Dear Couz, said Hermes in a Fright,
58 For Heav'n sake keep Your Darts: Good Night.


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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): MERCURY and CUPID.
Author: Matthew Prior
Genres: narrative verse

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Source edition

Prior, Matthew, 1664-1721. Poems on Several Occasions [English poems only]. London: Printed for JACOB TONSON at Shakespear's-Head over against Katharine-Street in the Strand, and JOHN BARBER upon Lambeth-Hill. MDCCXVIII., 1718, pp. 86-88. [42],506,[6]p.: ill.; 2°. (ESTC T075639) (Page images digitized from a copy in the Bodleian Library [H 6.8 Art.].)

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Typography, spelling, capitalization, and punctuation have been cautiously modernized. The source of the text is given and all significant editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. This ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 4.0.0.

Other works by Matthew Prior