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The Upstart
Jonathan Swift


The rascal! that's too mild a name;
Does he forget from whence he came?
Has he forgot from whence he sprung?
A mushroom in a bed of dung;
A maggot in a cake of fat,
The offspring of a beggar's brat;
As eels delight to creep in mud,
To eels we may compare his blood;
His blood delights in mud to run,
Witness his lazy, lousy son!
Puff'd up with pride and insolence,
Without a grain of common sense.
See with what consequence he stalks!
With what pomposity he talks!
See how the gaping crowd admire
The stupid blockhead and the liar!
How long shall vice triumphant reign?
How long shall mortals bend to gain?
How long shall virtue hide her face,
And leave her votaries in disgrace?
- Let indignation fire my strains,
Another villain yet remains - 
Let purse-proud C------n next approach;
With what an air he mounts his coach!
A cart would best become the knave,
A dirty parasite and slave!
His heart in poison deeply dipt,
His tongue with oily accents tipt,
A smile still ready at command,
The pliant bow, the forehead bland ?


This poem is in the public domain.



Jonathan Swift (1667 - 1745) was an Irish author and clergyman who is best known for his novel, Gulliver's Travels; the book has never been out of print since its initial publication. Well-educated and well respected, Jonathan played an active role in British politics, often expressing his opinions in searing satirical works.


Post New Comment:
Cheesh! We never have to wonder what Swift was thinking! He WAS a master of rhyme and meter, both of which I love! Janice
Posted 03/05/2017 12:50 PM
I suspect the :"C.....n"is Crown, a reference to British control in Ireland.
Posted 03/05/2017 09:13 AM
Gilbert Allen:
Spleen never goes out of style! Jayne, thanks for sharing this eternally relevant poem.
Posted 03/05/2017 08:02 AM

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