Calcutta: a Poem.
Curse on the ship in evil hour that bore
My jolted frame to India's burning shore!
An inauspicious hour, from which I date
The bitter torments of a wretched fate:
Deluded, listening to the tales they told.
Lands rich in mines, and rivers streaming gold;
Whence twelve short years in Luxury's lap beguiled.
Would bear me homeward. Fortune's favourite child.
To pass my days in some secure retreat,
Or grace the mazes of St. James's Street;
Even then, in fancy drawn with bays or roans,
I seized the reins, and rattled o'er the stones.
Oh! fond delusion! prospects nursed in vain,
The rude creation of a thoughtless brain!
A visionary image, formed to shun
The melting gaze of India's fervid sun!
Now, sad reverse! the rich delusion flies,
House, park, and carriage vanish from my eyes!
Condemned, alas! twelve tedious years to burn
Nor dare the vast expenses of return,
When all the savings of attentive care
Would scarcely buy a cabin eight feet square;
Content in England with a single room,
And solitary nag without a groom.