The Transformation of Tiresias

'Twas now, while these Transactions past on Earth,
And Bacchus thus procur'd a second Birth,
When Jove , dispos'd to lay aside the Weight
Of Publick Empire; and the Cares of State;
As to his Queen in Nectar Bowls he quaff'd,
" In troth, says he, and as he spoke he laugh'd,
" The Sense of Pleasure in the Male is far
" More dull and dead, than what you Females share
Juno the Truth of what was said deny'd;
Tiresias therefore must the Cause decide,
For he the Pleasure of each Sex had try'd.
It happen'd once, within a shady Wood,
Two twisted Snakes he in Conjunction view'd;
When with his Staff their slimy Folds he broke,
And lost his Manhood at the fatal Stroke
But, after sev'n revolving Years, he view'd
The self-same Serpents in the self-same Wood;
" And if, says he, such Virtue in you lye,
" That he who dares your slimy Folds untie
" Must change his Kind, a second Stroke I'll try.
Again he struck the Snakes, and stood again
New-Sex'd, and strait recover'd into Man
Him therefore both the Deities create
The Sov'raign Umpire, in their grand Debate;
And he declar'd for Jove : When Juno fir'd,
More than so trivial an Affair requir'd,
Depriv'd him, in her Fury, of his Sight,
And left him groping round in sudden Night.
But Jove (for so it is in Heav'n decree'd,
That no one God repeal Another's Deed).
Irradiates all his Soul with inward Light,
And with the Prophet's Art relieves the want of Sight.
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