Henry Livingston, Jr.
Henry Livingston's Poetry

Rebus on the christian name
of a gentm.

That hero whose great & magnanimous mind
Explored and gave a new world to mankind.
A shell fish by gentle & simple desired
And the word you most hated from her you admired.
The end of my plowing & aim of your speaking;
And the creatures that Saul & his servants
      were seeking.
What pope could not bear tho it's seen ev'ry day
When you my good friend & myself's on the way:
The initials of these will present you a swain
As clever as any that trips o'er the plain;

lady and man

Of aspect engaging, of manners refined,
And of Laws mighty carcase a member designed.
His friends have asserted (if fame with his trumpet
Don't lie like a harden'd old impudent strumpet)
That Ovid's gay volume & Horace's wit,
His fancy hath ever more forcibly hit,
I have Blackstone sententious and Solheld verbose.
Or Coke upon Littleton's afternoon dose.

And I must declare from my own observation
He shines at a teatable's mixt conversation.
To gay little things, he can little things utter
Whether Hyson's the subject or biscuit & butter.


Talk of gowns from the tight
      closely puckered chammeze
To the light airy frisk & the loose poloneze.
In the mystery of Tuckers all yield to his learning
And each one allows in a hoop he's discerning:
In short from the shoe & the soft shammy glove
To the ostrich's feather that trembles above
He's deeply conversant -- He too has the art
To engage the affection & bind the soft heart;
To whisper the language of passion & truth
In the ear of sweet innocence, beauty & youth.

On my word pretty females his faults are but few
And such as will yield to be cured by you.
His virtues are many -- then hasten around him
And home to the heart with your
      lovely eyes wound him;
Transfix and transfix him, nor give up the day
Till you bear off the prize to the altar away.

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