Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, UPON THE AUTHOR, by PATRICK DELANY



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UPON THE AUTHOR, by            
First Line: Had I ten thousand mouths and tongues
Last Line: And help to set the world on fire.
Subject(s): Sheridan, Thomas (1687-1738)


Had I ten thousand mouths and tongues,
Had I ten thousand pair of lungs,
Ten thousand skulls with brains to think,
Ten thousand standishes of ink,
Ten thousand hands and pens to write,
Thy praise I'd study day and night.

Oh, may thy work forever live!
(Dear Tom, a friendly zeal forgive.)
May no vile miscreant, saucy cook,
Presume to tear thy learned book
To singe his fowl for nicer guest,
Or pin it on the turkey's breast.
keep it from pastry baked, or flying
From broiling steak or fritters frying,
From lighting pipe, or making snuff,
Or casing up a feather muff.
From all the sev'ral ways the grocer
(Who to the learned world's a foe, sir)
Has found in twisting, folding, packing,
His brains and ours at once a-racking.
And may it never curl the head
Of either living block or dead.
Thus when all dangers they have passed,
Your leaves, like leaves of brass, shall last.
No blast shall from a critic's breath
By vile infection cause their death,
'Till they in flames at last expire,
And help to set the world on fire.





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