On Mrs. Riddell's Birthday

4th November 1793.

      Old Winter, with his frosty beard,      Thus once to Jove his prayer preferred:      "What have I done of all the year,      To bear this hated doom severe?       My cheerless suns no pleasure know;      Night's horrid car drags, dreary slow;      My dismal months no joys are crowning,      But spleeny English hanging, drowning.       "Now Jove, for once be mighty civil.      To counterbalance all this evil;      Give me, and I've no more to say,      Give me Maria's natal day!      That brilliant gift shall so enrich me,      Spring, Summer, Autumn, cannot match me."      "'Tis done!" says Jove; so ends my story,      And Winter once rejoiced in glory.