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Title: The Book Of Ballads - Eleventh Edition, 1870
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Book Of Ballads - Eleventh Edition, 1870" ***

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[Illustration: 004]

THE BOOK OF BALLADS


By Various


Edited by BON GAULTIER


Illustrated by DOYLE, LEECH, CROMQUILL


Eleventh Edition


1870


[Illustration: 005]


[Illustration: 011]


[Illustration: 012]


[Illustration: 015]



THE BROKEN PITCHER


  It {003}was a Moorish maiden was sitting by a well,
  And what the maiden thought of, I cannot, cannot tell,
  When by there rode a valiant knight from the town of
           Oviedo--
  Alphonzo Guzman was he hight, the Count of Tololedo.


  "Oh, maiden, Moorish maiden, why sitt'st thou by the
           spring?
  Say, dost thou seek a lover, or any other thing?
  Why dost thou look upon me, with eyes so dark and wide,
  And wherefore doth the pitcher lie broken by thy side?"


  "I {004}do not seek a lover, thou Christian knight so gay,
  Because an article like that hath never come my way;
  And why I gaze upon you, I cannot, cannot tell,
  Except that in your iron hose you look uncommon swell.


  "My pitcher it is broken, and this the reason is,--
  A shepherd came behind me, and tried to snatch a kiss;
  I would not stand his nonsense, so ne'er a word I spoke,
  But scored him on the costard, and so the jug was broke.


  "My uncle, the Alcaydè, he waits for me at home,
  And will not take his tumbler until Zorayda come:
  I cannot bring him water--the pitcher is in pieces--
  And so I'm sure to catch it, 'cos he wallops all his nieces."


  "Oh, maiden, Moorish maiden! wilt thou be ruled by me!
  So wipe thine eyes and rosy lips, and give me kisses three;
  And I'll give thee my helmet, thou kind and courteous lady,
  To carry home the water to thy uncle, the Alcaydè."


  He lighted down from off his steed--he tied him to a
        tree--
  He bent him to the maiden, and he took his kisses three;
  "To wrong thee, sweet Zorayda, I swear would be a sin!"
  And he knelt him at the fountain, and he dipped his
        helmet in.


  Up {005}rose the Moorish maiden--behind the knight she steals,
  And caught Alphonzo Guzman in a twinkling by the heels:
  She tipped him in, and held him down beneath the bub-
  bling water,--
  "Now, take thou that for venturing to kiss Al Hamet's
         daughter!"


  A Christian maid is weeping in the town of Oviedo;
  She waits the coming of her love, the Count of Tololedo.
  I pray you all in charity, that you will never tell,
  How he met the Moorish maiden beside the lonely well.


[Illustration: 017]


[Illustration: 018]



DON FERNANDO GOMERSALEZ


        From the Spanish of Astley's.


  Don {006}Fernando Gomersalez! basely have
      they borne thee down;
  Paces ten behind thy charger is thy
      glorious body thrown;
  Fetters have they bound upon thee--iron
      fetters, fast and sure;
  Don Fernando Gomersalez, thou art cap-
      tive to the Moor!


  Long {007}within a dingy dungeon pined that brave and noble
         knight,
  For the Saracenic warriors well they knew and feared his
         might;
  Long he lay and long he languished on his dripping bed
         of stone,
  Till the cankered iron fetters ate their way into his bone.


  On the twentieth day of August--'twas the feast of false
         Mahound--
  Came the Moorish population from the neighbouring cities
         round;
  There to hold their foul carousal, there to dance and there
         to sing,
  And to pay their yearly homage to Al-Widdicomb, the
        King!


  First they wheeled their supple coursers, wheeled them at
         their utmost speed,
  Then they galloped by in squadrons, tossing far the light
         jereed;
  Then around the circus racing, faster than the swallow
         flies,
  Did they spurn the yellow sawdust in the rapt spectators'
         eyes.


[Illustration: 020]


  Proudly {008}did the Moorish monarch every passing warrior
          greet,
  As he sate enthroned above them, with the lamps beneath
         his feet;
  "Tell me, thou black-bearded Cadi! are there any in the
         land,
  That against my janissaries dare one hour in combat stand?"


  Then the bearded Cadi answered--"Be not wroth, my lord
         the King,
  If thy faithful slave shall venture to observe one little thing;
  Valiant, {009}doubtless, are thy warriors, and their beards are
          long and hairy,
  And a thunderbolt in battle is each bristly janissary:


  "But I cannot, O my sovereign, quite forget that fearful
         day,
  "When I saw the Christian army in its terrible array;
  When they charged across the footlights like a torrent
   down its bed,
  With the red cross floating o'er them, and Fernando at
        their head!


  "Don Fernando Gomersalez! matchless chieftain he in war,
  Mightier than Don Sticknejo, braver than the Cid Bivar!
  Not a cheek within Grenada, O my King, but wan and
        pale is,
  When they hear the dreaded name of Don Fernando
       Gomersalez!"


  "Thou shalt see thy champion, Cadi! hither quick the
        captive bring!"
  Thus in wrath and deadly anger spoke Al-Widdicomb, the
        King:
  "Paler than a maiden's forehead is the Christian's hue, I
         ween,
  Since a year within the dungeons of Grenada he hath
        been!"


  Then {010}they brought the Gomersalez, and they led the
         warrior in;
  Weak and wasted seemed his body, and his face was pale
        and thin;
  But the ancient fire was burning, unallayed, within his eye,
  And his step was proud and stately, and his look was stern
         and high.


  Scarcely from tumultuous cheering could the galleried
        crowd refrain,
  For they knew Don Gomersalez and his prowess in the
        plain;
  But they feared the grizzly despot and his myrmidons in
         steel,
  So their sympathy descended in the fruitage of Seville.


  "Wherefore, monarch, hast thou brought me from the
        dungeon dark and drear,
  Where these limbs of mine have wasted in confinement
        for a year?
  Dost thou lead me forth to torture?--Rack and pincers
        I defy!
  Is it that thy base grotesquos may behold a hero die?"


  "Hold thy peace, thou Christian caitiff, and attend to what
         I say!
  Thou art called the starkest rider of the Spanish cur's array:
  If {011}thy courage be undaunted, as they say it was of yore,
  Thou mayst yet achieve thy freedom,--yet regain thy
        native shore.


  "Courses three within this circus 'gainst my warriors shalt
          thou run,
  Ere yon weltering pasteboard ocean shall receive yon
        muslin sun;
  Victor--thou shalt have thy freedom; but if stretched
         upon the plain,
  To thy dark and dreary dungeon they shall hale thee back
         again."


  "Give me but the armour, monarch, I have worn in many
         a field,
  Give me but my trusty helmet, give me but my dinted
        shield;
  And my old steed, Bavieca, swiftest courser in the ring,
  And I rather should imagine that I'll do the business, King!"


  Then they carried down the armour from the garret where
         it lay,
  O! but it was red and rusty, and the plumes were shorn
         away:
  And they led out Bavieca from a foul and filthy van,
  For the conqueror had sold him to a Moorish dogs'-meat
         man.


  When {012}the steed beheld his master, then he whinnied loud
          and free,
  And, in token of subjection, knelt upon each broken knee;
  And a tear of walnut largeness to the warrior's eyelids
         rose,
  As he fondly picked a bean-straw from his coughing
        courser's nose.


  "Many a time, O Bavieca, hast thou borne me through
        the fray!
  Bear me but again as deftly through the listed ring this
         day;
  Or if thou art worn and feeble, as may well have come to
         pass,
  Time it is, my trusty charger, both of us were sent to grass!"


  Then he seized his lance, and vaulting in the saddle sate
         upright;
  Marble seemed the noble courser, iron seemed the mailèd
         knight;
  And a cry of admiration burst from every Moorish lady.
  "Five to four on Don Fernando!" cried the sable-bearded
         Cadi.


  Warriors three from Alcantara burst into the listed space,
  Warriors three, all bred in battle, of the proud Alhambra
         race:
  Trumpets {013}sounded, coursers bounded, and the foremost
         straight went down,
  Tumbling, like a sack of turnips, just before the jeering
         Clown.


  In the second chieftain galloped, and he bowed him to the
         King,
  And his saddle-girths were tightened by the Master of the
         Ring;
  Through three blazing hoops he bounded ere the desperate
         fight began--
  Don Fernando! bear thee bravely!--'tis the Moor Abdor-
         rhoman!


  Like a double streak of lightning, clashing in the sulphurous
          sky,
  Met the pair of hostile heroes, and they made the sawdust
  And the Moslem spear so stiffly smote on Don Fernando's
         mail,
  That he reeled, as if in liquor, back to Bavieca's tail:


  But he caught the mace beside him, and he griped it hard
         and fast,
  And he swung it starkly upwards as the foeman bounded
         past;
  And {014}the deadly stroke descended through, the skull and
         through the brain,
  As ye may have seen a poker cleave a cocoa-nut in twain.


  Sore astonished was the monarch, and the Moorish warriors
         all,
  Save the third bold chief, who tarried and beheld his
        brethren fall;
  And the Clown, in haste arising from the footstool where
         he sat,
  Notified the first appearance of the famous Acrobat;


  Never on a single charger rides that stout and stalwart
         Moor,--
  Five beneath his stride so stately bear him o'er the
        trembling floor;
  Five Arabians, black as midnight--on their necks the rein
         he throws,
  And the outer and the inner feel the pressure of his toes.


  Never wore that chieftain armour; in a knot himself he
        ties,
  With his grizzly head appearing in the centre of his
        thighs,
  Till the petrified spectator asks, in paralysed alarm,
  Where may be the warrior's body,--which is leg, and
        which is arm?


[Illustration: 027]


  "Sound [015]the charge!" The coursers started; with a yell
         and furious vault,
  High in air the Moorish champion cut a wondrous somer-
        sault;
  O'er the head of Don Fernando like a tennis-ball he sprung,
  Caught him tightly by the girdle, and behind the crupper
         hung.


  Then his dagger Don Fernando plucked from out its
        jewelled sheath,
  And he struck the Moor so fiercely, as he grappled him
        beneath,
  That {016}the good Damascus weapon sank within the folds
         of fat,
  And as dead as Julius Cæsar dropped the Gordian
        Acrobat.


  Meanwhile fast the sun was sinking--it had sunk beneath
         the sea,
  Ere Fernando Gomersalez smote the latter of the three;
  And Al-Widdicomb, the monarch, pointed, with a bitter
         smile,
  To the deeply-darkening canvass;--blacker grew it all the
         while.


  "Thou hast slain my warriors, Spaniard! but thou hast
         not kept thy time;
  Only two had sunk before thee ere I heard the curfew
        chime;
  Back thou goest to thy dungeon, and thou mayst be
        wondrous glad
  That thy head is on thy shoulders for thy work to-day,
         my lad!


  "Therefore all thy boasted valour, Christian dog, of no
         avail is!"
  Dark as midnight grew the brow of Don Fernando Gomer-
         salez;--
  Stiffly {017}sate he in his saddle, grimly looked around the
         ring,
  Laid his lance within the rest, and shook his gauntlet at
         the King.


  "O, thou foul and faithless traitor! wouldst thou play me
         false again?
  Welcome death and welcome torture, rather than the
        captive's chain!
  But I give thee warning, caitiff! Look thou sharply to
        thine eye--
  Unavenged, at least in harness, Gomersalez shall not
        die!"


  Thus he spoke, and Bavieca like an arrow forward flew,
  Right and left the Moorish squadron wheeled to let the
        hero through;
  Brightly gleamed the lance of vengeance--fiercely sped
        the fatal thrust--
  From his throne the Moorish monarch tumbled lifeless in
        the dust.


  Speed thee, speed thee, Bavieca! speed thee faster than
         the wind!
  Life and freedom are before thee, deadly foes give chase
         behind!


[Illustration: 030]


  Speed {018}thee up the sloping spring-board; o'er the bridge
            that spans the seas;
  Yonder gauzy moon will light thee through the grove of
          canvas trees.
  Close {019}before thee, Pampeluna spreads her painted paste-
          board gate!
  Speed thee onward, gallant courser, speed thee with thy
         knightly freight!


  Victory! The town receives them!--Gentle ladies, this
         the tale is,
  Which I learned in Astley's Circus, of Fernando Gomer-
         salez.


[Illustration: 031]


[Illustration: 032]



THE COURTSHIP OF OUR CID


  What {020}a pang of sweet emotion
  Thrilled the Master of the Ring,
  When he first beheld the lady
  Through the stabled portal spring!
  Midway in his wild grimacing
  Stopped the piebald-visaged Clown
  And the thunders of the audience
  Nearly brought the gallery down.


  Donna {021}Inez Woolfordinez!
  Saw ye ever such a maid,
  With the feathers swaling o'er her,
  And her spangled rich brocade?
  In her fairy hand a horsewhip,
  On her foot a buskin small,
  So she stepped, the stately damsel,
  Through the scarlet grooms and all.


  And she beckoned for her courser,
  And they brought a milk-white mare;
  Proud, I ween, was that Arabian
  Such a gentle freight to bear:
  And the Master moved to greet her,
  With a proud and stately walk;
  And, in reverential homage,
  Rubbed her soles with virgin chalk.


  Round she flew, as Flora flying
  Spans the circle of the year;
  And the youth of London, sighing,
  Half forgot the ginger-beer--
  Quite forgot the maids beside them;
  As they surely well might do,
  When she raised two Roman candles,
  Shooting fireballs red and blue!
  Swifter {022}than the Tartar's arrow,


  Lighter than the lark in flight,
  On the left foot now she bounded,
  Now she stood upon the right.
  Like a beautiful Bacchante,
  Here she soars, and there she kneels,
  While amid her floating tresses
  Flash two whirling Catherine wheels!
  Hark! the blare of yonder trumpet!


  See, the gates are opened wide!
  Room, there, room for Gomersalez,--
  Gomersalez in his pride!
  Rose the shouts of exultation,
  Rose the cat's triumphant call,
  As he bounded, man and courser,
  Over Master, Clown, and all!
  Donna Inez Woolfordinez!


  Why those blushes on thy cheek?
  Doth thy trembling bosom tell thee,
  He hath come thy love to seek?
  Fleet thy Arab, but behind thee
  He is rushing like a gale;
  One foot on his coal-black's shoulders,
  And the other on his tail!
  Onward, {023}onward, panting maiden!


  He is faint, and fails, for now
  By the feet he hangs suspended
  From his glistening saddle-bow.
  Down are gone both cap and feather,
  Lance and gonfalon are down!
  Trunks, and cloak, and vest of velvet,
  He has flung them to the Clown,
  Faint and failing! Up he vaulteth,
  Fresh as when he first began;
  All in coat of bright vermilion,
  'Quipped as Shaw, the Lifeguardsman;
  Eight and left his whizzing broadsword,
  Like a sturdy flail, he throws;
  Cutting out a path unto thee
  Through imaginary foes.


  Woolfordinez! speed thee onward!
  He is hard upon thy track,--
  Paralysed is Widdicombez,
  Nor his whip can longer crack;
  He has flung away his broadsword,
  'Tis to clasp thee to his breast.
  Onward!--see, he bares his bosom,
  Tears away his scarlet vest;
  Leaps {024}from out his nether garments,
  And his leathern stock unties--
  As the flower of London's dustmen,
  Now in swift pursuit he flies.


  Nimbly now he cuts and shuffles,
  O'er the buckle, heel and toe!
  Flaps his hands in his tail-pockets,
  Winks to all the throng below!


  Onward, onward rush the coursers;
  Woolfordinez, peerless girl,
  O'er the garters lightly bounding
  From her steed with airy whirl!
  Gomersalez, wild with passion,
  Danger--all but her--forgets;
  Wheresoe'er she flies, pursues her,
  Casting clouds of somersets!


  Onward, onward rush the coursers;
  Bright is Gomersalez' eye;
  Saints protect thee, Woolfordinez,
  For his triumph sure is nigh:
  Now his courser's flanks he lashes,
  O'er his shoulder flings the rein,
  And his feet aloft he tosses,
  Holding stoutly by the mane!


  Then, {025}his feet once more regaining,
  Doffs his jacket, doffs his smalls,
  And in graceful folds around him
  A bespangled tunic falls.
  Pinions from his heels are bursting,
  His bright locks have pinions o'er them;
  And the public see with rapture
  Maia's nimble son before them.


  Speed thee, speed thee, Woolfordinez!
  For a panting god pursues;
  And the chalk is very nearly
  Rubbed from thy White satin shoes;
  Every bosom throbs with terror,
  You might hear a pin to drop;
  All is hushed, save where a starting
  Cork gives out a casual pop.


  One smart lash across his courser,
  One tremendous bound and stride,
  And our noble Cid was standing
  By his Woolfordinez' side!
  With a god's embrace he clasped her,
  Raised her in his manly arms;
  And the stables' closing barriers
  Hid his valour, and her charms!


[Illustration: 041]



AMERICAN BALLADS



THE FIGHT WITH THE SNAPPING TURTLE



FYTTE FIRST


  Have {029}you heard of Philip Slingsby,
  Slingsby of the manly chest;
  How he slew the Snapping Turtle
  In the regions of the 'West?


  Every day the huge Cawana
  Lifted up its monstrous jaws;
  And it swallowed Langton Bennett,
  And digested Rufus Dawes.


  Riled, {030}I ween, was Philip Slingsby,
  Their untimely deaths to hear;
  For one author owed him money,
  And the other loved him dear.


  "Listen now, sagacious Tyler,
  Whom the loafers all obey;
  What reward will Congress give me,
  If I take this pest away?"


  Then sagacious Tyler answered,
  "You're the ring-tailed squealer! Less
  Than a hundred heavy dollars
  Won't be offered you, I guess!


  "And a lot of wooden nutmegs
  In the bargain, too, we'll throw--
  Only you just fix the critter.
  Won't you liquor ere you go?"


  Straightway leaped the valiant Slingsby
  Into armour of Seville,
  With a strong Arkansas toothpick
  Screwed in every joint of steel.


  "Come thou with me, Cullen Bryant,
  Come with me, as squire, I pray;
  Be the Homer of the battle
  Which I go to wage to-day."


  So {031}they went along careering
  With a loud and martial tramp,
  Till they neared the Snapping Turtle
  In the dreary Swindle Swamp.


  But when Slingsby saw the water,
  Somewhat pale, I ween, was he.
  "If I come not back, dear Bryant,
  Tell the tale to Melanie!


  "Tell her that I died devoted,
  Victim to a noble task!
  Han't you got a drop of brandy
  In the bottom of your flask?"


  As he spoke, an alligator
  Swam across the sullen creek;
  And the two Columbians started,
  When they heard the monster shriek;


  For a snout of huge dimensions
  Rose above the waters high,
  And took down the alligator,
  As a trout takes down a fly.


  "'Tarnal death! the Snapping Turtle!"
  Thus the squire in terror cried;
  But the noble Slingsby straightway
  Drew the toothpick from his side.


  "Fare {032}thee well!" he cried, and dashing
  Through the waters, strongly swam:
  Meanwhile, Cullen Bryant, watching,
  Breathed a prayer and sucked a dram.


  Sudden from the slimy bottom
  Was the snout again upreared,
  With a snap as loud as thunder,--
  And the Slingsby disappeared.


  Like a mighty steam-ship foundering,
  Down the monstrous vision sank;
  And the ripple, slowly rolling,
  Plashed and played upon the bank.


  Still and stiller grew the water,
  Hushed the canes within the brake;
  There was but a kind of coughing
  At the bottom of the lake.


  Bryant wept as loud and deeply
  As a father for a son--
  "He's a finished 'coon, is Slingsby,
  And the brandy's nearly done!"



FYTTE SECOND.


  In a {033}trance of sickening anguish,
  Cold and stiff, and sore and damp,
  For two days did Bryant linger
  By the dreary Swindle Swamp;


  Always peering at the water,
  Always waiting for the hour
  When those monstrous jaws should open
  As he saw them ope before..


  Still in vain;--the alligators
  Scrambled through the marshy brake,
  And the vampire leeches gaily
  Sucked the garfish in the lake.


  But the Snapping Turtle never
  Rose for food or rose for rest,
  Since he lodged the steel deposit
  In the bottom of his chest.


  Only always from the bottom
  Sounds of frequent coughing rolled,
  Just as if the huge Cawana
  Had a most confounded cold.


  On {034}the bank lay Cullen Bryant,
  As the second moon arose,
  Gouging on the sloping greensward
  Some imaginary foes;


  When the swamp began to tremble,
  And the canes to rustle fast,
  As though some stupendous body
  Through their roots were crushing past.


  And the waters boiled and bubbled,
  And, in groups of twos and threes,
  Several alligators bounded,
  Smart as squirrels, up the trees.


  Then a hideous head was lifted,
  With such huge distended jaws,
  That they might have held Goliath
  Quite as well as Rufus Dawes.


  Paws of elephantine thickness
  Dragged its body from the bay,
  And it glared at Cullen Bryant
  In a most unpleasant way.


  Then it writhed as if in torture,
  And it staggered to and fro;
  And its very shell was shaken
  In the anguish of its throe:


  And {035}its cough grew loud and louder,
  And its sob more husky thick!
  For, indeed, it was apparent
  That the beast was very sick.


[Illustration: 047]


  Till, {036}at last, a spasmy vomit
  Shook its carcass through and through,
  And as if from out a cannon,
  All in armour Slingsby flew.


  Bent and bloody was the bowie
  Which he held within his grasp;
  And he seemed so much exhausted
  That he scarce had strength to gasp--


  "Gouge him, Bryant! darn ye, gouge him!
  Gouge him while he's on the shore!"
  Bryant's thumbs were straightway buried
  Where no thumbs had pierced before.


  Right from out their bony sockets
  Did he scoop the monstrous balls;
  And, with one convulsive shudder,
  Dead the Snapping Turtle falls!


              ****


  "Post the tin, sagacious Tyler!"
  But the old experienced file,
  Leering first at Clay and Webster,
  Answered, with a quiet smile--


  "Since {037}you dragged the 'tarnal crittur
  From the bottom of the ponds,
  Here's the hundred dollars due you,
  _All in Pennsylvanian Bonds!_"


[Illustration: 049]



THE LAY OF MR COLT.


[The {038}story of Mr Colt, of which our Lay contains merely the sequel,
is this: A New York printer, of the name of Adams, had the effrontery
to call upon him one day for payment of an account, which the
independent Colt settled by cutting his creditor's head to fragments
with an axe. He then packed his body in a box, sprinkling it with salt,
and despatched it to a packet bound for New Orleans. Suspicions having
been excited, he was seized and tried before Judge Kent. The trial is,
perhaps, the most disgraceful upon the records of any country. The
ruffian's mistress was produced in court, and examined, in disgusting
detail, as to her connection with Colt, and his movements during the
days and nights succeeding the murder. The head of the murdered man was
bandied to and fro in the court, handed up to the jury, and commented on
by witnesses and counsel; and to crown the horrors of the whole
proceeding, the wretch's own counsel, a Mr Emmet, commencing the defence
with a cool admission that his client took the life of Adams, and
following it up by a de-tail of the whole circumstances of this most
brutal-murder in the first person, as though he himself had been the
murderer, ended by telling the jury, that his client was "_entitled to
the sympathy_ of a jury of his country," as "a young man just entering
into life, _whose prospects, probably, have been permanently blasted_."
Colt was found guilty; but a variety of exceptions were taken to the
charge by the judge, and after a long series of appeals, which _occupied
more than a year from the date of conviction_, the sentence of death was
ratified by Governor Seward. The rest of Colt's story is told in our
ballad.]



STREAK THE FIRST.


  And now the sacred rite was done, and the marriage-knot
        was tied,
  And Colt withdrew his blushing wife a little way aside;
  "Let's go," he said, "into my cell; let's go alone, my dear;
  I fain would shelter that sweet face from the sheriff's
  odious leer.


  The {039}jailer and the hangmen, they are waiting both for
        me,--
  I cannot bear to see them wink so knowingly at thee!
  Oh, how I loved thee, dearest! They say that I am
        wild,
  That a mother dares not trust me with the weasand of
        her child;


  They say my bowie-knife is keen to sliver into halves
  The carcass of my enemy, as butchers slay their calves.
  They say that I am stern of mood, because, like salted
         beef,
  I packed my quartered foeman up, and marked him  'prime
         tariff;'


  Because I thought to palm him on the simple-souled John
         Bull,
  And clear a small percentage on the sale at Liverpool;
  It may be so, I do not know--these things, perhaps,
        may be;
  But surely I have always been a gentleman to thee!


  Then come, my love, into my cell, short bridal space is
         ours,--
  Nay, sheriff, never look thy watch--I guess there's good
         two hours.
  We'll shut the prison doors and keep the gaping world
         at bay,
  For love is long as 'tarnity, though I must die to-day!"



STREAK THE SECOND.


  The {040}clock is ticking onward,
  It nears the hour of doom,
  And no one yet hath entered
  Into that ghastly room.


  The jailer and the sheriff,
  They are walking to and fro:
  And the hangman sits upon the steps,
  And smokes his pipe below.


  In grisly expectation
  The prison all is bound,
  And, save expectoration,
  You cannot hear a sound.


  The turnkey stands and ponders,--,
  His hand upon the bolt,--
  "In twenty minutes more, I guess,
  'Twill all be up with Colt!"


  But see, the door is opened!
  Forth comes the weeping bride;
  The courteous sheriff lifts his hat,
  And saunters to her side,--


  "I beg your pardon, Mrs C.,
  But is your husband ready?"
  "I {041}guess you'd better ask himself,"
  Replied the woeful lady.


  The clock is ticking onward,
  The minutes almost run,
  The hangman's pipe is nearly out,
  'Tis on the stroke of one.


  At every grated window,
  Unshaven faces glare;
  There's Puke, the judge of Tennessee,
  And Lynch, of Delaware;


  And Batter, with the long black beard,
  Whom Hartford's maids know well;
  And Winkinson, from Fish Kill Reach,
  The pride of New Rochelle;


  Elkanah Nutts, from Tarry Town,
  The gallant gouging boy;
  And 'coon-faced Bushwhack, from the hills
  That frown o'er modern Troy;


  Young Julep, whom our Willis loves,
  Because, 'tis said, that he
  One morning from a bookstall filched
  The tale of "Melanie;"


  And Skunk, who fought his country's fight
  Beneath the stripes and stars,--
  All thronging at the windows stood,
  And gazed between the bars.


  The {042}little hoys that stood behind
  (Young thievish imps were they!)
  Displayed considerable _nous_
  On that eventful day;


  For bits of broken looking-glass
      They held aslant on high,
  And there a mirrored gallows-tree
      Met their delighted eye. *


                       * A fact.


  The clock is ticking onward;
  Hark! Hark! it striketh one!
  Each felon draws a whistling breath,
  "Time's up with Colt! he's done


  The sheriff looks his watch again,
  Then puts it in his fob,
  And turns him to the hangman,--
  "Get ready for the job."


  The jailer knocketh loudly,
  The turnkey draws the bolt,
  And pleasantly the sheriff says,
  "We're waiting, Mister Colt!"


  No answer! no! no answer!
  All's still as death within;
  The sheriff eyes the jailer,
  The jailer strokes his chin.


  "I {043}shouldn't wonder, Nahum, if
  It were as you suppose."
  The hangman looked unhappy, and
  The turnkey blew his nose.


  They entered. On his pallet
  The noble convict lay,--
  The bridegroom on his marriage-bed,
  But not in trim array.


  His red right hand a razor held,
  Fresh sharpened from the hone,
  And his ivory neck was severed,
  And gashed into the bone.


  ****


  And when the lamp is lighted
  In the long November days,
  And lads and lasses mingle
  At the shucking of the maize;


  When pies of smoking pumpkin
  Upon the table stand,
  And bowls of black molasses
  Go round from hand to hand;


  When slap-jacks, maple-sugared,
  Are hissing in the pan,
  And cider, with a dash of gin,
  Foams in the social can;


  When {044}the goodman wets his whistle,
  And the goodwife scolds the child;
  And the girls exclaim convulsively,
  "Have done, or I'll be riled!"


  When the loafer sitting next them
  Attempts a sly caress,
  And whispers, "O! you 'possum,
  You've fixed my heart, I guess!"


  With laughter and with weeping,
  Then shall they tell the tale,
  How Colt his foeman quartered,
  And died within the jail.


  [Illustration: 056]



THE DEATH OF JABEZ DOLLAR


[Before {045}the following poem, which originally appeared in 'Fraser's
Magazine,' could have reached America, intelligence was received in
this country of an affray in Congress, very nearly the counterpart of
that which the Author has here imagined in jest. It was very clear, to
any one who observed the state of public manners in America, that such
occurrences _must_ happen, sooner or later. The Americans apparently
felt the force of the satire, as the poem was widely reprinted
throughout the States. It subsequently returned to this country,
embodied in an American work on American manners, where it
characteristically appeared as the writer's _own_ production; and it
afterwards went the round of British newspapers, as an amusing satire,
by an American, of his countrymen's foibles!]


  The Congress met, the day was wet, Van Buren took the
        chair;
  On either side, the statesman pride of far Kentuck was
        there.
  With moody frown, there sat Calhoun, and slowly in his
        cheek
  His quid he thrust, and slaked the dust, as Webster rose
         to speak.


  Upon that day, near gifted Clay, a youthful member sat,
  And like a free American upon the floor he spat;
  Then turning round to Clay, He said, and wiped his manly
         chin,
  "What kind of Locofoco's that, as wears the painter's
      skin?"


  "Young {046}man," quoth Clay, "avoid the way of Slick of
         Tennessee;
  Of gougers fierce, the eyes that pierce, the fiercest gouger
         he;
  He chews and spits, as there he sits, and whittles at the
         chairs,
  And in his hand, for deadly strife, a bowie-knife he
        bears.


  "Avoid that knife. In frequent strife its blade, so long
         and thin,
  Has found itself a resting-place his rivals' ribs within."
  But coward fear came never near young Jabez Dollar's
         heart,--
  "Were he an alligator, I would rile him pretty smart!"


  Then up he rose, and cleared his nose, and looked toward
         the chair;
  He saw the stately stripes and stars,--our country's flag
         was there!
  His heart beat high, with eldritch cry upon the floor he
         sprang,
  Then raised his wrist, and shook his fist, and spoke his
         first harangue.


  "Who {047}sold the nutmegs made of wood--the clocks that
         wouldn't figure?
  Who grinned the bark off gum-trees dark--the everlasting
         nigger?
  For twenty cents, ye Congress gents, through 'tarnity I'll
         kick
  That man, I guess, though nothing less than 'coon-faced
         Colonel Slick!"


  The {047}Colonel smiled--with frenzy wild,--his very beard
         waxed blue,--
  His shirt it could not hold him, so wrathy riled he grew;
  He foams and frets, his knife he whets upon his seat
         below--
  He sharpens it on either side, and whittles at his toe,--


  "Oh! waken snakes, and walk your chalks!" he cried,
         with ire elate;
  "Darn my old mother, but I will in wild cats whip my
        weight!
  Oh! 'tarnal death, I'll spoil your breath, young Dollar, and
         your chaffing,--
  Look to your ribs, for here is that will tickle them without
         laughing!"


  His {048}knife he raised--with, fury crazed, he sprang across
         the hall;
  He cut a caper in the air--he stood before them all:
  He never stopped to look or think if he the deed should
         do,
  But spinning sent the President, and on young Dollar
        flew.


  They met--they closed--they sank--they rose,--in vain
        young Dollar strove--
  For, like a streak of lightning greased, the infuriate Colonel
          drove
  His bowie-blade deep in his side, and to the ground they
         rolled,
  And, drenched in gore, wheeled o'er and o'er, locked in
         each other's hold.


  With fury dumb--with nail and thumb--they struggled
        and they thrust,--
  The blood ran red from Dollar's side, like rain, upon the
         dust;
  He nerved his might for one last spring, and as he sank
         and died,
  Reft of an eye, his enemy fell groaning by his side.


  Thus {049}did he fall within the hall of Congress, that brave
         youth;
  The bowie-knife has quenched his life of valour and of
        truth;
  And still among the statesmen throng at Washington they
        tell
  How nobly Dollar gouged his man--how gallantly he fell.


[Illustration: 061]


[Illustration: 062]



THE  ALABAMA  DUEL


  "Young {050}chaps, give ear, the case is clear. You, Silas
         Fixings, you
  Pay Mister Nehemiali Dodge them dollars as you're due.
  You are a bloody cheat,--you are. But spite of all your
         tricks, it
  Is not in you Judge Lynch to do. No! nohow you can
         fix it!"


  Thus {051}spake Judge Lynch, as there he sat in Alabama's
         forum,
  Around he gazed, with legs upraised upon the bench before
         him;
  And, as he gave this sentence stern to him who stood
         beneath,
  Still with his gleaming bowie-knife he slowly picked his
         teeth.


  It was high noon, the month was June, and sultry was the
         air,
  A cool gin-sling stood by his hand, his coat hung o'er his
         chair;
  All naked were his manly arms, and shaded by his hat,
  Like an old senator of Rome that simple Archon sat.


  "A bloody cheat?--Oh, legs and feet!" in wrath young
         Silas cried;
  And springing high into the air, he jerked his quid
         aside.
  "No man shall put my dander up, or with my feelings
         trifle,
  As long as Silas Fixings wears a bowie-knife and rifle."


  "If your shoes pinch," replied Judge Lynch, "you'll very,
         soon have ease;
  I'll give you satisfaction, squire, in any way you please;
  What are your weapons?--knife or gun?--at both I'm
         pretty spry!"
  "Oh! 'tarnal death, you're spry, you are?" quoth Silas;
         "so am I!"


  Hard by the town a forest stands, dark with the shades
         of time,
  And they have sought that forest dark at morning's early
         prime;
  Lynch, backed by Nehemiah Dodge, and Silas with a
        friend,
  And half the town in glee came down to see that contest's
         end.


  They led their men two miles apart, they measured out
         the ground;
  A belt of that, vast wood it was, they notched the trees
         around;
  Into the tangled brake they turned them off, and neither
         knew
  Where he should seek his wagered foe, how get him into
         view.


[Illustration: 065]


  With {053}stealthy tread, and stooping head,
        from tree to tree they passed,
  They crept beneath the crackling furze, they
        held their rifles fast:


  Hour passed on hour, the noonday sun
        smote fiercely down, but yet
  No sound to the expectant crowd proclaimed
        that they had met.


  And now the sun was going down, when,
        hark! a rifle's crack!
  Hush--hush! another strikes the air,--and
         all their breath draw back,--
  Then crashing on through bush and briar,
   the crowd from either side
  Rush in to see whose rifle sure with blood
        the moss has dyed.


  Weary {054}with watching up and down, brave Lynch con-
         ceived a plan,
  An artful dodge whereby to take at unawares his man;
  He hung his hat upon a bush, and hid himself hard by;
  Young Silas thought he had him fast, and at the hat let
         fly.
  It fell; up sprang young Silas,--he hurled his gun
        away;
  Lynch fixed him with his rifle, from the ambush where he
         lay.


  The bullet pierced his manly breast--yet, valiant to the
         last,
  Young Fixings drew his bowie-knife, and up his foxtail *
         cast.


              * The Yankee substitute for the _chapeau de soie_.


  With tottering step and glazing eye he cleared the space
         between,
  And stabbed the air as stabs in grim Macbeth the younger
         Kean:
  Brave Lynch received him with a bang that stretched him
         on the ground,
  Then sat himself serenely down till all the crowd drew
         round.


  They {055}hailed him with triumphant cheers--in him each
         loafer saw
  The bearing bold that could uphold the majesty of law;
  And, raising him aloft, they bore him homewards at his
         ease,--
  That noble judge, whose daring hand enforced his own
        decrees.


  They buried Silas Fixings in the hollow where he fell,
  And gum-trees wave above his grave--that tree he loved
         so well;
  And the 'coons sit chattering o'er him when the nights are
         long and damp;
  But he sleeps well in that lonely dell, the Dreary 'Possum
         Swamp.



THE AMERICAN'S APOSTROPHE TO BOZ


[Rapidly {056}as oblivion does its work nowadays, the burst of amiable
indignation with which enlightened America received the issue of Boz's
_Notes_ can scarcely yet be forgotten. Not content with waging a
universal rivalry in the piracy of the work, Columbia showered upon its
author the riches of its own choice vocabulary of abuse; while some of
her more fiery spirits threw out playful hints as to the propriety of
gouging the "stranger," and furnishing him with a permanent suit of tar
and feathers, in the very improbable event of his paying them a second
visit. The perusal of these animated expressions of free opinion
suggested the following lines, which those who remember Boz's book, and
the festivities with which he was all but hunted to death, will at once
understand. We hope we have done justice to the bitterness and
"immortal hate" of these thin-skinned sons of freedom. When will Americans
cease to justify the ridicule of Europe, by bearing rebuke, or even
misrepresentation, calmly as a great nation should?]


  Sneak across the wide Atlantic, worthless London's puling
         child,
  Better that its waves should bear thee, than the land thou
         hast reviled;
  Better in the stifling cabin, on the sofa thou shouldst lie,
  Sickening as the fetid nigger bears the greens and bacon by;
  Better, when the midnight horrors haunt the strained and
         creaking ship,
  Thou shouldst yell in vain for brandy with a fever-sodden
         lip;


  When amid the deepening darkness and the lamp's ex-
         piring shade,
  From {057}the bagman's berth above thee comes the bountiful
         cascade,
  Better than upon the Broadway thou shouldst be at noon-
         day seen,
  Smirking like a Tracy Tupman with a Mantalini mien,
  With a rivulet of satin falling o'er thy puny chest,
  Worse than even P. Willis for an evening party drest!


  We received thee warmly--kindly--though we knew thou
        wert a quiz,
  Partly for thyself it may be, chiefly for the sake of Phiz!
  Much we bore, and much we suffered, listening to remorse-
         less spells
  Of that Smike's unceasing drivellings, and these everlast-
         ing Nells.
  When you talked of babes and sunshine, fields, and all
        that sort of thing,
  Each Columbian inly chuckled, as he slowly sucked his
        sling;


  And though all our sleeves were bursting, from the many
         hundreds near
  Not one single scornful titter rose on thy complacent ear.
  Then to show thee to the ladies, with our usual want of sense
  We engaged the place in Park Street at a ruinous expense;
  Even our own three-volumed Cooper waived his old pre-
        scriptive right,
  And deluded Dickens figured first on that eventful night.


   Clusters {058}of uncoated Yorkers, vainly striving to be cool,
   Saw thee desperately plunging through, the perils of La
          Poule:
   And their muttered exclamation drowned the tenor of the
          tune,--
   "Don't he beat all natur hollow? Don't He foot it like a
           'coon?"
   Did we spare our brandy-cocktails, stint thee of our whisky-
           grogs?
   Half the juleps that we gave thee would have floored a
          Newman Noggs;


   And thou took'st them in so kindly, little was there then
          to blame,
   To thy parched and panting palate sweet as mother's milk
          they came.
   Did the hams of old Virginny find no favour in thine
          eyes?
   Came no soft compunction o'er thee at the thought of
          pumpkin pies?
   Could not all our chicken fixings into silence fix thy scorn?
   Did not all our cakes rebuke thee, Johnny, waffle, dander,
           corn?


  Could not all our care and coddling teach, thee how to
          draw it mild?
  Well, no matter, we deserve it. Serves us right! We
          spoilt the child!
  You, {059}forsooth, must come crusading, boring us with broad-
          est hints
  Of your own peculiar losses by American reprints.
  Such an impudent remonstrance never in our face was flung;
  Lever stands it, so does Ainsworth; _you_, I guess, may hold
          your tongue.


  Downpour throats you'd cram your projects, thick and hard
         as pickled salmon,
  That, I s'pose, you call free trading,--I pronounce it utter
          gammon.
  No, my lad, a 'cuter vision than your own might soon
        have seen
  That a true Columbian ogle carries little that is green;
  That we never will surrender useful privateering rights,
  Stoutly won at glorious Bunker's Hill, and other famous
         fights;


  That we keep our native dollars for our native scribbling
         gents,
  And on British manufacture only waste our straggling cents;
  Quite enough we pay, I reckon, when we stump of these a few
  For the voyages and travels of a freshman such as you.


  I have been at Niagara, I have stood beneath the Falls,
  I have marked the water twisting over its rampagious walls;
  But "a holy calm sensation," one, in fact, of perfect peace,
  Was as much my first idea as the thought of Christmas
        geese.
  As for {060}"old familiar faces," looking through the misty air,
  Surely you were strongly liquored when you saw your
  Chuckster there.


  One familiar face, however, you will very likely see,
  If you'll only treat the natives to a call in Tennessee,
  Of a certain individual, true Columbian every inch,
  In a high judicial station, called by 'mancipators, Lynch.
  Half an hour of conversation with his worship in a wood,
  Would, I strongly notion, do you an infernal deal of good.


  Then you'd understand more clearly than you ever did
         before,
  Why an independent patriot freely spits upon the floor,
  Why he gouges when he pleases, why he whittles at the
         chairs,
  Why for swift and deadly combat still the bowie-knife he
         bears,--
  Why he sneers at the old country with republican disdain,
  And, unheedful of the negro's cry, still tighter draws his
        chain.


  All these things the judge shall teach thee of the land
         thou hast reviled;
  Get thee o'er the wide Atlantic, worthless London's puling
         child!



MISCELLANEOUS  BALLADS


[Illustration: 075]



THE STUDENT OF JENA


  Once--'twas {063}when I lived at Jena--
  At a Wirthshous' door I sat;
  And in pensive contemplation
  Ate the sausage thick and fat'
  Ate the kraut that never sourer
  Tasted to my lips than here;
  Smoked my pipe of strong canaster,
  Sipped my fifteenth jug of beer;
  Gazed upon the glancing river,
  Gazed upon the tranquil pool,
  Whence {064}the silver-voiced Undine,
  When the nights were calm and cool,
  As the Baron Fouqué tells us,
  Rose from out her shelly grot,
  Casting glamour o'er the waters,
  Witching that enchanted spot.


  From the shadow which the coppice
  Flings across the rippling stream,
  Did I hear a sound of music--
  Was it thought or was it dream?
  There, beside a pile of linen,
  Stretched along the daisied sward,
  Stood a young and blooming maiden--
  'Twas her thrush-like song I heard.


  Evermore within the eddy
  Did she plunge the white chemise;
  And her robes were losely gathered
  Rather far above her knees;
  Then my breath at once forsook me,
  For too surely did I deem
  That I saw the fair Undine
  Standing in the glancing stream--
  And I felt the charm of knighthood;
  And from that remembered day,
  Every evening to the Wirthshaus
  Took I my enchanted way.


  Shortly {065}to relate my story,
  Many a week of summer long
  Came I there, when beer-o'ertaken,
  With my lute and with my song;
  Sang in mellow-toned soprano
  All my love and all my woe,
  Till the river-maiden answered,
  Lilting in the stream below:--
  "Fair Undine! sweet Undine!
  Dost thou love as I love thee?"
  "Love is free as running water,"
  Was the answer made to me.


  Thus, in interchange seraphic,
  Did I woo my phantom fay,
  Till the nights grew long and chilly,
  Short and shorter grew the day;
  Till at last--'twas dark and gloomy,
  Dull and starless was the sky,
  And my steps were all unsteady,
  For a little flushed was I,--
  To the well-accustomed signal
  No response the maiden gave;
  But I heard the waters washing,
  And the moaning of the wave.


  Vanished {066}was my own Undine,
  All her linen, too, was gone;
  And I walked about lamenting
  On the river bank alone.
  Idiot that I was, for never
  Had I asked the maiden's name.
  Was it Lieschen--was it Gretchen?
  Had she tin, or whence she came?
  So I took my trusty meerschaum,
  And I took my lute likewise;
  Wandered forth in minstrel fashion,
  Underneath the louring skies;
  Sang before each comely Wirthshaus,
  Sang beside each purling stream,
  That same ditty which I chanted
  When Undine was my theme,
  Singing, as I sang at Jena,
  When the shifts were hung to dry,
  "Fair Undine! young Undine!
  Dost thou love as well as I?"


  But, alas! in field or village,
  Or beside the pebbly shore,
  Did I see those glancing ankles,
  And the white robe never more;
  And {067}no answer came to greet me,
  No sweet voice to mine replied;
  But I heard the waters rippling,
  And the moaning of the tide.


[Illustration: 079]


[Illustration: 080]



THE LAY OF THE JEBITE


  There {068}is a sound that's dear to me,
  It haunts me in my sleep;
  I wake, and, if I hear it not,
  I cannot choose but weep.


  Above the roaring of the wind,
  Above the river's flow,
  Methinks I hear the mystic cry
  Of "Clo!--Old Clo!"


  The exile's song, it thrills among
  The dwellings of the free,
  Its {69}sound is strange to English ears,
  But 'tis not strange to me;


  For it hath shook the tented field
  In ages long ago,
  And hosts have quailed before the cry
  Of "Clo!--Old Clo!"


  Oh, lose it not! forsake it not!
  And let no time efface
  The memory of that solemn sound,
  The watchword of our race;


  For not by dark and eagle eye
  The Hebrew shall you know,
  So well as by the plaintive cry
  Of "Clo!--Old Clo!"


  Even now, perchance, by Jordan's banks,
  Or Sidon's sunny walls,
  Where, dial-like, to portion time,
  The palm-tree's shadow falls,


  The pilgrims, wending on their way,
  Will linger as they go,
  And listen to the distant cry
  Of "Clo!--Old Clo!"


[Illustration: 082]



BURSCH GROGGNEBURG


     [After the manner of Schiller.]


  "Bursch! {070}if foaming beer content ye,
      Come and drink your fill;
  In our cellars there is plenty;
      Himmel! how you swill!
  That the liquor hath allurance,
      Well I understand;
  But 'tis really past endurance,
      When you squeeze my hand!"


  And he heard her as if dreaming,
      Heard her half in awe;
  And {071}the meerschaum's smoke came streaming
      From his open jaw:
  And his pulse heat somewhat quicker
      Than it did before,
  And he finished off his liquor,
      Staggered through the door;


  Bolted off direct to Munich,
      And within the year
  Underneath his German tunic
      Stowed whole butts of beer.
  And he drank like fifty fishes,
      Drank till all was blue;
  For he felt extremely vicious--
      Somewhat thirsty too.


  But at length this dire deboshing
      Drew towards an end;
  Few of all his silver groschen
      Had he left to spend.
  And he knew it was not prudent
      Longer to remain;
  So, with weary feet, the student
      Wended home again.


  At the tavern's well-known portal
      Knocks he as before,
  And a {072}waiter, rather mortal,
      Hiccups through the door--
  "Master's sleeping in the kitchen
      You'll alarm the house;
  Yesterday the Jungfrau Fritchen
      Married baker Kraus!"


  Like a fiery comet bristling,
      Rose the young man's hair,
  And, poor soul! he fell a-whistling
      Out of sheer despair.
  Down the gloomy street in silence,
      Savage-calm he goes;
  But he did no deed of vi'lence--
      Only blew his nose.


  Then he hired an airy garret
      Near her dwelling-place;
  Grew a beard of fiercest carrot,
      Never washed his face;
  Sate all day beside the casement,
      Sate a dreary man;
  Found in smoking such an easement
      As the wretched can;


  Stared for hours and hours together.
      Stared yet more and more;
  Till {073}in fine and sunny weather.
      At the baker's door,
  Stood, in apron white and mealy,
      That beloved dame,
  Counting out the loaves so freely,
      Selling of the same.


  Then like a volcano puffing,
      Smoked he out his pipe;
  Sighed and supped on ducks and stuffing,
      Ham and kraut and tripe;
  Went to bed, and, in the morning,
      Waited as before,
  Still his eyes in anguish turning
      To the baker's door;


  Till, with apron white and mealy,
      Came the lovely dame,
  Counting out the loaves so freely,
      Selling of the same.
  So one day--the fact's amazing!--
      On his post he died!
  And they found the body gazing
      At the baker's bride.



NIGHT AND MORNING


       [Not by Sir E. Bulwer Lytton.]


  "Thy {074}coffee, Tom, 's untasted,
      And thy egg is very cold;
  Thy cheeks are wan and wasted,
      Not rosy as of old.


  My boy, what has come o'er ye?
      You surely are not well!
  Try some of that ham before ye,
      And then, Tom, ring the bell!"


  "I cannot eat, my mother,
      My tongue is parched and bound,
  And my head, somehow or other,
      Is swimming round and round.


  In my Eyes there is a fulness,
      And my pulse is beating quick;
  On my brain is a weight of dulness:
      Oh, mother, I am sick!"


  "These {075}long, long nights of watching
      Are killing you outright;
  The evening dews are catching,
      And you're out every night.


  Why does that horrid grumbler,
      Old Inkpen, work you so?"
  "My head! Oh, that tenth tumbler!
      'Twas that which wrought my woe!"



THE BITTER BIT


  The {076}sun is in the sky, mother, the flowers are springing
         fair,
  And the melody of woodland birds is stirring in the air;
  The river, smiling to the sky, glides onward to the sea,
  And happiness is everywhere, oh mother, but with me!


  They are going to the church, mother,--I hear the mar-
         riage-bell;
  It booms along the upland,--oh! it haunts me like a
         knell;
  He leads her on his arm, mother, he cheers her faltering
         step,
  And closely to his side she clings,--she does, the demirep!


  They are crossing by the stile, mother, where we so oft
         have stood,
  The stile beside the shady thorn, at the corner of the
         wood;
  And the boughs, that wont to murmur back the words
        that won my ear,
  Wave their silver blossoms o'er him, as he leads his bridal
         fere.


  He will pass {077}beside the stream, mother, where first my
         hand he pressed,
  By the meadow where, with quivering lip, his passion he
         confessed;
  And down the hedgerows where we've strayed again and
         yet again;
  But he will not think of me, mother, his broken-hearted
         Jane!


  He said that I was proud, mother,--that I looked for rank
         and gold;
  He said I did not love him,--he said my words were
        cold;
  He said I kept him off and on, in hopes of higher
        game--
  And it may be that I did, mother; but who hasn't done
        the same?


  I did not know my heart, mother,--I know it now too
        late;
  I thought that I without a pang could wed some nobler
        mate;
  But no nobler suitor sought me,--and he has taken wing,
  And my heart is gone, and I am left a lone and blighted
         thing.


  You {078}may lay me in my "bed, mother,--my head is throb-
         bing sore;
  And, mother, prithee, let the sheets be duly aired before;
  And, if you'd do a kindness to your poor desponding
         child,
  Draw me a pot of beer, mother--and, mother, draw it mild!


[Illustration: 090]



THE MEETING


  Once {079}I lay beside a fountain,
  Lulled me with its gentle song,
  And my thoughts o'er dale and mountain
     With the clouds were borne along.


  There I saw old castles flinging
  Shadowy gleams on moveless seas,
  Saw gigantic forests swinging
     To and fro without a breeze;


  And in dusky alleys straying,
  Many a giant shape of power,
  Troops of nymphs in sunshine playing,
     Singing, dancing, hour on hour.


  I, too, trod these plains Elysian,
  Heard their ringing tones of mirth,
  But a brighter, fairer vision
     Called me back again to earth.


  From the forest shade advancing,
  See, where comes a lovely May;
  The dew, like gems, before her glancing,
     As she brushes it away!


  Straight {080}I rose, and ran to meet her,
  Seized her hand--the heavenly blue
  Of her eyes smiled brighter, sweeter,
     As she asked me--"Who are you?"


  To that question came another--
  What its aim I still must doubt--
  And she asked me, "How's your mother?
     Does she know that you are out?"


  "No! my mother does not know it,
  Beauteous, heaven-descended muse!"
  "Then be off, my handsome poet,
     And say I sent you with the news!"


[Illustration: 093]



THE CONVICT AND THE AUSTRALIAN LADY


  Thy {081}skin is dark as jet, ladye,
     Thy cheek is sharp and high,
  And there's a cruel leer, love,
     Within thy rolling eye:


  These tangled ebon tresses
     No comb hath e'er gone through;
  And thy forehead, it is furrowed by
     The elegant tattoo!


  I love {082}thee,--oh, I love thee,
     Thou strangely-feeding maid!
  Nay, lift not thus thy boomerang,
     I meant not to upbraid!


  Come, let me taste those yellow lips
     That ne'er were tasted yet,
  Save when the shipwrecked mariner
     Passed through them for a whet.


  Nay, squeeze me not so tightly!
     For I am gaunt and thin;
  There's little flesh to tempt thee
     Beneath a convict's skin.


  I came not to be eaten;
      I sought thee, love, to woo;
  Besides, bethink thee, dearest,
      Thou'st dined on cockatoo.


  Thy father is a chieftain!
      Why, that's the very thing!
  Within my native country
      I too have been a king.


  Behold this branded letter,
      Which nothing can efface!
  It is the royal emblem,
      The token of my race!


  But {083}rebels rose against me,
      And dared my power disown--
  You've heard, love, of the judges?
      They drove me from my throne.


  And I have wandered hither,
      Across the stormy sea,
  In search of glorious freedom,--
      In search, my sweet, of thee!


  The bush is now my empire,
      The knife my sceptre keen;
  Come with me to the desert wild,
      And be my dusky queen.


  I cannot give thee jewels,
      I have nor sheep nor cow,
  Yet there are kangaroos, love,
      And colonists enow.


  We'll meet the unwary settler,
      As whistling home he goes,
  And I'll take tribute from him,
      His money and his clothes.


  Then on his bleeding carcass
      Thou'lt lay thy pretty paw,
  And lunch upon him roasted,
      Or, if you like it, raw!


  Then {084}come with me, my princess,
      My own Australian dear,
  Within this grove of gum-trees
      We'll hold our bridal cheer!


  Thy heart with love is heating,
      I feel it through my side:--
  Hurrah, then, for the noble pair,
      The Convict and his Bride!



DOLEFUL LAY OF THE HONORABLE  J. O. UWINS


  Come and listen, lords and ladies,
  To a woeful lay of mine;
  He whose tailor's bill unpaid is,
  Let him now his ear incline!


  Let him hearken to my story,
  How the noblest of the land
  Pined in piteous purgatory,
  'Neath a sponging Bailiffs hand.


  I. O. Uwins! I. O. Uwins!
  Baron's son although thou be,
  Thou must pay for thy misdoings
  In the country of the free!


  None of all thy sire's retainers
  To thy rescue now may come;
  And there lie some score detainers
  With Abednego, the bum.


  Little recked he of his prison
  Whilst the sun was in the sky:
  Only when the moon was risen
  Did you hear the captive's cry.


  For till then, cigars and claret
  Lulled him in oblivion sweet;
  And {086}he much, preferred a garret,
  For his drinking, to the street.


  But the moonlight, pale and broken,
  Pained at soul the Baron's son;
  For he knew, by that soft token,
  That the larking had begun;--


  That the stout and valiant Marquis
  Then was leading forth his swells,
  Milling some policeman's carcass,
  Or purloining private bells.


  So he sat in grief and sorrow,
  Rather drunk than otherwise,
  Till the golden gush of morrow
  Dawned once more upon his eyes:


  Till the sponging Bailiff's daughter,
  Lightly tapping at the door,
  Brought his draught of soda-water,
  Brandy-bottomed as before.


  "Sweet Rebecca! has your father,
  Think you, made a deal of brass?"
  And she answered--"Sir, I rather
  Should imagine that he has."


  Uwins then, his whiskers scratching,
  Leered upon the maiden's face,
  And, {087}her hand with ardour catching,
  Folded her in close embrace.


  "La, Sir! let alone--you fright me!"
  Said the daughter of the Jew:
  "Dearest, how those eyes delight me!
  Let me love thee, darling, do!"


  "Vat is dish?" the Bailiff muttered,
  Rushing in with fury wild;
  "Ish your muffins so veil buttered,
  Dat you darsh insult ma shild?"


  "Honourable my intentions,
  Good Abednego, I swear!
  And I have some small pretensions,
  For I am a Baron's heir.


  If you'll only clear my credit,
  And advance a _thou_ * or so,
  She's a peeress--I have said it:
  Don't you twig, Abednego?"


     * The fashionable abbreviation for a thousand pounds.


  "Datsh a very different matter,"
  Said the Bailiff, with a leer;
  "But you musht not cut it fatter
  Than ta slish will shtand, ma tear!


  If you seeksh ma approbation,
  You musht quite give up your rigsh,
  Alsho {088}you musht join our nashun,
  And renounsli ta flesh of pigsh.


  Fast as one of Fagin's pupils,
  I. O. Uwins did agree!
  little plagued with holy scruples
  From the starting-post was he.


  But at times a baleful vision
  Rose before his shuddering view,
  For he knew that circumcision
  Was expected from a Jew.


  At a meeting of the Rabbis,
  Held about the Whitsuntide,
  Was this thorough-paced Barabbas
  Wedded to his Hebrew bride:


  All his previous debts compounded,
  From the sponging-house he came,
  And his father's feelings wounded
  With reflections on the same.


  But the sire his son accosted--
  "Split my wig! if any more
  Such a double-dyed apostate
  Shall presume to cross my door!


  Not a penny-piece to save ye
  From the kennel or the spout;--
  Dinner, {089}John! the pig and gravy!--
  Kick this dirty scoundrel out!"


  Forth rushed I. O. Uwins, faster
  Than all winking--much afraid
  That the orders of the master
  Would be punctually obeyed:


  Sought his club, and then the sentence
  Of expulsion first he saw;
  No one dared to own acquaintance
  With a Bailiff's son-in-law.


  Uselessly, down Bond Street strutting,
  Did he greet his friends of yore:
  Such a universal cutting
  Never man received before:


  Till at last his pride revolted--
  Pale, and lean, and stern he grew;
  And his wife Rebecca bolted
  With a missionary Jew.


  Ye who read this doleful ditty,
  Ask ye where is Uwins now?
  Wend your way through London city,
  Climb to Holborn's lofty brow;


  Near the sign-post of the "Nigger,"
  Near the baked-potato shed,
  You {090}may see a ghastly figure
  With three hats upon his head.


  When the evening shades are dusky,
  Then the phantom form draws near,
  And, with accents low and husky,
  Pours effluvium in your ear;


  Craving an immediate barter
  Of your trousers or surtout;
  And you know the Hebrew martyr,
  Once the peerless I. O. U


[Illustration: 102]


[Illustration: 103]



THE KNYGHTE AND THE TAYLZEOUR'S DAUGHTER


  Did {091}you ever hear the story--
  Old the legend is, and true--
  How a knyghte of fame and glory
  All aside his armour threw;
  Spouted spear and pawned habergeon,
  Pledged his sword and surcoat gay,
  Sate down cross-legged on the shop-board,
  Sate and stitched the livelong day?


  "Taylzeour! {092}not one single shilling
  Does my breeches-pocket hold:
  I to pay am really willing,
  If I only had the gold.
  Farmers none can I encounter,
  Graziers there are none to kill;
  Therefore, prithee, gentle taylzeour,
  Bother not about thy bill."


  "Good Sir Knyghte, just once too often
  Have you tried that slippery trick;
  Hearts like mine you cannot soften,
  Vainly do you ask for tick.
  Christmas and its bills are coming,
  Soon will they be showering in;
  Therefore, once for all, my rum un,
  I expect you'll post the tin.


  "Mark, Sir Knyghte, that gloomy bayliffe
  In the palmer's amice brown;
  He shall lead you unto jail, if
  Instantly you stump not down."
  Deeply swore the young crusader,
  But the taylzeour would not hear;
  And the gloomy, bearded bayliffe
  Evermore kept sneaking near.


  "Neither groat nor maravedi
  Have I got my soul to bless;
  And {093}I'd feel extremely seedy,
  Languishing in vile duresse.
  Therefore listen, ruthless taylzeour,
  Take my steed and armour free,
  Pawn them at thy Hebrew uncle's,
  And I'll work the rest for thee."


  Lightly leaped he on the shop-board,
  Lightly crooked his manly limb,
  Lightly drove the glancing needle
  Through the growing doublet's rim.
  Gaberdines in countless number
  Did the taylzeour knyghte repair,
  And entirely on cucumber
  And on cabbage lived he there.


  Once his weary task beguiling
  With a low and plaintive song,
  That good knyghte o'er miles of broadcloth
  Drove the hissing goose along;
  From her lofty latticed window
  Looked the taylzeour's daughter down,
  And she instantly discovered
  That her heart was not her own.


  "Canst thou love me, gentle stranger?"
  Picking at a pink she stood--
  And the knyghte at once admitted
  That he rather thought he could.
  "He {094}who weds me shall have riches,
  Gold, and lands, and houses free."
  "For a single pair of--_small-clothes_,
  I would roam the world with thee!"


  Then she flung him down the tickets--
  Well the knyghte their import knew--
  "Take this gold, and win thy armour
  From the unbelieving Jew.
  Though in garments mean and lowly,
  Thou wouldst roam the world with me,
  Only {095}as a belted warrior,
  Stranger, will I wed with, thee!"


[Illustration: 106]


  At the feast of good Saint Stitchem,
  In the middle of the Spring,
  There was some superior jousting,
  By the order of the King.
  "Valiant knyghtes!" proclaimed the monarch,
  "You will please to understand,
  He who bears himself most bravely
  Shall obtain my daughter's hand."


  Well and bravely did they bear them,
  Bravely battled, one and all;
  But the bravest in the tourney
  Was a warrior stout and tall.
  None could tell his name or lineage,
  None could meet him in the field,
  And a goose regardant proper
  Hissed along his azure shield.


  "Warrior, thou hast won my daughter!"
  But the champion bowed his knee,
  "Royal blood may not be wasted
  On a simple knight like me.
  She I love is meek and lowly;
  But her heart is kind and free;
  Also, there is tin forthcoming,
  Though she is of low degree."


  Slowly {096}rose that nameless warrior,
  Slowly turned his steps aside,
  Passed the lattice where the princess
  Sate in beauty, sate in pride.
  Passed the row of noble ladies,
  Hied him to an humbler seat,
  And in silence laid the chaplet
  At the taylzeour's daughter's feet.


[Illustration: 108]


[Illustration: 109]



THE MIDNIGHT VISIT


  It was the Lord of Castlereagh, he sat within his room,
  His arms were crossed upon his breast, his face was
        marked with gloom;
  They said that St Helena's Isle had rendered up its
        charge,
  That France was bristling high in arms--the Emperor at
        large.


  'Twas {098}midnight! all the lamps were dim, and dull as
         death the street,
  It might be that the watchman slept that night upon his
         beat,
  When lo! a heavy foot was heard to creak upon the
        stair,
  The door revolved upon its hinge--Great Heaven!--What
         enters there?


  A little man, of stately mien, with slow and solemn
        stride;
  His hands are crossed upon his back, his coat is opened
         wide;
  And on his vest of green he wears an eagle and a
        star,--
  Saint George! protect us! 'tis The Man--the thunder-
         bolt of war!


  Is that the famous hat that waved along Marengo's
        ridge?
  Are these the spurs of Austerlitz--the boots of Lodi's
         bridge?
  Leads he the conscript swarm again from France's hornet
         hive?


  What seeks the fell usurper here, in Britain, and alive?
  Pale {099}grew the Lord of Castlereagh, his tongue was parched
          and dry,
  As in his brain he felt the glare of that tremendous eye;
  What wonder if he shrunk in fear, for who could meet the
         glance
  Of him who reared, 'mid Russian snows, the gonfalon of
         France?


  From the side-pocket of his vest a pinch the despot
        took,
  Yet not a whit did he relax the sternness of his look:
  "Thou thoughtst the lion was afar, but he hath burst the
         chain--
  The watchword for to-night is France--the answer St
        Heléne.


  "And didst thou deem the barren isle, or ocean waves,
         could bind
  The master of the universe--the monarch of mankind?
  I tell thee, fool! the world itself is all too small for me;
  I laugh to scorn thy bolts and bars--I burst them, and
         am free.


  "Thou thinkst that England hates me! Mark!--This
         very night my name
  Was thundered in its capital with tumult and acclaim!
  They {100}saw me, knew me, owned my power--Proud lord!
         I say, beware!
  There be men within the Surrey side, who know to do
        and dare!


  "To-morrow in thy very teeth my standard will I rear--
  Ay, well that ashen cheek of thine may blanch and shrink
         with fear!
  To-morrow night another town shall sink in ghastly
        flames;
  And as I crossed the Borodin, so shall I cross the
        Thames!


  "Thou'lt seize me, wilt thou, ere the dawn? Weak
        lordling, do thy worst!
  These hands ere now have broke thy chains, thy fetters
        they have burst.
  Yet, wouldst thou know my resting-place? Behold, 'tis
        written there!
  And let thy coward myrmidons approach me if they dare!"


  Another pinch, another stride--he passes through the
        door--
  "Was it a phantom or a man was standing on the floor?
  And could that be the Emperor that moved before my eyes?
  Ah, yes! too sure it was himself, for here the paper lies!"


  With, {101}trembling hands Lord Castlereagh undid the mystic
         scroll,
  With glassy eye essayed to read, for fear was on his soul--
  "What's here?--'At Astley's, every night, the play of
         Moscow's Fall!
  Napoleon, for the thousandth time, by Mr Gomersal!'"


[Illustration: 113]


[Illustration: 114]



THE LAY OF THE LOVELORN.


  Comrades, {102}you may pass the rosy. With permission of
         the chair,
  I shall leave you for a little, for I'd like to take the air.
  Whether 'twas the sauce at dinner, or that glass of ginger-
         beer,
  Or these strong cheroots, I know not, but I feel a little queer.


  Let me go. Nay, Chuckster, blow me, 'pon my soul, this
        is too bad!
  When you want me, ask the waiter; he knows where I'm
        to be had.
  Whew! {103}This is a great relief now! Let me but undo my
         stock;
  Resting here beneath the porch, my nerves will steady
         like a rock.


  In my ears I hear the singing of a lot of favourite tunes--
  Bless my heart, how very odd! Why, surely there's a
        brace of moons!
  See! the stars! how bright they twinkle, winking with a
         frosty glare,
  Like my faithless cousin Amy when she drove me to
        despair.


  Oh, my cousin, spider-hearted! Oh, my Amy! No, con-
         found it!
  I must wear the mournful willow,--all around my hat
        I've bound it.
  Falser than the bank of fancy, frailer than a shilling glove,
  Puppet to a father's anger, minion to a nabob's love!


  Is it well to wish thee happy? Having known me, could
         you ever
  Stoop to marry half a heart, and little more than half a
         liver?
  Happy! Damme! Thou shalt lower to his level day by
        day,
  Changing from the best of china to the commonest of
        clay.


  As the husband is, the wife is,--he is stomach-plagued
         and old;
  And his curry soups will make thy cheek the colour of
         his gold.
  When his feeble love is sated, he will hold thee surely
         then
  Something lower than his hookah,--something less than
  his cayenne.


  What is this? His eyes are pinky. Was't the claret?
           Oh, no, no,--
  Bless your soul! it was the salmon,--salmon always makes
         him so.
  Take him to thy dainty chamber--sooth him with thy
        lightest fancies;
  He will understand thee, won't he?--pay thee with a
        lover's glances?


  Louder {105}than the loudest trumpet, harsh as harshest
         ophicleide,
  Nasal respirations answer the endearments of his bride.
  Sweet response, delightful music! Gaze upon thy noble
         charge,
  Till the spirit fill thy bosom that inspired the meek
     Laffarge.


  Better thou wert dead before me,--better, better that I
         stood,
  Looking on thy murdered body, like the injured Daniel
         Good!
  Better thou and I were lying, cold and timber-stiff and
         dead,
  With a pan of burning charcoal underneath our nuptial
         bed!


  Cursed be the Bank of England's notes, that tempt the
         soul to sin!
  Cursed be the want of acres,--doubly cursed the want of tin!
  Cursed be the marriage-contract, that enslaved thy soul
         to greed!
  Cursed be the sallow lawyer, that prepared and drew the
         deed!


  Cursed {106}be his foul apprentice, who the loathsome fees did
         earn!
  Cursed be the clerk and parson,--cursed be the whole
         concern!
  Oh, 'tis well that I should bluster,--much I'm like to
         make of that;
  Better comfort have I found in singing "All Around my
         Hat."


  But that song, so wildly plaintive, palls upon my British
         ears.
  'Twill not do to pine for ever,--I am getting up in
         years.
  Can't I turn the honest penny, scribbling for the weekly
         press,
  And in writing Sunday libels drown my private wretched-
         ness?
  Oh, to feel the wild pulsation that in manhood's dawn I
         knew,
  When my days were all before me, and my years were
         twenty-two!


  When I {107}smoked my independent pipe along the Quadrant
         wide,
  With the many larks of London flaring up on every side;


  When I went the pace so wildly, caring little what might
         come;
  Coffee-milling care and sorrow, with a nose-adapted thumb;
  Felt the exquisite enjoyment, tossing nightly off, oh
         heavens!
  Brandy at the Cider Cellars, kidneys smoking-hot at
         Evans'!


  Or in the Adelphi sitting, half in rapture, half in tears,
  Saw the glorious melodrama conjure up the shades of
         years!
  Saw Jack Sheppard, noble stripling, act his wondrous feats
         again,
  Snapping Newgate's bars of iron, like an infant's daisy
         chain.


  Might was right, and all the terrors, which had held the
         world in awe,
  Were despised, and prigging prospered, spite of Laurie,
         spite of law.
  In such {108}scenes as these I triumphed, ere my passion's
         edge was rusted,
  And my cousin's cold refusal left me very much dis-
        gusted!


  Since, my heart is sere and withered, and I do not care a
         curse,
  Whether worse shall be the better, or the better be the
         worse.
  Hark! my merry comrades call me, bawling for another
        jorum;
  They would mock me in derision, should I thus appear
        before 'em.


  Womankind no more shall vex me, such at least as go
        arrayed.
  In the most expensive satins and the newest silk brocade.
  I'll to Afric, lion-haunted, where the giant forest yields
  Rarer robes and finer tissue than are sold at Spital-
        fields.


  Or to burst all chains of habit, flinging habit's self
        aside,
  I shall walk the tangled jungle in mankind's primeval
        pride;
  Feeding on the luscious berries and the rich cassava root,
  Lots of dates and lots of guavas, clusters of forbidden
         fruit.


  Never comes the trader thither, never o'er the purple
         main
  Sounds the oath of British commerce, or the accents of
        Cockaigne.
  There, methinks, would be enjoyment, where no envious
        rule prevents;
  Sink the steamboats! cuss the railways! rot, O rot the
         Three per Cents!


  There the passions, cramped no longer, shall have space
         to breathe, my cousin!
  I will wed some savage woman--nay, I'll wed at least a
        dozen.
  There I'll rear my young mulattoes, as no Bond Street
        brats are reared:
  They shall dive for alligators, catch the mid goats by the
         beard--


  Whistle to the cockatoos, and mock the hairy-faced
        baboon,
  Worship mighty Mumbo Jumbo in the Mountains of the
        Moon.
  I myself, in {110}far Timbuctoo, leopard's blood will daily
         quaff,
  Ride a tiger-hunting, mounted on a thorough-bred giraffe.


  Fiercely shall I shout the war-whoop, as some sullen
        stream he crosses,
  Startling from their noonday slumbers iron-bound rhino-
         ceroses.
  Fool! again the dream, the fancy! But I know my words
         are mad,
  For I hold the grey barbarian lower than the Christian
        cad.


  I the swell--the city dandy! I to seek such horrid
        places,--
  I to haunt with squalid negroes, blubber-lips, and monkey-
         faces!
  I to wed with Coromantees! I, who managed--very
        near--
  To secure theheart and fortune of the widow Shilli-
        beer!


  Stuff and nonsense! let me never fling a single chance
         away;
  Maids ere now, I know, have loved me, and another
        maiden may.
  'Morning {111}post' ('The Times' won't trust me)
          help me, as I know you can;
  I will pen an advertisement,--that's a never-
         failing plan.


[Illustration: 123]


  "Wanted--By a bard, in wedlock, some young
        interesting woman:
  Looks are not so much an object, if the shiners
         be forthcoming!
  "Hymen's chains the advertiser vows shall be
         but silken fetters;
  Please address to A. T., Chelsea. N.B.--You
         must pay the letters."
  That's the sort of thing to do it. Now I'll go
         and taste the balmy,--
  Rest thee with thy yellow nabob, spider-hearted
         Cousin Amy!


[Illustration: 124]



MY WIFE'S COUSIN


  Decked {112}with shoes of blackest polish,
  And with shirt as white as snow,
  After matutinal breakfast
  To my daily desk I go;


  First a fond salute bestowing
  On my Mary's ruby lips,
  Which, perchance, may be rewarded
  With a pair of playful nips.


  All day long across the ledger
  Still my patient pen I drive,
  Thinking what a feast awaits me
  In my happy home at five;


  In my small one-storeyed Eden,
  Where my wife awaits my coming,
  And our solitary handmaid
  Mutton-chops with care is crumbing.


  When {113}the clock proclaims my freedom,
  Then my hat I seize and vanish;
  Every trouble from my bosom,
  Every anxious care I banish.


  Swiftly brushing o'er the pavement,
  At a furious pace I go,
  Till I reach my darling dwelling
  In the wilds of Pimlico.


  "Mary, wife, where art thou, dearest?"
  Thus I cry, while yet afar;
  Ah! what scent invades my nostrils?--
  'Tis the smoke of a cigar!


  Instantly into the parlour
  Like a maniac I haste,
  And I find a young Life-Guardsman,
  With his arm round Mary's waist.


  And his other hand is playing
  Most familiarly with hers;
  And I think my Brussels carpet
  Somewhat damaged by his spurs.


  "Fire and furies! what the blazes?"
  Thus in frenzied wrath I call;
  When my spouse her arms upraises,
  With a most astounding squall.


  "Was there ever such a monster,
  Ever such a wretched wife?
  Ah! how {114}long must I endure it,
  How protract this hateful life?


  All day long, quite unprotected,
  Does he leave his wife at home;
  And she cannot see her cousins,
  Even when they kindly come!"


  Then the young Life-Guardsman, rising,
  Scarce vouchsafes a single word,
  But, with look of deadly menace,
  Claps his hand upon his sword;


  And in fear I faintly falter--
  "This your cousin, then he's mine!
  Very glad, indeed, to see you,-
  Won't you stop with us, and dine?"


  Won't a ferret suck a rabbit?--
  As a thing of course he stops;
  And with most voracious swallow
  Walks into my mutton-chops.


  In the twinkling of a bed-post
  Is each savoury platter clear,
  And he shows uncommon science
  In his estimate of beer.


  Half-and-half goes down before him,
  Gurgling from the pewter pot;
  And he {115}moves a counter motion
  For a glass of something hot.


  Neither chops nor beer I grudge him,
  Nor a moderate share of goes;
  But I know not why he's always
  Treading upon Mary's toes.


  Evermore, when, home returning,
  From the counting-house I come,
  Do I find the young Life-Guardsman
  Smoking pipes and drinking rum.


  Evermore he stays to dinner,
  Evermore devours my meal;
  For I have a wholesome horror
  Both of powder and of steel.


  Yet I know he's Mary's cousin,
  For my only son and heir
  Much resembles that young Guardsman,
  "With the self-same curly hair;


  But I wish he would not always
  Spoil my carpet with his spurs;
  And I'd rather see his fingers
  In the fire, than touching hers.


[Illustration: 128]



THE QUEEN IN FRANCE


         An Ancient Scottish Ballad.



PART I.


  It {116}fell upon the August month,
  When landsmen bide at hame,
  That our gude Queen went out to sail
  Upon the saut-sea faem.


  And she has ta'en the silk and gowd,
  The like was never seen;
  And she {117}has ta'en the Prince Albert,
  And the bauld Lord Abërdeen.


  "Ye'se bide at hame, Lord Wellington:
  Ye daurna gang wi' me:
  For ye hae been ance in the land o' France,
  And that's enench for ye.


  "Ye'se bide at hame, Sir Robert Peel,
  To gather the red and the white monie;
  And see that my men dinna eat me up
  At Windsor wi' their gluttonie."


  They hadna sailed a league, a league,--
  A league, but barely twa,
  When the lift grew dark, and the waves grew wan,
  And the wind began to blaw.


  "O weel weel may the waters rise,
  In welcome o' their Queen;
  What gars ye look sae white, Albert?
  What makes your ee sae green?"


  "My heart is sick, my heid is sair:
  "Gie me a glass o' the gude brandie:
  To set my foot on the braid green sward,
  I'd gie the half o' my yearly fee.


  "It's {118}sweet to hunt the sprightly hare
  On the bonny slopes o' Windsor lea,
  But O, it's ill to bear the thud
  And pitching o' the saut saut sea!"


  And aye they sailed, and aye they sailed,
  Till England sank behind,
  And over to the coast of France
  They drave before the wind.


  Then up and spak the King o' France,
  Was birling at the wine;
  "O wha may be the gay ladye,
  That owns that ship sae fine?


  "And wha may be that bonny lad,
  That looks sae pale and wan?
  I'll wad my lands o' Picardie,
  That he's nae Englishman."


  Then up and spak an auld French lord,
  Was sitting beneath his knee,
  "It is the Queen o' braid England
  That's come across the sea."


  "And O an it be England's Queen,
  She's welcome here the day;
  I'd rather hae her for a friend
  Than for a deadly fae.


  "Gae, {119}kill the eerock in the yard,
  The auld sow in the sty,
  And bake for her the brockit calf,
  But and the puddock-pie!"


  And he has gane until the ship,
  As soon as it drew near,
  And he has ta'en her by the hand--
  "Ye're kindly welcome here!"


  And syne he kissed her on ae cheek,
  And syne upon the ither;
  And he ca'd her his sister dear,
  And she ca'd him her brither.


  "Light doun, light doun now, ladye mine,
  Light doun upon the shore;
  Nae English king has trodden here
  This thousand years and more."


  "And gin I lighted on your land,
  As light fu' weel I may,
  O am I free to feast wi' you,
  And free to come and gae?"


  And he has sworn by the Haly Rood,
  And the black stane o' Dumblane,
  That she is free to come and gae
  Till twenty days are gane.


  "I've {120}lippened to a Frenchman's aith,"
  Said gude Lord Aberdeen;
  "But I'll never lippen to it again
  Sae lang's the grass is green.


  "Yet gae your ways, my sovereign liege,
  Sin' better mayna be;
  The wee bit bairns are safe at hame,
  By the blessing o' Marie!"


  Then doun she lighted frae the ship,
  She lighted safe and sound;
  And glad was our good Prince Albert
  To step upon the ground.


  "Is that your Queen, my Lord," she said,
  "That auld and buirdly dame?
  I see the crown upon her head;
  But I dinna ken her name."


  And she has kissed the Frenchman's Queen,
  And eke her daughters three,
  And gien her hand to the young Princess,
  That louted upon the knee.


  And she has gane to the proud castle,
  That's biggit beside the sea:
  But aye, when she thought o' the bairns at hame,
  The tear was in her ee.


  She {121}gied the King the Cheshire cheese,
  But and the porter fine;
  And he gied her the puddock-pies,
  But and the blude-red wine.


  Then up and spak the dourest Prince,
  An admiral was he;
  "Let's keep the Queen o' England here,
  Sin' better mayna be!


  "O mony is the dainty king
  That we hae trappit here;
  And mony is the English yerl
  That's in our dungeons drear!"


  "You lee, you lee, ye graceless loon,
  Sae loud's I hear ye lee!
  There never yet was Englishman
  That came to skaith by me.


  "Gae oot, gae oot, ye fause traitour!
  Gae oot until the street;
  It's shame that Kings and Queens should sit
  Wi' sic a knave at meat!"


  Then up and raise the young French lord,
  In wrath and hie disdain--
  "O ye may sit, and ye may eat
  Your puddock-pies alane!


  "But {122}were I in my ain gude ship,
  And sailing wi' the wind,
  And did I meet wi' auld Napier,
  I'd tell him o' my mind."


  O then the Queen leuch loud and lang,
  And her colour went and came;
  "Gin ye meet wi' Charlie on the sea,
  Ye'd wish yersel at hame!"


  And aye they birlit at the wine,
  And drank richt merrilie,
  Till the auld cock crawed in the castle-yard,
  And the abbey bell struck three.


  The Queen she gaed until her bed,
  And Prince Albert likewise;
  And the last word that gay ladye said
  Was--"O thae puddock-pies!"



PART II.


  The sun was high within the lift
  Afore the French King raise;
  And syne he louped intil his sark,
  And warslit on his claes.


  "Gae {123}up, gae up, my little foot-page,
  Gae up until the toun;
  And gin ye meet wi' the auld harper,
  Be sure ye bring him doun."


  And he has met wi' the auld harper;
  O but his een were reid;
  And the bizzing o' a swarm o' bees
  Was singing in his heid.


  "Alack! alack!" the harper said,
  "That this should e'er hae been!
  I daurna gang before my liege,
  For I was fou yestreen."


  "It's ye maun come, ye auld harper:
  Ye dauma tarry lang;
  The King is just dementit-like
  For wanting o' a sang."


  And when he came to the King's chamber,
  He loutit on his knee,
  "O what may be your gracious will
  Wi' an auld frail man like me?"


  "I want a sang, harper," he said,
  "I want a sang richt speedilie;
  And gin ye dinna make a sang,
  I'll hang ye up on the gallows tree."


  "I canna {124}do't, my liege," he said,
  "Hae mercy on my auld grey hair!
  But gin that I had got the words,
  I think that I might mak the air."


  "And wha's to mak the words, fause loon,
  When minstrels we have barely twa;
  And Lamartine is in Paris toun,
  And Victor Hugo far awa?"


  "The diel may gang for Lamartine,
  And flee away wi' auld Hugo,
  For a better minstrel than them baith
  Within this very toun I know.


  "O kens my liege the gude Walter,
  At hame they ca' him Bon Gaultier?
  He'll rhyme ony day wi' True Thomas,
  And he is in the castle here."


  The French King first he lauchit loud,
  And syne did he begin to sing;
  "My een are auld, and my heart is cauld,
  Or I suld hae known the minstrels' King.


  "Gae take to him this ring o' gowd,
  And this mantle o' the silk sae fine,
  And bid him mak a maister sang
  For his sovereign ladye's sake and mine."


  "I winna {125}take the gowden ring,
  Nor yet the mantle fine:
  But I'll mak the sang for my ladye's sake,
  And for a cup of wine."


  The Queen was sitting at the cards,
  The King ahint her back;
  And aye she dealed the red honours,
  And aye she dealed the black;


  And syne unto the dourest Prince
  She spak richt courteouslie;--
  "Now will ye play, Lord Admiral,
  Now will ye play wi' me?"


  The dourest Prince he bit his lip,
  And his brow was black as glaur;
  "The only game that e'er I play
  Is the bluidy game o' war!"


  "And gin ye play at that, young man,
  It weel may cost ye sair;
  Ye'd better stick to the game at cards,
  For you'll win nae honours there!"


  The King he leuch, and the Queen she leuch,
  Till the tears ran blithely doon;
  But the Admiral he raved and swore,
  Till they kicked him frae the room.


  The {126}harper came, and the harper sang,
  And O but they were fain;
  For when he had sung the gude sang twice,
  They called for it again.


  It was the sang o' the Field o' Gowd,
  In the days of anld langsyne;
  When bauld King Henry crossed the seas,
  Wi' his brither King to dine.


  And aye he harped, and aye he carped,
  Till up the Queen she sprang--
  "I'll wad a County Palatine,
  Gude Walter made that sang."


  Three days had come, three days had gane,
  The fourth began to fa',
  When our gude Queen to the Frenchman said,
  "It's time I was awa!


  "O, bonny are the fields o' France,
  And saftly draps the rain;
  But my barnies are in Windsor Tower,
  And greeting a' their lane.


  "Now ye maun come to me, Sir King,
  As I have come to ye;
  And a benison upon your heid
  For a' your courtesie!


  "Ye maun {127}come, and bring your ladye fere;
  Ye sail na say me no;
  And ye'se mind, we have aye a bed to spare
  For that gawsy chield Guizot."


  Now he has ta'en her lily-white hand,
  And put it to his lip,
  And he has ta'en her to the strand,
  And left her in her ship.


  "Will ye come back, sweet bird," he cried,
  "Will ye come kindly here,
  When the lift is blue, and the lavrocks sing,
  In the spring-time o' the year?"


  "It's I would blithely come, my Lord,
  To see ye in the spring;
  It's I would blithely venture back,
  But for ae little thing.


  "It isna that the winds are rude,
  Or that the waters rise,
  But I loe the roasted beef at hame,
  And no thae puddock-pies!"


[Illustration: 140]



THE MASSACRE OF MACPHERSON


          [From the Gaelic.]


  I.


  Fhairshon {128}swore a feud
  Against the elan M'Tavish;
  Marched into their land
  To murder and to rafish;
  For he did resolve
  To extirpate the vipers,
  With four-and-twenty men
  And five-and-thirty pipers.


  II.


  But {129}when he had gone
  Half-way down Strath Canaan,
  Of his fighting tail
  Just three were remainin'.
  They were all he had,
  To back him in ta battle;
  All the rest had gone
  Olf, to drive ta cattle.


  III.


  "Fery coot!" cried Fhairshon,
  "So my clan disgraced is;
  Lads, we'll need to fight,
  Pefore we touch the peasties.
  Here's Mhic-Mac-Methusaleh
  Coming wi' his fassals,
  Gillies seventy-three,
  And sixty Dhuiné wassails!"


  IV.


  "Coot tay to you, sir;
  Are you not ta Fhairshon?
  Was you coming here
  To fisit any person?
  You {130}are a plackguard, sir!
  It is now six hundred
  Coot long years, and more,
  Since my glen was plundered."


  V.


  "Fat is tat you say?
  Dare you cock your peaver?
  I will teach you, sir,
  Fat is coot pehaviour!
  You shall not exist
  For another day more;
  I will shoot you, sir,
  Or stap you with my claymore!"


  VI.


  "I am fery glad
  To learn what you mention,
  Since I can prevent
  Any such intention."
  So Mhic-Mac-Methusaleh
  Gave some warlike howls,
  Trew his skhian-dhu,
  An' stuck it in his powels.


  VII.


  In {131}this fery way
  Tied ta faliant Fhairshon,
  Who was always thought
  A superior person.
  Fhairshon had a son,
  Who married Noah's daughter,
  And nearly spoiled ta Flood,
  By trinking up ta water:


  VIII.


  Which he would have done,
  I at least believe it,
  Had ta mixture peen
  Only half Glenlivet.
  This is all my tale:
  Sirs, I hope 'tis new t'ye!
  Here's your fery good healths,
  And tamn ta whusky duty!


[Illustration: 144]



THE YOUNG STOCKBROKER'S BRIDE


  "O swiftly {132}speed the gallant bark!--
  I say, you mind my luggage, porter!
  I do not heed yon storm-cloud dark,
  I go to wed old Jenkin's daughter.
  I go to claim my own Mariar,
  The fairest flower that blooms in Harwich;
  My panting bosom is on fire,
  And all is ready for the marriage."


  Thus {133}spoke young Mivins, as he stepped
  On hoard the "Firefly," Harwich packet;
  The bell rang out, the paddles swept
  Plish-plashing round with noisy racket.
  The louring clouds young Mivins saw,
  But fear, he felt, was only folly;
  And so he smoked a fresh cigar,
  Then fell to whistling "Nix my dolly!"


  The wind it roared; the packet's hulk
  Rocked with a most unpleasant motion;
  Young Mivins leant him o'er a bulk,
  And poured his sorrows to the ocean.
  Tints--blue and yellow--signs of woe--
  Flushed, rainbow like, his noble face in,
  As suddenly he rushed below,
  Crying, "Steward, steward, bring a basin!"


  On sped the bark: the howling storm
  The funnel's tapering smoke did blow far;
  Unmoved, young Mivins' lifeless form
  Was stretched upon a haircloth sofar.
  All night he moaned, the steamer groaned,
  And he was hourly getting fainter;
  When it came bump against the pier,
  And there was fastened by the painter.
  Young Mivins {134}rose, arranged his clothes,
  Caught wildly at his small portmanteau;
  He was unfit to lie or sit,
  And found it difficult to stand, too.


  He sought the deck, he sought the shore,
  He sought the lady's house like winking,
  And asked, low tapping at the door,
  "Is this the house of Mr Jenkin?"
  A short man came--he told his name--
  Mivins was short--he cut him shorter,
  For in a fury he exclaimed,
  "Are you the man as vants my darter?
  Yot kim'd on you, last night, young sqvire?"
  "It was the steamer, rot and scuttle her!"
  "Mayhap it vos, but our Mariar
  Yalked off last night with Bill the butler."


  "And so you've kim'd a post too late."
  "It was the packet, sir, miscarried!"
  "Vy, does you think a gal can vait
  As sets 'er 'art on being married?
  Last night she vowed she'd be a bride,
  And 'ave a spouse for vuss or better:
  So Bill struck in; the knot vos tied,
  And now I vishes you may get her!"


  Young {135}Mivins turned him from the spot,
  Bewildered with the dreadful stroke, her
  Perfidy came like a shot--
  He was a thunder-struck stockbroker.
  "A curse on steam and steamers too!
  By their delays I have been undone!"
  He cried, as, looking very blue,
  He rode a bachelor to London.



THE LAUREATES' TOURNEY


By the Hon. T- B----M'A-.


[This {136}and the five following Poems were among those forwarded to
the Home Secretary, by "the unsuccessful competitors for the
Laureateship, on its becoming vacant by the death of Southey. How they
came into our possession is a matter between Sir James Graham and
ourselves. The result of the contest could never have been doubtful,
least of all to the great poet who then succeeded to the bays. His own
sonnet on the subject is full of the serene consciousness of
superiority, which does not even admit the idea of rivalry, far less of
defeat.


     Bays! which in former days have graced the brow
     Of some, who lived and loved, and sang and died;
     Leaves that were gathered on the pleasant side
     Of old Parnassus from Apollo's bough;
     With palpitating hand I take ye now,
     Since worthier minstrel there is none beside,
     And with a thrill of song half deified,
     I bind them proudly on my locks of snow.
     There shall they bide, till he who follows next,
     Of whom I cannot even guess the name,
     Shall by Court favour, or some vain pretext
     Of fancied merit, desecrate the same,--
     And think, perchance, he wears them quite as well
     As the sole bard who sang of Peter Bell!]



FYTTE THE FIRST.


  "What news, what news, thou pilgrim grey, what news
         from southern land?
  How fare the bold Conservatives, how is it with Ferrand?
  How does the little Prince of Wales--how looks our lady
         Queen?


  And tell me, is the monthly nurse once more at Windsor
         seen?"
  "I bring {137}no tidings from the Court, nor from St Stephen's
         hall;
  I've heard the thundering tramp of horse, and the trum-
         pet's battle-call;
  And these old eyes have seen a fight, which England ne'er
         hath seen,
  Since fell King Richard sobbed his soul through blood on
         Bosworth Green.


  'He's dead, he's dead, the Laureate's dead!' 'Twas thus
         the cry began,
  And straightway every garret-roof gave up its minstrel
         man;
  From Grub Street, and from Houndsditch, and from Far-
         ringdon Within,
  The poets all towards Whitehall poured on with eldritch
         din.


  Loud yelled they for Sir James the Graham: but sore
        afraid was he;
  A hardy knight were he that might face such a minstrelsie.
  'Now by St Giles of Netherby, my patron Saint, I
        swear,
  I'd rather by a thousand crowns Lord Palmerston were
        here!--


  'What is't {138}ye seek, ye rebel knaves--what make you
         there beneath?'
  'The bays, the bays! we want the bays! we seek the
        laureate wreath!
  We seek the butt of generous wine that cheers the sons
         of song;
  Choose thou among us all, Sir Knight--we may not tarry
         long!'


  Loud laughed the good Sir James in scorn--'Rare jest it
         were, I think,
  But one poor butt of Xeres, and a thousand rogues to
        drink!
  An' if it flowed with wine or beer, 'tis easy to be
        seen,
  That dry within the hour would be the well of Hippo-
        crene.


  'Tell me, if on Parnassus' heights there grow a thousand
         sheaves:
  Or has Apollo's laurel bush yet borne ten hundred
        leaves?
  Or if so many leaves were there, how long would they
        sustain
  The ravage and the glutton bite of such a locust train?


  'No! get {139}ye "back into your dens, take counsel for the
          night,
  And choose me out two champions to meet in deadly
        fight;
  To-morrow's dawn shall see the lists marked out in Spital-
         fields,
  And he who wins shall have the hays, and he shall die
        who yields!'


  Down went the window with a crash,--in silence and in
        fear
  Each raggèd bard looked anxiously upon his neighbour
        near;
  Then up and spake young Tennyson--'Who's here that
        fears for death?
  'Twere better one of us should die, than England lose the
         wreath!


  'Let's cast the lots among us now, which two shall fight
         to-morrow;--
  For armour bright we'll club our mite, and horses we can
         borrow;
  'Twere shame that bards of France should sneer, and
        German _Dichters_ too,
  If none of British song might dare a deed of _derring-do!_'


  'The lists {140}of Love are mine,' said Moore, 'and not the
         lists of Mars
  Said Hunt, 'I seek the jars of wine, but shun the com-
        bat's jars!'
  'I'm old,' quoth Samuel Rogers.--'Faith, says Camp-
        bell, 'so am I!'
  'And I'm in holy orders, sir!' quoth Tom of Ingoldsby.


  'Now out upon ye, craven loons!' cried Moxon, good at
        need,--
  'Bide, if ye will, secure at home, and sleep while others
         bleed.
  I second Alfred's motion, boys,--let's try the chance of
         lot;
  And monks shall sing, and bells shall ring, for him that
         goes to pot.'


  Eight hundred minstrels slunk away--two hundred
        stayed to draw,--
  Now Heaven protect the daring wight that pulls the
        longest straw!
  'Tis done! 'tis done! And who hath won? Keep silence
         one and all,--
  The first is William Wordsworth hight, the second Ned
        Fitzball!



FYTTE THE SECOND.


  'Oh, {141}bright and gay hath dawned the day on lordly
         Spitalfields,--
  How flash the rays with ardent blaze from polished helms
         and shields!
  On either side the chivalry of England throng the green,
  And in the middle balcony appears our gracious Queen.


  With iron fists, to keep the lists, two valiant knights ap-
         pear,
  The Marquis Hal of Waterford, and stout Sir Aubrey Vere.
  'What ho! there, herald, blow the trump! Let's see who
         comes to claim
  The butt of golden Xeres, and the Laureate's honoured
        name!'


  That instant dashed into the lists, all armed from head to
         heel,
  On courser brown, with vizor down, a warrior sheathed in
         steel;
  Then said our Queen--'Was ever seen so stout a knight
        and tall?
  His name--his race?'--'An't please your grace, it is the
         brave Fitzball.


  'Oft in {142}the Melodrama line his prowess hath been
     shown,
  And well throughout the Surrey side his thirst for blood
         is known.
  But see, the other champion comes!'--Then rang the
        startled air
  With shouts of 'Wordsworth, Wordsworth, ho! the bard
        of Kydal's there.'


  And lo! upon a little steed, unmeet for such a course,
  Appeared the honoured veteran; but weak seemed man
        and horse.
  Then shook their ears the sapient peers,--'That joust
        will soon be done:
  My Lord of Brougham, I'll back Fitzball, and give you
        two to one!'


  'Done,' quoth the Brougham,--'And done with you!'
         'Now, Minstrels, are you ready?'
  Exclaimed the Lord of Waterford,--'You'd better both
        sit steady.
  Blow, trumpets, blow the note of charge! and forward to'
         the fight!'
  'Amen!' said good Sir Aubrey Vere; 'Saint Schism
        defend the right!'


  As {143}sweeps the blast against the mast when blows the
         furious squall,
  So started at the trumpet's sound the terrible Fitzball;
  His lance he bore his breast before,--Saint George protect
         the just!
  Or Wordsworth's hoary head must roll along the shame-
        ful dust!


  'Who threw that calthrop? Seize the knave!' Alas!
        the deed is done;
  Down went the steed, and o'er his head flew bright
        Apollo's son.
  'Undo his helmet! cut the lace! pour water on his
        head!'
  'It ain't no use at all, my lord; 'cos vy? the covey's
         dead!'


  Above him stood the Rydal bard--his face was full of
        woe,
  'Now there thou liest, stiff and stark, who never feared a
         foe:
  A braver knight, or more renowned in tourney and in
        hall,
  Ne'er brought the upper gallery down than terrible Fitz-
         ball!'


  They led {144}our Wordsworth to the Queen--she crowned
        him with the bays,
  And wished him many happy years, and many quarter-
        days;
  And if you'd have the story told by abler lips than
        mine,
  You've but to call at Rydal Mount, and taste the
        Laureate's wine!"


[Illustration: 157]



THE ROYAL BANQUET


           By the Hon. G- S- S--


  The {145}Queen she kept high festival in Winclsor's lordly
         hall,
  And round her sat the gartered knights, and ermined
        nobles all;
  There drank the valiant Wellington, there fed the wary
        Peel,
  And at the bottom of the board Prince Albert carved the
         veal.


  "What, {146}pantler, ho! remove the cloth! Ho! cellarer,
         the wine,
  And bid the royal nurse bring in the hope of Brunswick's
         line!"
  Then rose with one tumultuous shout the band of British
         peers,
  "God bless her sacred Majesty! Let's see the little
        dears!"


  Now by Saint George, our patron saint, 'twas a touching
         sight to see
  That iron warrior gently place the Princess on his
        knee;
  To hear him hush her infant fears, and teach her how to
         gape
  With rosy mouth expectant for the raisin and the
        grape!


  They passed the wine, the sparkling wine--they filled the
         goblets up;
  Even Brougham, the cynic anchorite, smiled blandly on
         the cup;
  And Lyndhurst, with a noble thirst, that nothing could
        appease,
  Proposed the immortal memory of King William on his
        knees.


  "What {147}want we here, my gracious liege," cried gay Lord
          Aberdeen,
  "Save gladsome song and minstrelsy to flow our cups
         between?
  I ask not now for Goulburn's voice or Knatchbull's
         warbling lay,
  But where's the Poet Laureate to grace our board to-
         day?"


  Loud laughed the Knight of Netherby, and scornfully he
         cried,
  "Or art thou mad with wine, Lord Earl, or art thyself
         beside?
  Eight hundred Bedlam bards have claimed the Laureate's
         vacant crown,
  And now like frantic Bacchanals run wild through London
         town!"


  "Now glory to our gracious Queen!" a voice was heard
         to cry,
  And dark Macaulay stood before them all with frenzied
         eye;
  "Now glory to our gracious Queen, and all her glorious
         race,
  A boon, a boon, my sovran liege! Give me the Laureate's
         place!


  "'Twas I {148}that sang the might of Rome, the glories of
         Navarre;
  And who could swell the fame so well of Britain's Isles
         afar?
  The hero of a hundred fights------" Then Wellington up
         sprung,
  "Ho, silence in the ranks, I say! Sit down and hold
        your tongue!


  "By heaven, thou shalt not twist my name into a jingling
          lay,
  Or mimic in thy puny song the thunders of Assaye!
  'Tis hard that for thy lust of place in peace we cannot
         dine.
  Nurse, take her Royal Highness, here! Sir Robert, pass
         the wine!"


  "No Laureate need we at our board!" then spoke the
        Lord of Vaux;
  "Here's many a voice to charm the ear with minstrel
         song, I know.
  Even I {149}myself------" Then rose the cry--"A song, a
         song from Brougham!"
  He sang,--and straightway found himself alone within
        the room.


[Illustration: 161]



THE BARD OF ERIN'S LAMENT


                By T- M-EE, Esq.


  Oh, {150}weep for the hours, when the little blind boy
      Wove round me the spells of his Paphian bower;
  When I dipped my light wings in the nectar of joy,
     And soared in the sunshine, the moth of the hour!
  From beauty to beauty I passed, like the wind;
     Now fondled the lily, now toyed with the rose;
  And the fair, that at morn had enchanted my mind,
     Was forsook for another ere evening's close.


  I sighed not for honour, I cared not for fame,
     While Pleasure sat by me, and Love was my guest;
  They twined a fresh wreath for each day as it came,
     And the bosom of Beauty still pillowed my rest:
  And the harp of my country--neglected it slept--
     In hall or by greenwood unheard were its songs;
  From Love's Sybarite dreams I aroused me, and swept
     Its chords to the tale of her glories and wrongs,
     but weep{151} for the hour!--Life's summer is past,
  And the snow of its winter lies cold on my brow;
     And my soul, as it shrinks from each stroke of the blast,
  Cannot turn to a fire that glows inwardly now.


  No, its ashes are dead--and, alas! Love or Song
     No charm to Life's lengthening shadows can lend,
  Like a cup of old wine, rich, mellow, and strong,
     And a seat by the fire _tête-à-tête_ with a friend.


[Illustration: 164]



THE LAUREATE


    By A- T-.


  Who {152}would not be
  The Laureate bold,
           With his butt of sherry
           To keep him merry,
  And nothing to do but to pocket his gold?
  'Tis I {153}would be the Laureate bold!


  When the days are hot, and the sun is strong,
  I'd lounge in the gateway all the day long,
  With her Majesty's footmen in crimson and gold.
  I'd care not a pin for the waiting-lord;
  But I'd lie on my back on the smooth greensward
  With a straw in my mouth, and an open vest,
  And the cool wind blowing upon my breast,
  And I'd vacantly stare at the clear blue sky,
  And watch the clouds as listless as I,
             Lazily, lazily!


  And I'd pick the moss and daisies white,
  And chew their stalks with a nibbling bite;
  And I'd let my fancies roam abroad
  In search of a hint for a birthday ode,
             Crazily, crazily!


  Oh, that would be the life for me,
  With plenty to get and nothing to do,
  But to deck a pet poodle with ribbons of blue,
  And whistle all day to the Queen's cockatoo,
           Trance-somely, trance-somely!


  Then the chambermaids, that clean the rooms,
  Would come to the windows and rest on their brooms,
  With their saucy caps and their crisped hair,
  And they'd toss their heads in the fragrant air,
  And say {154}to each other--"Just look down there,
  At the nice young man, so tidy and small,
  Who is paid for writing on nothing at all,
          Handsomely, handsomely!"


  They would pelt me with matches and sweet pastilles,
  And crumpled-up halls of the royal hills,
  Giggling and laughing, and screaming with fun,
  As they'd see me start, with a leap and a run,
  From the broad of my back to the points of my toes,
  When a pellet of paper hit my nose,
          Teasingly, sneezingly.


  Then I'd fling them bunches of garden flowers,
  And hyacinths plucked from the Castle bowers;
  And I'd challenge them all to come down to me,
  And I'd kiss them all till they kissèd me,
         Laughingly, laughingly.


  Oh, would not that be a merry life,
  Apart from care and apart from strife,
  With the Laureate's wine, and the Laureate's pay,
  And no deductions at quarter-day?
  Oh, that would be the post for me!
  With {155}plenty to get and nothing to do,
  But to deck a pet poodle with ribbons of blue,
  And whistle a tune to the Queen's cockatoo,
  And scribble of verses remarkably few,
  And at evening empty a bottle or two,
          Quaffingly, quaffingly!


               'Tis I would be
  The Laureate bold,
             With my butt of sherry
             To keep me merry,
  And nothing to do but to pocket my gold!


A MIDNIGHT MEDITAION


                 By Sir E- B- L-.


  Fill me {156}once more the foaming pewter up!
      Another hoard of oysters, ladye mine!
  To-night Lucullus with himself shall sup.


  These Mute inglorious Miltons are divine!
      And as I here in slippered ease recline,
  Quaffing of Perkins's Entire my fill,
      I sigh not for the lymph of Aganippe's rill.


  A nobler inspiration fires my brain,
      Caught from Old England's fine time-hallowed drink;
  I snatch the pot again and yet again,
      And as the foaming fluids shrink and shrink,
      Fill me once more, I say, up to the brink!


  This makes strong hearts--strong heads attest its charm--
  This nerves the might that sleeps in Britain's brawny arm!


  But these remarks are neither here nor there.
      Where was I? Oh, I see--old Southey's dead!
  They'll want some bard to fill the vacant chair,
      And drain the annual butt--and oh, what head
      More fit with laurel to be garlanded
  Than {157}this, which, curled in many a fragrant coil,
  Breathes of Castalia's streams, and best Macassar oil?


  I know a grace is seated on my brow,
  Like young Apollo's with his golden beams--
  There should Apollo's bays be budding now:--
  And in my flashing eyes the radiance beams
  That marks the poet in his waking dreams,
  When, as his fancies cluster thick and thicker,
  He feels the trance divine of poesy and liquor.


  They throng around me now, those things of air,
  That from my fancy took their being's stamp:
  There Pelham sits and twirls his glossy hair,
  There Clifford leads his pals upon the tramp;
  There pale Zanoni, bending o'er his lamp,
  Roams through the starry wilderness of thought,
  Where all is everything, and everything is nought.


  Yes, I am he who sang how Aram won
  The gentle ear of pensive Madeline!
  How love and murder hand in hand may run,
  Cemented by philosophy serene,
  And kisses bless the spot where gore has been!
  Who {158}breathed the melting sentiment of crime,
  And for the assassin waked a sympathy sublime!


  Yes, I am he, who on the novel shed
      Obscure philosophy's enchanting light!
  Until the public, 'wildered as they read,
      Believed they saw that which was not in sight--
      Of course 'twas not for me to set them right;
  For in my nether heart convinced I am,
  Philosophy's as good as any other bam.


  Novels three-volumed I shall write no more--
      Somehow or other now they will not sell;
  And to invent new passions is a bore--
      I find the Magazines pay quite as well.
      Translating's simple, too, as I can tell,
  Who've hawked at Schiller on his lyric throne,
  And given the astonished bard a meaning all my own.


  Moore, Campbell, Wordsworth, their best days are grassed:
      Battered and broken are their early lyres,
  Rogers, a pleasant memory of the past,
      Warmed his young hands at Smithfield's martyr fires,
      And, worth a plum, nor bays nor butt desires.
  But these are tilings would suit me to the letter,
  For though the Stout is good, old Sherry's greatly better.
  A fico {159}for your small poetic ravers,
      Your Hunts, your Tennysons, your Milnes, and these!
  Shall they compete with him who wrote 'Maltravers,'
  Prologue to 'Alice or the Mysteries'?
  No! Even now my glance prophetic sees
  My own high brow girt with the bays about.


  What ho! within there, ho! another pint of Stout!


[Illustration: 171]



MONTGOMERY, A POEM.


  Like {162}one who, waking from a troublous dream,
  Pursues with force his meditative theme;
  Calm as the ocean in its halcyon still,
  Calm as the sunlight sleeping on the hill;


  Calm as at Ephesus great Paul was seen
  To rend his robes in agonies serene;
  Calm as the love that radiant Luther bore
  To all that lived behind him and before;


  Calm as meek Calvin, when, with holy smile,
  He sang the mass around Servetus' pile,--
  So once again I snatch this harp of mine,
  To breathe rich incense from a mystic shrine.


  Not now to whisper to the ambient air
  The sounds of Satan's Universal Prayer;
  Not now to sing, in sweet domestic strife
  That woman reigns the Angel of our life;


  But to proclaim the wish, with pious art,
  Which thrills through Britain's universal heart,--
  That on this brow, with native honours graced,
  The Laureate's chaplet should at length be placed.


  Fear {161}not, ye maids, who love to hear me speak;
  Let no desponding tears bedim your cheek!
  No gust of envy, no malicious scorn,
  Hath this poor heart of mine with frenzy torn.


  There are who move so far above the great,
  Their very look disarms the glance of hate;
  Their thoughts, more rich than emerald or gold,
  Enwrap them like the prophet's mantle's fold.


  Fear not for me, nor think that this our age,
  Blind though it be, hath yet no Archimage.
  I, who have bathed in bright Castalia's tide,
  By classic Isis and more classic Clyde;


  I, who have handled, in my lofty strain,
  All things divine, and many things profane;
  I, who have trod where seraphs fear to tread;
  I, who on mount-no, "honey-dew" have fed;


  I, who undaunted broke the mystic seal,
  And left no page for prophets to reveal;
  I, who in shade portentous Dante threw;
  I, who have done what Milton dared not do,--


  I fear no rival for the vacant throne;
  No mortal thunder shall eclipse my own!
  Let dark Macaulay chant his Roman lays,
  Let Monckton Milnes go maunder for the bays,


  Let Simmons call on great Napoleon's shade,
  Let Lytton Bulwer seek his Aram's aid,
  Let {162}Wordsworth, ask for help from Peter Bell,
  Let Campbell carol Copenhagen's knell,


  Let Delta warble through his Delphic groves,
  Let Elliott shout for pork and penny loaves,--
  I care not, I! resolved to stand or fall;
  One down, another on, I'll smash them all!


  Back, ye profane! this hand alone hath power
  To pluck the laurel from its sacred bower;
  This brow alone is privileged to wear
  The ancient wreath o'er hyacinthine hair;


  These lips alone may quaff the sparkling wine,
  And make its mortal juice once more divine.
  Back, ye profane! And thou, fair Queen, rejoice:
  A nation's praise shall consecrate thy choice.


  Thus, then, I kneel where Spenser knelt before,
  On the same spot, perchance, of Windsor's floor;
  And take, while awe-struck millions round me stand,
  The hallowed wreath from great Victoria's hand.



THE DEATH OF SPACE


[Why {163}has Satan's own Laureate never given to the world his
marvellous threnody on the "Death of Space"? Who knows where the bays
might have fallen, had he forwarded that mystic manuscript to the Home
Office? If un-wonted modesty withholds it from the public eye, the
public will pardon the boldness that tears from blushing obscurity the
following fragments of this unique poem.]


  Eternity shall raise her funeral-pile
  In the vast dungeon of the extinguished sky,
  And, clothed in dim barbaric splendour, smile,
  And murmur shouts of elegiac joy.


  While those that dwell beyond the realms of space,
  And those that people all that dreary void,
  When old Time's endless heir hath run his race,
  Shall live for aye, enjoying and enjoyed.


  And 'mid the agony of unsullied bliss,
  Her Demogorgon's doom shall Sin bewail,
  The undying serpent at the spheres shall hiss,
  And lash the empyrean with his tail.


  And {164}Hell, inflated with supernal wrath,
  Shall open wide her thunder-bolted jaws,
  And shout into the dull cold ear of Death,
  That he must pay his debt to Nature's laws.


  And when the King of Terrors breathes his last,
  Infinity shall creep into her shell,
  Cause and effect shall from their thrones be cast,
  And end their strife with suicidal yell:


  While from their ashes, burnt with pomp of kings,
  'Mid incense floating to the evanished skies,
  Nonentity, on circumambient wings,
  An everlasting Phoenix shall arise.


[Illustration: 177]



LITTLE JOHN AND THE RED FRIAR, A LAY OF SHERWOOD.



FYTTE THE FIRST.


  The {165}deer may leap within the glade;
  The fawns may follow free--
  For Robin is dead, and his bones are laid
  Beneath the greenwood tree.


  And {166}broken are his merry, merry men,
  That goodly companie:
  There's some have ta'en the northern road
  With Jem of Netherbee.


  The best and bravest of the band
  With Derby Ned are gone;
  But Earlie Gray and Charlie Wood,
  They stayed with Little John.


  Now Little John was an outlaw proud,
  A prouder ye never saw;
  Through Nottingham and Leicester shires
  He thought his word, was law,


  And he strutted through the greenwood wide,
  Like a pestilent jackdaw.
  He swore that none, but with leave of him,
  Should set foot on the turf so free:


  And he thought to spread his cutter's rule,
  All over the south countrie.
  "There's never a knave in the land," he said,
  "But shall pay his toll to me!"


  And Charlie Wood was a taxman good
  As ever stepped the ground,
  He levied mail, like a sturdy thief,
  From all the yeomen round.


  "Nay, stand!" quoth he, "thou shalt pay to me
  Seven pence from every pound!"


  Now word has come to Little John,
  As he lay upon the grass,
  That a Friar red was in merry Sherwood
  Without his leave to pass.


  "Come hither, come hither, my little foot-page!
  Ben Hawes, come tell to me,
  What manner of man is this burly frere
  Who walks the woods so free?"


  "My master good!" the little page said,
  "His name I wot not well,
  But he wears on his head a hat so red,
  With a monstrous scallop-shell.


  "He says he is Prior of Copmanshurst,
  And Bishop of London town,
  And he comes with a rope from our father the Pope,
  To put the outlaws down.


  "I saw {168}him ride but yester-tide,
  With his jolly chaplains three;
  And he swears that he has an open pass
  From Jem of Netherbee!"


  Little John has ta'en an arrow so broad,
  And broken it o'er his knee;
  "Now may I never strike doe again,
  But this wrong avenged shall be!


  "And has he dared, this greasy frere,
  To trespass in my bound,
  Nor asked for leave from Little John
  To range with hawk and hound?


  "And has he dared to take a pass
  From Jem of Netherbee,
  Forgetting that the Sherwood shaws
  Pertain of right to me?


  "O were he but a simple man,
  And not a slip-shod frere!
  I'd hang him up by his own waist-rope
  Above yon tangled brere.


  "O did {169}he come alone from Jem,
  And not from our father the Pope,
  I'd bring him in to Copmanshurst,
  With the noose of a hempen rope!


  "But since he has come from our father the Pope,
  And sailed across the sea,
  And since he has power to bind and loose,
  His life is safe for me;
  But a heavy penance he shall do
  Beneath the greenwood tree!"


  "O tarry yet!" quoth Charlie Wood.
  "O tarry, master mine!
  It's ill to shear a yearling hog,
  Or twist the wool of swine!


  "It's ill to make a bonny silk purse
  From the ear of a bristly boar;
  It's ill to provoke a shaveling's curse,
  When the way lies him before.


  "I've walked the forest for twenty years,
  In wet weather and dry,
  And {170}never stopped a good fellowe,
  "Who had no coin to buy.


  "What boots it to search a beggarman's bags,
  When no silver groat he has?
  So, master mine, I rede you well,
  E'en let the Friar pass!"


  "Now cease thy prate," quoth Little John,
  "Thou japest but in vain;
  An he have not a groat within his pouch,
  We may find a silver chain.


  "But were he as bare as a new-flayed buck,
  As truly he may be,
  He shall not tread the Sherwood shaws
  Without the leave of me!"


  Little John has taken his arrows and bow,
  His sword and buckler strong,
  And lifted up his quarter-staff,
  Was full three cloth yards long.


  And he has left his merry men
  At the trysting-tree behind,
  And {171}gone into the gay greenwood,
  This burly frere to find.


  O'er holt and hill, through brake and brere,
  He took his way alone--
  Now, Lordlings, list and you shall hear
  This geste of Little John.



FYTTE THE SECOND-


  'Tis merry, 'tis merry in gay greenwood,
      When the little birds are singing,
  When the buck is belling in the fern,
      And the hare from the thicket springing!


  'Tis merry to hear the waters clear,
      As they splash in the pebbly fall;
  And the ouzel whistling to his mate,
      As he lights on the stones so small.


  But small pleasaunce took Little John
     In all he heard and saw;
  Till he reached the cave of a hermit old
      Who wonned within the shaw.


  "_Ora pro nobis!_" quoth {172}Little John--
      His Latin was somewhat rude--
  "Now, holy father, hast thou seen
      A frere within the wood?


  "By his scarlet hose, and his ruddy nose,
      I guess you may know him well;
  And he wears on his head a hat so red,
      And a monstrous scallop-shell."


  "I have served Saint Pancras," the hermit said,
      "In this cell for thirty year,
  Yet never saw I, in the forest bounds,
      The face of such a frere!


  "An' if ye find him, master mine,
      E'en take an old man's advice,
  An' raddle him well, till he roar again,
      Lest ye fail to meet him twice!"


  "Trust me for that!" quoth Little John--
      "Trust me for that!" quoth he, with a laugh;
  "There never was man of woman born,
      That asked twice for the taste of my quarter-
           staff!"


  Then {173}Little John, he strutted on,
      Till he came to an open bound,
  And he was aware of a Red Friar,
      Was sitting upon the ground.


  His shoulders they were broad and strong,
      And large was he of limb;
  Few yeomen in the north countrie
      Would care to mell with him.


  He heard the rustling of the boughs,
      As Little John drew near;
  But never a single word he spoke,
      Of welcome or of cheer:
  Less stir he made than a pedlar would
      For a small gnat in his ear!


  I like not his looks! thought Little John,
      Nor his staff of the oaken tree.
  Now may our Lady be my help,
      Else beaten I well may be!


  "What dost thou here, thou strong Friar,
      In Sherwood's merry round,
  Without the leave of Little John,
      To range with hawk and hound?"


  "Small {174}thought have I," quoth the Red Friar,
      "Of any leave, I trow;
  That Little John is an outlawed thief,
      And so, I ween, art thou!


  "Know, I am Prior of Copmanshurst,
      And Bishop of London town,
  And I bring a rope from our father the Pope,
      To put the outlaws down."


  Then out spoke Little John in wrath,
      "I tell thee, burly frere,
  The Pope may do as he likes at home,
      But he sends no Bishops here!


  "Up, and away, Red Friar!" he said,
      "Up, and away, right speedilie;
  An it were not for that cowl of thine,
      Avenged on thy body I would be!"


  "Nay, heed not that," said the Red Friar,
      "And let my cowl no hindrance be;
  I warrant that I can give as good
      As ever I think to take from thee!"


  Little {175}John he raised his quarter-staff,
      And so did the burly priest,
  And they fought beneath the greenwood tree
      A stricken hour at least.


  But Little John was weak of fence,
      And his strength began to fail;
  Whilst the Friar's blows came thundering down,
      Like the strokes of a threshing-flail.


  "Now hold thy hand, thou stalwart Friar,
      Now rest beneath the thorn,
  Until I gather breath enow,
      For a blast at my bugle-horn!"


  "I'll hold my hand," the Friar said,
      "Since that is your propine,
  But, an you sound your bugle-horn,
      I'll even blow on mine!"


  Little John he wound a blast so shrill
      'That it rang o'er rock and linn,
  And Charlie Wood, and his merry men all,
       Came lightly bounding in.


  The Friar {176}he wound a blast so strong
      That it shook both bush and tree,
  And to his side came witless Will,
      And Jem of Netherbee;
  With all the worst of Robin's band,
      And many a Rapparee!


  Little John he wist not what to do,
      When he saw the others come;
  So he twisted his quarter-staff between
      His fingers and his thumb.


  "There's some mistake, good Friar!" he said,
      "There's some mistake 'twixt thee and me
  I know thou art Prior of Copmanshurst,
      But not beneath the greenwood tree.


  "And if you will take some other name,
      You shall have ample leave to bide;
  With pasture also for your Bulls,
      And power to range the forest wide."


  "There's no mistake!" the Friar said;
      "I'll call myself just what I please.
  My doctrine is that chalk is chalk,
      And cheese is nothing else than cheese."


  "So be it, {177}then!" quoth Little John;
     "But surely you will not object,
  If I and all my merry men
     Should treat you with reserved respect?


[Illustration: 189]


  "We {178}can't call you Prior of Copmanshurst,
      Nor Bishop of London town,
  Nor on the grass, as you chance to pass,
      Can we very well kneel down.


  "But you'll send the Pope my compliments,
     And say, as a further hint,
  That, within the Sherwood bounds, you saw
     Little John, who is the son-in-law
     Of his friend, old Mat-o'-the-Mint!"


  So ends this geste of Little John--
     God save our noble Queen!
  But, Lordlings, say--Is Sherwood now
     What Sherwood once hath been?


[Illustration: 191]



THE RHYME OF SIR LAUNCELOT BOGLE.


A LEGEND OF GLASGOW.


  There's {179}a pleasant place of rest, near a City of the West,
      Where its bravest and its best find their grave.
  Below {180}the willows weep, and their hoary branches steep
      In the waters still and deep,
                              Not a wave!


  And the old Cathedral Wall, so scathed and grey and tall.
      Like a priest surveying all, stands beyond;
  And the ringing of its bell, when the ringers ring it well,
      Makes a kind of tidal swell
                              On the pond!


  And there it was I lay, on a beauteous summer's day,
     With the odour of the hay floating by;
  And I heard the blackbirds sing, and the bells demurely ring,
     Chime by chime, ting by ting,
                             Droppingly.


  Then my thoughts went wandering back, on a very beaten
           track,
     To the confine deep and black of the tomb;
  And I wondered who he was, that is laid beneath the
          grass,
     Where the dandelion has
                              Such a bloom.


  Then I {181}straightway did espy, with my slantly-sloping eye,
      A carvèd stone hard by, somewhat worn;
  And I read in letters cold


==> See Page Scan


     Here the letters failed outright, but I knew
  That a stout crusading lord, who had crossed the Jordan's
  ford,
     Lay there beneath the sward,
                            Wet with dew.


  Time and tide they passed away, on that pleasant summer's
           day,
     And around me, as I lay, all grew old:
  Sank the chimneys from the town, and the clouds of vapour
  brown
  No longer, like a crown,
                                   O'er it rolled.


  Sank the great Saint Rollox stalk, like a pile of dingy chalk;
     Disappeared the cypress walk, and the flowers;
  And a donjon-keep arose, that might baffle any foes,
     With its men-at-arms in rows,
                              On the towers.


  And the {182}flag that flaunted there showed the grim and
            grizzly bear,
  Which the Bogles always wear for their crest.
  And I heard the warder call, as he stood upon the wall,
      "Wake ye up! my comrades all,
                               From your rest!


  "For, by the blessed rood, there's a glimpse of armour
           good
  In the deep Cowcaddens wood, o'er the stream;
  And I hear the stifled hum of a multitude that come,
      Though they have not beat the drum,
                               It would seem!


  "Go tell it to my Lord, lest he wish to man the ford
      With partisan and sword, just beneath;
  Ho, Gilkison and Nares! Ho, Provan of Cowlairs!
     We'll back the bonny bears
                              To the death!"


  To the tower above the moat, like one who heedeth not,
  Came the bold Sir Launcelot, half undressed;
  On the outer rim he stood, and peered into the wood,
      With his arms across him glued
                                On his breast.


  And {183}he muttered, "Foe accurst! hast thou dared to seek
            me first?
  George of Gorbals, do thy worst--for I swear,
  O'er thy gory corpse to ride, ere thy sister and my bride,
     From my undissevered side
                                Thou shalt tear!


  "Ho, herald mine, Brownlee! ride forth, I pray, and see,
  Who, what, and whence is he, foe or friend!
  Sir Roderick Dalgleish, and my foster-brother Neish,
      With his bloodhounds in the leash,
                                Shall attend."


  Forth went the herald stout, o'er the drawbridge and
          without,
      Then a wild and savage shout rose amain,
  Six arrows sped their force, and, a pale and bleeding corse,
      He sank from off his horse
                                On the plain!


  Back drew the bold Dalgleish, back started stalwart Neish,
      With his bloodhounds in the leash, from Brownlee.
  "Now shame be to the sword that made thee knight and
           lord,
      Thou caitiff thrice abhorred,
                              Shame on thee!


  "Ho, {184}bowmen, bend your bows! Discharge upon the
           foes
     Forthwith no end of those heavy bolts.
  Three angels to the brave who finds the foe a grave,
     And a gallows for the slave
                              Who revolts!"


  Ten days the combat lasted; but the bold defenders
          fasted,
      While the foemen, better pastied, fed their host;
  You might hear the savage cheers of the hungry Gorbaliers,
      As at night they dressed the steers
                                 For the roast.


  And Sir Launcelot grew thin, and Provan's double chin
     Showed sundry folds of skin down beneath;
  In silence and in grief found Gilkison relief,
     Nor did Neish the spell-word, beef,
                                Dare to breathe.


  To the ramparts Edith came, that fair and youthful dame,
      With the rosy evening flame on her face.
  She sighed, and looked around on the soldiers on the ground,
      Who but little penance found,
                                 Saying grace!


  And {185}she said unto her lord, as he leaned upon his sword,
      "One short and little word may I speak?
  I cannot bear to view those eyes so ghastly blue,
      Or mark the sallow hue
                               Of thy cheek!


  "I know the rage and wrath that my furious brother hath
     Is less against us both than at me.
  Then, dearest, let me go, to find among the foe
     An arrow from the bow,
                                Like Brownlee!"


  "I would soil my father's name, I would lose my treasured
            fame,
     Ladye mine, should such a shame on me light:
  While I wear a belted brand, together still we stand,
     Heart to heart, hand in hand!"
                               Said the knight.


  "All our chances are not lost, as your brother and his
           host
      Shall discover to their cost rather hard!
  Ho, Provan! take this key--hoist up the Malvoisie,
      And heap it, d'ye see,
                               In the yard.


  "Of {186}usquebaugh and rum, you will find, I reckon, some,
      Besides the beer and mum, extra stout;
  Go straightway to your tasks, and roll me all the casks,
     As also range the flasks,
                               Just without.


  "If I know the Gorbaliers, they are sure to dip their ears
      In the very inmost tiers of the drink.
  Let them win the outer court, and hold it for their sport,
     Since their time is rather short,
                                 I should think!"


  With a loud triumphant yell, as the heavy drawbridge fell,
     Rushed the Gorbaliers pell-mell, wild as Druids;
  Mad with thirst for human gore, how they threatened and
           they swore,
     Till they stumbled on the floor,
                                  O'er the fluids.


  Down their weapons then they threw, and each savage
           soldier drew
  From his belt an iron screw, in his fist;
  George of Gorbals found it vain their excitement to re-
           strain,
     And indeed was rather fain
                                  To assist.


  With a beaker in his hand, in the midst he took his stand,
     And silence did command, all below--
  "Ho! Launcelot the bold, ere thy lips are icy cold,
     In the centre of thy hold,
                             Pledge me now!


  "Art surly, brother mine? In this cup of rosy wine,
      I drink to the decline of thy race!
  Thy proud career is done, thy sand is nearly run,
     Never more shall setting sun
                                 Gild thy face!


  "The pilgrim, in amaze, shall see a goodly blaze,
     Ere the pallid morning rays flicker up;
  And perchance he may espy certain corpses swinging
          high!
     What, brother! art thou dry?
                                      Fill my cup!"


  Dumb as death stood Launcelot, as though he heard him
           not,
     But his bosom Provan smote, and he swore:
  And Sir Roderick Dalgleish remarked aside to Neish,
     "Never sure did thirsty fish
                          Swallow more!


  "Thirty {188}casks are nearly done, yet the revel's scarce
            begun;
     It were knightly sport and fun to strike in!"
  "Nay, tarry till they come," quoth Neish, "unto the
          rum--
     They are working at the mum,
                               And the gin!"


  Then straight there did appear to each gallant Gorbalier
     Twenty castles dancing near, all around;
  The solid earth did shake, and the stones beneath them
           quake,
     And sinuous as a snake
                             Moved the ground.


  Why and wherefore they had come, seemed intricate to
           some,
     But all agreed the rum was divine.
  And they looked with bitter scorn on their leader highly
           born,
     Who preferred to fill his horn
                              Up with wine!


  Then said Launcelot the tall, "Bring the chargers from
           their stall;
     Lead them straight unto the hall, down below:
  Draw {189}your weapons from your side, fling the gates asunder
            wide,
     And together we shall ride
                                On the foe!"


  Then Provan knew full well, as he leaped into his selle,
     That few would 'scape to tell how they fared;
  And Gilkison and Nares, both mounted on their mares,
     Looked terrible as bears,
                               All prepared.


  With his bloodhounds in the leash, stood the iron-sinewed
           Neish,
      And the falchion of Dalgleish glittered bright--
  "Now, wake the trumpet's blast; and, comrades, follow
           fast;
     Smite them down unto the last!"
                               Cried the knight.


  In the cumbered yard without, there was shriek, and yell,
           and shout,
     As the warriors wheeled about, all in mail.
  On the miserable kerne fell the death-strokes stiff and stern,
      As the deer treads down the fern,
                                 In the vale!


  Saint {190}Mungo be my guide! It was goodly in that tide
     To see the Bogle ride in his haste;
  He accompanied each blow with a cry of "Ha!" or
          "Ho!"
     And always cleft the foe
                                To the waist.


  "George of Gorbals--craven lord! thou didst threat me
           with the cord;
     Come forth and brave my sword, if you dare!"
  But he met with no reply, and never could descry
     The glitter of his eye
                           Anywhere.


  Ere the dawn of morning shone, all the Gorbaliers were
           down,
     Like a field of barley mown in the ear:
  It had done a soldier good to see how Provan stood,
     With Neish all bathed in blood,
                               Panting near.


  "Now ply ye to your tasks--go carry down those casks,
     And place the empty flasks on the floor;
  George of Gorbals scarce will come, with trumpet and
           with drum,
     To taste our beer and rum
                               Any more!"


  So {191}they plied them to their tasks, and they carried down
            the casks,
      And replaced the empty flasks on the floor;
  But pallid for a week was the cellar-master's cheek,.
     For he swore he heard a shriek
                              Through the door.


  When the merry Christmas came, and the Yule-log lent
           its flame
      To the face of squire and dame in the hall,
  The cellarer went down to tap October brown,
     Which was rather of renown
                               'Mongst them all.


  He placed the spigot low, and gave the cask a blow,
      But his liquor would not flow through the pin.
  "Sure, 'tis sweet as honeysuckles!" so he rapped it with
            his knuckles,
      But a sound, as if of buckles,
                               Clashed within.


  "Bring a hatchet, varlets, here!" and they cleft the cask
            of beer:
      What a spectacle of fear met their sight!
  There George of Gorbals lay, skull and bones all blanched
            and grey,
     In the arms he bore the day
                                   Of the fight!


  I have {192}sung this ancient tale, not, I trust, without avail,
      Though the moral ye may fail to perceive;
  Sir Launcelot is dust, and his gallant sword is rust,
     And now, I think, I must
                              Take my leave!


[Illustration: 204]


[Illustration: 205]



THE LAY OF THE LOVER'S FRIEND


   [Air--"The days we went a-gypsying."]


   I {193}would all womankind were dead,
   Or banished o'er the sea;
   For they have been a bitter plague
   These last six weeks to me:
   It is not that I'm touched myself,
   For that I do not fear;
   No {194}female face has shown me grace
                 For many a bygone year.
   But 'tis the most infernal bore,
   Of all the bores I know,
        To have a friend who's lost his heart
                       A short time ago.


  Whene'er we steam it to Black wall,
        Or down to Greenwich run,
  To quaff the pleasant cider-cup,
        And feed on fish and fun;
  Or climb the slopes of Richmond Hill,
              To catch a breath of air:
  Then, for my sins, he straight begins
         To rave about his fair.
  Oh, 'tis the most tremendous bore,
  Of all the bores I know,
       To have a friend who's lost his heart
                       A short time ago.


  In vain you pour into his ear
              Your own confiding grief;
  In vain you claim his sympathy,
         In vain you ask relief;
  In vain you try to rouse him by
         Joke, repartee, or quiz;
  His {195}sole reply's a burning sigh,
  And "What a mind it is!"
  O Lord! it is the greatest bore,
  Of all the bores I know,
         To have a friend who's lost his heart
             A short time ago.


  I've heard her thoroughly described
  A hundred times, I'm sure;
  And all the while I've tried to smile,
  And patiently endure;
  He waxes strong upon his pangs,
  And potters o'er his grog;
  And still I say, in a playful way--
         "Why, you're a lucky dog!"
         But oh! it is the heaviest bore,
  Of all the bores I know,
         To have a friend who's lost his heart
             A short time ago.


  I really wish he'd do like me,
     When I was young and strong;
  I formed a passion every week,
  But never kept it long.
  But he has not the sportive mood
  That always rescued me,
  And {196}so I would all women could
  Be banished o'er the sea.
         For 'tis the most egregious bore,
  Of all the bores I know,
         To have a friend who's lost his heart
             A short time ago.


[Illustration: 209]



FRANCESCA DA RIMINI



TO BON GAULTIER.


[Argument.--An {197}impassioned pupil of Leigh Hunt, having met Bon
Gaultier at a Fancy Ball, declares the destructive consequences thus.]


  Didst thou not praise me, Gaultier, at the hall,
  Ripe lips, trim boddice, and a waist so small,
      With clipsome lightness, dwindling ever less,
      Beneath the robe of pea-y greeniness?


  Dost thou remember, when, with stately prance,
  Our heads went crosswise in the country-dance;
  How {198}soft, warm fingers, tipped like "buds of balm,
  Trembled within the squeezing of thy palm;
  And how a cheek grew flushed and peachy-wise
  At the frank lifting of thy cordial eyes?


  Ah, me! that night there was one gentle thing,
  Who, like a dove, with its scarce feathered wing,
  Fluttered at the approach of thy quaint swaggering!


  There's wont to be, at conscious times like these,
  An affectation of a bright-eyed ease,--
  A crispy cheekiness, if so I dare
  Describe the swaling of a jaunty air;


  And thus, when swirling from the waltz's wheel,
  You craved my hand to grace the next quadrille,
  That smiling voice, although it made me start,
  Boiled in the meek o'erlifting of my heart;.
  And, picking at my flowers, I said, with free
  And usual tone, "O yes, sir, certainly!"


  Like one that swoons, 'twixt sweet amaze and fear,
  I heard the music burning in my ear,
  And felt I cared not, so thou wert with me,
  If Gurth or Wamba were our vis-à-vis.


  So, when a tall Knight Templar ringing came,
  And took his place amongst us with his dame,
  I neither turned away, nor bashful shrunk
  From the stern survey of the soldier-monk,
  Though, {199}rather more than three full quarters drunk;
  But, threading through the figure, first in rule,
  I paused to see thee plunge into La Poule.


  Ah, what a sight was that! Not prurient Mars,
  Pointing his toe through ten celestial bars--
  Not young Apollo, beamily arrayed
  In tripsome guise for Juno's masquerade--


  Not smartest Hermes, with his pinion girth,
  Jerking with freaks and snatches down to earth,
  Looked half so bold, so beautiful, and strong,
  As thou, when pranking through the glittering throng!
  How the calmed ladies looked with eyes of love
  On thy trim velvet doublet laced above;
  The hem of gold, that, like a wavy river,
  Flowed down into thy back with glancing shiver!
  So bare was thy fine throat, and curls of black,
  So lightsomely dropped in thy lordly back,
  So crisply swaled the feather in thy bonnet,
  So glanced thy thigh, and spanning palm upon it,
  That my weak soul took instant flight to thee,
  Lost in the fondest gush of that sweet witchery!


  But when the dance was o'er, and arm in arm
  (The full heart beating 'gainst the elbow warm)
  We passed into the great refreshment-hall,
  Where the heaped cheese-cakes and the comfits small
  Lay, {200}like a hive of sunbeams, brought to burn
  Around the margin of the negus urn;
  When my poor quivering hand you fingered twice,
  And, with inquiring accents, whispered "Ice,
  Water, or cream?" I could no more dissemble,
  But dropped upon the couch all in a tremble.
  A swimming faintness misted o'er my brain,
  The corks seemed starting from the brisk champagne,
  The custards fell untouched upon the floor,
  Thine eyes met mine. That night we danced no more!


[Illustration: 212]


[Illustration: 213]



THE CADI'S DAUGHTER, A LEGEND OF THE BOSPHORUS.


  How {201}beauteous is the star of night
     Within the eastern skies,
  Like the twinkling glance of the Toorkman's lance,
     Or the antelope's azure eyes!


  A lamp of love in the heaven above,
     That star is fondly streaming;
  And the gay kiosk and the shadowy mosque
     In the Golden Horn are gleaming.


  Young {202}Leila sits in her jasmine bower,
     And she hears the bulbul sing,'
  As it thrills its throat to the first full note,
     That anthems the flowery spring.


  She gazes still, as a maiden will,
     On that beauteous eastern star:
  You might see the throb of her bosom's sob
     Beneath the white cymar!


  She thinks of him who is far away,--
     Her own brave Galiongee,--
  Where the billows foam and the breezes roam,
     On the wild Carpathian sea.


  She thinks of the oath that bound them both
     Beside the stormy water;
  And the words of love, that in Athens' grove
     He spake to the Cadi's daughter.


  "My Selim!" thus the maiden said,
     "Though severed thus we be,
  By the raging deep and the mountain steep,
     My soul still yearns to thee.


  Thy form so dear is mirrored here
     In my heart's pellucid well,
  As the rose looks up to Phingari's orb,
     Or the moth to the gay gazelle.


  "I think {203}of the time when the Kaftan's crime
     Our love's young joys o'ertook,
  And thy name still floats in the plaintive notes
     Of my silver-toned chibouque.


  Thy hand is red with the blood it has shed,
     Thy soul it is heavy laden;
  Yet come, my Giaour, to thy Leila's bower;
     Oh, come to thy Turkish maiden!"


  A light step trod on the dewy sod,
     And a voice was in her ear,
  And an arm embraced young Leila's waist--
     "Beloved! I am here!"


  Like the phantom form that rules the storm,
     Appeared the pirate lover,
  And his fiery eye was like Zatanai,
     As he fondly bent above her.


  "Speak, Leila, speak; for my light caïque
     Rides proudly in yonder bay;
  I have come from my rest to her I love best,
     To carry thee, love, away.


  The breast of thy lover shall shield thee, and cover
     My own jemscheed from harm;
  Think'st thou I fear the dark vizier,
     Or the mufti's vengeful arm?


  "Then droop not, love, nor turn away
     From this rude hand of mine!
  And Leila looked in her lover's eyes,
     And murmured--"I am thine!"


  But a gloomy man with a yataghan
     Stole through the acacia-blossoms,
  And the thrust he made with his gleaming blade
     Hath pierced through both their bosoms.


  "There! there! thou cursed caitiff Giaour!
     There, there, thou false one, lie!"
  Remorseless Hassan stands above,
     And he smiles to see them die.


  They sleep beneath the fresh green turf.
     The lover and the lady--
  And the maidens wail to hear the tale
     Of the daughter of the Cadi!


[Illustration:  216]



THE DIRGE OF THE DRINKER


  Brothers, {205}spare awhile your liquor, lay your final tumbler
          down;
  He has dropped--that star of honour--on the field of his
         renown!
  Raise the wail, but raise it softly, lowly bending on your
         knees,
  If you find it more convenient, you may hiccup if you
         please.


  Sons of Pantagruel, gently let your hip-hurrahing sink,
  Be your manly accents clouded, half with sorrow, half
         with drink!
  Lightly to the sofa pillow lift his head from off the floor;
  See, how calm he sleeps, unconscious as the deadest nail
         in door!


  Widely o'er the earth I've wandered; where the drink
         most freely flowed,
  I have ever reeled the foremost, foremost to the beaker
         strode.
  Deep in shady Cider Cellars I have dreamed o'er heavy wet,
  By the fountains of Damascus I have quaffed the rich
        sherbet,


  Regal {206}Montepulciano drained beneath its native rock,
  On Johannis' sunny mountain frequent hiccuped o'er my
        hock;
  I have bathed in butts of Xeres deeper than did e'er
        Monsoon,
  Sangaree'd with bearded Tartars in the Mountains of the
         Moon;


  In beer-swilling Copenhagen I have drunk your Danesman
         blind,
  I have kept my feet in Jena, when each bursch to earth
         declined;
  Glass for glass, in fierce Jamaica, I have shared the plant-
         er's rum,
  Drunk with Highland dhuiné-wassails, till each gibbering
         Gael grew dumb;


  But a stouter, bolder drinker--one that loved his liquor
         more--
  Never yet did I encounter than our friend upon the floor!
  Yet the best of us are mortal, we to weakness all are
        heir,
  He has fallen who rarely staggered--let the rest of us
         beware!


  We shall leave him as we found him,--lying where his
        manhood fell,
  'Mong the trophies of the revel, for he took his tipple well.
  Better 'twere we loosed his neckcloth, laid his throat and
         bosom bare,
  Pulled his {207}Hobies off, and turned his toes to taste the
          breezy air.


  Throw the sofa-cover o'er him, dim the flaring of the gas,
  Calmly, calmly let him slumber, and, as by the bar we
         pass,
  We shall bid that thoughtful waiter place beside him, near
         and handy,
  Large supplies of soda-water, tumblers bottomed well with
         brandy,


  So, when waking, he shall drain them, with that deathless
         thirst of his,--
  Clinging to the hand that smote him, like a good 'un as
         he is!



THE DEATH OF DUBAL


By W- H-- A-TH, Esq.


["Methinks {208}I see him already in the cart, sweeter and more lovely
than the nosegay in his hand! I hear the crowd extolling his resolution
and intrepidity! What volleys of sighs are sent from the windows of
Holbom, that so comely a youth should be brought to disgrace! I see him
at the tree! the whole circle are in tears! even butchers weep!"--
Beggars' Opera.]


  A living sea of eager human faces,
  A thousand bosoms throbbing all as one,
  Walls, windows, balconies, all sorts of places,
  Holding their crowds of gazers to the sun:
     Through the hushed groups low-buzzing murmurs run;
  And on the air, with slow reluctant swell,
  Comes the dull funeral-boom of old Sepulchre's bell.


  Oh, joy in London now! in festal measure
  Be spent the evening of this festive day!
  For thee is opening now a high-strung pleasure;
     Now, even now, in yonder press-yard they
     Strike from his limbs the fetters loose away!
  A little while, and he, the brave Duval,
  Will issue forth, serene, to glad and greet you all.
  "Why comes he not? say, wherefore doth he tarry?"
  Starts the inquiry loud from every tongue.


  "Surely," they cry, "that tedious Ordinary
     His tedious psalms must long ere this have sung,--
     Tedious to him that's waiting to be hung!"
  But hark! old Newgate's doors fly wide apart.
  "He comes, he comes!" A thrill shoots through each
        gazer's heart.


  Joined in the stunning cry ten thousand voices,
  All Smithfield answered to the loud acclaim.
  "He comes, he comes!" and every breast rejoices,
     As down Snow Hill the shout tumultuous came,
     Bearing to Holborn's crowd the welcome fame.
  "He comes, he comes!" and each holds back his breath--
  Some ribs are broke, and some few scores are crushed to
         death.


  With step majestic to the cart advances
     The dauntless Claude, and springs into his seat.
  He feels that on him now are fixed the glances
  Of many a Briton bold and maiden sweet,
  Whose hearts responsive to his glories beat.


  In him the honour of "The Road" is centred,
  And all the hero's fire into his bosom entered.
  His {210}was the transport--his the exultation
      Of Rome's great generals, when from afar,
  Up to the Capitol in the ovation,
     They bore with them, in the triumphal car,
     Rich gold and gems, the spoils of foreign war.
  _Io Triumphe!_ They forgot their clay.


  E'en so Duval, who rode in glory on his way,
  His laced cravat, his kids of purest yellow,
     The many-tinted nosegay in his hand,
  His large black eyes, so fiery, yet so mellow,
     Like the old vintages of Spanish land,
     Locks clustering o'er a brow of high command,
  Subdue all hearts; and, as up Holborn's steep
  Toils the slow car of death, e'en cruel butchers weep.


  He saw it, but he heeded not. His story,
     He knew, was graven on the page of Time.
  Tyburn to him was as a field of glory,
     Where he must stoop to death his head sublime,
     Hymned in full many an elegiac rhyme.
  He left his deeds behind him, and his name--
  For he, like Cæsar, had lived long enough for fame.


  He quailed not, save when, as he raised the chalice,--
      St Giles's bowl,--filled with the mildest ale,
  To pledge {211}the crowd, on her--his beauteous Alice--
  His eye alighted, and his cheek grew pale.
      She, whose sweet breath was like the spicy gale,
  She, whom he fondly deemed his own dear girl,
  Stood with a tall dragoon, drinking long draughts of
         purl.


  He bit his lip--it quivered but a moment--
      Then passed his hand across his flushing brows:
  He could have spared so forcible a comment
  Upon the constancy of woman's vows.


  One short sharp pang his hero-soul allows;
  But in the bowl he drowned the stinging pain,
  And on his pilgrim course went calmly forth again.


  A princely group of England's noble daughters
  Stood in a balcony suffused with grief,
  Diffusing fragrance round them, of strong waters,
  And waving many a snowy handkerchief;
    Then glowed the prince of highwayman and thief!
  His soul was touched with a seraphic gleam--
  That woman could be false was but a mocking dream.


  And now, his bright career of triumph ended,
  His chariot stood beneath the triple tree.
  The law's {212}grim finisher to its boughs ascended,
     And fixed the hempen bandages, while he
     Bowed to the throng, then bade the car go free.
  The car rolled on, and left him dangling there,
  Like famed Mohammed's tomb, uphung midway in air.


  As droops the cup of the surchargèd lily
  Beneath the buffets of the surly storm,
  Or the soft petals of the daffodilly,
     When Sirius is uncomfortably warm,
     So drooped his head upon his manly form,
  While floated in the breeze his tresses brown.
  He hung the stated time, and then they cut him down.


  With soft and tender care the trainbands bore him,
     Just as they found him, nightcap, robe, and all,
  And placed this neat though plain inscription o'er him,
     Among the atomies in Surgeons' Hall:
     "_These are the Bones of the Renowned Duval!_"
  There still they tell us, from their glassy case,
  He was the last, the best of all that noble race!


[Illustration: 225]



EASTERN SERENADE


  The minarets {213}wave on the plain of Stamboul,
  And the breeze of the evening blows freshly and cool;
  The voice of the musnud is heard from the west,
  And kaftan and kalpac have gone to their rest.


  The notes of the kislar re-echo no more,
  And the waves of Al Sirat fall light on the shore.
  'Where art thou, my beauty; where art thou, my bride?
  Oh, come and repose by thy dragoman's side!


  I wait {214}for thee still by the flowery tophaik--
  I have broken my Eblis for Zuleima's sake.
  But the heart that adores thee is faithful and true,
  Though it beats 'neath the folds of a Greek Allah-hu!


  Oh, wake thee, my dearest! the muftis are still,
  And the tschocadars sleep on the Franguestan hill;
  No sullen aleikoum--no derveesh is here,
  And the mosques are all watching by lonely Kashmere!


  Oh, come in the gush of thy beauty so full,
  I have waited for thee, my adored attar-gul!
  I see thee--I hear thee--thy antelope foot
  Treads lightly and soft on the velvet cheroot;


  The jewelled amaun of thy zemzem is bare,
  And the folds of thy palampore wave in the air.
  Come, rest on the bosom that loves thee so well,
  My dove! my phingari! my gentle gazelle!


  Nay, tremble not, dearest! I feel thy heart throb,
  'Neath the sheltering shroud of thy snowy kiebaub;
  Lo, there shines Muezzin, the beautiful star!
  Thy lover is with thee, and danger afar:


  Say, is it the glance of the haughty vizier,
  Or the bark of the distant effendi, you fear?
  Oh, swift {215}fly the hours in the garden of bliss!
  And sweeter than balm of Gehenna thy kiss!


  Wherever I wander--wherever I roam,
  My spirit flies back to its beautiful home;
  It dwells by the lake of the limpid Stamboul,
  With thee, my adored one! my own attar-gul!


[Illustration: 227]



DAME FREDEGONDE


  When {216}folks, with headstrong passion blind,
  To play the fool make up their mind,
  They're sure to come with phrases nice,
  And modest air, for your advice.


  But as a truth unfailing make it,
  They ask, but never mean to take it.
  'Tis not advice they want, in fact,
  But confirmation in their act.


  Now mark what did, in such a case,
  A worthy priest who knew the race.


  A dame more buxom, blithe, and free,
  Than Fredegonde you scarce would see.
  So smart her dress, so trim her shape,
  N e'er hostess offered juice of grape,


  Could {217}for her trade wish better sign;
  Her looks gave flavour to her wine,
  And each guest feels it, as he sips,
  Smack of the ruby of her lips.


  A smile for all, a welcome glad,--
  A jovial coaxing way she had;
  And,--what was more her fate than blame,--
  A nine months' widow was our dame.


  But toil was hard, for trade was good,
  And gallants sometimes will be rude.
  "And what can a lone woman do?
  The nights are long and eerie too.


  Now, Guillot there's a likely man,
  None better draws or taps a can;
  He's just the man, I think, to suit,
  If I could bring my courage to't."


  With thoughts like these her mind is crossed:
  The dame, they say, who doubts, is lost.
  "But then the risk? I'll beg a slice
  Of Father Raulin's good advice."


  Prankt in her best, with looks demure,
  She seeks the priest; and, to be sure,
  Asks if he thinks she ought to wed:
  "With such a business on my head,
  I'm {218}worried off my legs with care,
  And need some help to keep things square.


  I've thought of Guillot, truth to tell!
  He's steady, knows his business well.
  What do you think?" When thus he met her:
  "Oh, take him, dear, you can't do better!"


  "But then the danger, my good pastor,
  If of the man I make the master.
  There is no trusting to these men."


  "Well, well, my dear, don't have him, then!"
  "But help I must have; there's the curse.
  I may go farther and fare worse."


  "Why, take him, then!"


"But if he should
  Turn out a thankless ne'er-do-good--
  In drink and riot waste my all,
  And rout me out of house and hall?"


  "Don't have him, then! But I've a plan
  To clear your doubts, if any can.


  The bells a peal are ringing,--hark!
  Go straight, and what they tell you mark.
  If they say 'Yes!' wed, and be blest--
  If 'No,' why--do as you think best."


  The bells rang out a triple bob:
  Oh, how our widow's heart did throb,
  As {219}thus she heard their burden go,
  "Marry, mar-marry, mar-Guillot!"


  Bells were not then left to hang idle:
  A week,--and they rang for her bridal.


  But, woe the while, they might as well
  Have rung the poor dame's parting knell.
  The rosy dimples left her cheek,
  She lost her beauties plump and sleek;
  For Guillot oftener kicked than kissed,
  And backed his orders with his fist,
  Proving by deeds as well as words
  That servants make the worst of lords.


  She seeks the priest, her ire to wreak,
  And speaks as angry women speak,
  With tiger looks and bosom swelling,
  Cursing the hour she took his telling.


  To all, his calm reply was this,--
  "I fear you've read the bells amiss:
  If they have led you wrong in aught,
  Your wish, not they, inspired the thought.


  Just go, and mark well what they say."
  Off trudged the dame upon her way,
  And sure enough their chime went so,--
  "Don't have that knave, that knave Guillot!"


  "Too true," she cried, "there's not a doubt
  What could my ears have been about?"
  She had forgot, that, as fools think,
  The bell is ever sure to clink.


[Illustration: 232]



THE DEATH OF ISHMAEL.


[This and {221}the six following poems are examples of that new
achievement of modern song--which, blending the _utile_ with the
_dulce_, symbolises at once the practical and spiritual characteristics
of the age,--and is called familiarly "the puff poetical."]


  Died the Jew? "The Hebrew died.
           On the pavement cold he lay,
  Around him closed the living tide;
            The butcher's cad set down his tray;
       The pot-boy from the Dragon Green
       No longer for his pewter calls;
        The Nereid rushes in between,
   Nor more her 'Fine live mackerel!' bawls."


  Died the Jew? "The Hebrew died.
            They raised him gently from the stone,
   They flung his coat and neckcloth wide--
  But linen had that Hebrew none.
   They raised the pile of hats that pressed
   His noble head, his locks of snow;
  But, ah, that head, upon his breast,
            Sank down with an expiring 'Clo!'"


     Died {222}the Jew? "The Hebrew died,
     Struck with overwhelming qualms
     From the flavour spreading wide
     Of some fine Virginia hams.
     Would you know the fatal spot,
     Fatal to that child of sin?
     These fine-flavoured hams are bought
     _At 50 Bishopsgate Within!_"


[Illustration: 234]



PARR'S LIFE PILLS


       Twas {223}in the town of Lubeck,
          A hundred years ago,
       An old man walked into the church,
          With beard as white as snow;
       Yet were his cheeks not wrinkled,
       Nor dim his eagle eye:
       There's many a knight that steps the street,
       Might wonder, should he chance to meet
       That man erect and high!


       When silenced was the organ,
       And hushed the vespers loud,
       The Sacristan approached the sire,
          And drew him from the crowd--
       "There's something in thy visage,
       On which I dare not look;
       And when I rang the passing bell,
       A tremor that I may not tell,
           My very vitals shook.


       "Who art thou, awful stranger?
       Our ancient annals say,
   That twice two hundred years ago
          Another passed this way
  Like {224}thee in face and feature;
     And, if the tale be true,
  'Tis writ, that in this very year
  Again the stranger shall appear.
     Art thou the Wandering Jew?"


  "The Wandering Jew, thou dotard!"
  The wondrous phantom cried--
  "'Tis several centuries ago
     Since that poor stripling died.
  He would not use my nostrums--
  See, shaveling, here they are!
  _These_ put to flight all human ills,
  These conquer death--unfailing pills,
  And I'm the inventor, PARR!"


[Illustration: 236]



TARQUIN AND THE AUGUR


  Gingerly {225}is good King Tarquin shaving,
  Gently glides the razor o'er his chin,
  Near him stands a grim Haruspex raving,
  And with nasal whine he pitches in
  Church extension hints,
      Till the monarch squints,
  Snicks his chin, and swears--a deadly sin!


  "Jove confound thee, thou bare-legged impostor
     From my dressing-table get thee gone!
  Dost thou think my flesh is double Glo'ster?
  There again! That cut was to the bone!
  Get ye from my sight;
     I'll believe you're right
  When my razor cuts the sharpening hone!"


  Thus spoke Tarquin with a deal of dryness;
  But the Augur, eager for his fees,
  Answered--"Try it, your Imperial Highness;
     Press a little harder, if you please.
  There! the {126}deed is done!"


  Through the solid stone
  Went the steel as glibly as through cheese.
  So the Augur touched the tin of Tarquin,
  Who suspected some celestial aid:
  But he wronged the blameless gods; for hearken!
     Ere the monarch's bet was rashly laid,
         With his searching eye
  Did the priest espy
  RODGERS' name engraved upon the blade.



LA MORT d'ARTHUR



NOT BY ALFRED TENNYSON.


  Slowly, {227}as one who bears a mortal hurt,
  Through which the fountain of his life runs dry,
  Crept good King Arthur down unto the lake.


  A roughening wind was bringing in the waves
  With cold dull plash and plunging to the shore,
  And a great bank of clouds came sailing up
  Athwart the aspect of the gibbous moon,
  Leaving no glimpse save starlight, as he sank,
  With a short stagger, senseless on the stones.


  No man yet knows how long he lay in swound
  But long enough it was to let the rust
  Lick half the surface of his polished shield;
  For it was made by far inferior hands,
  Than forged his helm, his breastplate, and his greaves,
  Whereon no canker lighted, for they bore
  The magic stamp of MECHI'S SILVER STEEL.


[Illustration: 240]



JUPITER AND THE INDIAN ALE


  "Take {228}away this clammy nectar!"
  Said the king of gods and men;
  "Never at Olympus' table
  Let that trash be served again.


  Ho, Lyæus, thou, the beery!
  Quick--invent some other drink;
  Or, in a brace of shakes, thou standest
  On Cocytus' sulphury brink!"


  Terror shook the limbs of Bacchus,
  Paly grew his pimpled nose,
  And {229}already in his rearward
  Felt he Jove's tremendous toes;
  When a bright idea struck him--
  "Dash my thyrsus! I'll be bail--
  For you never were in India--
  That you know not HODGSON'S ALE!"


  "Bring it!" quoth the Cloud-compeller;
  And the wine-god brought the beer--
  "Port and claret are like water
  To the noble stuff that's here!"


  And Saturnius drank and nodded,
  Winking with his lightning eyes,
  And amidst the constellations
  Did the star of HODGSON rise!


[Illustration: 241]



THE LAY OF THE DONDNEY BROTHERS


  Coats at {230}five-and-forty shillings! trousers ten-and-six a
          pair!
  Summer waistcoats, three a sov'reign, light and comfort-
         able wear!
  Taglionis, black or coloured, Chesterfield and velveteen!
  The old English shooting-jacket--doeskins, such as ne'er
         were seen!
  Army cloaks and riding-habits, Alberts at a trifling cost!
  Do you want an annual contract? Write to DOUDNEYS'
        by the post.


  DOUDNEY BROTHERS! DOUDNEY BROTHERS!  Not the men
        that drive the van,
  Plastered o'er with advertisements, heralding some paltry
         plan,
  How, by base mechanic stinting, and by pinching of their
         backs,
  Slim attorneys' clerks may manage to retrieve their
        Income-tax:
  But the old established business--where the best of clothes
         are given
  At the very lowest prices--Fleet Street, Number Ninety-
         seven.


  Wouldst {231}thou know the works of DOUDNEY? Hie thee
         to the thronged Arcade,
  To the Park upon a Sunday, to the terrible Parade.


  There, amid the bayonets bristling, and the flashing of the
          steel,
  When the household troops in squadrons round the bold
         field-marshals wheel,
  Shouldst thou see an aged warrior in a plain blue morning
         frock,
  Peering at the proud battalions o'er the margin of his
         stock,--
  Should thy throbbing heart then tell thee, that the veteran
          worn and grey
  Curbed the course of Bonaparte, rolled the thunders of
         Assaye--
  Let it tell thee, stranger, likewise, that the goodly garb
         he wears
  Started into shape and being from the DOUDNEY BROTHERS'
         shears!


  Seek thou next the rooms of Willis--mark, where
        D'Orsay's Count is bending,
  See the trouser's undulation from his graceful hip
         descending;
  Hath the earth another trouser so compact and love-
         compelling?
  Thou canst find it, stranger, only, if thou seek'st the
         DOUDNEYS' dwelling!
  Hark, {232}from Windsor's royal palace, what sweet voice
         enchants the ear?
  "Goodness, what a lovely waistcoat! Oh, who made it,
         Albert dear?
  'Tis the very prettiest pattern! You must get a dozen
         others!"
  And the Prince, in rapture, answers--"'Tis the work of
         DOUDNEY BROTHERS!"



PARIS AND HELEN


   As {233}the youthful Paris presses
       Helen to his ivory breast,
   Sporting with her golden tresses,
       Close and ever closer pressed,


   "Let me," said he, "quaff the nectar,
       "Which thy lips of ruby yield;
    Glory I can leave to Hector,
       Gathered in the tented field.


  "Let me ever gaze upon thee,
       Look into thine eyes so deep;
   With a daring hand I won thee,
       With a faithful heart I'll keep.


   "Oh, my Helen, thou bright wonder,
       Who was ever like to thee?
   Jove would lay aside his thunder,
     So he might be blest like me.


  "How {234}mine eyes so fondly linger
      On thy soft and pearly skin;
  Scan each round and rosy finger,
      Drinking draughts of beauty in!


  "Tell me, whence thy beauty, fairest?
     Whence thy cheek's enchanting bloom?
  Whence the rosy hue thou wearest,
      Breathing round thee rich perfume?"


  Thus he spoke, with heart that panted,
      Clasped her fondly to his side,
  Gazed on her with look enchanted,
      While his Helen thus replied:


  "Be no discord, love, between us,
      If I not the secret tell!
  'Twas a gift I had of Venus,--
      Venus, who hath loved me well.


  "And she told me as she gave it,
      'Let not e'er the charm be known;
  O'er thy person freely lave it,
      Only when thou art alone.'


  "'Tis enclosed in yonder casket--
      Here behold its golden key;
  But its name--love, do not ask it,
      Tell't I may not, even to thee!"


  Long {235}with vow and kiss he plied her;
      Still the secret did she keep,
  Till at length he sank beside her,
      Seemed as he had dropped to sleep.


  Soon was Helen laid in slumber,
      When her Paris, rising slow,
  Did his fair neck disencumber
      From her rounded arms of snow.


  Then, her heedless fingers oping,
      Takes the key and steals away,
  To the ebon table groping,
      Where the wondrous casket lay;


  Eagerly the lid uncloses,
      Sees within it, laid aslope,
  PEAR'S LIQUID BLOOM OF ROSES,
      Cakes of his TRANSPARENT SOAP!



SONG OF THE ENNUYE


  I'm {236}weary, and sick, and disgusted
     With Britain's mechanical din;
  Where I'm much too well known to be trusted,
     And plaguily pestered for tin;
  Where love has two eyes for your hanker,
     And one chilly glance for yourself;
  Where souls can afford to be franker,
     But when they're well garnished with pelf.


  I'm sick of the whole race of poets,
     Emasculate, misty, and fine;
  They brew their small-heer, and don't know its
     Distinction from full-bodied wine.


  I'm sick of the prosers, that house up
     At drowsy St Stephen's,--ain't you?
  I want some strong spirits to rouse up
     A good revolution or two!


  I'm {237}sick of a land, where each morrow
     Repeats the dull tale of to-day,
  Where you can't even find a new sorrow
     To chase your stale pleasures away.


  I'm sick of blue stockings horrific,
      Steam, railroads, gas, scrip, and consols:
  So I'll off where the golden Pacific
      Round islands of Paradise rolls.


  There the passions shall revel unfettered,
  And the heart never speak but in truth,
  And the intellect, wholly unlettered,
      Be bright with the freedom of youth!
  There the earth can rejoice in her blossoms,
  Unsullied by vapour or soot,
  And there chimpanzees and opossums
  Shall playfully pelt me with fruit.


  There I'll sit with my dark Orianas,
  In groves by the murmuring sea,
  And they'll give, as I suck the bananas,
  Their kisses, nor ask them from me.
  They'll never torment me for sonnets,
     Nor bore me to death with their own;
  They'll ask not for shawls nor for bonnets,
     For milliners there are unknown.


  There {238}my couch shall be earth's freshest flowers,
     My curtains the night and the stars,
  And my spirit shall gather new powers,
  Uncramped by conventional bars.


  Love for love, truth for truth ever giving,
  My days shall be manfully sped;
  I shall know that I'm loved while I'm living,
  And be wept by fond eyes when I'm dead!



CAROLINE


  Lightsome, {239}brightsome, cousin mine,
      Easy, breezy Caroline!


  With, thy locks all raven-shaded,
  From thy merry brow up-braided,
  And thine eyes of laughter full,
     Brightsome cousin mine!


  Thou in chains of love hast bound me--
  Wherefore dost thou flit around me,
  Laughter-loving Caroline!


  When I fain would go to sleep
     In my easy-chair,
  Wherefore on my slumbers creep--
  Wherefore start me from repose,
  Tickling of my hookèd nose,
     Pulling of my hair?
  Wherefore, then, if thou dost love me,
  So to words of anger move me,
     Corking of this face of mine,
     Tricksy cousin Caroline?


  When a {240}sudden sound I hear,
  Much my nervous system suffers,
  Shaking through and through.
  Cousin Caroline, I fear,
    'Twas no other, now, but you,
  Put gunpowder in the snuffers,
  Springing such a mine!


  Yes, it was your tricksy self,
  Wicked-trickèd little elf,
  Naughty cousin Caroline!


  Pins she sticks into my shoulder,
  Places needles in my chair,
  And, when I begin to scold her,
    Tosses back her combed hair,
  With so saucy-vexed an air,
  That the pitying beholder
  Cannot brook that I should scold her:
  Then again she comes, and bolder,
  Blacks anew this face of mine,
  Artful cousin Caroline!


  Would she only say she'd love me,
  Winsome, tinsome Caroline,
  Unto such excess 'twould move me,
  Teazing, pleasing, cousin mine!


  That {241}she might the live-long day
  Undermine the snuffer-tray,
  Tickle still my hooked nose,
  Startle me from calm repose
     With her pretty persecution;


  Throw the tongs against my shins,
  Run me through and through with pins,
     Like a pierced cushion;


  Would she only say she'd love me,
  Darning-needles should not move me;
  But, reclining back, I'd say,
  "Dearest! there's the snuffer-tray;
  Pinch, o pinch those legs of mine!


  Cork me, cousin Caroline!"


  TO A FORGET-ME-NOT



FOUND IN MY EMPORIUM OF LOVE-TOKENS.


   Sweet {242}flower, that with thy soft blue eye
      Didst once look up in shady spot,
   To whisper to the passer-by
      Those tender words--Forget-me-not!


   Though withered now, thou art to me
      The minister of gentle thought,--
   And I could weep to gaze on thee,.
      Love's faded pledge--Forget-me-not!


   Thou speak'st of hours when I was young,
      And happiness arose unsought;
   When she, the whispering woods among,
      Gave me thy bloom--Forget-me-not!


   That rapturous hour with that dear maid
      From memory's page no time shall blot,
   When, yielding to my kiss, she said,
      "Oh, Theodore--Forget me not!"


  Alas {243}for love! alas for truth!
      Alas for man's uncertain lot!
  Alas for all the hopes of youth
      That fade like thee--Forget-me-not!


  Alas for that one image fair,
      With all my brightest dreams inwrought!
  That walks beside me everywhere,
      Still whispering--Forget me not!


  Oh, Memory! thou art but a sigh
      For friendships dead and loves forgot,
  And many a cold and altered eye
      That once did say--Forget me not!


  And I must bow me to thy laws,
      For--odd although it may be thought--
  I can't tell who the deuce it was
      That gave me this Forget-me-not!



THE MISHAP


  "Why {244}art thou weeping, sister?
  Why is thy cheek so pale?
  Look up, dear Jane, and tell me
  What is it thou dost ail?


  "I know thy will is froward,
  Thy feelings warm and keen,
  And that _that_ Augustus Howard
  For weeks has not been seen.


  "I know {245}how much you loved him;
  But I know thou dost not weep
  For him;--for though his passion be,
  His purse is noways deep.


  "Then tell me why those tear-drops?
  What means this woeful mood?
  Say, has the tax-collector
  Been calling, and been rude?


  "Or has that hateful grocer,
  The slave! been here to-day?
  Of course he had, by morrow's noon,
  A heavy bill to pay!


  "Come, on thy brother's bosom
  Unburden all thy woes;
  Look up, look up, sweet sister;
  Nay, sob not through thy nose."


  "Oh, John, 'tis not the grocer
  For his account, although
  How ever he is to be paid,
  I really do not know.


  "'Tis {246}not the tax-collector;
  Though by his fell command
  They've seized our old paternal clock,
  And new umbrella-stand!


  "Nor that Augustus Howard,
  Whom I despise almost,--
  But the soot's come down the chimney, John,
  And fairly spoiled the roast!"



COMFORT IN AFFLICTION


  "Wherefore {247}starts my bosom's lord?
  Why this anguish in thine eye?
  Oh, it seems as thy heart's chord
  Had broken with that sigh!


  "Rest thee, my dear lord, I pray,
  Rest thee on my bosom now!
  And let me wipe the dews away,
  Are gathering on thy brow.


  "There, again! that fevered start!
  What, love! husband! is thy pain?
  There is a sorrow on thy heart,
  A weight upon thy brain!


  "Nay, nay, that sickly smile can ne'er
  Deceive affection's searching eye;
  'Tis a wife's duty, love, to share
   Her husband's agony.


  "Since {248}the dawn began to peep,
  Have I lain with stifled breath;
  Heard thee moaning in thy sleep,
  As thou wert at grips with death.


  "Oh, what joy it was to see
  My gentle lord once more awake!
  Tell me, what is amiss with thee?
  Speak, or my heart will break!"


  "Mary, thou angel of my life,
  Thou ever good and kind;
  'Tis not, believe me, my dear wife,
  The anguish of the mind!


  "It is not in my bosom, dear,
  No, nor my brain, in sooth;
  But Mary, oh, I feel it here,
  Here in my wisdom tooth!


 "Then give,--oh, first best antidote,--
  Sweet partner of my bed!
  Give me thy flannel petticoat
  To wrap around my head!"



THE INVOCATION


  "Brother, {249}thou art very weary,
  And thine eye is sunk and dim,
  And thy neckcloth's tie is crumpled,
  And thy collar out of trim;
  There is dust upon thy visage,--
  Think not, Charles, I would hurt ye,
  When I say, that altogether
  You appear extremely dirty.


  "Frown not, brother, now, but hie thee
     To thy chamber's distant room;
  Drown the odours of the ledger
     With the lavender's perfume.
  Brush the mud from off thy trousers,
     O'er the china basin kneel,
  Lave thy brows in water softened
     With the soap of Old Castile.


  "Smooth the locks that o'er thy forehead
     'Now in loose disorder stray;
  Pare thy nails, and from thy whiskers
  Cut those ragged points away;
  Let no more thy calculations
     Thy bewildered brain beset;
  Life has other hopes than Cocker's,
      Other joys than tare and tret.


  "Haste thee, for I ordered dinner,
     Waiting to the very last,
  Twenty minutes after seven,
     And 'tis now the quarter past.
  'Tis a dinner which Lucullus
     Would have wept with joy to see,
  One, might wake the soul of Curtis
     From death's drowsy atrophy.


  "There is soup of real turtle,
     Turbot, and the dainty sole;
  And the mottled row of lobsters
     Blushes through the butter-bowl.
  There the lordly haunch of mutton,
     Tender as the mountain grass,
  Waits to mix its ruddy juices
     With the girdling caper-sauce.


  "There a stag, whose branching forehead
     Spoke him monarch of the herds,
  He whose flight was o'er the heather
     Swift as through the air the bird's,
  Yields for thee a dish of cutlets;
     And the haunch that wont to dash
  O'er the roaring mountain-torrent,
  Smokes in most delicious hash.


  "There, besides, are amber jellies.
     Floating like a golden dream;
  Ginger from the far Bermudas,
     Dishes of Italian pream;
  And a princely apple-dumpling,
     Which my own fair fingers wrought,
  Shall unfold its nectared treasures
  To thy lips all smoking hot.


  "Ha! I see thy brow is clearing,
  Lustre flashes from thine eyes;
  To thy lips I see the moisture
     Of anticipation rise.
  Hark! the dinner-bell is sounding!"
     "Only wait one moment, Jane:
  I'll be dressed, and down, before you
     Can get up the iced champagne!"



THE HUSBAND'S PETITION


   Come {252}hither, my heart's darling,
   Come, sit upon my knee,
   And listen, while I whisper
   A boon I ask of thee.


  You need not pull my whiskers
  So amorously, my dove;
   'Tis something quite apart from
   The gentle cares of love.


   I feel a bitter craving--
   A dark and deep desire,
   That glows beneath my bosom
   Like coals of kindled fire.


   The passion of the nightingale,
   When singing to the rose,
  Is {253}feebler than the agony
      That murders my repose!


  Nay, dearest! do not doubt me,
      Though madly thus I speak--
  I feel thy arms about me,
     Thy tresses on my cheek:


  I know the sweet devotion
      That links thy heart with mine,--
  I know my soul's emotion
      Is doubly felt by thine:


  And deem not that a shadow
     Hath fallen across my love:
  No, sweet, my love is shadowless,
     As yonder heaven above.


  These little taper fingers--
      Ah, Jane! how white they be!--
  Can well supply the cruel want
     That almost maddens me.


  Thou wilt not sure deny me
     My first and fond request;
  I pray thee, by the memory
     Of all we cherish best--


  By all the dear remembrance
     Of those delicious days,
  When, hand in hand, we wandered
     Along the summer braes;


  By {254}all we felt, unspoken,
     When 'neath the early moon,
  We sat beside the rivulet,
     In the leafy month of June;


  And by the broken whisper
     That fell upon my ear,
  More sweet than angel music,
     When first I wooed thee, dear!


  By thy great vow which bound thee
     For ever to my side,
  And by the ring that made thee
     My darling and my bride!


  Thou wilt not fail nor falter,
      But bend thee to the task--
  _A BOILED SHEEP'S-HEAD ON SUNDAY_
     Is all the boon I ask!


[Illustration: 266]


[Illustration: 267]



SONNET TO BRITAIN.


   Halt! {255}Shoulder arms! Recover
        As you were!
   Right wheel! Eyes left! Attention!
        Stand at ease!


   O Britain! O my country! Words like these
   Have made thy name a terror and a fear
   To all the nations. Witness Ebro's banks,
   Assaÿe, Toulouse, Nivelle, and Waterloo,
   Where the grim despot muttered--_Sauve qui peut!_
   And Ney fled darkling.--Silence in the ranks!


   Inspired {256}by these, amidst the iron crash
   Of armies, in the centre of his troop
   The soldier stands--unmovable, not rash--
   Until the forces of the foeman droop;
   Then knocks the Frenchman to eternal smash,
   Pounding them into mummy. Shoulder, hoop!



THE END.





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