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Ne’er did I taste Castalia's stream; Nor yet on fork'd Parnassus dream, That I should feel a poet's fire, Or blow the lute, or string the lyre. I leave the Muse's magic ground To bards profess'd, with laurel crown'd. The gift I offer to the Nine, A rustic wreath, to grace their shrine. What taught the parrot to cry, hail ? What taught the chattering pie his tale ? Hunger; that sharpener of the wits, Which gives e'en fools some thinking fits. Did rooks and pies but know the pleasure Of heaping high a golden treasure ; And would their music money bring, Even rooks and pies would shortly sing.
O curas hominum! ô quantum est in rebus inane!
PERSIUS AND MONITOR.
UNHAPPY men lead lives of care and pain,