The Rendezvous

Miss Vardill

Said Momus to Apollo — “Brother,
How seldom now we meet each other!
To routs and galas I repair
But you, it seems, are never there.
It grieves me much to haste away;
Adieu! I’m quite engaged to-day — 
’Tis ELLEN’s birthday — half-past-eight!
Have you no ticket for the Fête?”

“No ticket, Momus! — how you jest!
I rule myself her Attic Chest:
To-night I go unmask’d — I wor
A hundred antic coats before.
Once with ANACREON’s festive lyre
I join’d our ELLEN’s jocund choir;
So well I tun’d its golden string,
His darling pigeon spread her wing
And hover’d round to hear my sing.
I lurk’d in Laura’s spangled cloak,
In graceful Celia’s form I spoke,
But in so silver-sweet a tone
All guess’d and whisper’d ’twas my own.

With schemes and epics came to jeer us,
I gave the busy knave his cue
Tho’ some, perhaps, believ’d ’twas you.
I penn’d the woes of Michael Mitre,
I toil’d as Tabby-Letter-writer;
They call’d me, in my cap and bib,
Dame Nettletop and Sister Squib:
In ev’ry shape I found employ here,
Cook, chymist, garreteer, and lawyer.
To-night I throw my mask away
And only go to own my sway:
Then, MOMUS! never now complain
How oft you seek for me in vain;
’Tis true, I fly from routs and balls
But always come when ELLEN calls;
And on her Birthday, ev’ry Muse
May know APOLLO’s rendez-vous!”