While one philosopher affirms That by our senses we’re deceived, Another swears, in plainest terms, The senses are to be believed. The twain are right. Philosophy Correctly calls us dupes whenever On mere senses we rely.
John Rabbit’s palace under ground Was once by Goody Weasel found. She, sly of heart, resolved to seize The place, and did so at her ease. She took possession while its lord Was absent on the dewy sward,
It’s often from chance opinion takes its rise, And into reputation multiplies. This prologue finds pat applications In men of all this world’s vocations; For fashion, prejudice, and party strife, Conspire to crowd poor justice out of life.
A trader on the sea to riches grew; Freight after freight the winds in favour blew; Fate steered him clear; gulf, rock, nor shoal Of all his bales exacted toll. Of other men the powers of chance and storm Their dues collected in substantial form;
Who joins not with his restless race To give Dame Fortune eager chase? O, had I but some lofty perch, From which to view the panting crowd Of care-worn dreamers, poor and proud, As on they hurry in the search,