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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 1.djvu/436

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394
HINTS FROM HORACE.

As Vulcan's feet to bear Apollo's frame;
Or, with a fair complexion, to expose
Black eyes, black ringlets, but—a bottle nose!


Dear Authors! suit your topics to your strength,
And ponder well your subject, and its length;60
Nor lift your load, before you're quite aware
What weight your shoulders will, or will not, bear.
But lucid Order, and Wit's siren voice,[1]
Await the Poet, skilful in his choice;
With native Eloquence he soars along,
Grace in his thoughts, and Music in his song.


Let Judgment teach him wisely to combine
With future parts the now omitted line:
This shall the Author choose, or that reject,
Precise in style, and cautious to select;70
Nor slight applause will candid pens afford

To him who furnishes a wanting word.[2]
  1. Him who hath sense to make a skilful choice
    Nor lucid Order, nor the Siren Voice
    Of Eloquence shall shun, and Wit and Grace

    (Or I'm deceived) shall aid him in the Race:
    These too will teach him to defer or Join
    To future parts the now omitted line:
    This shall the Author like or that reject,
    Sparing in words and cautious to select:
    Nor slight applause will candid pens afford
    To him who well compounds a wanting word,
    And if, by chance, 'tis needful to produce
    Some term long laid and obsolete in use.

    [MSS. M., L. (a and b). The last line partly erased.]

  2. The dextrous Coiner of a wanting word.—[Proof b, British Museum.]