A PANEGYRIC TO SIR LEWIS PEMBERTON by Robert Herrick
Till I shall come again, let this suffice, I send my salt, my sacrifice To thee, thy lady, younglings, and as far As to thy Genius and thy Lar; To the worn threshold, porch, hall, parlour, kitchen, The fat-fed smoking temple, which in The wholesome savour of thy mighty chines, Invites to supper him who dines: Where laden spits, warp'd with large ribs of beef, Not represent, but give relief To the lank stranger and the sour swain, Where both may feed and come again; For no black-bearded Vigil from thy door Beats with a button'd-staff the poor; But from thy warm love-hatching gates, each may Take friendly morsels, and there stay To sun his thin-clad members, if he likes; For thou no porter keep'st who strikes. No comer to thy roof his guest-rite wants; Or, staying there, is scourged with taunts Of some rough groom, who, yirk'd with corns, says, 'Sir, 'You've dipp'd too long i' th' vinegar; 'And with our broth and bread and bits, Sir friend, 'You've fared well; pray make an end; 'Two days you've larded here; a third, ye know, 'Makes guests and fish smell strong; pray go 'You to some other chimney, and there take 'Essay of other giblets; make 'Merry at another's hearth; you're here 'Welcome as thunder to our beer; 'Manners knows distance, and a man unrude 'Would soon recoil, and not intrude 'His stomach to a second meal.'--No, no, Thy house, well fed and taught, can show No such crabb'd vizard: Thou hast learnt thy train With heart and hand to entertain; And by the arms-full, with a breast unhid, As the old race of mankind did, When either's heart, and either's hand did strive To be the nearer relative; Thou dost redeem those times: and what was lost Of ancient honesty, may boast It keeps a growth in thee, and so will run A course in thy fame's pledge, thy son. Thus, like a Roman Tribune, thou thy gate Early sets ope to feast, and late; Keeping no currish waiter to affright, With blasting eye, the appetite, Which fain would waste upon thy cates, but that The trencher creature marketh what Best and more suppling piece he cuts, and by Some private pinch tells dangers nigh, A hand too desp'rate, or a knife that bites Skin-deep into the pork, or lights Upon some part of kid, as if mistook, When checked by the butler's look. No, no, thy bread, thy wine, thy jocund beer Is not reserved for Trebius here, But all who at thy table seated are, Find equal freedom, equal fare; And thou, like to that hospitable god, Jove, joy'st when guests make their abode To eat thy bullocks thighs, thy veals, thy fat Wethers, and never grudged at. The pheasant, partridge, gotwit, reeve, ruff, rail, The cock, the curlew, and the quail, These, and thy choicest viands, do extend Their tastes unto the lower end Of thy glad table; not a dish more known To thee, than unto any one: But as thy meat, so thy immortal wine Makes the smirk face of each to shine, And spring fresh rose-buds, while the salt, the wit, Flows from the wine, and graces it; While Reverence, waiting at the bashful board, Honours my lady and my lord. No scurril jest, no open scene is laid Here, for to make the face afraid; But temp'rate mirth dealt forth, and so discreet- Ly, that it makes the meat more sweet, And adds perfumes unto the wine, which thou Dost rather pour forth, than allow By cruse and measure; thus devoting wine, As the Canary isles were thine; But with that wisdom and that method, as No one that's there his guilty glass Drinks of distemper, or has cause to cry Repentance to his liberty. No, thou know'st orders, ethics, and hast read All oeconomics, know'st to lead A house-dance neatly, and canst truly show How far a figure ought to go, Forward or backward, side-ward, and what pace Can give, and what retract a grace; What gesture, courtship, comeliness agrees, With those thy primitive decrees, To give subsistence to thy house, and proof What Genii support thy roof, Goodness and greatness, not the oaken piles; For these, and marbles have their whiles To last, but not their ever; virtue's hand It is which builds 'gainst fate to stand. Such is thy house, whose firm foundations trust Is more in thee than in her dust, Or depth; these last may yield, and yearly shrink, When what is strongly built, no chink Or yawning rupture can the same devour, But fix'd it stands, by her own power And well-laid bottom, on the iron and rock, Which tries, and counter-stands the shock And ram of time, and by vexation grows The stronger. Virtue dies when foes Are wanting to her exercise, but, great And large she spreads by dust and sweat. Safe stand thy walls, and thee, and so both will, Since neither's height was raised by th'ill Of others; since no stud, no stone, no piece Was rear'd up by the poor-man's fleece; No widow's tenement was rack'd to gild Or fret thy cieling, or to build A sweating-closet, to anoint the silk- Soft skin, or bath[e] in asses' milk; No orphan's pittance, left him, served to set The pillars up of lasting jet, For which their cries might beat against thine ears, Or in the damp jet read their tears. No plank from hallow'd altar does appeal To yond' Star-chamber, or does seal A curse to thee, or thine; but all things even Make for thy peace, and pace to heaven. --Go on directly so, as just men may A thousand times more swear, than say This is that princely Pemberton, who can Teach men to keep a God in man; And when wise poets shall search out to see Good men, they find them all in thee.