An' did he stop, then, wi' the good wold bwoy? Or did he soon contrive to slip awoy?
Why, when the vo'k were all asleep, a-bed, The veaeiries us'd to come, as 'tis a-zaid, Avore the vire wer cwold, an' dance an hour Or two at dead o' night upon the vloor; Var they, by only utteren a word Or charm, can come down chimney lik' a bird; Or draw their bodies out so long an' narrow, That they can vlee drough keyholes lik' an arrow. An' zoo woone midnight, when the moon did drow His light drough window, roun' the vloor below, An' crickets roun' the bricken he'th did zing, They come an' danced about the hall in ring; An' tapp'd, drough little holes noo eyes could spy, A kag o' poor aunt's meaed a-stannen by. An' woone o'm drink'd so much, he coulden mind The word he wer to zay to meaeke en small; He got a-dather'd zoo, that after all Out tothers went an' left en back behind. An' after he'd a-beaet about his head, Ageaen the keyhole till he wer half dead, He laid down all along upon the vloor Till gramfer, comen down, unlocked the door: An' then he zeed en ('twer enough to frighten en) Bolt out o' door, an' down the road lik' lightenen.
CORN A-TURNEN YOLLOW.
The windless copse ha' sheaedy boughs, Wi' blackbirds' evenen whistles; The hills ha' sheep upon their brows, The zummerleaeze ha' thistles: The meaeds be gay in grassy May, But, oh! vrom hill to hollow, Let me look down upon a groun' O' corn a-turnen yollow.
An' pease do grow in tangled beds, An' beaens be sweet to snuff, O; The teaeper woats do bend their heads, The barley's beard is rough, O. The turnip green is fresh between The corn in hill or hollow, But I'd look down upon a groun' O' wheat a-turnen yollow.
'Tis merry when the brawny men Do come to reap it down, O, Where glossy red the poppy head 'S among the stalks so brown, O. 'Tis merry while the wheat's in hile, Or when, by hill or hollow, The leaezers thick do stoop to pick The ears so ripe an' yollow.
A-HAULEN O' THE CORN.
Ah! yesterday, you know, we carr'd The piece o' corn in Zidelen Plot, An' work'd about it pretty hard, An' vound the weather pretty hot. 'Twer all a-tied an' zet upright In tidy hile o' Monday night; Zoo yesterday in afternoon We zet, in eaernest, ev'ry woone A-haulen o' the corn.
The hosses, wi' the het an' lwoad, Did froth, an' zwang vrom zide to zide, A-gwain along the dousty road, An' seem'd as if they would a-died. An' wi' my collar all undone, An' neck a-burnen wi' the zun, I got, wi' work, an' doust, an' het, So dry at last, I coulden spet, A-haulen o' the corn.
At uncle's orcha'd, gwain along, I begged some apples, vor to quench My drith, o' Poll that wer among The trees: but she, a saucy wench, Toss'd over hedge some crabs vor fun. I squail'd her, though, an' meaede her run; An' zoo she gie'd me, vor a treat, A lot o' stubberds vor to eat. A-haulen o' the corn.
An' up at rick, Jeaene took the flagon, An' gi'ed us out zome eaele; an' then I carr'd her out upon the waggon, Wi' bread an' cheese to gi'e the men. An' there, vor fun, we dress'd her head Wi' nodden poppies bright an' red, As we wer catchen vrom our laps, Below a woak, our bits an' draps, A-haulen o' the corn.
The vu'st peaert. The Supper.
Since we wer striplens naighbour John, The good wold merry times be gone: But we do like to think upon What we've a-zeed an' done. When I wer up a hardish lad, At harvest hwome the work-vo'k had Sich suppers, they wer jumpen mad Wi' feaesten an' wi' fun.
At uncle's, I do mind, woone year, I zeed a vill o' hearty cheer; Fat beef an' pudden, eaele an' beer, Vor ev'ry workman's crop An' after they'd a-gie'd God thanks, They all zot down, in two long ranks, Along a teaeble-bwoard o' planks, Wi' uncle at the top.
An' there, in platters, big and brown, Wer red fat beaecon, an' a roun' O' beef wi' gravy that would drown A little rwoasten pig; Wi' beaens an' teaeties vull a zack, An' cabbage that would meaeke a stack, An' puddens brown, a-speckled black Wi' figs, so big's my wig.
An' uncle, wi' his elbows out, Did carve, an' meaeke the gravy spout; An' aunt did gi'e the mugs about A-frothen to the brim. Pleaetes werden then ov e'then ware, They ate off pewter, that would bear A knock; or wooden trenchers, square, Wi' zalt-holes at the rim.
An' zoo they munch'd their hearty cheer, An' dipp'd their beards in frothy-beer, An' laugh'd, an' jok'd—they couldden hear What woone another zaid. An' all o'm drink'd, wi' woone accword, The wold vo'k's health: an' beaet the bwoard, An' swung their eaerms about, an' roar'd, Enough to crack woone's head.
Second Peaert. What they did after Supper.
Zoo after supper wer a-done, They clear'd the teaebles, an' begun To have a little bit o' fun, As long as they mid stop. The wold woones took their pipes to smoke, An' tell their teaeles, an' laugh an' joke, A-looken at the younger vo'k, That got up vor a hop.
Woone screaep'd away, wi' merry grin, A fiddle stuck below his chin; An' woone o'm took the rollen pin, An' beaet the fryen pan. An' tothers, dancen to the soun', Went in an' out, an' droo an' roun', An' kick'd, an' beaet the tuen down, A-laughen, maid an' man.
An' then a maid, all up tip-tooe, Vell down; an' woone o'm wi' his shoe Slit down her pocket-hole in two, Vrom top a-most to bottom. An' when they had a-danc'd enough, They got a-playen blindman's buff, An' sard the maidens pretty rough, When woonce they had a-got em.
An' zome did drink, an' laugh, an' roar, An' lots o' teaeles they had in store, O' things that happen'd years avore To them, or vo'k they know'd. An' zome did joke, an' zome did zing, An' meaeke the girt wold kitchen ring; Till uncle's cock, wi' flappen wing, Stratch'd out his neck an' crow'd.
A ZONG OV HARVEST HWOME.
The ground is clear. There's nar a ear O' stannen corn a-left out now, Vor win' to blow or rain to drow; 'Tis all up seaefe in barn or mow. Here's health to them that plough'd an' zow'd; Here's health to them that reap'd an' mow'd, An' them that had to pitch an' lwoad, Or tip the rick at Harvest Hwome. The happy zight,—the merry night, The men's delight,—the Harvest Hwome.
An' mid noo harm o' vire or storm Beval the farmer or his corn; An' ev'ry zack o' zeed gi'e back A hunderd-vwold so much in barn. An' mid his Meaeker bless his store, His wife an' all that she've a-bore, An' keep all evil out o' door, Vrom Harvest Hwome to Harvest Hwome. The happy zight,—the merry night, The men's delight,—the Harvest Hwome.
Mid nothen ill betide the mill, As day by day the miller's wheel Do dreve his clacks, an' heist his zacks, An' vill his bins wi' show'ren meal: Mid's water never overflow His dousty mill, nor zink too low, Vrom now till wheat ageaen do grow, An' we've another Harvest Hwome. The happy zight,—the merry night, The men's delight,—the Harvest Hwome.
Drough cisterns wet an' malt-kil's het, Mid barley pay the malter's pains; An' mid noo hurt bevall the wort, A-bweilen vrom the brewer's grains. Mid all his beer keep out o' harm Vrom bu'sted hoop or thunder storm, That we mid have a mug to warm Our merry hearts nex' Harvest Hwome. The happy zight,—the merry night, The men's delight,—the Harvest Hwome.
Mid luck an' jay the beaeker pay, As he do hear his vier roar, Or nimbly catch his hot white batch, A-reeken vrom the oven door. An' mid it never be too high Vor our vew zixpences to buy, When we do hear our childern cry Vor bread, avore nex' Harvest Hwome. The happy zight,—the merry night, The men's delight,—the Harvest Hwome.
Wi' jay o' heart mid shooters start The whirren pa'tridges in vlocks; While shots do vlee drough bush an' tree, An' dogs do stan' so still as stocks. An' let em ramble round the farms Wi' guns 'ithin their bended eaerms, In goolden zunsheen free o' storms, Rejaicen vor the Harvest Hwome. The happy zight,—the merry night, The men's delight,—the Harvest Hwome.
Ah! Jimmy vow'd he'd have the law Ov ouer cousin Poll's Jack-daw, That had by day his withy jail A-hangen up upon a nail, Ageaen the elem tree, avore The house, jist over-right the door, An' twitted vo'k a-passen by A-most so plain as you or I; Vor hardly any day did pass 'Ithout Tom's teachen o'm zome sa'ce; Till by-an'-by he call'd em all 'Soft-polls' an' 'gawkeys,' girt an' small.
An' zoo, as Jim went down along The leaene a-whisslen ov a zong, The saucy Daw cried out by rote "Girt Soft-poll!" lik' to split his droat. Jim stopp'd an' grabbled up a clot, An' zent en at en lik' a shot; An' down went Daw an' cage avore The clot, up thump ageaen the door. Zoo out run Poll an' Tom, to zee What all the meaenen o't mid be; "Now who did that?" zaid Poll. "Who whurr'd Theaese clot?" "Girt Soft-poll!" cried the bird.
An' when Tom catch'd a glimpse o' Jim, A-looken all so red an' slim, An' slinken on, he vled, red hot, Down leaene to catch en, lik' a shot; But Jim, that thought he'd better trust To lags than vistes, tried em vu'st. An' Poll, that zeed Tom woulden catch En, stood a-smilen at the hatch. An' zoo he vollow'd en for two Or dree stwones' drows, an' let en goo.
Upon theaese knap I'd sooner be The ivy that do climb the tree, Than bloom the gayest rwose a-tied An' trimm'd upon the house's zide. The rwose mid be the maidens' pride, But still the ivy's wild an' free; An' what is all that life can gi'e, 'Ithout a free light heart, John?
The creepen sheaede mid steal too soon Upon the rwose in afternoon; But here the zun do drow his het Vrom when do rise till when do zet, To dry the leaves the rain do wet. An' evenen air do bring along The merry deaeiry-maiden's zong, The zong of free light hearts, John.
Oh! why do vo'k so often chain Their pinen minds vor love o' gain, An' gi'e their innocence to rise A little in the worold's eyes? If pride could lift us to the skies, What man do value God do slight, An' all is nothen in his zight 'Ithout an honest heart, John.
An ugly feaece can't bribe the brooks To show it back young han'some looks, Nor crooked vo'k intice the light To cast their zummer sheaedes upright: Noo goold can blind our Meaeker's zight. An' what's the odds what cloth do hide The bosom that do hold inside A free an' honest heart, John?
THE WELSHNUT TREE.
When in the evenen the zun's a-zinken, A drowen sheaedes vrom the yollow west, An' mother, weary, 's a-zot a thinken, Wi' vwolded eaerms by the vire at rest, Then we do zwarm, O, Wi' such a charm, O, So vull o' glee by the welshnut tree.
A-leaeven father in-doors, a-leinen' In his girt chair in his easy shoes, Or in the settle so high behine en, While down bezide en the dog do snooze, Our tongues do run, O, Enough to stun, O, Your head wi' glee by the welshnut tree.
There we do play 'thread the woman's needle.' An' slap the maidens a-darten drough: Or try who'll ax em the hardest riddle, Or soonest tell woone a-put us, true; Or zit an' ring, O, The bells, ding, ding, O, Upon our knee by the welshnut tree.
An' zome do goo out, an' hide in orcha't, An' tothers, slily a-stealen by, Where there's a dark cunnen pleaece, do sarch it, Till they do zee em an' cry, "I spy," An' thik a-vound, O, Do gi'e a bound, O, To get off free to the welshnut tree.
Poll went woone night, that we midden vind her, Inzide a woak wi' a hollow moot, An' drough a hole near the groun' behind her, I pok'd a stick in, an' catch'd her voot; An' out she scream'd, O, An' jump'd, an' seem'd, O, A-most to vlee to the welshnut tree.
An' when, at last, at the drashel, mother Do call us, smilen, in-door to rest, Then we do cluster by woone another, To zee hwome them we do love the best: An' then do sound, O, "Good night," all round, O, To end our glee by the welshnut tree.
JENNY OUT VROM HWOME.
O wild-reaeven west winds; as you do roar on, The elems do rock an' the poplars do ply, An' weaeve do dreve weaeve in the dark-water'd pon',— Oh! where do ye rise vrom, an' where do ye die?
O wild-reaeven winds I do wish I could vlee Wi' you, lik' a bird o' the clouds, up above The ridge o' the hill an' the top o' the tree, To where I do long vor, an' vo'k I do love.
Or else that in under theaese rock I could hear, In the soft-zwellen sounds you do leaeve in your road, Zome words you mid bring me, vrom tongues that be dear, Vrom friends that do love me, all scatter'd abrode.
O wild-reaeven winds! if you ever do roar By the house an' the elems vrom where I'm a-come, Breathe up at the window, or call at the door, An' tell you've a-voun' me a-thinken o' hwome.
The sheaedeless darkness o' the night Can never blind my mem'ry's zight; An' in the storm, my fancy's eyes Can look upon their own blue skies. The laggen moon mid fail to rise, But when the daylight's blue an' green Be gone, my fancy's zun do sheen At hwome at Grenley Water.
As when the work-vo'k us'd to ride In waggon, by the hedge's zide, Drough evenen sheaedes that trees cast down Vrom lofty stems athirt the groun'; An' in at house the mug went roun', While ev'ry merry man prais'd up The pretty maid that vill'd his cup, The maid o' Grenley Water.
There I do seem ageaen to ride The hosses to the water-zide, An' zee the visher fling his hook Below the withies by the brook; Or Fanny, wi' her blushen look, Car on her pail, or come to dip Wi' ceaereful step, her pitcher's lip Down into Grenley Water.
If I'd a farm wi' vower ploughs, An' vor my deaeiry fifty cows; If Grenley Water winded down Drough two good miles o' my own groun'; If half ov Ashknowle Hill wer brown Wi' my own corn,—noo growen pride Should ever meaeke me cast azide The maid o' Grenley Water.
THE VEAIRY VEET THAT I DO MEET.
When dewy fall's red leaves do vlee Along the grass below the tree, Or lie in yollow beds a-shook Upon the shallow-water'd brook, Or drove 'ithin a sheaedy nook; Then softly, in the evenen, down The knap do steal along the groun' The veaeiry veet that I do meet Below the row o' beech trees.
'Tis jist avore the candle-light Do redden windows up at night, An' peaeler stars do light the vogs A-risen vrom the brooks an' bogs, An' when in barkens yoppen dogs Do bark at vo'k a-comen near, Or growl a-lis'enen to hear The veaeiry veet that I do meet Below the row o' beech trees.
Dree times a-year do bless the road O' womanhood a-gwain abrode: When vu'st her litty veet do tread The eaerly May's white deaeisy bed: When leaves be all a-scattered dead; An' when the winter's vrozen grass Do glissen in the zun lik' glass Vor veaeiry veet that I do meet Below the row o' beech trees.
When vu'st the breaken day is red, An' grass is dewy wet, An' roun' the blackberry's a-spread The spider's gliss'nen net, Then I do dreve the cows across The brook that's in a vog, While they do trot, an' bleaere, an' toss Their heads to hook the dog; Vor the cock do gi'e me warnen, An' light or dark, So brisk's a lark, I'm up at break o' mornen.
Avore the maiden's sleep's a-broke By window-striken zun, Avore the busy wife's vu'st smoke Do curl above the tun, My day's begun. An' when the zun 'S a-zinken in the west, The work the mornen brought's a-done, An' I do goo to rest, Till the cock do gi'e me warnen; An' light or dark, So brisk's a lark, I'm up ageaen nex' mornen.
We can't keep back the daily zun, The wind is never still, An' never ha' the streams a-done A-runnen down at hill. Zoo they that ha' their work to do, Should do't so soon's they can; Vor time an' tide will come an' goo, An' never wait vor man, As the cock do gi'e me warnen; When, light or dark, So brisk's a lark, I'm up so rathe in mornen.
We've leaezes where the air do blow, An' meaeds wi' deaeiry cows, An' copse wi' lewth an' sheaede below The overhangen boughs. An' when the zun, noo time can tire, 'S a-quench'd below the west, Then we've, avore the bleaezen vire, A settle vor to rest,— To be up ageaen nex' mornen So brisk's a lark, When, light or dark, The cock do gi'e us warnen.
Last week, when we'd a haul'd the crops, We went a-nutten out in copse, Wi' nutten-bags to bring hwome vull, An' beaky nutten-crooks to pull The bushes down; an' all o's wore Wold clothes that wer in rags avore, An' look'd, as we did skip an' zing, Lik' merry gipsies in a string, A-gwain a-nutten.
Zoo drough the stubble, over rudge An' vurrow, we begun to trudge; An' Sal an' Nan agreed to pick Along wi' me, an' Poll wi' Dick; An' they went where the wold wood, high An' thick, did meet an' hide the sky; But we thought we mid vind zome good Ripe nuts among the shorter wood, The best vor nutten.
We voun' zome bushes that did feaece The downcast zunlight's highest pleaece, Where clusters hung so ripe an' brown, That some slipp'd shell an' vell to groun'. But Sal wi' me zoo hitch'd her lag In brembles, that she coulden wag; While Poll kept clwose to Dick, an' stole The nuts vrom's hinder pocket-hole, While he did nutty.
An' Nanny thought she zaw a sneaeke, An' jump'd off into zome girt breaeke, An' tore the bag where she'd a-put Her sheaere, an' shatter'd ev'ry nut. An' out in vield we all zot roun' A white-stemm'd woak upon the groun', Where yollor evenen light did strik' Drough yollow leaves, that still wer thick In time o' nutten,
An' twold ov all the luck we had Among the bushes, good an' bad! Till all the maidens left the bwoys, An' skipp'd about the leaeze all woys Vor musherooms, to car back zome, A treat vor father in at hwome. Zoo off we trudg'd wi' clothes in slents An' libbets, jis' lik' Jack-o'-lents, Vrom copse a-nutten.
TEAKEN IN APPLES.
We took the apples in last week, An' got, by night, zome eaechen backs A-stoopen down all day to pick So many up in mawns an' zacks. An' there wer Liz so proud an' prim, An' dumpy Nan, an' Poll so sly; An' dapper Tom, an' loppen Jim, An' little Dick, an' Fan, an' I.
An' there the lwoaded tree bent low, Behung wi' apples green an' red; An' springen grass could hardly grow, Drough windvalls down below his head. An' when the maidens come in roun' The heavy boughs to vill their laps, We slily shook the apples down Lik' hail, an' gi'ed their backs some raps.
An' zome big apple, Jimmy flung To squail me, gi'ed me sich a crack; But very shortly his ear rung, Wi' woone I zent to pay en back. An' after we'd a-had our squails, Poor Tom, a-jumpen in a bag, Wer pinch'd by all the maiden's nails, An' rolled down into hwome-groun' quag.
An' then they carr'd our Fan all roun', 'Ithin a mawn, till zome girt stump Upset en over on the groun', An' drow'd her out along-straight, plump. An' in the cider-house we zot Upon the windlass Poll an' Nan, An' spun 'em roun' till they wer got So giddy that they coulden stan'.
MEAPLE LEAVES BE YOLLOW.
Come, let's stroll down so vur's the poun', Avore the sparklen zun is down: The zummer's gone, an' days so feaeir As theaese be now a-getten reaere. The night, wi' mwore than daylight's sheaere O' wat'ry sky, do wet wi' dew The ee-grass up above woone's shoe, An' meaeple leaves be yollow.
The last hot doust, above the road, An' vu'st dead leaves ha' been a-blow'd By playsome win's where spring did spread The blossoms that the zummer shed; An' near blue sloos an' conkers red The evenen zun, a zetten soon, Do leaeve a-quiv'ren to the moon, The meaeple leaves so yollow.
Zoo come along, an' let's injay The last fine weather while do stay; While thou canst hang, wi' ribbons slack, Thy bonnet down upon thy back, Avore the winter, cwold an' black, Do kill thy flowers, an' avore Thy bird-cage is a-took in door, Though meaeple leaves be yollow.
NIGHT A-ZETTEN IN.
When leaezers wi' their laps o' corn Noo longer be a-stoopen, An' in the stubble, all vorlorn, Noo poppies be a-droopen; When theaese young harvest-moon do weaene, That now've his horns so thin, O, We'll leaeve off walken in the leaene, While night's a zetten in, O.
When zummer doust is all a-laid Below our litty shoes, O; When all the rain-chill'd flow'rs be dead, That now do drink the dews, O; When beauty's neck, that's now a-show'd, 'S a-muffled to the chin, O; We'll leaeve off walken in the road, When night's a-zetten in, O.
But now, while barley by the road Do hang upon the bough, O, A-pull'd by branches off the lwoad A-riden hwome to mow, O; While spiders roun' the flower-stalks Ha' cobwebs yet to spin, O, We'll cool ourzelves in out-door walks, When night's a-zetten in, O.
While down at vword the brook so small, That leaetely wer so high, O, Wi' little tinklen sounds do vall In roun' the stwones half dry, O; While twilight ha' sich air in store, To cool our zunburnt skin, O, We'll have a ramble out o' door, When night's a-zetten in, O.
THE WEATHER-BEATEN TREE.
The woaken tree, a-beaet at night By stormy winds wi' all their spite, Mid toss his lim's, an' ply, an' mwoan, Wi' unknown struggles all alwone; An' when the day do show his head, A-stripp'd by winds at last a-laid, How vew mid think that didden zee, How night-time had a-tried thik tree.
An' happy vo'k do seldom know How hard our unknown storms do blow, The while our heads do slowly bend Below the trials God do zend, Like shiv'ren bennets, beaere to all The dreven winds o' dark'nen fall. An' zoo in tryen hardships we Be lik' the weather beaeten tree.
But He will never meaeke our sheaere O' sorrow mwore than we can bear, But meaeke us zee, if 'tis His will, That He can bring us good vrom ill; As after winter He do bring, In His good time, the zunny spring, An' leaves, an' young vo'k vull o' glee A-dancen roun' the woaken tree.
True love's the ivy that do twine Unwith'ren roun' his mossy rine, When winter's zickly zun do sheen Upon its leaves o' glossy green, So patiently a-holden vast Till storms an' cwold be all a-past, An' only liven vor to be A-meaeted to the woaken tree.
The vu'st Peaert.
An' zoo's the day wer warm an' bright, An' nar a cloud wer up in zight, We wheedled father vor the meaere An' cart, to goo to Shrodon feaeir. An' Poll an' Nan run off up stairs, To shift their things, as wild as heaeres; An' pull'd out, each o'm vrom her box, Their snow-white leaece an' newest frocks, An' put their bonnets on, a-lined Wi' blue, an' sashes tied behind; An' turn'd avore the glass their feaece An' back, to zee their things in pleaece; While Dick an' I did brush our hats An' cwoats, an' cleaen ourzelves lik' cats. At woone or two o'clock, we vound Ourzelves at Shrodon seaefe an' sound, A-strutten in among the rows O' tilted stannens an' o' shows, An' girt long booths wi' little bars Chock-vull o' barrels, mugs, an' jars, An' meat a-cooken out avore The vier at the upper door; Where zellers bwold to buyers shy Did hollow round us, "What d'ye buy?" An' scores o' merry tongues did speak At woonce, an' childern's pipes did squeak, An' horns did blow, an' drums did rumble, An' bawlen merrymen did tumble; An' woone did all but want an edge To peaert the crowd wi', lik' a wedge.
We zaw the dancers in a show Dance up an' down, an' to an' fro, Upon a rwope, wi' chalky zoles, So light as magpies up on poles; An' tumblers, wi' their streaks an' spots, That all but tied theirzelves in knots. An' then a conjurer burn'd off Poll's han'kerchief so black's a snoff, An' het en, wi' a single blow, Right back ageaen so white as snow. An' after that, he fried a fat Girt ceaeke inzide o' my new hat; An' yet, vor all he did en brown, He didden even zweal the crown.
The rest o't.
An' after that we met wi' zome O' Mans'on vo'k, but jist a-come, An' had a raffle vor a treat All roun', o' gingerbread to eat; An' Tom meaede leaest, wi' all his sheaekes, An' paid the money vor the ceaekes, But wer so lwoth to put it down As if a penny wer a poun'. Then up come zidelen Sammy Heaere, That's fond o' Poll, an' she can't bear, A-holden out his girt scram vist, An' ax'd her, wi' a grin an' twist, To have zome nuts; an' she, to hide Her laughen, turn'd her head azide, An' answer'd that she'd rather not, But Nancy mid. An' Nan, so hot As vier, zaid 'twer quite enough Vor Poll to answer vor herzuf: She had a tongue, she zaid, an' wit Enough to use en, when 'twer fit. An' in the dusk, a-riden round Drough Okford, who d'ye think we vound But Sam ageaen, a-gwaein vrom feaeir Astride his broken-winded meaere. An' zoo, a-hetten her, he tried To keep up clwose by ouer zide: But when we come to Hayward-brudge, Our Poll gi'ed Dick a meaenen nudge, An' wi' a little twitch our meaere Flung out her lags so lights a heaere, An' left poor Sammy's skin an' bwones Behind, a-kicken o' the stwones.
Come, bring a log o' cleft wood, Jack, An' fling en on ageaen the back, An' zee the outside door is vast,— The win' do blow a cwoldish blast. Come, so's! come, pull your chairs in roun' Avore the vire; an' let's zit down, An' keep up Martin's-tide, vor I Shall keep it up till I do die. 'Twer Martinmas, and ouer feaeir, When Jeaene an' I, a happy peaeir, Vu'st walk'd, a-keepen up the tide, Among the stan'ens, zide by zide; An' thik day twel'month, never failen, She gi'ed me at the chancel railen A heart—though I do sound her praise— As true as ever beaet in stays. How vast the time do goo! Do seem But yesterday,—'tis lik' a dream!
Ah, sō's! 'tis now zome years agoo You vu'st knew me, an' I knew you; An' we've a-had zome bits o' fun, By winter vire an' zummer zun. Aye; we've a-prowl'd an' rigg'd about Lik' cats, in harm's way mwore than out, An' busy wi' the tricks we play'd In fun, to outwit chap or maid. An' out avore the bleaezen he'th, Our naisy tongues, in winter me'th, 'V a-shook the warmen-pan, a-hung Bezide us, till his cover rung. There, 'twer but tother day thik chap, Our Robert, wer a child in lap; An' Poll's two little lags hung down Vrom thik wold chair a span vrom groun', An' now the saucy wench do stride About wi' steps o' dree veet wide. How time do goo! A life do seem As 'twer a year; 'tis lik' a dream!
GUY FAUX'S NIGHT.
Guy Faux's night, dost know, we chaps, A-putten on our woldest traps, Went up the highest o' the knaps, An' meaede up such a vier! An' thou an' Tom wer all we miss'd, Vor if a sarpent had a-hiss'd Among the rest in thy sprack vist, Our fun 'd a-been the higher.
We chaps at hwome, an' Will our cousin, Took up a half a lwoad o' vuzzen; An' burn'd a barrel wi' a dozen O' faggots, till above en The fleaemes, arisen up so high 'S the tun, did snap, an' roar, an' ply, Lik' vier in an' oven.
An' zome wi' hissen squibs did run, To pay off zome what they'd a-done, An' let em off so loud's a gun Ageaen their smoken polls; An' zome did stir their nimble pags Wi' crackers in between their lags, While zome did burn their cwoats to rags, Or wes'cots out in holes.
An' zome o'm's heads lost half their locks, An' zome o'm got their white smock-frocks Jist fit to vill the tinder-box, Wi' half the backs o'm off; An' Dick, that all o'm vell upon, Vound woone flap ov his cwoat-tail gone, An' tother jist a-hangen on, A-zweal'd so black's a snoff.
THE COMMON A-TOOK IN.
Thomas an' John.
Good morn t'ye, John. How b'ye? how b'ye? Zoo you be gwain to market, I do zee. Why, you be quite a-lwoaded wi' your geese.
Ees, Thomas, ees. Why, I'm a-getten rid ov ev'ry goose An' goslen I've a-got: an' what is woose, I fear that I must zell my little cow.
How zoo, then, John? Why, what's the matter now? What, can't ye get along? B'ye run a-ground? An' can't pay twenty shillens vor a pound? What can't ye put a lwoaf on shelf?
JOHN. Ees, now; But I do fear I shan't 'ithout my cow. No; they do mean to teaeke the moor in, I do hear, An' 'twill be soon begun upon; Zoo I must zell my bit o' stock to-year, Because they woon't have any groun' to run upon.
Why, what d'ye tell o'? I be very zorry To hear what they be gwain about; But yet I s'pose there'll be a 'lotment vor ye, When they do come to mark it out.
No; not vor me, I fear. An' if there should, Why 'twoulden be so handy as 'tis now; Vor 'tis the common that do do me good, The run for my vew geese, or vor my cow.
Ees, that's the job; why 'tis a handy thing To have a bit o' common, I do know, To put a little cow upon in Spring, The while woone's bit ov orcha'd grass do grow.
Aye, that's the thing, you zee. Now I do mow My bit o' grass, an' meaeke a little rick; An' in the zummer, while do grow, My cow do run in common vor to pick A bleaede or two o' grass, if she can vind em, Vor tother cattle don't leaeve much behind em. Zoo in the evenen, we do put a lock O' nice fresh grass avore the wicket; An' she do come at vive or zix o'clock, As constant as the zun, to pick it. An' then, bezides the cow, why we do let Our geese run out among the emmet hills; An' then when we do pluck em, we do get Vor zeaele zome veathers an' zome quills; An' in the winter we do fat em well, An' car em to the market vor to zell To gentlevo'ks, vor we don't oft avvword To put a goose a-top ov ouer bwoard; But we do get our feaest,—vor we be eaeble To clap the giblets up a-top o' teaeble.
An' I don't know o' many better things, Than geese's heads and gizzards, lags an' wings.
An' then, when I ha' nothen else to do, Why I can teaeke my hook an' gloves, an' goo To cut a lot o' vuzz and briars Vor heten ovens, or vor lighten viers. An' when the childern be too young to eaern A penny, they can g'out in zunny weather, An' run about, an' get together A bag o' cow-dung vor to burn.
'Tis handy to live near a common; But I've a-zeed, an' I've a-zaid, That if a poor man got a bit o' bread, They'll try to teaeke it vrom en. But I wer twold back tother day, That they be got into a way O' letten bits o' groun' out to the poor.
Well, I do hope 'tis true, I'm sure; An' I do hope that they will do it here, Or I must goo to workhouse, I do fear.
TWO FARMS IN WOONE.
Robert an' Thomas.
You'll lose your meaester soon, then, I do vind; He's gwain to leaeve his farm, as I do larn, At Mielmas; an' I be zorry vor'n. What, is he then a little bit behind?
O no! at Mielmas his time is up, An' thik there sly wold fellow, Farmer Tup, A-fearen that he'd get a bit o' bread, 'V a-been an' took his farm here over's head.
How come the Squire to treat your meaester zoo?
Why, he an' meaester had a word or two.
Is Farmer Tup a-gwain to leaeve his farm? He han't a-got noo young woones vor to zwarm. Poor over-reachen man! why to be sure He don't want all the farms in parish, do er?
Why ees, all ever he can come across, Last year, you know, he got away the eaecre Or two o' ground a-rented by the beaeker, An' what the butcher had to keep his hoss; An' vo'k do beaenhan' now, that meaester's lot Will be a-drowd along wi' what he got.
That's it. In theaese here pleaece there used to be Eight farms avore they wer a-drowd together, An' eight farm-housen. Now how many be there? Why after this, you know there'll be but dree.
An' now they don't imploy so many men Upon the land as work'd upon it then, Vor all they midden crop it worse, nor stock it. The lan'lord, to be sure, is into pocket; Vor half the housen been down, 'tis clear, Don't cost so much to keep em up, a-near. But then the jobs o' work in wood an' morter Do come I 'spose, you know, a little shorter; An' many that wer little farmers then, Be now a-come all down to leaeb'ren men; An' many leaeb'ren men, wi' empty hands, Do live lik' drones upon the worker's lands.
Aye, if a young chap, woonce, had any wit To try an' scrape together zome vew pound, To buy some cows an' teaeke a bit o' ground, He mid become a farmer, bit by bit. But, hang it! now the farms be all so big, An' bits o' groun' so skeae'ce, woone got no scope; If woone could seaeve a poun', woone couldden hope To keep noo live stock but a little pig.
Why here wer vourteen men, zome years agoo, A-kept a-drashen half the winter drough; An' now, woone's drashels be'n't a bit o' good. They got machines to drashy wi', plague teaeke em! An' he that vu'st vound out the way to meaeke em, I'd drash his busy zides vor'n if I could! Avore they took away our work, they ought To meaeke us up the bread our leaebour bought.
They hadden need meaeke poor men's leaebour less, Vor work a'ready is uncommon skeae'ce.
Ah! Robert! times be badish vor the poor; An' worse will come, I be a-fear'd, if Moore In theaese year's almanick do tell us right.
Why then we sartainly must starve. Good night!
Come, run up hwome wi' us to night, Athirt the vield a-vroze so white, Where vrosty sheaedes do lie below The winter ricks a-tipp'd wi' snow, An' lively birds, wi' waggen tails, Do hop upon the icy rails, An' rime do whiten all the tops O' bush an' tree in hedge an' copse, In wind's a-cutten keen.
Come, maidens, come: the groun's a-vroze Too hard to-night to spweil your clothes. You got noo pools to waddle drough, Nor clay a-pullen off your shoe: An' we can trig ye at the zide, To keep ye up if you do slide: Zoo while there's neither wet nor mud, 'S the time to run an' warm your blood, In winds a-cutten keen.
Vor young men's hearts an' maiden's eyes Don't vreeze below the cwoldest skies, While they in twice so keen a blast Can wag their brisk lim's twice so vast! Though vier-light, a-flick'ren red Drough vrosty window-peaenes, do spread Vrom wall to wall, vrom he'th to door, Vor us to goo an' zit avore, Vrom winds a-cutten keen.
A BIT O' FUN.
We thought you woulden leaeve us quite So soon as what you did last night; Our fun jist got up to a height As you about got hwome. The frisken chaps did skip about, An' cou'se the maidens in an' out, A-meaeken such a randy-rout, You coulden hear a drum.
An' Tom, a-springen after Bet Blind-vwolded, whizz'd along, an' het Poor Grammer's zide, an' overzet Her chair, at blind-man's buff; An' she, poor soul, as she did vall, Did show her snags o' teeth an' squall, An' what, she zaid, wer wo'se than all, She shatter'd all her snuff.
An' Bet, a-hoppen back vor fear O' Tom, struck uncle zomewhere near, An' meaede his han' spill all his beer Right down her poll an' back; An' Joe, in middle o' the din, Slipt out a bit, an' soon come in Wi' all below his dapper chin A-jumpen in a zack.
An' in a twinklen tother chaps Jist hung en to a crook wi' straps, An' meaede en bear the maidens' slaps, An' prickens wi' a pin. An' Jim, a-catchen Poll, poor chap, In back-house in the dark, vell slap Athirt a tub o' barm,—a trap She set to catch en in.
An' then we zot down out o' breath, An' meaede a circle roun' the he'th, A-keepen up our harmless me'th, Till supper wer a-come. An' after we'd a-had zome prog, All tother chaps begun to jog, Wi' sticks to lick a thief or dog, To zee the maidens hwome.
How merry, wi' the cider cup, We kept poor Fanny's be'th-day up! An' how our busy tongues did run An' hands did wag, a-meaeken fun! What playsome anticks zome ō's done! An' how, a-reelen roun' an' roun', We beaet the merry tuen down, While music wer a-sounden!
The maidens' eyes o' black an' blue Did glisten lik' the mornen dew; An' while the cider-mug did stand A-hissen by the bleaezen brand, An' uncle's pipe wer in his hand, How little he or we did think How peaele the zetten stars did blink While music wer a-sounden.
An' Fanny's last young teen begun, Poor maid, wi' thik day's risen zun, An' we all wish'd her many mwore Long years wi' happiness in store; An' as she went an' stood avore The vier, by her father's zide, Her mother dropp'd a tear o' pride While music wer a-sounden.
An' then we did all kinds o' tricks Wi' han'kerchiefs, an' strings, an' sticks: An' woone did try to overmatch Another wi' zome cunnen catch, While tothers slyly tried to hatch Zome geaeme; but yet, by chap an' maid. The dancen wer the mwost injay'd, While music wer a-sounden.
The briskest chap ov all the lot Wer Tom, that danc'd hizzelf so hot, He doff'd his cwoat an' jump'd about, Wi' girt new shirt-sleeves all a-strout, Among the maidens screamen out, A-thinken, wi' his strides an' stamps, He'd squot their veet wi' his girt clamps, While music wer a-sounden.
Then up jump'd uncle vrom his chair, An' pull'd out aunt to meaeke a peaeir; An' off he zet upon his tooe, So light's the best that beaet a shoe, Wi' aunt a-crien "Let me goo:" While all ov us did laugh so loud, We drown'd the tuen o' the croud, While music wer a-sounden.
A-comen out o' passage, Nan, Wi' pipes an' cider in her han', An' watchen uncle up so sprack, Vorgot her veet, an' vell down smack Athirt the house-dog's shaggy back, That wer in passage vor a snooze, Beyond the reach o' dancers' shoes, While music wer a-sounden.
WHAT DICK AN' I DID.
Last week the Browns ax'd nearly all The naighbours to a randy, An' left us out o't, girt an' small, Vor all we liv'd so handy; An' zoo I zaid to Dick, "We'll trudge, When they be in their fun, min; An' car up zome'hat to the rudge, An' jis' stop up the tun, min."
Zoo, wi' the ladder vrom the rick, We stole towards the house, An' crope in roun' behind en, lik' A cat upon a mouse. Then, looken roun', Dick whisper'd "How Is theaese job to be done, min: Why we do want a faggot now, Vor stoppen up the tun, min."
"Stan' still," I answer'd; "I'll teaeke ceaere O' that: why dussen zee The little grinden stwone out there, Below the apple-tree? Put up the ladder; in a crack Shalt zee that I wull run, min, An' teaeke en up upon my back, An' soon stop up the tun, min."
Zoo up I clomb upon the thatch, An' clapp'd en on; an' slided Right down ageaen, an' run drough hatch, Behind the hedge, an' hided. The vier that wer clear avore, Begun to spweil their fun, min; The smoke all roll'd toward the door, Vor I'd a-stopp'd the tun, min.
The maidens cough'd or stopp'd their breath, The men did hauk an' spet; The wold vo'k bundled out from he'th Wi' eyes a-runnen wet. "'T'ool choke us all," the wold man cried, "Whatever's to be done, min? Why zome'hat is a-vell inside O' chimney drough the tun, min."
Then out they scamper'd all, vull run, An' out cried Tom, "I think The grinden-stwone is up on tun, Vor I can zee the wink. This is some kindness that the vo'k At Woodley have a-done, min; I wish I had em here, I'd poke Their numskulls down the tun, min."
Then off he zet, an' come so quick 'S a lamplighter, an' brote The little ladder in vrom rick, To clear the chimney's droat. While I, a-chucklen at the joke, A-slided down, to run, min, To hidelock, had a-left the vo'k As bad as na'r a tun, min.
I do seem to zee Grammer as she did use Vor to show us, at Chris'mas, her wedden shoes, An' her flat spreaden bonnet so big an' roun' As a girt pewter dish a-turn'd upside down; When we all did draw near In a cluster to hear O' the merry wold soul how she did use To walk an' to dance wi' her high-heel shoes.
She'd a gown wi' girt flowers lik' hollyhocks, An' zome stockens o' gramfer's a-knit wi' clocks, An' a token she kept under lock an' key,— A small lock ov his heaeir off avore 't wer grey. An' her eyes wer red, An' she shook her head, When we'd all a-look'd at it, an' she did use To lock it away wi' her wedden shoes.
She could tell us such teaeles about heavy snows, An' o' rains an' o' floods when the waters rose All up into the housen, an' carr'd awoy All the bridge wi' a man an' his little bwoy; An' o' vog an' vrost, An' o' vo'k a-lost, An' o' peaerties at Chris'mas, when she did use Vor to walk hwome wi' gramfer in high-heel shoes.
Ev'ry Chris'mas she lik'd vor the bells to ring, An' to have in the zingers to heaer em zing The wold carols she heaerd many years a-gone, While she warm'd em zome cider avore the bron'; An' she'd look an' smile At our dancen, while She did tell how her friends now a-gone did use To reely wi' her in their high-heel shoes.
Ah! an' how she did like vor to deck wi' red Holly-berries the window an' wold clock's head, An' the clavy wi' boughs o' some bright green leaves, An' to meaeke twoast an' eaele upon Chris'mas eves; But she's now, drough greaece, In a better pleaece, Though we'll never vorget her, poor soul, nor lose Gramfer's token ov heaeir, nor her wedden shoes.
ZUNSHEEN IN THE WINTER.
The winter clouds, that long did hide The zun, be all a-blown azide, An' in the light, noo longer dim, Do sheen the ivy that do clim' The tower's zide an' elem's stim; An' holmen bushes, in between The leafless thorns, be bright an' green To zunsheen o' the winter.
The trees, that yesterday did twist In wind's a-dreven rain an' mist, Do now drow sheaedes out, long an' still; But roaren watervals do vill Their whirlen pools below the hill, Where, wi' her pail upon the stile, A-gwain a-milken Jeaene do smile To zunsheen o' the winter.
The birds do sheaeke, wi' playsome skips, The rain-drops off the bushes' tips, A-chirripen wi' merry sound; While over all the grassy ground The wind's a-whirlen round an' round So softly, that the day do seem Mwore lik' a zummer in a dream, Than zunsheen in the winter.
The wold vo'k now do meet abrode, An' tell o' winter's they've a-know'd; When snow wer long above the groun', Or floods broke all the bridges down, Or wind unheal'd a half the town,— The teaeles o' wold times long a-gone, But ever dear to think upon, The zunsheen o' their winter.
Vor now to them noo brook can run, Noo hill can feaece the winter zun, Noo leaves can vall, noo flow'rs can feaede, Noo snow can hide the grasses bleaede, Noo vrost can whiten in the sheaede, Noo day can come, but what do bring To mind ageaen their early spring, That's now a-turn'd to winter.
THE WEEPEN LEADY.
When, leaete o' nights, above the green By thik wold house, the moon do sheen, A leaedy there, a-hangen low Her head, 's a-walken to an' fro In robes so white's the driven snow, Wi' woone eaerm down, while woone do rest All lily-white athirt the breast O' thik poor weepen leaedy.
The whirlen wind an' whis'len squall Do sheaeke the ivy by the wall, An' meaeke the plyen tree-tops rock, But never ruffle her white frock; An' slammen door an' rattlen lock, That in thik empty house do sound, Do never seem to meaeke look round Thik ever downcast leaedy.
A leaedy, as the teaele do goo, That woonce liv'd there, an' lov'd too true, Wer by a young man cast azide. A mother sad, but not a bride; An' then her father, in his pride An' anger, offer'd woone o' two Vull bitter things to undergoo To thik poor weepen leaedy:
That she herzelf should leaeve his door, To darken it ageaen noo mwore; Or that her little playsome chile, A-zent away a thousand mile, Should never meet her eyes to smile An' play ageaen; till she, in sheaeme, Should die an' leaeve a tarnish'd neaeme, A sad vorseaeken leaedy.
"Let me be lost," she cried, "the while I do but know vor my poor chile;" An' left the hwome ov all her pride, To wander drough the worold wide, Wi' grief that vew but she ha' tried: An' lik' a flow'r a blow ha' broke, She wither'd wi' the deadly stroke, An' died a weepen leaedy.
An' she do keep a-comen on To zee her father dead an' gone, As if her soul could have noo rest Avore her teaery cheaek's a-prest By his vorgiven kiss. Zoo blest Be they that can but live in love, An' vind a pleaece o' rest above Unlik' the weepen leaedy.
THE HAPPY DAYS WHEN I WER YOUNG.
In happy days when I wer young, An' had noo ho, an' laugh'd an' zung, The maid wer merry by her cow, An' men wer merry wi' the plough; But never talk'd, at hwome or out O' doors, o' what's a-talk'd about By many now,—that to despise The laws o' God an' man is wise. Wi' daily health, an' daily bread, An' thatch above their shelter'd head, They velt noo fear, an' had noo spite, To keep their eyes awake at night; But slept in peace wi' God on high An' man below, an' fit to die.
O' grassy meaed an' woody nook, An' waters o' the winden brook, That sprung below the vu'st dark sky That rain'd, to run till seas be dry; An' hills a-stannen on while all The works o' man do rise an' vall; An' trees the toddlen child do vind At vu'st, an' leaeve at last behind; I wish that you could now unvwold The peace an' jaey o' times o' wold; An' tell, when death do still my tongue, O' happy days when I wer young. Vrom where wer all this venom brought, To kill our hope an' taint our thought? Clear brook! thy water coulden bring Such venom vrom thy rocky spring; Nor could it come in zummer blights, Or reaeven storms o' winter nights, Or in the cloud an' viry stroke O' thunder that do split the woak.
O valley dear! I wish that I 'D a-liv'd in former times, to die Wi' all the happy souls that trod Thy turf in peaece, an' died to God; Or gone wi' them that laugh'd an' zung In happy days when I wer young!
IN THE STILLNESS O' THE NIGHT.
Ov all the housen o' the pleaece, There's woone where I do like to call By day or night the best ov all, To zee my Fanny's smilen feaece; An' there the steaetely trees do grow, A-rocken as the win' do blow, While she do sweetly sleep below, In the stillness o' the night.
An' there, at evenen, I do goo A-hoppen over geaetes an' bars, By twinklen light o' winter stars, When snow do clumper to my shoe; An' zometimes we do slyly catch A chat an hour upon the stratch, An' peaert wi' whispers at the hatch In the stillness o' the night.
An' zometimes she do goo to zome Young naighbours' housen down the pleaece, An' I do get a clue to treaece Her out, an' goo to zee her hwome; An' I do wish a vield a mile, As she do sweetly chat an' smile Along the drove, or at the stile, In the stillness o' the night.
THE SETTLE AN' THE GIRT WOOD VIRE.
Ah! naighbour John, since I an' you Wer youngsters, ev'ry thing is new. My father's vires wer all o' logs O' cleft-wood, down upon the dogs Below our clavy, high, an' brode Enough to teaeke a cart an' lwoad, Where big an' little all zot down At bwoth zides, an' bevore, all roun'. An' when I zot among em, I Could zee all up ageaen the sky Drough chimney, where our vo'k did hitch The zalt-box an' the beaecon-vlitch, An' watch the smoke on out o' vier, All up an' out o' tun, an' higher. An' there wer beaecon up on rack, An' pleaetes an' dishes on the tack; An' roun' the walls wer heaerbs a-stowed In peaepern bags, an' blathers blowed. An' just above the clavy-bwoard Wer father's spurs, an' gun, an' sword; An' there wer then, our girtest pride, The settle by the vier zide. Ah! gi'e me, if I wer a squier, The settle an' the girt wood vier.
But they've a-wall'd up now wi' bricks The vier pleaece vor dogs an' sticks, An' only left a little hole To teaeke a little greaete o' coal, So small that only twos or drees Can jist push in an' warm their knees. An' then the carpets they do use, Bēn't fit to tread wi' ouer shoes; An' chairs an' couches be so neat, You mussen teaeke em vor a seat: They be so fine, that vo'k mus' pleaece All over em an' outer ceaese, An' then the cover, when 'tis on, Is still too fine to loll upon. Ah! gi'e me, if I wer a squier, The settle an' the girt wood vier.
Carpets, indeed! You coulden hurt The stwone-vloor wi' a little dirt; Vor what wer brought in doors by men, The women soon mopp'd out ageaen. Zoo we did come vrom muck an' mire, An' walk in straight avore the vier; But now, a man's a-kept at door At work a pirty while, avore He's screaep'd an' rubb'd, an' cleaen and fit To goo in where his wife do zit. An' then if he should have a whiff In there, 'twould only breed a miff: He cānt smoke there, vor smoke woon't goo 'Ithin the footy little flue. Ah! gi'e me, if I wer a squier, The settle an' the girt wood vier.
O, I be a carter, wi' my whip A-smacken loud, as by my zide, Up over hill, an' down the dip, The heavy lwoad do slowly ride.
An' I do haul in all the crops, An' I do bring in vuzz vrom down; An' I do goo vor wood to copse, An' car the corn an' straw to town.
An' I do goo vor lime, an' bring Hwome cider wi' my sleek-heaeir'd team, An' smack my limber whip an' zing, While all their bells do gaily cheeme.
An' I do always know the pleaece To gi'e the hosses breath, or drug; An' ev'ry hoss do know my feaece, An' mind my 'mether ho! an' whug!
An' merry hay-meaekers do ride Vrom vield in zummer wi' their prongs, In my blue waggon, zide by zide Upon the reaeves, a-zingen zongs.
An' when the vrost do catch the stream, An' oves wi' icicles be hung, My panten hosses' breath do steam In white-grass'd vields, a-haulen dung.
An' mine's the waggon fit vor lwoads, An' mine be lwoads to cut a rout; An' mine's a team, in routy rwoads, To pull a lwoaded waggon out.
A zull is nothen when do come Behind their lags; an' they do teaeke A roller as they would a drum, An' harrow as they would a reaeke.
O! I be a carter, wi' my whip A-smacken loud, as by my zide, Up over hill, an' down the dip, The heavy lwoad do slowly ride.
Come down to-morrow night; an' mind, Don't leaeve thy fiddle-bag behind; We'll sheaeke a lag, an' drink a cup O' eaele, to keep wold Chris'mas up.
An' let thy sister teaeke thy eaerm, The walk won't do her any harm; There's noo dirt now to spweil her frock, The ground's a-vroze so hard's a rock.
You won't meet any stranger's feaece, But only naighbours o' the pleaece, An' Stowe, an' Combe; an' two or dree Vrom uncle's up at Rookery.
An' thou wu'lt vind a rwosy feaece, An' peaeir ov eyes so black as sloos, The prettiest woones in all the pleaece,— I'm sure I needen tell thee whose.
We got a back-bran', dree girt logs So much as dree ov us can car; We'll put em up athirt the dogs, An' meaeke a vier to the bar.
An' ev'ry woone shall tell his teaele, An' ev'ry woone shall zing his zong, An' ev'ry woone wull drink his eaele To love an' frien'ship all night long.
We'll snap the tongs, we'll have a ball, We'll sheaeke the house, we'll lift the ruf, We'll romp an' meaeke the maidens squall, A catchen o'm at blind-man's buff.
Zoo come to-morrow night; an' mind, Don't leaeve thy fiddle-bag behind; We'll sheaeke a lag, an' drink a cup O' eaele, to keep wold Chris'mas up.
KEEPEN UP O' CHRIS'MAS.
An' zoo you didden come athirt, To have zome fun last night: how wer't? Vor we'd a-work'd wi' all our might To scour the iron things up bright, An' brush'd an' scrubb'd the house all drough; An' brought in vor a brand, a plock O' wood so big's an uppen-stock, An' hung a bough o' misseltoo, An' ax'd a merry friend or two, To keepen up o' Chris'mas.
An' there wer wold an' young; an' Bill, Soon after dark, stalk'd up vrom mill. An' when he wer a-comen near, He whissled loud vor me to hear; Then roun' my head my frock I roll'd, An' stood in orcha'd like a post, To meaeke en think I wer a ghost. But he wer up to't, an' did scwold To vind me stannen in the cwold, A keepen up o' Chris'mas.
We play'd at forfeits, an' we spun The trencher roun', an' meaede such fun! An' had a geaeme o' dree-ceaerd loo, An' then begun to hunt the shoe. An' all the wold vo'k zitten near, A-chatten roun' the vier pleaece, Did smile in woone another's feaece. An' sheaeke right hands wi' hearty cheer, An' let their left hands spill their beer, A keepen up o' Chris'mas.
ZITTEN OUT THE WOLD YEAR.
Why, rain or sheen, or blow or snow, I zaid, if I could stand so's, I'd come, vor all a friend or foe, To sheaeke ye by the hand, so's; An' spend, wi' kinsvo'k near an' dear, A happy evenen, woonce a year, A-zot wi' me'th Avore the he'th To zee the new year in, so's.
There's Jim an' Tom, a-grown the size O' men, girt lusty chaps, so's, An' Fanny wi' her sloo-black eyes, Her mother's very dap's, so's; An' little Bill, so brown's a nut, An' Poll a gigglen little slut, I hope will shoot Another voot The year that's comen in, so's.
An' there, upon his mother's knee, So peaert do look about, so's, The little woone ov all, to zee His vu'st wold year goo out, so's An' zoo mid God bless all o's still, Gwain up or down along the hill, To meet in glee Ageaen to zee A happy new year in, so's.
The wold clock's han' do softly steal Up roun' the year's last hour, so's; Zoo let the han'-bells ring a peal, Lik' them a-hung in tow'r, so's. Here, here be two vor Tom, an' two Vor Fanny, an' a peaeir vor you; We'll meaeke em swing, An' meaeke em ring, The merry new year in, so's.
Tom, mind your time there; you be wrong. Come, let your bells all sound, so's: A little clwoser, Poll; ding, dong! There, now 'tis right all round, so's. The clock's a-striken twelve, d'ye hear? Ting, ting, ding, dong! Farewell, wold year! 'Tis gone, 'tis gone!— Goo on, goo on, An' ring the new woone in, so's!
WOAK WER GOOD ENOUGH WOONCE.
Ees: now mahogany's the goo, An' good wold English woak won't do. I wish vo'k always mid avvword Hot meals upon a woaken bwoard, As good as thik that took my cup An' trencher all my growen up. Ah! I do mind en in the hall, A-reachen all along the wall, Wi' us at father's end, while tother Did teaeke the maidens wi' their mother; An' while the risen steam did spread In curlen clouds up over head, Our mouths did wag, an' tongues did run, To meaeke the maidens laugh o' fun.
A woaken bedstead, black an' bright, Did teaeke my weary bwones at night, Where I could stratch an' roll about Wi' little fear o' vallen out; An' up above my head a peaeir Ov ugly heads a-carv'd did steaere, An' grin avore a bright vull moon A'most enough to frighten woone. An' then we had, vor cwoats an' frocks, Woak cwoffers wi' their rusty locks An' neaemes in nails, a-left behind By kinsvo'k dead an' out o' mind; Zoo we did get on well enough Wi' things a-meaede ov English stuff. But then, you know, a woaken stick Wer cheap, vor woaken trees wer thick. When poor wold Gramfer Green wer young, He zaid a squirrel mid a-sprung Along the dell, vrom tree to tree, Vrom Woodcomb all the way to Lea; An' woak wer all vo'k did avvword, Avore his time, vor bed or bwoard.
The rook's nest do rock on the tree-top Where vew foes can stand; The martin's is high, an' is deep In the steep cliff o' zand. But thou, love, a-sleepen where vootsteps Mid come to thy bed, Hast father an' mother to watch thee An' shelter thy head. Lullaby, Lilybrow. Lie asleep; Blest be thy rest.
An' zome birds do keep under ruffen Their young vrom the storm, An' zome wi' nest-hoodens o' moss And o' wool, do lie warm. An' we wull look well to the houseruf That o'er thee mid leaek, An' the blast that mid beaet on thy winder Shall not smite thy cheaek. Lullaby, Lilibrow. Lie asleep; Blest be thy rest.
Meary-Ann wer alwone wi' her beaeby in eaerms, In her house wi' the trees over head, Vor her husban' wer out in the night an' the storms, In his business a-tweilen vor bread; An' she, as the wind in the elems did roar, Did grievy vor Robert all night out o' door.
An' her kinsvo'k an' nai'bours did zay ov her chile, (Under the high elem tree), That a prettier never did babble or smile Up o' top ov a proud mother's knee; An' his mother did toss en, an' kiss en, an' call En her darlen, an' life, an' her hope, an' her all.
But she vound in the evenen the chile werden well, (Under the dark elem tree), An' she thought she could gi'e all the worold to tell, Vor a truth what his ailen mid be; An' she thought o'en last in her prayers at night, An' she look'd at en last as she put out the light.
An' she vound en grow wo'se in the dead o' the night, (Under the dark elem tree), An' she press'd en ageaen her warm bosom so tight, An' she rock'd en so sorrowfully; An' there laid a-nestlen the poor little bwoy, Till his struggles grew weak, an' his cries died awoy.
An' the moon wer a-sheenen down into the pleaece, (Under the dark elem tree), An' his mother could zee that his lips an' his feaece Wer so white as cleaen axen could be; An' her tongue wer a-tied an' her still heart did zwell, Till her senses come back wi' the vu'st tear that vell.
Never mwore can she veel his warm feaece in her breast, (Under the green elem tree), Vor his eyes be a-shut, an' his hands be at rest, An' he's now vrom his pain a-zet free; Vor his soul, we do know, is to heaven a-vled, Where noo pain is a-known, an' noo tears be a-shed.
FATHER COME HWOME.
John, Wife, an' Child.
O mother, mother! be the teaeties done? Here's father now a-comen down the track, Hes got his nitch o' wood upon his back, An' such a speaeker in en! I'll be bound, He's long enough to reach vrom ground Up to the top ov ouer tun; 'Tis jist the very thing vor Jack an' I To goo a-colepecksen wi' by an' by.
The teaeties must be ready pretty nigh; Do teaeke woone up upon the fork' an' try. The ceaeke upon the vier, too, 's a-burnen, I be afeaerd: do run an' zee, an' turn en.
Well, mother! here I be woonce mwore, at hwome.
Ah! I be very glad you be a-come. You be a-tired an' cwold enough, I s'pose; Zit down an' rest your bwones, an' warm your nose.
Why I be nippy: what is there to eat?
Your supper's nearly ready. I've a got Some teaeties here a-doen in the pot; I wish wi' all my heart I had some meat. I got a little ceaeke too, here, a-beaeken o'n Upon the vier. 'Tis done by this time though. He's nice an' moist; vor when I wer a-meaeken o'n I stuck some bits ov apple in the dough.
Well, father; what d'ye think? The pig got out This mornen; an' avore we zeed or heaerd en, He run about, an' got out into geaerden, An' routed up the groun' zoo wi' his snout!
Now only think o' that! You must contrive To keep en in, or else he'll never thrive.
An' father, what d'ye think? I voun' to-day The nest where thik wold hen ov our's do lay: 'Twer out in orcha'd hedge, an' had vive aggs.
Lo'k there: how wet you got your veet an' lags! How did ye get in such a pickle, Jahn?
I broke my hoss, an' been a-fwo'ced to stan' All's day in mud an' water vor to dig, An' meaede myzelf so wetshod as a pig.
Father, teaeke off your shoes, then come, and I Will bring your wold woones vor ye, nice an' dry.
An' have ye got much hedgen mwore to do?
Enough to last vor dree weeks mwore or zoo.
An' when y'ave done the job you be about, D'ye think you'll have another vound ye out?
O ees, there'll be some mwore: vor after that, I got a job o' trenchen to goo at; An' then zome trees to shroud, an' wood to vell,— Zoo I do hope to rub on pretty well Till zummer time; an' then I be to cut The wood an' do the trenchen by the tut.
An' nex' week, father, I'm a-gwain to goo A-picken stwones, d'ye know, vor Farmer True.
An' little Jack, you know, 's a-gwain to eaern A penny too, a-keepen birds off corn.
O brave! What wages do 'e meaen to gi'e?
She dreppence vor a day, an' twopence he.
Well, Polly; thou must work a little spracker When thou bist out, or else thou wu'ten pick A dungpot lwoad o' stwones up very quick.
Oh! yes I shall. But Jack do want a clacker: An' father, wull ye teaeke an' cut A stick or two to meaeke his hut.
You wench! why you be always up a-baggen. I be too tired now to-night, I'm sure, To zet a-doen any mwore: Zoo I shall goo up out o' the way o' the waggon.
Jem an' Dick.
This is a darkish evenen; b'ye a-feaerd O' zights? Theaese leaene's a-haunted, I've a heaerd.
No, I be'nt much a-feaer'd. If vo'k don't strive To over-reach me while they be alive, I don't much think the dead wull ha' the will To come back here to do me any ill. An' I've a-been about all night, d'ye know, Vrom candle-lighten till the cock did crow; But never met wi' nothen bad enough To be much wo'se than what I be myzuf; Though I, lik' others, have a-heaerd vo'k zay The girt house is a-haunted, night an' day.
Aye; I do mind woone winter 'twer a-zaid The farmer's vo'k could hardly sleep a-bed, They heaerd at night such scuffens an' such jumpens, Such ugly naises an' such rottlen thumpens.
Aye, I do mind I heaerd his son, young Sammy, Tell how the chairs did dance an' doors did slammy; He stood to it—though zome vo'k woulden heed en— He didden only hear the ghost, but zeed en; An', hang me! if I han't a'most a-shook, To hear en tell what ugly sheaepes it took. Did zometimes come vull six veet high, or higher, In white, he zaid, wi' eyes lik' coals o' vier; An' zometimes, wi' a feaece so peaele as milk, A smileless leaedy, all a-deck'd in silk. His heaeir, he zaid, did use to stand upright, So stiff's a bunch o' rushes, wi' his fright.
An' then you know that zome'hat is a-zeed Down there in leaene, an' over in the meaed, A-comen zometimes lik' a slinken hound, Or rollen lik' a vleece along the ground. An' woonce, when gramfer wi' his wold grey meaere Wer riden down the leaene vrom Shroton feaeir, It roll'd so big's a pack ov wool across The road just under en, an' leaem'd his hoss.
Aye; did ye ever hear—vo'k zaid 'twer true— O' what bevell Jack Hine zome years agoo? Woone vrosty night, d'ye know, at Chris'mas tide, Jack, an' another chap or two bezide, 'D a-been out, zomewhere up at tother end O' parish, to a naighbour's house to spend A merry hour, an' mid a-took a cup Or two o' eaele a-keepen Chris'mas up; Zoo I do lot 'twer leaete avore the peaerty 'D a-burnt their bron out; I do lot, avore They thought o' turnen out o' door 'Twer mornen, vor their friendship then wer hearty. Well; clwose ageaen the vootpath that do leaed Vrom higher parish over withy-meaed, There's still a hollow, you do know: they tried there, In former times, to meaeke a cattle-pit, But gie'd it up, because they coulden get The water any time to bide there. Zoo when the merry fellows got Just overright theaese lwonesome spot, Jack zeed a girt big house-dog wi' a collar, A-stannen down in thik there hollor. Lo'k there, he zaid, there's zome girt dog a-prowlen: I'll just goo down an' gi'e'n a goodish lick Or two wi' theaese here groun'-ash stick, An' zend the shaggy rascal hwome a-howlen. Zoo there he run, an' gi'ed en a good whack Wi' his girt ashen stick a-thirt his back; An', all at woonce, his stick split right all down In vower pieces; an' the pieces vled Out ov his hand all up above his head, An' pitch'd in vower corners o' the groun'. An' then he velt his han' get all so num', He coulden veel a vinger or a thum'; An' after that his eaerm begun to zwell, An' in the night a-bed he vound The skin o't peelen off all round. 'Twer near a month avore he got it well.
That wer vor hetten ō'n. He should a let en Alwone d'ye zee: 'twer wicked vor to het en.
O Jenny, don't sobby! vor I shall be true; Noo might under heaven shall peaert me vrom you. My heart will be cwold, Jenny, when I do slight The zwell o' thy bosom, thy eyes' sparklen light.
My kinsvo'k would fain zee me teaeke vor my meaete A maid that ha' wealth, but a maid I should heaete; But I'd sooner leaebour wi' thee vor my bride, Than live lik' a squier wi' any bezide.
Vor all busy kinsvo'k, my love will be still A-zet upon thee lik' the vir in the hill; An' though they mid worry, an' dreaten, an' mock, My head's in the storm, but my root's in the rock.
Zoo, Jenny, don't sobby! vor I shall be true; Noo might under heaven shall peaert me vrom you. My heart will be cwold, Jenny, when I do slight The zwell o' thy bosom, thy eyes' sparklen light.
THE MAID VOR MY BRIDE.
Ah! don't tell o' maidens! the woone vor my bride Is little lik' too many maidens bezide,— Not branten, nor spitevul, nor wild; she've a mind To think o' what's right, an' a heart to be kind.
She's straight an' she's slender, but not over tall, Wi' lim's that be lightsome, but not over small; The goodness o' heaven do breathe in her feaece, An' a queen, to be steaetely, must walk wi' her peaece.
Her frocks be a-meaede all becomen an' plain, An' cleaen as a blossom undimm'd by a stain; Her bonnet ha' got but two ribbons, a-tied Up under her chin, or let down at the zide.
When she do speak to woone, she don't steaere an' grin; There's sense in her looks, vrom her eyes to her chin, An' her words be so kind, an' her speech is so meek, As her eyes do look down a-beginnen to speak.
Her skin is so white as a lily, an' each Ov her cheaeks is so downy an' red as a peach; She's pretty a-zitten; but oh! how my love Do watch her to madness when woonce she do move.
An' when she do walk hwome vrom church drough the groun', Wi' woone eaerm in mine, an' wi' woone a-hung down, I do think, an' do veel mwore o' sheaeme than o' pride, That do meaeke me look ugly to walk by her zide.
Zoo don't talk o' maiden's! the woone vor my bride Is but little lik' too many maidens bezide,— Not branten, nor spitevul, nor wild; she've a mind To think o' what's right, an' a heart to be kind.
If I had all the land my zight Can overlook vrom Chalwell hill, Vrom Sherborn left to Blanvord right, Why I could be but happy still. An' I be happy wi' my spot O' freehold ground an' mossy cot, An' shoulden get a better lot If I had all my will.
My orcha'd's wide, my trees be young; An' they do bear such heavy crops, Their boughs, lik' onion-rwopes a-hung, Be all a-trigg'd to year, wi' props. I got some geaerden groun' to dig, A parrock, an' a cow an' pig; I got zome cider vor to swig, An' eaele o' malt an' hops.
I'm landlord o' my little farm, I'm king 'ithin my little pleaece; I don't break laws, an' don't do harm, An' bent a-feaer'd o' noo man's feaece. When I'm a-cover'd wi' my thatch, Noo man do deaere to lift my latch; Where honest han's do shut the hatch, There fear do leaeve the pleaece.
My lofty elem trees do screen My brown-ruf'd house, an' here below, My geese do strut athirt the green, An' hiss an' flap their wings o' snow; As I do walk along a rank Ov apple trees, or by a bank, Or zit upon a bar or plank, To see how things do grow.
THE FARMER'S WOLDEST DĀ'TER.
No, no! I ben't a-runnen down The pretty maiden's o' the town, Nor wishen o'm noo harm; But she that I would marry vu'st, To sheaere my good luck or my crust, 'S a-bred up at a farm. In town, a maid do zee mwore life, An' I don't under-reaete her; But ten to woone the sprackest wife 'S a farmer's woldest dā'ter.
Vor she do veed, wi' tender ceaere, The little woones, an' peaert their heaeir, An' keep em neat an' pirty; An' keep the saucy little chaps O' bwoys in trim wi' dreats an' slaps, When they be wild an' dirty. Zoo if you'd have a bus'len wife, An' childern well look'd after, The maid to help ye all drough life 'S a farmer's woldest dā'ter.
An' she can iorn up an' vwold A book o' clothes wi' young or wold, An' zalt an' roll the butter; An' meaeke brown bread, an' elder wine, An' zalt down meat in pans o' brine, An' do what you can put her. Zoo if you've wherewi', an' would vind A wife wo'th looken ā'ter, Goo an' get a farmer in the mind To gi'e ye his woldest dā'ter.
Her heart's so innocent an' kind, She idden thoughtless, but do mind Her mother an' her duty; An' liven blushes, that do spread Upon her healthy feaece o' red, Do heighten all her beauty; So quick's a bird, so neat's a cat, So cheerful in her neaetur, The best o' maidens to come at 'S a farmer's woldest dā'ter.
UNCLE OUT O' DEBT AN' OUT O' DANGER.
Ees; uncle had thik small hwomestead, The leaezes an' the bits o' mead, Besides the orcha'd in his prime, An' copse-wood vor the winter time. His wold black meaere, that draw'd his cart, An' he, wer seldom long apeaert; Vor he work'd hard an' paid his woy, An' zung so litsom as a bwoy, As he toss'd an' work'd, An' blow'd an' quirk'd, "I'm out o' debt an' out o' danger, An' I can feaece a friend or stranger; I've a vist vor friends, an' I'll vind a peaeir Vor the vu'st that do meddle wi' me or my meaere."
His meaere's long vlexy vetlocks grow'd Down roun' her hoofs so black an' brode; Her head hung low, her tail reach'd down A-bobben nearly to the groun'. The cwoat that uncle mwostly wore Wer long behind an' straight avore,
An' in his shoes he had girt buckles, An' breeches button'd round his huckles; An' he zung wi' pride, By's wold meaere's zide, "I'm out o' debt an' out o' danger, An' I can feaece a friend or stranger; I've a vist vor friends, an' I'll vind a peaeir Vor the vu'st that do meddle wi' me or my meare."
An' he would work,—an' lwoad, an' shoot, An' spur his heaps o' dung or zoot; Or car out hay, to sar his vew Milch cows in corners dry an' lew; Or dreve a zyve, or work a pick, To pitch or meaeke his little rick; Or thatch en up wi' straw or zedge, Or stop a shard, or gap, in hedge; An' he work'd an' flung His eaerms, an' zung "I'm out o' debt an' out o' danger, An' I can feaece a friend or stranger; I've a vist vor friends, an' I'll vind a peaeir Vor the vu'st that do meddle wi' me or my meare."
An' when his meaere an' he'd a-done Their work, an' tired ev'ry bwone, He zot avore the vire, to spend His evenen wi' his wife or friend; An' wi' his lags out-stratch'd vor rest, An' woone hand in his wes'coat breast, While burnen sticks did hiss an' crack, An' fleaemes did bleaezy up the back, There he zung so proud In a bakky cloud, "I'm out o' debt an' out o' danger, An' I can feaece a friend or stranger; I've a vist vor friends, an' I'll vind a peaeir Vor the vu'st that do meddle wi' me or my meare."
From market how he used to ride, Wi' pot's a-bumpen by his zide Wi' things a-bought—but not vor trust, Vor what he had he paid vor vu'st; An' when he trotted up the yard, The calves did bleaery to be sar'd, An' pigs did scoat all drough the muck, An' geese did hiss, an' hens did cluck; An' he zung aloud, So pleased an' proud, "I'm out o' debt an' out o' danger, An' I can feaece a friend or stranger; I've a vist vor friends, an' I'll vind a peaeir Vor the vu'st that do meddle wi' me or my meare."
When he wer joggen hwome woone night Vrom market, after candle-light, (He mid a-took a drop o' beer, Or midden, vor he had noo fear,) Zome ugly, long-lagg'd, herren ribs, Jump'd out an' ax'd en vor his dibs; But he soon gi'ed en such a mawlen, That there he left en down a-sprawlen, While he jogg'd along Wi' his own wold zong, "I'm out o' debt an' out o' danger, An' I can feaece a friend or stranger; I've a vist vor friends, an' I'll vind a peaeir Vor the vu'st that do meddle wi' me or my meare."
THE CHURCH AN' HAPPY ZUNDAY.
Ah! ev'ry day mid bring a while O' eaese vrom all woone's ceaere an' tweil, The welcome evenen, when 'tis sweet Vor tired friends wi' weary veet, But litsome hearts o' love, to meet; An' yet while weekly times do roll, The best vor body an' vor soul 'S the church an' happy Zunday.
Vor then our loosen'd souls do rise Wi' holy thoughts beyond the skies, As we do think o' Him that shed His blood vor us, an' still do spread His love upon the live an' dead; An' how He gi'ed a time an' pleaece To gather us, an' gi'e us greaece,— The church an' happy Zunday.
There, under leaenen mossy stwones, Do lie, vorgot, our fathers' bwones, That trod this groun' vor years agoo, When things that now be wold wer new; An' comely maidens, mild an' true, That meaede their sweet-hearts happy brides, An' come to kneel down at their zides At church o' happy Zundays.
'Tis good to zee woone's naighbours come Out drough the churchyard, vlocken hwome, As woone do nod, an' woone do smile, An' woone do toss another's chile; An' zome be sheaeken han's, the while Poll's uncle, chucken her below Her chin, do tell her she do grow, At church o' happy Zundays.
Zoo while our blood do run in vains O' liven souls in theaesum plains, Mid happy housen smoky round The church an' holy bit o' ground; An' while their wedden bells do sound, Oh! mid em have the meaens o' greaece, The holy day an' holy pleaece, The church an' happy Zunday.
THE WOLD WAGGON.
The girt wold waggon uncle had, When I wer up a hardish lad, Did stand, a-screen'd vrom het an' wet, In zummer at the barken geaete, Below the elems' spreaeden boughs, A-rubb'd by all the pigs an' cows. An' I've a-clom his head an' zides, A-riggen up or jumpen down A-playen, or in happy rides Along the leaene or drough the groun', An' many souls be in their greaeves, That rod' together on his reaeves; An' he, an' all the hosses too, 'V a-ben a-done vor years agoo.
Upon his head an' tail wer pinks, A-painted all in tangled links; His two long zides wer blue,—his bed Bent slightly upward at the head; His reaeves rose upward in a bow Above the slow hind-wheels below. Vour hosses wer a-kept to pull The girt wold waggon when 'twer vull; The black meaere Smiler, strong enough To pull a house down by herzuf,
So big, as took my widest strides To straddle halfway down her zides; An' champen Vi'let, sprack an' light, That foam'd an' pull'd wi' all her might: An' Whitevoot, leaezy in the treaece, Wi' cunnen looks an' show-white feaece; Bezides a bay woone, short-tail Jack, That wer a treaece-hoss or a hack.
How many lwoads o' vuzz, to scald The milk, thik waggon have a-haul'd! An' wood vrom copse, an' poles vor rails. An' bayens wi' their bushy tails; An' loose-ear'd barley, hangen down Outzide the wheels a'most to groun', An' lwoads o' hay so sweet an' dry, A-builded straight, an' long, an' high; An' hay-meaekers, a-zitten roun' The reaeves, a-riden hwome vrom groun', When Jim gi'ed Jenny's lips a-smack, An' jealous Dicky whipp'd his back, An' maidens scream'd to veel the thumps A-gi'ed by trenches an' by humps. But he, an' all his hosses too, 'V a-ben a-done vor years agoo.
THE DREVEN O' THE COMMON.[B]
In the common by our hwome There wer freely-open room, Vor our litty veet to roam By the vuzzen out in bloom. That wi' prickles kept our lags Vrom the skylark's nest ov aggs; While the peewit wheel'd around Wi' his cry up over head, Or he sped, though a-limpen, o'er the ground.
There we heaerd the whickr'en meaere Wi' her vaice a-quiv'ren high; Where the cow did loudly bleaere By the donkey's vallen cry. While a-stoopen man did zwing His bright hook at vuzz or ling Free o' fear, wi' wellglov'd hands, O' the prickly vuzz he vell'd, Then sweet-smell'd as it died in faggot bands.
When the hayward drove the stock In a herd to zome oone pleaece, Thither vo'k begun to vlock, Each to own his beaestes feaece. While the geese, bezide the stream, Zent vrom gapen bills a scream, An' the cattle then avound, Without right o' greaezen there, Went to bleaere bray or whicker in the pound.
[Footnote B: The Driving of the Common was by the Hayward who, whenever he thought fit, would drive all the cattle into a corner and impound all heads belonging to owners without a right of commonage for them, so that they had to ransom them by a fine.]
THE COMMON A-TOOK IN.
Oh! no, Poll, no! Since they've a-took The common in, our lew wold nook Don't seem a-bit as used to look When we had runnen room; Girt banks do shut up ev'ry drong, An' stratch wi' thorny backs along Where we did use to run among The vuzzen an' the broom.
Ees; while the ragged colts did crop The nibbled grass, I used to hop The emmet-buts, vrom top to top, So proud o' my spry jumps: Wi' thee behind or at my zide, A-skippen on so light an' wide 'S thy little frock would let thee stride, Among the vuzzy humps.
Ah while the lark up over head Did twitter, I did search the red Thick bunch o' broom, or yollow bed O' vuzzen vor a nest; An' thou di'st hunt about, to meet Wi' strawberries so red an' sweet, Or clogs or shoes off hosses veet, Or wild thyme vor thy breast;
Or when the cows did run about A-stung, in zummer, by the stout, Or when they play'd, or when they foueght, Di'st stand a-looken on: An' where white geese, wi' long red bills, Did veed among the emmet-hills, There we did goo to vind their quills Alongzide o' the pon'.
What fun there wer among us, when The hayward come, wi' all his men, To dreve the common, an' to pen Strange cattle in the pound; The cows did bleaere, the men did shout An' toss their eaerms an' sticks about, An' vo'ks, to own their stock, come out Vrom all the housen round.
A WOLD FRIEND.
Oh! when the friends we us'd to know, 'V a-been a-lost vor years; an' when Zome happy day do come, to show Their feaezen to our eyes ageaen, Do meaeke us look behind, John, Do bring wold times to mind, John, Do meaeke hearts veel, if they be steel, All warm, an' soft, an' kind, John.
When we do lose, still gay an' young, A vaice that us'd to call woone's neaeme, An' after years ageaen his tongue Do sound upon our ears the seaeme, Do kindle love anew, John, Do wet woone's eyes wi' dew, John, As we do sheaeke, vor friendship's seaeke, His vist an' vind en true, John.
What tender thoughts do touch woone's soul, When we do zee a meaed or hill Where we did work, or play, or stroll, An' talk wi' vaices that be still; 'Tis touchen vor to treaece, John, Wold times drough ev'ry pleaece, John; But that can't touch woone's heart so much, As zome wold long-lost feaece, John.
THE RWOSE THAT DECK'D HER BREAST.
Poor Jenny wer her Robert's bride Two happy years, an' then he died; An' zoo the wold vo'k meaede her come, Vorseaeken, to her maiden hwome. But Jenny's merry tongue wer dum'; An' round her comely neck she wore A murnen kerchif, where avore The rwose did deck her breast.
She walk'd alwone, wi' eye-balls wet, To zee the flow'rs that she'd a-zet; The lilies, white's her maiden frocks, The spike, to put 'ithin her box, Wi' columbines an' hollyhocks; The jilliflow'r an' nodden pink, An' rwose that touch'd her soul to think Ov woone that deck'd her breast.
Vor at her wedden, just avore Her maiden hand had yet a-wore A wife's goold ring, wi' hangen head She walk'd along thik flower-bed, Where stocks did grow, a-stained wi' red, An' meaerygoolds did skirt the walk, An' gather'd vrom the rwose's stalk A bud to deck her breast.
An' then her cheaek, wi' youthvul blood Wer bloomen as the rwoses bud; But now, as she wi' grief do pine, 'Tis peaele's the milk-white jessamine. But Robert have a-left behine A little beaeby wi' his feaece, To smile, an' nessle in the pleaece Where the rwose did deck her breast.
Ov all the cows, among the rest Wer woone that Nanny lik'd the best; An' after milken us'd to stan' A-veeden o' her, vrom her han', Wi' grass or hay; an' she know'd Ann, An' in the evenen she did come The vu'st, a-beaeten uep roun' hwome Vor Ann to come an' milk her.
Her back wer hollor as a bow, Her lags wer short, her body low; Her head wer small, her horns turn'd in Avore Her feaece so sharp's a pin: Her eyes wer vull, her ears wer thin, An' she wer red vrom head to tail, An' didden start nor kick the pail, When Nanny zot to milk her.
But losses zoon begun to vall On Nanny's father, that wi' all His tweil he voun', wi' breaken heart, That he mus' leaeve his ground, an' peaert Wi' all his beaest an' hoss an' cart; An', what did touch en mwost, to zell The red cow Nanny lik'd so well, An' lik'd vor her to milk her.
Zalt tears did run vrom Nanny's eyes, To hear her restless father's sighs. But as vor me, she mid be sure I wont vorzeaeke her now she's poor, Vor I do love her mwore an' mwore; An' if I can but get a cow An' parrock, I'll vulvil my vow, An' she shall come an' milk her.
THE SHEP'ERD BWOY.
When the warm zummer breeze do blow over the hill, An' the vlock's a-spread over the ground; When the vaice o' the busy wold sheep dog is still, An' the sheep-bells do tinkle all round; Where noo tree vor a sheaede but the thorn is a-vound, There, a zingen a zong, Or a-whislen among The sheep, the young shep'erd do bide all day long.
When the storm do come up wi' a thundery cloud That do shut out the zunlight, an' high Over head the wild thunder do rumble so loud, An' the lightnen do flash vrom the sky, Where noo shelter's a-vound but his hut, that is nigh, There out ov all harm, In the dry an' the warm, The poor little shep'erd do smile at the storm.
When the cwold winter win' do blow over the hill, An' the hore-vrost do whiten the grass, An' the breath o' the no'th is so cwold, as to chill The warm blood ov woone's heart as do pass; When the ice o' the pond is so slipp'ry as glass, There, a-zingen a zong, Or a-whislen among The sheep, the poor shep'erd do bide all day long.
When the shearen's a-come, an' the shearers do pull In the sheep, hangen back a-gwain in, Wi' their roun' zides a-heaven in under their wool, To come out all a-clipp'd to the skin; When the feaesten, an' zingen, an fun do begin, Vor to help em, an' sheaere All their me'th an' good feaere, The poor little shep'erd is sure to be there.
HOPE A-LEFT BEHIND.
Don't try to win a maiden's heart, To leaeve her in her love,—'tis wrong: 'Tis bitter to her soul to peaert Wi' woone that is her sweetheart long. A maid's vu'st love is always strong; An' if do fail, she'll linger on, Wi' all her best o' pleasure gone, An' hope a-left behind her.
Thy poor lost Jenny wer a-grow'd So kind an' thoughtvul vor her years, When she did meet wi' vo'k a-know'd The best, her love did speak in tears. She walk'd wi' thee, an' had noo fears O' thy unkindness, till she zeed Herzelf a-cast off lik' a weed, An' hope a-left behind her.
Thy slight turn'd peaele her cherry lip; Her sorrow, not a-zeed by eyes, Wer lik' the mildew, that do nip A bud by darksome midnight skies. The day mid come, the zun mid rise, But there's noo hope o' day nor zun; The storm ha' blow'd, the harm's a-done, An' hope's a-left behind her.
The time will come when thou wouldst gi'e The worold vor to have her smile, Or meet her by the parrock tree, Or catch her jumpen off the stile; Thy life's avore thee vor a while, But thou wilt turn thy mind in time, An' zee the deed as 'tis,—a crime, An' hope a-left behind thee.
Zoo never win a maiden's heart, But her's that is to be thy bride, An' play drough life a manly peaert, An' if she's true when time ha' tried Her mind, then teaeke her by thy zide. True love will meaeke thy hardships light, True love will meaeke the worold bright, When hope's a-left behind thee.
A GOOD FATHER.
No; mind thy father. When his tongue Is keen, he's still thy friend, John, Vor wolder vo'k should warn the young How wickedness will end, John; An' he do know a wicked youth Would be thy manhood's beaene, An' zoo would bring thee back ageaen 'Ithin the ways o' truth.
An' mind en still when in the end His leaebour's all a-done, John, An' let en vind a steadvast friend In thee his thoughtvul son, John; Vor he did win what thou didst lack Avore couldst work or stand, An' zoo, when time do num' his hand, Then pay his leaebour back.
An' when his bwones be in the dust, Then honour still his neaeme, John; An' as his godly soul wer just, Let thine be voun' the seaeme, John. Be true, as he wer true, to men, An' love the laws o' God; Still tread the road that he've a-trod, An' live wi' him ageaen.
THE BEAM IN GRENLEY CHURCH.
In church at Grenley woone mid zee A beam vrom wall to wall; a tree That's longer than the church is wide, An' zoo woone end o'n's drough outside,— Not cut off short, but bound all round Wi' lead, to keep en seaefe an' sound.
Back when the builders vu'st begun The church,—as still the teaele do run,— A man work'd wi' em; no man knew Who 'twer, nor whither he did goo. He wer as harmless as a chile, An' work'd 'ithout a frown or smile, Till any woaths or strife did rise To overcast his sparklen eyes:
An' then he'd call their minds vrom strife, To think upon another life. He wer so strong, that all alwone He lifted beams an' blocks o' stwone, That others, with the girtest pains, Could hardly wag wi' bars an' chains; An' yet he never used to stay O' Zaturdays, to teaeke his pay.
Woone day the men wer out o' heart, To have a beam a-cut too short; An' in the evenen, when they shut Off work, they left en where 'twer put; An' while dumb night went softly by Towards the vi'ry western sky, A-lullen birds, an' shutten up The deaeisy an' the butter cup, They went to lay their heavy heads An' weary bwones upon their beds.
An' when the dewy mornen broke, An' show'd the worold, fresh awoke, Their godly work ageaen, they vound The beam they left upon the ground A-put in pleaece, where still do bide, An' long enough to reach outzide. But he unknown to tother men Wer never there at work ageaen: Zoo whether he mid be a man Or angel, wi' a helpen han', Or whether all o't wer a dream, They didden deaere to cut the beam.
THE VAICES THAT BE GONE.
When evenen sheaedes o' trees do hide A body by the hedge's zide, An' twitt'ren birds, wi' playsome flight, Do vlee to roost at comen night, Then I do saunter out o' zight In orcha'd, where the pleaece woonce rung Wi' laughs a-laugh'd an' zongs a-zung By vaices that be gone.
There's still the tree that bore our swing, An' others where the birds did zing; But long-leav'd docks do overgrow The groun' we trampled heaere below, Wi' merry skippens to an' fro Bezide the banks, where Jim did zit A-playen o' the clarinit To vaices that be gone.
How mother, when we us'd to stun Her head wi' all our naisy fun, Did wish us all a-gone vrom hwome: An' now that zome be dead, an' zome A-gone, an' all the pleaece is dum', How she do wish, wi' useless tears, To have ageaen about her ears The vaices that be gone.
Vor all the maidens an' the bwoys But I, be marri'd off all woys, Or dead an' gone; but I do bide At hwome, alwone, at mother's zide, An' often, at the evenen-tide, I still do saunter out, wi' tears, Down drough the orcha'd, where my ears Do miss the vaices gone.
When out below the trees, that drow'd Their scraggy lim's athirt the road, While evenen zuns, a'most a-zet, Gi'ed goolden light, but little het, The merry chaps an' maidens met, An' look'd to zomebody to neaeme Their bit o' fun, a dance or geaeme, 'Twer Poll they cluster'd round.
An' after they'd a-had enough O' snappen tongs, or blind-man's buff, O' winter nights, an' went an' stood Avore the vire o' bleaezen wood, Though there wer maidens kind an' good, Though there wer maidens feaeir an' tall, 'Twer Poll that wer the queen o'm all, An' Poll they cluster'd round.
An' when the childern used to catch A glimpse o' Poll avore the hatch, The little things did run to meet Their friend wi' skippen tott'ren veet An' thought noo other kiss so sweet As hers; an' nwone could vind em out Such geaemes to meaeke em jump an' shout, As Poll they cluster'd round.
An' now, since she've a-left em, all The pleaece do miss her, girt an' small. In vain vor them the zun do sheen Upon the lwonesome rwoad an' green; Their zwing do hang vorgot between The leaenen trees, vor they've a-lost The best o' maidens, to their cost, The maid they cluster'd round.
LOOKS A-KNOW'D AVORE.
While zome, a-gwain from pleaece to pleaece, Do daily meet wi' zome new feaece, When my day's work is at an end, Let me zit down at hwome, an' spend A happy hour wi' zome wold friend, An' by my own vire-zide rejaice In zome wold naighbour's welcome vaice, An' looks I know'd avore, John.
Why is it, friends that we've a-met By zuns that now ha' long a-zet, Or winter vires that bleaezed for wold An' young vo'k, now vor ever cwold, Be met wi' jay that can't be twold? Why, 'tis because they friends have all Our youthvul spring ha' left our fall,— The looks we know'd avore, John.
'Tis lively at a feaeir, among The chatten, laughen, shiften drong, When wold an' young, an' high an' low, Do streamy round, an' to an' fro; But what new feaece that we don't know, Can ever meaeke woone's warm heart dance Among ten thousan', lik' a glance O' looks we know'd avore, John.
How of'en have the wind a-shook The leaves off into yonder brook, Since vu'st we two, in youthvul strolls, Did ramble roun' them bubblen shoals! An' oh! that zome o' them young souls, That we, in jay, did play wi' then Could come back now, an' bring ageaen The looks we know'd avore, John.
So soon's the barley's dead an' down, The clover-leaf do rise vrom groun', An' wolder feaezen do but goo To be a-vollow'd still by new; But souls that be a-tried an' true Shall meet ageaen beyond the skies, An' bring to woone another's eyes The looks they know'd avore, John.
THE MUSIC O' THE DEAD.
When music, in a heart that's true, Do kindle up wold loves anew, An' dim wet eyes, in feaeirest lights, Do zee but inward fancy's zights; When creepen years, wi' with'ren blights, 'V a-took off them that wer so dear, How touchen 'tis if we do hear The tuens o' the dead, John.
When I, a-stannen in the lew O' trees a storm's a-beaeten drough, Do zee the slanten mist a-drove By spitevul winds along the grove, An' hear their hollow sounds above My shelter'd head, do seem, as I Do think o' zunny days gone by. Lik' music vor the dead, John.
Last night, as I wer gwain along The brook, I heaerd the milk-maid's zong A-ringen out so clear an' shrill Along the meaeds an' roun' the hill. I catch'd the tuen, an' stood still To hear 't; 'twer woone that Jeaene did zing A-vield a-milken in the spring,— Sweet music o' the dead, John.
Don't tell o' zongs that be a-zung By young chaps now, wi' sheaemeless tongue: Zing me wold ditties, that would start The maiden's tears, or stir my heart To teaeke in life a manly peaert,— The wold vo'k's zongs that twold a teaele, An' vollow'd round their mugs o' eaele, The music o' the dead, John.
THE PLEAeCE A TEAeLE'S A-TWOLD O'.
Why tidden vields an' runnen brooks, Nor trees in Spring or fall; An' tidden woody slopes an' nooks, Do touch us mwost ov all; An' tidden ivy that do cling By housen big an' wold, O, But this is, after all, the thing,— The pleaece a teaele's a-twold o'.
At Burn, where mother's young friends know'd The vu'st her maiden neaeme, The zunny knaps, the narrow road An' green, be still the seaeme; The squier's house, an' ev'ry ground That now his son ha' zwold, O, An' ev'ry wood he hunted round 'S a pleaece a teaele's a-twold o'.
The maid a-lov'd to our heart's core, The dearest of our kin, Do meaeke us like the very door Where they went out an' in. 'Tis zome'hat touchen that bevel Poor flesh an' blood o' wold, O, Do meaeke us like to zee so well The pleaece a teaele's a-twold o'.
When blushen Jenny vu'st did come To zee our Poll o' nights, An' had to goo back leaetish hwome, Where vo'k did zee the zights, A-chatten loud below the sky So dark, an' winds so cwold, O, How proud wer I to zee her by The pleaece the teaele's a-twold o'.
Zoo whether 'tis the humpy ground That wer a battle viel', Or mossy house, all ivy-bound, An' vallen down piece-meal; Or if 'tis but a scraggy tree, Where beauty smil'd o' wold, O, How dearly I do like to zee The pleaece a teaele's a-twold o'.
Why ees, aunt Anne's a little staid, But kind an' merry, poor wold maid! If we don't cut her heart wi' slights, She'll zit an' put our things to rights, Upon a hard day's work, o' nights; But zet her up, she's jis' lik' vier, An' woe betide the woone that's nigh 'er. When she is in her tantrums.
She'll toss her head, a-steppen out Such strides, an' fling the pails about; An' slam the doors as she do goo, An' kick the cat out wi' her shoe, Enough to het her off in two. The bwoys do bundle out o' house, A-lassen they should get a towse, When aunt is in her tantrums.
She whurr'd, woone day, the wooden bowl In such a veag at my poor poll; It brush'd the heaeir above my crown, An' whizz'd on down upon the groun', An' knock'd the bantam cock right down, But up he sprung, a-teaeken flight Wi' tothers, clucken in a fright, Vrom aunt in such a tantrum!
But Dick stole in, an' reach'd en down The biggest blather to be voun', An' crope an' put en out o' zight Avore the vire, an' plimm'd en tight An crack'd en wi' the slice thereright She scream'd, an' bundled out o' house, An' got so quiet as a mouse,— It frighten'd off her tantrum.
THE STWONEN PWORCH.
A new house! Ees, indeed! a small Straight, upstart thing, that, after all, Do teaeke in only half the groun' The wold woone did avore 'twer down; Wi' little windows straight an' flat, Not big enough to zun a-cat, An' dealen door a-meaede so thin, A puff o' wind would blow en in, Where woone do vind a thing to knock So small's the hammer ov a clock, That wull but meaeke a little click About so loud's a clock do tick! Gi'e me the wold house, wi' the wide An' lofty-lo'ted rooms inside; An' wi' the stwonen pworch avore The nail-bestudded woaken door, That had a knocker very little Less to handle than a bittle, That het a blow that vled so loud Drough house as thunder drough a cloud. An' meaede the dog behind the door Growl out so deep's a bull do roar.