Then, say, was I or nature in the wrong

Then, say, was I or nature in the wrong,
If, yet a boy, one inclination, strong
In wayward fancies, domineered my soul,
And bade complete defiance to control?
What, though my youthful instincts, forced to brood
Within my bosom seemed a while subdued?
What, though by early education taught,
The charms of women first my homage caught?
What though my verse in Mary's praises flowed
And flowers poetic round her footsteps strewed,
Yet, when her ears would list not to my strain,
And every sigh was answered with disdain,
Pride turned, not stopped, the course of my desires,
Extinguished these and lighted other fires.
And as the pimple which cosmetic art
Repels from one, invades another part,
My bubbling passions found another vent,
The object changed, but not the sentiment.
And, e'er my years could ask the reason why,
Sex caused no qualms where beauty led the eye.
Such were my motions ere my teens began,
And such their progress till I grew a man.
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