The Poetry Corner

In Imitation Of Dr. Swift : The Happy Life Of A Country Parson

By Alexander Pope

Parson, these things in thy possessing Are better than the Bishop's blessing. A Wife that makes conserves; a Steed That carries double when there's need: October store, and best Virginia, Tithe-Pig, and mortuary Guinea: Gazettes sent gratis down, and frank'd, For which thy Patron's weekly thank'd; A large Concordance, bound long since: Sermons to Charles the First, when Prince; A Chronicle of ancient standing; A Chrysostom to smooth thy band in. The Polygot three parts, my text, Howbeit, likewise now to my next. Lo here the Septuagint, and Paul, To sum the whole, the close of all. He that has these, may pass his life, Drink with the 'Squire, and kiss his wife; On Sundays preach, and eat his fill; And fast on Fridays if he will; Toast Church and Queen, explain the News, Talk with Church-Wardens about Pews, Pray heartily for some new Gift, And shake his head at Doctor St.