The Monkey and the Dolphin

I N Greece a custom once prevail'd,
That Men used Monkeys, when they sail'd,
From watch to watch they made 'em skip,
Or ply the oars, or pump the ship.
Near Athens , by a fatal shock,
A vessel bulg'd upon a rock;
The Dolphins rose, for Dolphins then ,
As Pliny writes, were fond of men,
And gave them backs to sit or lie on,
As if their name had been Arion .
The Monkey, tickled by the whim,
Thought it would serve as well for him;
He chatter'd like the human race,
And was thought like 'em in the face.
A Dolphin, by his air deceiv'd,
The Rider on his back receiv'd,
Conniving at the tailor's posture,
And with no secret of th' imposture,
Firm though ungraceful was the seat,
And Pug enjoy'd the dexterous cheat.
" You bear, " said he, " a man of fashion,
And place at interest your compassion;
In Athens I can fairly boast
That I am now the general toast:
I wish you 'd only come and see us. "
— " Of course you honour the Piraeus , "
The Fish remark'd, — " with your attention? " —
" The very man (said Pug ) you mention
Has been my favourite from his youth; —
When young he had a liquorish tooth,
And was a little too gallant —
A terror of the vestal aunt;
But now, that his wild oats are sown,
The rake is quite a pattern grown: —
In points of law he 's joined with me,
And parties bow to the decree:
Perhaps in calm and settled weather
You 'll hear us play duets together, —
My harp has not a common tone,
And the sonatas are my own. "
In short, the Monkey took the Port
For some proud Noble of the Court;
The Dolphin star'd with both his eyes,
And pique accompanied surprize:
He look'd and saw (Derision's feast)
Upon his back the hideous beast;
Then spilt him into Ocean's den,
Swam to the wreck, and plied for Men .
Alas! how many are the cheats
Whom Pug with his detection greets!
Who mount the Alps — dissect the Po —
Have nothing seen, but all things know;
With Dogberry of comic fame,
Committing murders of a name ,
But never doubt, or seem to fail;
And are the Monkeys of the tale .
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