"Love, the Soft Seal, by which alone we find / Something of Angel stamp't on Human-kind; / While we, like Wax, to the Impression bow, / And find our Souls are One, we know not how."

— Gould, Robert (b. 1660?, d. in or before 1709)

Place of Publication
Printed for W. Lewis
"Love, the Soft Seal, by which alone we find / Something of Angel stamp't on Human-kind; / While we, like Wax, to the Impression bow, / And find our Souls are One, we know not how."
Metaphor in Context
Shame of our Sex! What Rage inflames thy Breast?
Or for Inspir'd, have you mistook Possest?
In Maiden Verse, there shou'd no Words be seen
But what reveals the Innocence within.
Of things Ridiculous, I dare maintain
Nothing's so senseless, frivolous and vain,
As thinking all our Fau'ts in Publick shown
When not a Line, but what unveils your own.
A thousand Times be Harlots call'd Obscene,
It no Reproach can to the Vert'ous mean:
Nor does Adult'rous Wife reflect on me,
While I walk Hand in Hand with Modesty;
But she that does resent it, that Ill Wife is She.
The Tender Place will quickly tell 'tis bare;
For if we shrink, the Satyr Lances there:
And this may be laid down a Standard Rule,
Relate to whom it will; Punk, Pimp, or Fool.
What Credit can to thy Defence accrue,
But that his Satyr sat too close on You,
And like Strait Stays made You unlace for Air?
As Pounds imply what brought the Cattle there:
Sated with Lawfull Grass they leap't the Bound:
O never let us quit that Fertile Ground
Where Vert'ous Herbage Springs, and Honour rais'd the Mound.
His Hate of Falshood, not his Love of spite,
Ground his Inveterate Spleen, and bid him Write:
A Perjur'd Nymph depriv'd him of his Rest;
When Her, and all like Her he banish'd from his Breast.
Who dare Accuse Him for so just a Deed,
To save the Corn by Rooting out the Weed?
That Worth's his Care is plainly understood,
For pulling down the Ill must raise the Good.
Yet if You were Resolv'd to write to show
Your Parts, (which don't distinguish Friend from Foe,)
Why was it Rhime? (But Rage all Sense devours)
That scandal to their Sex, and worse to Ours.
'Tis not as formerly, when 'twas the Use
For Verse t'Instruct, as now 'tis to Traduce;
As from your own Example can you plead excuse?
Remember how the Chast Orinda Wrote,
With all the Grace and Modesty of Thought?
Rapt we all stood, nor knew which to prefer,
Whether to read her Verse, or gaze on Her:
Thro' all her works apparently does shine
A Spark that shews her Nature was Divine;
While only Spite and Fury Actuate thine.
Our Female Poesie is chang'd since then;
For Songs Obscene fit not a Woman's Pen:
Nor Satyr is our Province; let 'em throw
Their Darts, while we are Chast we ward the Blow.
O! let us not be Snakes beneath the Flower.
Nor Ill because we know it in our Power;
But keep in thought the last, the scrutinizing Hour:
For after Death a strict Account Succeeds;
Our Idle Thoughts are Punisht with our Evil Deeds.
Then thou dost talk of Love at such a Rate
As drawn by Thee, 'tis what we ought to Hate,
A freakish, Hair-Brain'd, Bess of Bedlam State.
Love, the Soft Seal, by which alone we find
Something of Angel stamp't on Human-kind;
While we, like Wax, to the Impression bow,
And find our Souls are One, we know not how

And, like Translated Saints, Ascending flee,
Rapt up to a Third Heav'n of Extasie.
This is the Fate that Constancy does prove;
And such is always the Reward of Purity in Love.
But in thy Numbers 'tis a Lapland Witch
Sailing thro' Air, astride, upon a Switch,
Mumbling of Wicked, but successless Spells,
And tho' You fail to hurt, it still your Envy tells.
In short, both thine and Ariadne's Rage
Only a General Ruin can Asswage:
Both Good and Bad, at once, must blended go,
And the whole Race be ended at a Blow;
And all your Reason,--You wou'd have it so.
What worst of Furies, (cou'd they have their Will)
Wou'd talk so boldly, and Design so Ill?
Forbear thy Scribling Itch, and Write no more;
When You began 'twas time to give it o'er:
What has this Age produc'd from Female Pens
But an Obsceneness that out-strides the Men's?
Succeeding Times will see the Diff'rence plain,
And wonder at a Style so loose and vain;
And what shou'd make the Women rise so high
In Love of Vice, and scorn of Modesty.
For why are You concern'd a common Whore
Shou'd be turn'd off; and Providence once more
Her Senseless Cully, to his Wits restore?
Of Cashier'd Punks so feelingly You speak,
You have been serv'd, sure, some such Slipp'ry Trick;
And so by Sad Experience (as You sing)
Know but too much of it;--a Barb'rous Thing!
Your Language all along is Loose and Vile,
We see your want of Manners in your Stile.
Your Words Outrag'ous, but their Meaning weak,
And writ with the same Caution Bullies speak.
Coherence their is none; thy Genius warms
No more than now thy Face, at Fifty, Charms.
To all a Nusance, to Your self a Plague;
And but a step between Thee and a Toothless Hag--
But I forbear Thee; and may He forbear
You write against, and not be too severe:
If such Scurrility you long pursue,
No Creature e'er will be so Maul'd as you:
Your Fau'ts and Follies He'll to all make plain;
And in his bold, Satyrick, angry Vein,
Set a worse Mark on Thee than GOD on Cain.
But may He spare Thee--Here she wou'd give o'er:
And I will spare Thee;--for a Whore's a Whore.
Searching "wax" and "soul" in HDIS (Poetry); found again "impression"
Only 1 entry in ESTC (1709).

The Works of Mr. Robert Gould: In Two Volumes. Consisting of those Poems and Satyrs Which were formerly Printed, and Corrected since by the Author; As also of the many more which He Design'd for the Press. Publish'd from his Own Original Copies (London: W. Lewis, 1709). <Link to ECCO>
Date of Entry

The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.