Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE APOLOGY OF THE BISHOPS IN ANSWER TO BONNER'S GHOST, by ANNA LETITIA BARBAULD



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THE APOLOGY OF THE BISHOPS IN ANSWER TO BONNER'S GHOST, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Right revd. Brother and so forth
Last Line: We'll find her soon a bonner.
Alternate Author Name(s): Aikin, Anna Letitia
Subject(s): Anglican Church; Clergy; Priests; Rabbis; Ministers; Bishops


Right Revd. Brother and so forth
The Bishops send you greeting,
They honour much the zeal and worth
In you so highly meeting.

But your abuse of us, good Sir
Is very little founded!
We blush that you should make a stir
With notions so ill grounded.

'Tis not to us should be addrest
Your ghostly exhortation,
If heresy still lifts her crest
The fault is in the nation.

The State, in spite of all our pains,
Has left us in the lurch,
The spirit of the times restrains
The spirit of the Church.

To this day down from famed Sacheverel
Our zeal has never cooled,
We mean to Truth and Freedom ever ill,
But we are over ruled.

Still damning Creeds framed long ago,
Help us to vent our spite;
And penal laws our teeth to shew
Although we cannot bite.

Our spleen against reforming cries
Is now as ever shewn;
Though we can't blind the nation's eyes
We still can shut our own.

Well warned from what abroad befalls,
We keep all tight at home;
Nor brush one cobweb from St. Paul's,
Lest it should shake the dome.

Once in an age a Louth may chance
To wield the pastoral staff,
And Fortune for a whim advance
A Hoadly or Landaff.

Yet do not thou by fears misled
To rash conclusions jump,
So little leaven scarce appears,
And leaveneth not the lump.

What though the arm of flesh be dead
And lost the power it gives,
The spirit quickeneth, it is said,
And sure the spirit lives.

Would it but please the civil weal
To lift again the Crosier,
We soon would make those yokes of steel
Which now are bands of osier.

The Birmingham Apostle then,
And Essex Street Apostate,
Debarred from paper and from pen
Should both lament their lost state.

Church maxims do not greatly vary,
Take it upon my honour,
Place on the throne another Mary,
We'll find her soon a Bonner.





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