Warblin's fro' an Owd Songster (4)

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ADAM AN' MARY.


ON th' borders o' Scotland, a long toime ago,
Lived a chap an' his wife, an' their names, yo mun know,
Wur Adam an' Mary—good foalks i' their way,
But fond o' their whisky, aw'm sorry to say.
Neaw th' neighbourin' parson used to go theer,
To talk o' religion, an' taste o' their beer;
He wur summat loike th' parson 'at lives eawr way—
He could oather pretich, wrostle, drink whisky, or pray.

One mornin' as Adam an' th' woife sat i'th' heawse,
Watchin' th' cat play her pranks wi' a newly-catch'd meawse,
Ole at once summat coom into owd Mary's yead,
An' turning reet sharply to Adam, hoo said—
"Aw say, Mr. Bell may be comin' to-day,
An' we'n getten no whisky: go fetch some aw pray;
Tak' th' bottle an' th' brass, and be sure to make haste,
An' see 'at tha doesn't poo th' cork eawt to taste."

Well, Adam set off, an' soon landed i' th' teawn,
But his woife's gentle warnin' appears to ha' fleawn;
For, findin' his bottle wur rayther to' smo,
He thowt to hissel ther'd be no harm at o—
Considerin' 'at th' day wur so stormy an' cowd—
I' drinkin' what th' bottle wurn't able to howd;
Well, he drank it—an' just as drink had done afoor,
It gan him th' idea 'at he wanted some moor.

As Adam wur trudgin' tort whoam i' great haste,
He felt rayther dry, an' wur tempted to taste;
But remember'd what woife said afoor he set eawt;
If he'rn fuddle't th' owd lass ud go on he'd no deawt;
He knew if he tasted their Mary could tell;
Heawever he thowt he met just hav a smell;
He poo'd th' cork eawt, an' did so, an' then yo' may think,
Heaw th' poor foolish chap ud be tempted to drink.

Well, he tasted an' tasted, then took a good swig,
Till at length th' silly chap wur as "drunk as a pig."
As he'rn goin' tort whoam, the'rn a great pile o' stones,
'At soon coom i' contact wi' poor Adam's bones;
For trudgin' along, at a moderate pace,
Wi' his e'en welly shut, he fell slap on his face.
"Oh, dear, dear!" said Adam, "aw'm very near killed,
An' aw've brocken my bottle, an' th' whisky's o spill'd!"

Theer he lay, wi' his face welly covered wi' blood—
Aw wish aw could draw yo his likeness, aw would;
Heawever, th' owd chap wur a pitiful seet
When he londed at th' dur ov his cottage that neet.
When th' woife fun' it eawt 'at ole th' whisky wur gone,
There wur a rare noise i' that auction, bi' th' mon!
Just then, as hoo're turnin' her yead o' one spide.
An' glancin' deawn th' meadow th' owd parson hoo spied.

Well, hoo did carry on!   Hoo stamp'd wi' her feet;
An' bawled eawt to Adam, "Be off, eawt o'th' seet!"
Th' owd parson wur in in a minute or two,
An' could see plain enuff there wur summat to do;
Soa thowt it his duty to give her a slice
'At he culled fro' th' owd Book—namely—spiritual advoice
"Can you tell me," he ax'd, "how it was Adam fell?"
"Well, aw could do," hoo said, "but aw'd rayther not tell."

Th' owd mon wur reet capp'd at a answer loike that,
An' shapin' for goin', geet howd ov his hat;
"Well, Mary," he said, "since you don't choose to tell
Your spiritual guide how it was Adam fell,
I am sure you could tell me—at least, if you tried,
Where the guilty transgressor attempted to hide."
Mary, neaw fairly pinn'd, to her husband did sheawt,
"Mon, he knows ole abeawt it, tha'll ha' to come eawt!"

 

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THINKS I TO MISEL'.
(READ AT A HARVEST FESTIVAL IN BLACKPOOL.)


AS aw're ceawered bi mysel' here a bit th' other day,
Mi muse bein' unshackled an' havin' fair play,—
Aw wur lookin' abeawt on these fruits an' fleawers, ——
So tastefully placed reawnd this "Bethel" o' eawrs,—
Thinks I to mysel' neaw there's summat wrong here;
Th' theologians have made some sad blunders, aw fear.
Is th' God 'at provides us wi' ole these grand things
Th' same God 'at we read of i' Numbers an' Kings?

It's hard to imagine a Bein' 'at's good
Takin' pleasure i' spillin' pure, innocent blood;
But they had some queer notions, had th' Jews, aw must say;—
In fact, one or two on 'em have to this day.
I' their hearts they'll pull deawn a just God fro' His throne,
An' i' th' place on Him fix up a god o' their own.
Thoose 'at glory i' war, an' think it foine sport,
Someheaw manage to meet wi' a god o' th' same sort.

If they happen to meet wi' one rayther to' good,
They set th' Roman rabble to yeawl for his blood.
It's th' same here, i' Blackpool, there's men to be feawnd
Who i' doctrine an' dogma are perfectly seawnd;
But as for good morals, pure lives, or good works—
They're as innocent, bless yo, o' these things as th' Turks.
If yo try to do reet, they peawnce on yo' an' yell
"Good works never yet kept one soul eawt o' hell!"

Of course, sich a doctrine must mack us feel sad,
For it seems, to be saved, we shall have to be bad.
An' men 'at are hearty, an' seawnd, an' can kick,
Have no need of a doctor, it's thoose 'at are sick.
Th' Unitarians are wrong if they trust to good deeds;
Th' Trinitarians are too, wi' their dogmas an' creeds.
They may sprinkle their childer—a doctrine long towt—
Or dip 'em o'er th' yead, it'll ole come to nowt!

It's thoose 'at are sinners 'at God deigns to bless,
An' th' righteous will find their poor selves in a mess.
Wheer's th' use ov a barber, if nob'dy needs shavin'?
Or wheer's th' use o' a Saviour, if nob'dy needs savin'?
What's to come o' th' Owd Book, wi' ole th' shadows an' types,
An' ole thoose grand words sich as "healin'" an' "stripes"—
If we're ole on us perfect, an' needin' noa Saviour?
Aw must tell yo, to my mind, this seems bad behaviour!

Just think what a task it would be to th' owd scribes,
Arrangin' th' "burnt offerin's" an' ceawntin' up th' "tribes,"
Gettin' ole things i' order fro' th' furst to th' last day,
An' us machin' light o' their wark i' this way;
Mackin' merry, an' lookin' as happy an' breet
As if we imagined sich conduct wur reet:
Stickin' mottoes on th' walls wi' sich beautiful words
As "Our God will provide," "The earth is the Lord's."

Aw'm surprised at yo' crackin' yo'r jokes o'er yo'r tay,
An' pamp'rin' yo'r preawd sinful tastes i' this way!
It would look better on yo t' clear eawt ole these things
'At wur only intended for priests an' for kings—
An' get a young kid into th' chapel—an' kill it!
Never mind abeawt th' blood bein' innocent—spill it!
An', if yo're noan sinners, turn sinners at once,
An' gi'e th' sacred writers a bit ov a chance.

Yo may fancy yo'r reet baskin' here i' these beawers,
Surreawnded wi' cabbages, onions, an' fleawers;
Alleawin' yo'r time to glide smoothly away;
But, as sure as yo're livin', yo'll catch it some day!
Away wi' yo whoam, an' get deawn on yo'r shanks,
An', instead of insultin' high Heaven wi' yo'r thanks
For beawntiful harvests, an' good tasty dinners,—
Get some sackcloth an' ashes, an' tell God yo're sinners.

 

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GOOD TEMPLARS' WAR SONG.


AS Good Templars we're met once ogen,
    Ah, met here to plan an' to work,
An' so long as there's owt to be done
    We're determined noa duty to shirk.
When we don on this armour o' eawrs,
    It's a sign 'at we're rigg'd eawt for feightin';
An' there's plenty o' wark for us ole,
    There's a vast deol o' wrongs 'at want reightin'.

Neaw, we're noan here to look at—not us;
    Nor these trappin's aren't worn for a show;
An' eawr Order's no childish affair,
    Though there are foalk 'at think soa, we know.
We'n a far grander object i' view,
    An' th' lon'lords know that, never fret;
God bless yo', we'n summat else t' do
    Nor be playin' at babheawse just yet.

When th' drink shops have ole bin shut up,
    When th' woives o' poor drunkards can smile,
An' their poor little children are fed—
    Well, then, we may play us awhoile.
But soa long as th' drink traffic exists,
    An' so mony are perishin' thro' it,
We feel 'at there's work to be done,
    An', God helpin' us, brothers, we'll do it.

There's some hundreds o' theawsands i' th' field,
    Sworn foes to this enemy, drink;
An' we're noan very likely to yield,
    Chus what some may say or may think.
Eawr opponents may turn eawt their "chaff,"
    An' treat us wi' second-hand wit;
They can just do an' say what they loike,
    But we'll oppen their een in a bit.

We're soldiers! an' trained up to feight
    Wi' owd England's deadliest foe;
An' eawr swords shall ne'er rest i' their sheaths
    Till we'n laid this great enemy low.
Eawr warfare is God-like an' fair;
    Eawr cause one o' justice an' right;
We're aimin' a terrible blow
    At selfishness, meanness, an' might.

Eh, there would be some stock o' foalk pleased,
    If this drink could noa longer be had!
There would be some tears woiped away,
    Some hearts leetened up 'at are sad!
As Good Templars let's do what we con
    To bring ole these good things abeawt;
Heaven ull bless us i' work o' this sort,
    An' give us success, there's no deawt.

Neaw there's nowt 'at needs cause ony shame
    I' this great undertakin o' eawrs,
For we're rootin' eawt poisonous plants,
    An' in th' place on 'em plantin' fair fleawers.
Isn't this a grand work to engage in?
    Need we wonder at th' glorious success
Attendin' eawr Heaven-inspired efforts?
    Nay! we cannot expect nowt no less!

Some object to us wearin' these badges,
    But th' objections are noan "worth a fig;"
Do we sin ony more nor a parson
    Or a barrister wearin' a wig?
Don't th' Oddfellows wear their regalia—
    Their aprons, their sashes, an' things?
Don't widowers wear mournin' hatbands?
    An' don't married women wear rings?

This is th' armour we put on to feight in,
    An' we've never yet stained it wi' blood;
We feight not to kill foalk, but save 'em,
    Not to injure, but do people good.
We con ax for God's blessing on eawr cause,
    An' while we're at war we con pray;
We con feight wi' clear consciences, brethren—
    Con eawr enemies do so?   Not they!

We're Good Templars, and meon to defend
    This glorious owd country o' eawers
'Gainst a traffic 'at's blighting her hopes,
    An crushin' her loveliest fleawers.
"Vested interests" we've nowt to do with;
    Foalk are free to invest what they loike;
Thoose 'at feel discontented con "shunt,"
    Or else do same as colliers do—"stroike."

Haven't we vested interests an ole?
    Are these lassies an' lads o' eawers nowt,
These scholars we've paddled to th' schoo',
    An' toiled for, an' prayed for, an' towt?
"Vested interests," indeed! oh, for shame!
    Let that drop, for we've had quite enuff,
Lest th' owd lad should claim damages too,
    For investin' i' brimstone an' stuff!

We can do wi' a fair honest trade,
    Wheer th' articles dealt in are good,
But this traffic i' drink we abhor,
    As ole thowtful and sober men should.
As Good Templars an' lovers o' right,
    Let's be faithful an' true to a mon;
An' wherever these plague-spots exist,
    Let's shift 'em as soon as we con.

We're right, mi dear brethren an' sisters,
    God smiles on eawr work from above;
Let's go on moore determined than ever,
    I' this labour o' mercy an' love.
Eawr country's i' danger—let's save it;
    We've peawer enuff, let it be felt;
An' keep on agitatin' this question
    Until justice is honestly dealt.

Till owd England shall rise in her greatness,
    An' shake off her deadliest foe;
Till Rachel feels safe wi' her childer,
    An' flings off her trappin's o' woe;
Till the dram shops no more shall disfigure
    This bonny, dear island o' eawrs;
Until sorrow is turned into gladness,
    An' thistles are changed into fleawers.

 

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JIM LEE, AN' TH' POOAST OFFICE CLERK.


WHAT strange foalk we have i' this world, to he sure
Aw've yeard tell o' ignorant numbskulls befoor,
But one's hardly prepared to have such a display
O' what we cole "greenhorns" at this toime o'th' day.
Well, a fellow fro' somewheer i' Smoshaw, aw think,
'At had muddled his reasonin' tackle wi' drink,
Went into a post office near to th' teawn end
Wi' a sooart ov a letter he'd getten to send;

An' not bein' up to these pooast office ways,
He said to a clerk 'at wur writin' i' th' place—
"Does theaw know a young chap they co' Abrum Lee?"
"Not I," said the clerk, "Why do you ask me?"
"Well, nowt o' mich consequence; only aw thowt
Aw should loike thee to send him this letter aw've browt.
Aw've a sister i' Owdham 'at's hurt her big toe,
An' aw thowt aw should just loike eawr Abrum to know."

"Now, just look you here," said the clerk in amaze,
"Put a stamp on your letter, and then go your ways;
You silly old goose, I should just like to know
What I have to do with your sister's big toe!
Get your hat, and be going, you ignorant elf,
And keep your weak heads and sore toes to yourself;
I cannot be bothered with fellows like you,
So get out of this office, whatever you do."

"Aw'm sorry," said th' chap, "iv aw done owt amiss,
But there's no need at ole ov a rumpus loike this.
Aw should think theaw may see aw'm no angel wi' wings.
What should aw know abeawt sendin' letters an' things?
Ole aw wanted wur this—'at mi brother should know
At mi sister at Owdham had hurt her big toe!
Iv there's owt wrong i' that—well, aw'm sorry aw've come,
An' aw'll poike up mi letter, an' tak' it back whoam."

"Do make yourself scarce here, you silliest of men,
And pray never darken this doorway again.
What with letters unstamped, saucy words, and sore toes,
And rubbish like this—why, Heaven only knows
What I have endured since you entered in,
With your ignorance that almost amounts to a sin.
Now let me advise you before you depart,
To endeavour to get just one lesson to heart:—

"That lesson is this—never trouble another
With matters concerning a sister or brother;
Go join the Mechanics', and spend a few pence
On that much-needed article called "Common Sense;"
Take that pipe which I see sticking out of your breast,
And fling it away as a nuisance and pest;
Take that nose, which appears to have been in a plight,
To the temperance folks to be doctored.   Good night."

"Good neet to yo, mestur.   Aw'll toddle back whoam;
But alleaw me to tell yo aw'm glad 'at aw've come.
Yo're reet i' th' remarks yo'n bin makin', aw think,
For Ignorance is often th' twin sister to Drink.
Aw've been a great foo up to neaw, to be sure,
But nob'dy's ne'er shown me mi folly befoor.
Henceforth an' for ever aw'll try to do reet.
No drinkin' nor smookin' i'th' future.   Good neet."

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TH' OW'D BELLMAN.




THEY may talk o' Turn Breawn bein' as "soft as a cawve,"
But aw'll warrant th' owd Bellman t' be softer bi th' hawve;
Scarce a day passes o'er but he's pooin' his face,
An' bleth'rin an' "cryin'" all up an' deawn th' place.
Th' other day Snuffy Bet ud bumbailys i' th' shop,
Gettin' ready for sellin' her besoms an' pop;
An' among other sundries wur th' owd woman's cat:
Well, aw'm blest, iv th' owd softy didn't "cry" abeawt that.

He "cried" when Dick Whiteside sowd off at his farm;
Aw met him th' same day wi' his bell on his arm,
Soa aw ax'd heaw it wur he wur bawlin' so loud,
Iv th' things belonged him 'at wur beawn to be sowd.
"Nowe, indeed 'em," he said, "cryin's part o' my trade,
An' aw dar say tha'd yeawl a bit, too, if tha're paid."
"Well," aw said, "there's no tellin' what one may ha' t' do,
Aw know aw once cried o'er an onion or two.''

A day or two sin aw' wur goin' deawn th' street,
On a bit ov an errand, when whoa should aw meet,
But owd Jammie wi' th' bell, so says I, "What's up neaw?"
"Oh, nowt, nobbut Jonathan Smith's lost a ceaw,
An' he's gan me a shillin' to go reawnd an cry;
Aw'm on duty, tha sees, so excuse me—good-bye.'
"Stop a bit, mon," aw said, "as aw've nowt mitch to do,
Iv tha'll gie me th' tone hawve on't aw'll cry a bit too."

"Not to-day," Jammie said; "aw con manage misel,"—
Tong-tingle-tum, tingle-tum, tingle-tum-dell!
"Law-st a ceaw, 'at belongs unto Jonathan Smith;
Thoose 'at foind it mun bring it to th' bellman forthwith,
At number nineteen, Betty Singleton's yard,
Wheer th' foinder ull meet wi' a han'some reward.
Neaw, yo chaps, here's a job, mak good use o' yo'r een;
Foind Jonathan's ceaw ogen.   God save the Queen!"

Well, aw see'd him ogen, a week after or so,
He wur plasterin' some mack o' bills on a wo;
"Oh, Jammie," aw said, " what becoom o' that ceaw?
Wur it feawnd th' other day, when tha cried it, or heaw?"
"Feawnd! aye, to be sure; mon aw knew wheer it wur;
Aw'd had it ole th' toime hud at eawr back dur;
When aw'd done goin' reawnd aw went whoam wi' mi bell,
Took th' ceaw, said aw'd feawnd it, geet th' brass for misel."

"Eh, theaw rascal!" aw said, "to do tricks sich as these;
Wheerever does t' think tha'll ha' t' goa when tha dees?
Here, aw think, aw con manage to foind thee a job."
Soa aw towd him aw'd lost one o' th' childer—eawr Bob;
An' ally gan him a papper o' what he had t' say,
An' a shillin' or two, an' then sent him away;
Th' furst corner he coom to he up wi' his bell,
Tong-tingle-tum, tingle-tum, tingle-tum dell!

"Law-st, oather to-day or else sometoime to-morn,
As pratty a babby as ever wur born;
It has cheeks like red roses, two bonny blue een,
Had it's meawth daubed wi' traycle th' last toime it wur seen;
It's just cuttin' it's teeth, an' has very sore gums,
An' it's getten' a habit o' suckin' it's thumbs;
Thoose at foind it may keep it, there's nob'dy ull care,
For thoose 'at han lost it han lots moor to spare!"

Eh, there wur some rare laffin' when Jammie had done;
Some o' th' women reet skreomed, they thowt it sich fun;
But th' chap wur some mad, he threw th' papper on th' floor,
An' swore held ne'er "cry" o'er lost childer no moor.
Sin' that toime he's tried hard to keep eawt o' my seet,
Still aw neaw an' then drop on him somewheer i' th' street;
An' aw allis inquire iv he's wantin' a job,
Iv he is, he can go reawnd a seechin' eawr Bob.

 

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A "SMART" WAY O' CURIN' DRUNKARDS.


THERE'S a capital tale comes across the Atlantic,
An' aw think aw shall hardly be doin' owt' wrong,
Iv aw put it i' some mak o' form for recitin',
Or—iv yo prefer it—a Lancashire song.
Neaw aw hardly need tell yo 'at th' Yankees are clever;
They're "cuter" nor English foalk are a foine sect;
One reason is this—there's less drinkin' amongst 'em,
An' aw've not the least deawt that's a lot to do we't.

Well, Tom Jones an' Miss Sharp, bein' weary o' coartin',
An' ceawerin' eawtsoide till their noses wur red,
Bethowt 'em they'rn fools to go starve theirsel's this way,
An' they'd stand it no longer, but goo an get wed.
So they went an' they stood before th' Rev'rend John Fleeceum,
Who, wi' th' aid ov a book or two teed 'em reet fast.
When they'd paid him his charges they went away singin',
"We're cured a cowd feet an' cowd noses at last."

Neaw one neet Tom stayed eawt rayther later nor usual,
But at length woife beheld him come stangerin' in;
An' at th' furst when hoo saw him hoo thowt he wur poorly,
But soon feawnd it eawt he smelled strongly o' gin.
Well, it pained her to foind her dear Tom wur a drunkard,
An' hoo said to herself, "I must cure him of this.
You are ill, my dear husband, lie down on the sofa;
Oh, whatever's to do, love? whatever's amiss?"

"Jane, run off for old Doctor Bell, and be handy;
And ask him to bring a few pills and his lance;
And tell Widow Thompson to come with her leeches,
For my husband must have some assistance at once."
When th' sarvant had gone hoo geet howd o' some mustard,
An' plaistered it weel o'er his honds an' his feet.
Neaw, aw dar' say yo'll some on yo call out "Poor fellow!"
While others will laugh, an' say "just sarves him reet."

Well, th' doctor soon came, an' th' chap's pulse wur examined,
An, he soon made th' discovery 'at th' fellow wur "tight;"
"Let him lie here," he said, "until ten in the morning,
And I think you will find he will then be all right."
Oh, no!" said his wife. "Sir, you must be mistaken;
I am sure my dear husband is dangerously ill;
You must shave him his head, sir, and then apply blisters,
Or else I shall send for a doctor who will."

So they shaved him his yead weel, an' then it wur blistered,
But still ole their efforts to rouse him wur vain;
For he kept snoorin' on until dayleet i'th' mornin',
When he wackened, an' seemed to be conscious o' pain.
"What does this mean?" he said, as he felt his bald cranium.
"You are sick," said his wife, "and must lie very still."
"You're mistaken," said th' husband; "yes, greatly mistaken;
Now I ought to know best, and I'm sure I'm not ill."

"You are rambling, my dear.   You have got the brain fever;
The doctor and I have been working all night."
"I should think so," said th' husband, "by what I can gather—
I seem to be left in a very sad plight.
What's to do with my feet?" groaned aloud the poor victim.
"Why, I've never been this way before in my life!
Oh, how I am punished with mustard and blisters!
Do take all these plaisters away from me, wife!"

And if ever I get in this way any more, love,
Don't send for a doctor, or trouble a bit."
"Oh dear! but I shall—I should feel so much frightened.
I am sure you would die in an apoplex fit!"
Neaw yo women, 'at's husbands 'at mack theirsel's poorly,
Yo set to an' give 'em a dose o' this mack;
An' moind yo, aw dar' bet mi loife to a hawpney
Yo'll never be plagued wi' a second attack.

 

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JOHN BULL AN' HIS TRICKS!


OH, forshame on thee, John! forshame on thee, John!
    The murderin' owd thief 'at theaw art:
Tha'rt a burnin' disgrace to humanity, mon,
    Tho' theaw thinks thisel' clever an' smart.
Tha'rt a beggar for sendin' eawt Bibles an' beer,
    An' calling it "Civilization;"
While thee an' thi dear christian countrymen here,
    Are chettin' an' lyin' like station.

Thee tak' my advoice, John, an' get a good brush,
    An' sweep well abeawt thi own door;
An' put th' bit o' th' lond at tha's stown to some use,
    Ere theaw offers to steal ony moor.
An' let th' heathens a-be; for tha's no need to fear
    'At they're loikely to get into hell:
My opinion is this—if there's onyone near
    A place o' that mack— it's thisel'.

It's thee 'at aw meon, John, theaw hypocrite, theaw;
    Wi' thi Sundayfied, sanctified looks!
Doesta think 'at ole th' milk comes fro' th' paps o' thy ceaw!
    Is ole th' wisdom beawnd up i' thy books!
An' what abeawt th' mixture o' cotton an' clay,
    'At theaw thrusts on thi unwillin' nayburs?
Eh John, tha'rt a "Cure," but tha'll catch it some day,
    When tha's ended these damnable labours.

Tha may wee! tell the Lord what a wretch theaw art, John,
    For tha pulls a long face on a Sunday;
An', to prove what tha says, tha does o' 'at tha con
    To rob thi poor nayburs on th' Monday.
What business has theaw to go battin' thi wings.
    An' crowin' on other folks middin?
Doesta think thi black brothers sich mean cringin' things
    As to give up their whoams at thy biddin'?

An' tha's th' cheek to thank God, when tha meets wi' success,
    As iv He stooped stooped to sanction sich wark!
Neaw one would ha, thowt 'at tha couldn't ha' done less
    Than to keep sich loike actions i' th' dark.
Iv tha meons to go on wi' committin' these sins—
    Sins tha'll ne'er get weshed eawt or forgiven—
Tha should try to keep matters as quiet as tha con,
    An' ne'er let em' know up i' heaven.

Tha wur allus a bullyead, i' thi best o' thi days;
    An' this ole thi nayburs must know;
An', tho' tha seems pious, an' pulls a long face,
    They con manage to see through it o.
But when tha goes sneakin' an' tries to cheat God,
    It strikes me tha'rt goin' to' far.
Aw'm noan mitch surproised at thi impudence, John;
    Aw'm only surprised heaw tha dar!

What business has theaw to be sendin' eawt thieves,
    To steal slices off other foalks' bread?
It would look better on thee to rowl up thi sleeves,
    An' work for thi livin' instead.
Aw' tell thi what John—an' tak' notice o' this—
    Tha ne'er knew a nation to thrive,
Wheer th' bees preferred feightin' to good honest wark;—
    They're like drones stealin' honey fro' th' hive!

Iv tha's th' sense ov a jackass tha'll tarry awhoam,
    An' keep th' own garden i' fettle;
But tha'd rather be eawt wi' thi Bible an' gun,
    An' robbin' some other mon's kettle.
Neaw drop these mean tricks—this contemptible wrong,
    An' behave a bit more loike a mon;
Or aw'll gie thee another warm dose before long,
    For aw'm gradely ashamed on thee, John!

 

_______________________________

 
WHAT'S TO DO 'AT THA'RT LOOKIN' SOA
SULKY, JOHN?


WHAT'S to do 'at tha'rt lookin' soa sulky?
    Are th' Radicals provin' unkoind?
Tha seems very much eawt o' flunter,
    As iv tha'd some weight on thi moind.
Tha wanted these Tories to govern;
    They're governin' neaw doesta see;
Soa dunno thee run thi own wark deawn,
    Tha's sent 'em, so let 'em a-be.

The've mended thy sink-holes wi' "Science,"
    An' they want to mend other foalks' to';
They've th' Suez Canal to slutch yet, mon,
    An' then they've got Cyprus to do.
Look what millions o' foalk are i' darkness—
    Beawt Bible, beawt devil, beawt leet;
An' are we to leov 'em i' this way?
    Nay, nay, John, that wouldn't be reet.

It's wrong to be graspin' an' selfish,
    Soa John, lad, let's try to do fair;
Iv its only a devil we're blest wi',
    Let's goa an' tak' th' heathens a share.
They send us their rice an' their cotton,
    To keep these frail bodies i' tune;
Let's give them some peawder an' bullets,
    To prepare 'em for th' mansions aboon!

What ailsto? tha seems very restless!
    Oh, aw see, it's thi conscience at works;
Tha'rt thinkin' abeawt thoose Bulgarians,
    'At wur slaughtered bi' th' Russians an' th' Turks,
Neaw, why should theaw bother o'er these things?
    Look here—keep thi heart up, owd brid;
Tha never encouraged these butchers
    To goa an' to do as they did.

Thee be easy; tha'll live a deol longer;
    Dunno fret abeawt th' wrongs 'at tha sees:
For tha connot get roses fro' thistles
    Iv tha bothers thisel' till tha dees.
There's evil i' th' world, an' there will be;
    An' it's folly thee crackin' thi brains;
For ole tha con do will be useless,
    An' tha'll only get kicked for thi pains.

What's th' use o' foalks botherin' their noddles
    Or bein' at th' trouble to think,
So long as there's plenty to stur on,
    I' th' shape o' meyt, bacco, an' drink.
Look heaw grogsellers fatten an' flourish;
    Look heaw th' brewers are macking their "tin;"
Neaw they never get favoured i' this way,
    When th' Radical government's in.

Look what toimes workin'-men con have neaw, mon;
    What lockeawts, an' turneawts, an' stroikes!
Iv tha's sense tha'll keep things as they are, John,
    For a chap can do just as he loikes.
Thee keep goin' on as theaw has done;
    Never argue thi principles eawt;
But up wi' thi' fist when tha'rt tackled,
    An' fot thi opponents a cleawt.

It's noa business o' thoine to be thinkin';
    Leov that job to thoose 'at have brains;
Thee get on wi' thi workin' an' drinkin',
    Worship th' tyrant at' forges thi chains.
Shoot thi nayburs, to mak 'em respect thee;
    Never mind abeawt doin' what's reet;
Tha connot booath serve God an' Mammon,
    So tha's no need to try, mon.—Good neet.

 

_______________________________

 
SHUT UP! YO LIBERALS!


NEAW, then, what's this grumblin' an' growlin' abeawt?
Yo Liberals are gettin' ungrateful aw deawt.
Iv this nation gets led on to honour an' glory,
What matters whoa leads it—a Liberal or Tory?
Th' owd spirit's still in us—th' leaf envyin' th' fleawer;
A few discontented one's graspin' for peawer!
Forshame o' yo'r face, goin' on as yo' do;—
Tellin' th' Tories they aren't ole honest an' true!

Callin' Dizzy a "trickster," an' Salisbury a "tool,"
An' sendin' th' whole "bag o' tricks" to the dule!
Why, it's shockin' aw'm sure; aw'm surproised heaw yo dar',
An' them blessin' th' country as mitch as they are!
Neaw yo Liberals had better moind weel what yo'r doin',
Or yo'r actions may soon bring this country to ruin;
Yo'd better shut up, an' be quiet for awhile,
Till th' Tories have finished enlargin' this isle.

Yo'd ne'er ha' no pleasure i' office aw fear;
Men 'at's troubled wi' consciences shouldn't go theer.
Foalk are givin' o'er botherin' their brains abeawt hell,
An' th' motto to-day is—"Look after yo'rsel."
Why, this age 'at we live in thinks newt ov a mon,
Iv he hasn't th' good sense to get howd when he con;
Fair play an' square deolin' are ole reet enuff,
For thoose 'at have laid in a good lot o' stuff;

But a chap 'at's th' bad luck to be honest an' poor,
Should lay conscience aside till he's got summat moor.
Just look what grand wark th' English nation's bin doin';
Why, bless yo, this world wur fast hastenin' to ruin,
But th' English —reneawned througheawt th' world for good
        works—
Undertook to look after a lot o' th' bad Turks.
An' we did these kind acts wi' a neighbourly hand,
Tho', of course, we geet howd ov a slice o' their land.

Wheer would Cyprus have been when th' preawd Russians wur
        near,
But for Englishmen's guns, English bibles, an' beer!
Wheer would India's grand jewels an' camels have been,
Iv hoo hadn't had an Empress made eawt ov a Queen!
Then there's th' Zulus; it pains one to read their sad story,
But eawr breet English bay'nets can point 'em to glory.
Look at Ireland—that spot o' contentment an' quiet
Wheer there's ne'er sich a thing as a murder or riot!

Try to poike eawt a fault i' their laws iv yo dar;—
An' look heaw contented an' happy they are!
Well, aw think yo'll admit 'at there's one thing quite clear—
That wheerever we've gone wi' eawr bibles an' beer—
Altho' we may vex foalk, an' stur up their blood,
We have only one object—to do 'em ole good.
Neaw yo Liberals could never convert foalk wi' th' gun,
But th' Tories can do it, an' think it rare fun.

Let 'em keep goin' on wi' these dignified labours,
Till we've getten a garden as big as eawr nayburs.
Look at th' lond 'at's belongin' to th' great Eastern peawers,
An' compare it with this puny island o' eawrs;
But th' Tories'll alter these things before long,
Iv Gladstone will nobbut just bridle his tongue.
So yo Liberals be quiet, an' let th' Tories a-be,
For ole nations are happy an' blest, as yo see.

Let Gladstone attend to his axe an' his fellin';
An' th' jingoes go on wi' their howlin' an' yellin;—
Let th' drink traffic blast us as mitch as it's able;—
Kick Sir Wilfrid's pet Bill—an' him too—under th' table;
Let Lord Beaconsfield rule us another six years,
Wi' ole th' lyin', an' murders, an' groanin's an' tears;
An' iv this doesn't satisty Gladstone an' Co.,
They're ungrateful, an' unpatriotic—that's o!

 

_______________________________

 
EIGHTY-SEVEN.
(SENT TO MR. JOSEPH LIVESEY, ON HIS 87TH BIRTHDAY.)

Joseph Livesey, social reformer and temperance advocate, was born at Walton le Dale near Preston in 1794.  By the late 1820s he had become an established cheese factor in Preston and during the 1830s began a printing business which produced many pamphlets, handbills and major temperance journals.  In 1844 he established the Preston Guardian the forerunner of the present Lancashire Evening Post.

During his life he witnessed at first-hand the acute social problems of the day, in which drunkenness played a major part. But while many talked about social problems, Livesey ‘did’ something about them.  And when the Cotton Famine hit Preston, Livesey and his associates formed a Relief Committee.

He died in 1884 aged ninety. Ten thousand people lined the funeral route, flags were flown at half-mast from public buildings and the blinds were drawn in almost every house. His epitaph states that "he died in his ninety-first year after an honoured life of philanthropy and usefulness as author and worker, as the pioneer of temperance, the advocate of moral and social reform and the helper and friend of the poor".

EIGHTY-SEVEN!   A grand owd age;
An' what a scene for history's page!
Eighty-seven!   What hopes an' fears;
What ups an' deawns; what smiles an' tears.
Eighty-seven!   Why, dear-a-me,
Teetotalers don't know heaw to dee;
Owd Bawsen Ben, 'at kept th' "White Bear,"
Has been i' th' grave o'er thirty year!

An' him an' thee wur born th' same day,
But tha'rt here yet, an' likely t' stay.
Heaw is it?   Has t' insured thi life?
Or has t' a kind an' lovin' wife
'At tucks thee up, an' keeps thee warm,
An' sees tha'rt sheltered weel fro' th' storm?
Aw think a chap 'at's eighty seven
Should shut his een an' go to heaven.

It's time tha laid thi weapons deawn,
An' shaped for wearin' th' gowden creawn;
An' still we wouldn't be beawt thee, mon;
There'll be some cryin' when tha'rt gone.
Aw nobbut know thee by thi name,
An' th' well-deserved an' spreadin' fame;
But still aw've often wished to sing
I' th' praise o' th' veteran Temperance King.

Aw've often read thi New Year's tracts,
An' feawnd 'em full o' sterlin' facts;
But, then, a mon o' th' age o' thee,
Has had some painful seets to see.
Aw'm noan surprised 'at God sees fit
To let thee stop i' th' world a bit;
For men like thee are hard to find—
They never faint or lag behind.

Tha comes to th' front, leads up i' th' van,
To bless an' save thi fellow-man;
For fifty years tha's had to feight
An' try to set this country reight.
Ah! wheer are thoose—aw'd like to know—
'At shared thi toils long years ago?
Wheer's Anderton, that plucky bard,
'At rapped at drink so long an' hard?

They're ole gone whom; tired eawt, they fell;
An' tha'rt left strugglin' here thisel';
An' yet tha seems to like thi shop;
Tha'rt wheer tha'rt quite content to stop.
Tha never longs to plant thi feet
On deathless shore or gowden street;
Tha'd rayther stop deawn here an' toil,
To mak' some drunkard's children smile.

Why, mon, it's plain enuff to see
'At heaven would be no heaven to thee,
If tha wur feastin' theer thisel',
An' ole thi brethren deawn i' hell!
Tha'rt eighty-seven, an' rich an' poor
To-day are throngin' reawnd thi door;
An' these their kindly wishes bring,
To Joseph Livesey, th' Temperance King.

An', minglin' 'mongst this motley throng,
Is he who pens this humble song;
An' though we've never met on earth,
Aw've long admired thi genuine worth.
Accept this tribute, then, aw pray—
This simple, unpretendin' lay;
It's written wi' a good intent,
An' every word is kindly meant.

God bless thoose snowy locks o' thine!
They're ripe for th' harvest, same as mine;
Aw'm fifty-five, tha'rt eighty-seven;
Tha'rt nearer God, an' nearer heaven;
Tha'll soon have crossed death's gloomy tide,
Tha'll soon be safe on th' other side.
Thi friends have waited for thee long,
An' want thee t' help 'em sing their song.

An' so tha'll have to leave us soon,
An' join wi' th' ransomed up aboon;
Another scratch or two, and then
Tha'll have to lay aside thi pen.
There'll be some eyelids drenched wi' weet,
When Joseph Livesey says "Good-neet;"
An' mony a homestead wheer he's sat
Will miss his homely, friendly chat.

Accept o' th' best an' warmest thanks
O' one at feights i' th' temperance ranks;
Aw've long admired thi pluck an' skill,
Tha's fowt thi battles with a will—
Noa childish trucklin' wi' thi foes,
Tha deols straight-forrad, heavy blows;
Tha'rt one o' thoose at never shrink,
When battlin' wi' that monster Drink.

Go on, owd vet'ran friend; tha'rt reet
I' tryin' to mak' dark homesteads breet;
I' sowin' truth wheer ignorance dwells,
An' makin' heavens wheer once wur hells.
It's reet to bid men use their wings,
An' soar aloft to nobler things:
An' this tha's done for fifty years,
Wi' insults ringin' i' thi ears.

For teachin' people common sense,
Tha'd rotten eggs as recompense.
But things have changed; i' th' place o' fear,
Tha's kindly help an' words o' cheer;
An' neaw, when th' brunt o' th' battle's o'er,
An Bashan's Bulls have ceased to roar,
The name of Livesey's heard an' known
Fro' th' cotter's child to th' Queen on th' throne.

Eighty-seven! still strong an' hale,
Can think an' feel, or tell a tale;
A rare good lesson here, aw think,
For thoose 'at dreawn their peawers i' drink.
Ah! Preston, tha may weel be proud:
Tha'rt rich i' men, if not i' gowd!
Eighty-seven! can skip an jump,
Wi' th' drink he gets fro' th' ceaw an' th' pump!

Eighty-seven! well, vet'ran friend,
Tha'rt gettin' near thi journey's end;
It will be grand, mon, wheer tha'rt beawn—
A happy change fro' th' cross to th' creawn.
Eighty-seven! an' still tha'rt here,
An' nearer heaven nor me, aw fear.
Good-bye; aw'll try to get i' tune,
An' meet thee somewheer up aboon.

_______________________________

 
TH' PEERS AN' TH' PEOPLE.


CLEAR us a ring, lads, an' let's have a feight,
An' we'll soon have it settled whoa's wrong an' whoa's
        reight;
Th' People or th' Peers—which is it to be?
Let's have a reawnd or two, then we shall see.

Must these preawd Peers tak' possession o' th' helm,
An' quietly say whoa's to govern this realm?
Are th' Bees to eat th' lean, an' th' Drones to eat th' fat,
For ever an' ever? we'll see abeawt that.

Widen that ring, lads; neaw up wi' your sleeves,
An' we'll soon mak' short wark o' these lordlin's an' thieves;
Lancashire lads can march up to their graves,
But can never be ceawards, or traitors, or slaves!

Comrades an' friends, shall we give up for newt
That freedom for which eawr brave forefathers fowt?
Nay, never, so long as these feet are well shod,
We'll oather win th' battle, or dee upo' th' clod!

But why talk o' deein', or have ony fears
While there's newt i' eawr way but a hon'ful o' Peers?
Let 'em only feel th' tips o' eawr famed wooden shoon,
An' they'll look for a road eawt o' th' field, an' soon.

Clear us a ring, then, an' let's have a feight,
An' we'll jolly soon settle it whoa's wrong an' whoa's reight.
Th' People or th' Peers—which is it to be?
Let's have a tussle, an' th' world shall soon see!

_______________________________

 
PROLOGUE:—

WRITTEN ON THE OCCASION OF THE PRESENTATION TO
ROBERT BICKERSTAFFE,
ON HIS RETIREMENT AS COXSWAIN OF THE BLACKPOOL LIFEBOAT, DECEMBER 5TH, 1887.


The Blackpool Lifeboat Robert William putting to sea.

The Robert William going to the wreck of the Bessie Jones, February 26th., 1880.

CREW: ROBERT BICKERSTAFFE (COXSWAIN), JNO. PARKINSON (BOWMAN), JAS. SWARBRICK, WM. RIMMER, J. T. FISH, RICHARD FISH, RICHARD PARR, W. OWEN, JOHN STANHOPE, AND JOHN SMITH.

―――♦―――


Manchester Times, February 28, 1880.
The Blackpool lifeboat, which belongs to the National Lifeboat Institution, rendered on Thursday a very important service in saving a shipwrecked crew from almost certain death.  It appears that the brig Bessie Jones, of Fleetwood, from Glasgow, with a cargo of iron rails, had struck on Salthouse Sandbank at six o'clock yesterday morning, and soon afterwards she sank.  On her perilous position being observed, no time was lost in despatching the Blackpool lifeboat to her help, and fortunately the lifeboat was successful in saving the shipwrecked crew, with the exception of one man (the cook), who was drowned before the lifeboat arrived.

Liverpool Mercury, February 28, 1880.
With reference to the rescue of the crew of the Bessie Jones at Blackpool, on Thursday morning, it is stated that three members of the lifeboat crew refused to proceed to the assistance of the disabled vessel, and that their places were filled by volunteers, whose conduct is highly praised.  The efforts of the lifeboat men and the crew of the Bessie Jones were witnessed by thousands of people, who lined the shore for several miles.  The names of the saved areCaptain Painter, of Fleetwood; John Stephens, mate; and O'Neil and Whittle, seamen.  The cook, who was washed away, was a young man named Braham.  The crew mistook the light from Lytham Lighthouse for Liverpool Bar Lightship.  The captain was five times washed into the sea.  A supper was given to the crew of the lifeboat at night in recognition of their gallant conduct.

Hampshire Telegraph and Sussex Chronicle, March 6, 1880.
A correspondent stated that on the occasion of the wreck of the Bessie Jones off Blackpool, the coxswain of the lifeboat, finding that he had but seven of his own men on the spot, looked out for volunteers to make up the crew; but although there was some strapping fishermen loafing about they coolly looked on and let the coxswain take in two joiners and a stone-mason, and then start two short of his complement.  The rescue of the persons on board the Bessie Jones was a plucky bit of service as has been done by a lifeboat; for on their return, being obliged to run over the bank with a tremendous sea running, they had the narrowest possible escape of being capsized; one man was washed out of the boat but recovered, and they lost most of their loose tackle.

Liverpool Mercury, March 6, 1880.
R
OYAL NATIONAL LIFEBOAT INSTITUTION.On Thursday a meeting of this institution was held at its house, John-street, Adelphi, London, the chairman of the institution presiding.  The committee expressed their deep sorrow at the loss of the Ardrossan lifeboat while engaged in the rescue of the crew of the barque Matilda Hilliard, of Yarmouth, N.S., which was wrecked on the rocks at the south end of Horse Island in a severe gale . . . . The silver medal of the institution was presented to MR ROBERT BICKERSTAFFE, coxswain of the Blackpool lifeboat, and double the ordinary reward to the boat's crew, in acknowledgment of their very brave and determined services in rescuing, at considerable risk of life, the crew of the brigantine Bessie Jones, of Fleetwood, which had sunk on Salthouse Bank, the men being rescued from the rigging of the wreck.  Such was the violence of the sea that one of the lifeboatmen was washed out of the boat, but, being supported by his lifebelt, he was soon rescued. . . . The New Brighton lifeboat saved twenty-six of the crew of the steamship Anatolian, of Liverpool, which was wrecked on the Asken Sand Bank at the mouth of the Mersey.

The Preston Guardian, March 6, 1880.
The Bessie Jones, lying on the Salthouse Bank, is fast breaking up, and the bulwarks and other pieces of the wreck have come ashore.

―――♦―――


TWENTY year' sin,—come th' furst o' next April
    Aw coom to reside i' this teawn;
A comparative stranger amongst yo',
    Unfavoured bi wealth or reneawn.
But one little circumstance happened,
    'At made matters rayther moor breet;
There wur one bade me welcome to Blackpool;
    That one is eawr guest here to neet;

He said he wur happy to meet one
    'At he'd often yeard tell of befoor.
Well, this to a stranger wur cheerin',
    An' aw felt very thankful, yo'r sure.
An' fro' that day to this we've been friendly;
    Yes, as friendly as brothers could be;
At least aw'll say this much on my part,
    An' aw think he's th' same feelin's tow'rds me.

We've had mony a political battle,
    But there's been newt but papper i' th' gun;
A flash o' good wit, to please th' list'ners,
    'At ended i' nowt nobbut fun.
Aw pretend to be Radical,—aw do;—
    Tho' aw'm but a poor hand at mi job:
Eawr guest seems to think he's a Tory;—
    He's to' good to be either, is Bob!

His spurs have been won eawt i' th' Lifeboat;
    An' he's won 'em mooast manfully too,—
I' shewin' true pluck when i' danger,
    An' encouragin' on his brave crew.
If needed, they'd rush eawt to th' rescue,
    When Death seemed to be on their track;
When we upo' th' shore have stood tremblin',
    For fear 'at they'd never get back.

Still, th' owd Coxs'n's been very reluctant
    To resign this position o' trust
To sever himself fro' his comrades,
    But his health and his age say he must.
Well, he's got a good man to succeed him;
    He's a brave-hearted fellow, is Will;
An' noa deawt when he goes eawt to action,
    He'll show he's booath courage an' skill.

But we'll leave him, an' get back to Robert;
    He's th' guest we're to honour to-neet;
An' mak noa mistake abeawt this friends,—
    We're intendin' to do this job reet.
Why, we've talent enough i' this meetin'—
    That, when it get's fairly to work,—
Aw dar bet my hat to a haupney
    They'll hear us across at New York!

We've a portrait to give eawr friend, Robert;
    An' it favvers th' owd Coxs'n soa mitch,
That when they're boath looked at together,
    Its vast hard to tell which is which.
We've other nice things here to give him;
    But one aw may name among th' rest
Is a fine eighteen-carat gowd medal,
    'At th' booatmen will pin on his breast.

Neaw an action like this—to mi' thinkin'—
    Is one 'at's well worthy o' note:
These are men 'at have shared in his dangers;
    Been eawt wi' him often i' th' boat:
Been eawt when th' big waves o' th' owd ocean
    Have threat'ned to crush eawt their lives;
While prayers have gone up for their safety,
    Fro' their poor anxious mothers an' wives.

Ah! there's some o' these absent this evenin';
    Brave men who have met with us oft;
They've ta'en their last look at owd Neptune;
    Laid their oars deawn au' gone up aloft!
While amongst us, an' strugglin' as boatmen,
    Their lives wur oft toilsome an' hard;
But they did their work nobly, an' neaw, friends,
    The're gone to receive their reward.

But, bless me! aw'm gettin' too serious:
    Yo've come here to laugh not to cry;
An' awm noan amongst yo' this evenin'
    To fill yo' wi' sadness;—not I.
So we'll give eawr friend Robert these presents,
    For his services rendered so long;
After that we'll keep on this grand meetin',
    Wi' speech, recitation, an' song.

As yo'll see,—we've got th' Fishermen's Band here;—
    Smart lads these, an' allus i' tune;
Give 'em plenty to eat an' to drink, an'
    They'll play fro', December to June!
Have yo' noticed Jack Fish, when he's playin',—
    Heaw he seems to put forth all his strength,—
When he's workin' th' trombone back an' forrud,
    An' tryin' to get it th' reet length?

He's been tuggin' two year' at aw know on,—
    At what should be done i' two days;
An' aw think if he's wise he'll get beawt it,
    An' try summat else in its place.
Neaw, I allus took Jack to be sharpish;
    Eawtwitted an' beaten bi noan';
But if aw've ony skill abeawt music,
    He's bothered wi' that trombone!

But aw musn't go on any longer,
    For others have summat to say—
Moor important than my bit o' scribble,
    So aw'll drop it, an' get eawt o' th' way.
But aw couldn't sit still here i' silence,
    Or feel aw wur doin' what's reet,
If aw didn't tak' some part—tho' humble,—
    I' honourin' eawr friend here to-neet.

Ed.—if you found this poem interesting, you might also wish to read Laycock's A Tribute to the Drowned, James Archibald's Wreck of the Mexico, Thomas Clounie's The Rescue and Alexander Anderson's The Life-Boat.

_______________________________

 
TH' OWD DUR SNECK.


THERE'S nowt very grand in an owd dur sneck,
    But its value lies here, do yo' see—
It belongs to th' heawse dur wheer aw lived when a lad,
    An', of course, it's most precious to me.
Aw wur born i' that cottage, at least so they say.
    But can hardly remember th' event;
Aw, didn't stur abeawt mitch for th' furst twothri days,
    For they kept me lapt up in a fent.

Aw've been thrashed i' that heawse, not becose aw'd done
        wrong,
    But becose aw'd noa peawer to do reet;
Aw'd two glarin' faults—gettin' hungry to' soon,
    An' wearin' mi clogs off mi feet.
But heaw could aw help mi owd clogs gettin' worn?
    Dunnot childer get hungry neaw?
These seem to be two o' th' "original sins"
    'At we connot shake off us, someheaw.

Whether Adam an' Eve wur to blame for this wark,
    Aw'm noan i' th' position to say;
But there's one thing we know—we 'at have it to find—
    There's a lot o' good meat thrown away.
Well, abeawt this owd sneck:—it's been middlin' weel worn
    Like mi naybur Tom Harlow's owd hat;
It's bin hondled an' rubbed abeawt th' edges a deol,
    But my thumb's helped to do some o' that.

Aw'm sorry th' owd heawse is unoccupied neaw,
    Still aw never goa past but aw co';
For it brings to mi mind childish acts an' events,
    Moor than onything else 'at aw know.
Th' bit o' garden's theer yet, but th' gardener's dead
    An' th' fleawers are ole gone to decay;
When aw look at th' dear spot, it brings tears to mi een,
    An' aw have to turn sadly away.

Soa aw value th' dur sneck as a relic o' th' past,
    It's a sort ov a heirloom to me;
Seein' this, aw con live mi young days o'er again,
    Kneel once more at mi dear mother's knee.
It wur deawn on that floor 'at aw lisped mi furst prayer;
    It wur theer 'at aw sung mi furst stave;
But th' kind Christian parents 'at towt me these things,
    Have long been asleep i' their grave.

They lie side bi side; brother Robert's theer too;
    An' neaw there's but two of us left;
Aw'm like a knife-blade—gettin' worn deawn an' thin,
    An ready to drop eawt o' th' heft.
Th' mainspring's gettin' cranky a bit, aw can feel,
    An' th' rivets are ole workin' loose;
When aw've scraped a bit longer they'll fling me away,
    Like a thing 'at's o' noa further use!

Aw'm rough abeawt th' edges, like other owd knives,
    An' can "hack" a bit when there's occasion;—
An' it's needed at times, though it's dangerous wark,
    Often endin' i' mortification!
But aw'm ramblin' away fro' mi subject aw find;
    Still yon pleos to excuse me this time;
An' aw'll bring to a close these few triflin' remarks
    'At aw've tried to work up into rhyme.

Aw shall value th' owd sneck as one o' thoose things
    'At aw've hondled an' looked on when young;
An' shall store it amongst other treasures aw have,
    Till mi very last song has been sung.
An' while Flora may value her jewels an' pearls,
    'At so gracefully hang on her neck;
Aw'm content wi' a relic fro' th' home o' mi birth,
    An, shall stick to mi owd dur sneck!

 

_______________________________

 
ALLIS TO' LAT'!


THERE'S a chap livin' somewheer on Huddersfield way,
'At's a very dry brick, though he's noan made o' clay.
Neaw, he's one strikin' feature—he's noated for that—
Wheerever th' chap goes to he's allis to' lat'!

He's fond o' his drink; gets as "full as a fitch;"
Soa one day, when he'd had hawve a gallon to' mitch
One or two ov his chums—as aw've yeard 'em tell th' tale—
Took him into a shop wheer there'n coffins for sale.

Into one o' these coffins they crammed this owd chap,
Then left him to sowber hissel' wi' a nap;
When he wackened he stared wi' ole th' een in his yead:
"Why, what's to do neaw?   Aw'm surely noan dead?

"It's a 'corker ' is this! but aw'm dryish, choose heaw:
Eh, wheerever i' th' world am aw getten to neaw?
Aw'm to' lat' ogen, hang it!   Eh, dear, dear-a-me!
Aw'll be blest iv they aren't ole gooan but me!

"Eh, aw am some an' dry!   Is there nowt here to sup?
Neaw they met just ha' nudged one, an' towd me t' get up;
Wheer's this leet fro', aw wonder?   It allis struck me
'At when one wur i' th' grave there'd be nowt mich to see.

"But there must be a dayleet hole somewheer abeawt,
    Or else heaw th' deuce han they ole getten eawt?
Well, it caps me to see ole these coffins reared up!
    But they must ha' crept eawt to get summat to sup.

"They'll happen be back in a minute or two,
    When they'n bin on at th' 'Mitre' an' had a good poo';
After ole's done an' said, it looks very unkind
    On 'em ole to get up an' leov me behind.

"Still, aw know heaw it is 'at they'n left me, aw think,
    Bein' a dry chap, they'd think aw should want ole th' drink;
For they know aw could polish it off to some tune,
    When aw're livin' an' hearty, i' th' world up aboon.

"Neaw, they've surely noan gooan off to heaven or to hell,
    An' left me deawn here i' this hole bi misel'!
Has th' trumpet bin blown, an' aw've missed yerrin' that?
    Well, aw'm 'done' iv it has; but aw'm allis t' lat'!"

 

_______________________________

 
MASHERS.


SHUT up, yo political wranglers,
    Wi yo'r Ireland, "three acres," an' sich!
Are these childish questions worth raising'
    Bi th' fleawer o' owd England?
Not mich.   It's o very weel to be patriots;
    But if yo'd be noted for wit,
Yo'll provide a nice white pocket napkin,
    An' just show one corner a bit.

An' science—it's nowt nobbut humbug!
    Whoa cares abeawt th' structure o' plants?
Or heaw this vast globe wur created?
    What modern society wants,
Isn't th' meawldy ideas of a Darwin,
    Or th' author o' "Spoopendyke's" wit;
But it's havin' a noice pocket napkin,
    An' showin' one corner a bit.

Eawr forefathers thowt they wur clever,
    But compared wi' us neaw they wur geese.
Need we wonder they're gropin' i' darkness,
    Wi' newspappers fourpence a-piece!
They'd no votes i' thoose days, had they Owdham;
    Their dense ignorance kept ',em unfit;
Their napkins wur made o' striped cotton,
    So it wouldn't do to show 'em—not it.

Do yo ax me what use they had for 'em?
    Well, aw dar'say 'at some on yo know—
They used 'em when aw wur a youngster,
    For woipin' their noses—that's o!
They'd no rings on their fingers i' thoose days;
    This shows 'at th' poor things had no wit;
An' havin' noa noice pocket napkins,
    They didn't display 'em one bit.

Th' church parson wur th' "boss" fifty year sin';
    Poor foalk didn't think for theirsel!
But they paid their rich naybours to do it;
    What th' result wur aw've no need to tell:
Th' landed gentry wur very near worshipp'd,
    An' th' poor wur set deawn as beawt wit;
If they had a nice napkin i' thoose days,
    It wouldn't do to show one—not it.

Young men! yo'n a future afore yo!
    A chance neaw for "sowin' wild oats;"
They don't measure men bi their brains neaw,
    But bi th' colour an' th' cut o' their coats.
Don't turn up yo'r een, or look pious,
    For at this time o' th' day it won't fit;
Yo look up a noice pocket napkin,
    An' just show one corner a bit.

Mack a plentiful use o' th' word "bloomin';"
    Embellish yo'r speech wi "Bi gads;"
This'll show to the world 'at yo're clever,
    At yo'n getten moor sense nor yo'r dads.
Cock yo'r hats o' one side just a trifle;
    Yo'll find this a capital hit,
Along wi' a noice pocket napkin,
    Wi' one corner showin' a bit.

Slip a ring or two on to yo'r fingers,
    These'll help th' pocket napkins yo'll find;
Get a pair o' noice silver-framed glasses;
    Ole "mashers" pretend to be blind!
Of course some may treat yo as "spooneys,"
    But ole sich as these have no wit;
Yo'll be reet if yo stick to yo'r napkins,
    An' show up one corner a bit.

 

_______________________________

 
TH' STORM AT BLACKPOOL, MARCH, 1876.


AW tell thee what, friend, tha's bin carryin' on strangely;
    Tha's bin on for a bit ov a "marlock," aw think,
An' tha seems eawt o' humour wi' summat or other,—
    What's to do wi' thee loike?   Hast bin havin' some drink?
Tha's bin rayther "top heavy" lately, that's certain,
    An' they sen tha's bin "cuttin' thi capers" i' th' street;
Aw know for a fact tha wur damagin' th' railin's.
    An' spoilin' us th' promenade rarely one neet.

Howd thi noise, for it's no use attemptin' t' deny it,
    For aw've catched thee agate o' this mischief misel;
Tha wur busy one day pooin' th' hulkin' to pieces,
    Between th' new Aquarium an' th' Royal Hotel.
Aw saw thee, mon, rippin' an' tearin' away theer,
    An' squanderin' th' cobbles an' th' timbers abeawt;
Tha made a rare hole i' th' sea fence, aw can tell thee,
    An' tha's made a fine hole i' my pockets, aw deawt.

T'other day aw turned eawt to admire thi performance,
    Intendin' to write a few lines i' thi praise;
But tha quenched every spark o' poetical fervour,
    When tha wet mi best trowsers, an' spat i' mi face.
One loikes to be friendly an' gradely wi' strangers,
    When they come deawn to spend a few days wi' us here;
But iv this is thy way o' returnin' a kindness,
    Tha'll have but few friends deawn at Blackpool, aw fear.

Before tha goes back aw've a job 'at wants doin'—
    It'll keep thee fro' mischief—at least for a day;
Ther's a cart looad o' shingle tha's thrown on my doorstep,
    Aw'll thank thee to set to an' shift it away.
Aw've cleared it off twice, but tha's bin here i' th' neet toime
    (For tha conno for shame do thi tricks before men),
An' when th' lamps have bin eawt, an' tha thowt nob dy saw thee,
    Tha browt a great lot o' this rubbish ogen.

Aw'm fond o' that song "Sweep abeawt yo'r own doorsteps,"
    An aw've often ta'en th' brush eawt to sweep abeawt mine;
An' aw'm still very willin' to side mi own rubbish,
    But aw connot just say 'at aw loike to shift thine.
There's nob'dy i' Blackpool mich fonder than I am
    O' seein' a regular stunnin' good storm;
An' tha's certainly gan us some grand entertainments;
    Still tha costs us a deol when tha comes to perform.

When a thing's really good we're quite willin' to pay for't,
    Though it's known 'at thy naybours are never so rich;
We should loike thy excitin' performances better,
    Iv, it wurno for one thing—tha charges to' mich.
Tha'rt clever, no deawt, an' a many 'at's yeard thee
    Have bin, loike misel, fairly melted to tears;
But look what a while tha's bin howdin' thi concerts!
    Tha's been practicin' thy songs for theawsands o' years!

Tha'rt a very good sarvant, but shockin' bad mestur;
    Tha'rt as harmless as owt while tha'rt kept within beawnds;
But tha neaw an' then gets in a terrible passion;
    An' tha maks weary wark when tha'rt havin' thi "reawnds."
Tha'll remember aw praised thee at th' furst when aw knew thee;
    Then th' seawnd o' thi voice wur grand music to me;
But aw've had rayther moor than aw've bargained for lately,
    An' we're nearer relations sin then, dusta see?

Iv tha wants to be friendly wi' thoose 'at admire thee
    Tha'll have to set to abeawt mendin' thi ways;
For tha connot expect a poor fellow to love thee
    Iv tha wets him his trowsers, an' spits in his face.
Well, my porritch is ready, so ta-ta, owd ocean;
    Tha'd better be off, as it's gettin' so late;
Iv tha finds it convenient to'ard th' end o' September,
    Slip o'er here, an' pay me my promenade rate.

 

_______________________________

 
BISPHAM.


                         BISPHAM here pratty?
                         Aw think it is pratty;
                         Foind me another spot
                         Lookin' soa "natty."
                         Hedgerows are bloomin',
                         Ole the village perfumin',
An' garden beds put on their pleasantest looks.
            Th' good childer's new weshed, love,
            An' th' bad ones new threshed, love,
While th' dullards are kept to their slates an' their books.

                         Bispham here pratty?
                         Why, bless thi loife, Matty,
                         Thee on wi' thi bonnet
                         An' come here to-neet;
                         Throstles are singin',
                         An' th' village bells ringin',
An' daisies are growin' reet under one's feet.
            Fling away sadness, love,
            Frettin' is madness, love;
Come thi ways here an' tha'll see a grand seet!

                         An' deawn on thi shanks, lass,
                         Return God thi thanks, lass;
                         We've never deserved
                         These dainties 'at's served.
                         Why, look up aboon,
                         At th' breet queenly moon,
Heaw grandly hoo pours deawn her silvery leet!
            Look at th' stars creawdin' near,
            Loike childer gone theer
To see their dear mother, an' bid her good neet.

                         Bispham here pratty?
                         Aw think it is pratty;
                         Then come thi ways, Matty,
                         An' see for thisel;
                         Come while it's May, love,
                         For th' fleawers fade away, love,
An' th' east winds may silence ole th' songsters i' th' dell,
            Aw've tidied mi garden walks,
            Shifted th' owd beon stalks,
An' dusted mi parlour, expectin' tha'd come.
            Soa if tha's a bonnet, lass,
            Look sharp an' don it, lass.
An' visit th' owd bard in his countryfied whoam.

 

_______________________________

 
LINES WRITTEN IN A VOLUME OF POEMS, AND SENT TO
THE
REV. ROBERT COLLYER, AMERICA.


TO the once Yorkshire blacksmith—now parson—I send
This book, through a hint dropt by Elliot, our friend.
Who ventures to hope you may find in these rhymes
Some thought that may wake up old scenes and old times.
You began at the anvil, and I at the loom,
Our pathway in those days was clouded with gloom;
But we toiled on in patience,—kept pushing along,
        And now we're rewarded with sunshine and song.

 

_______________________________

 
TO MY FRIEND, ISAAC BARDSLEY.


I' thoose lines 'at tha's sent,
Which awm sure are well meant—
    Tha tells me I am no' to fret;
If aw'll follow thy plan,
An' attend th' inner man,
    Aw've other ten years to live yet.

Well, aw try o' aw con
To be cheerful, but, mon,
    Aw find it vast hard aw can tell;
It's a terrible task,
An' awm tempted to ask,
    If tha's ever been poorly thisel'!

Mon, this owd neck o' mine
Isn't red, same as thine;
    An' th' yeadwartch awm seldom witheawt.
An' tho' tha looks breet,
Wi' thi stomach ole reet,
    Tha'll know what that meons, no deawt.

It's hard wark to cheer up,
When life's bitter cup
    Is constantly under one's nose;
But this looks like eawr doom;
Some fade, others bloom;
    One's a thorn, another's a rose.

After ole, mi dear lad,
One has cause to be glad,
    When he knows he's noan laboured for nowt;
If aw've done as tha says,—
Cheered thi earlier days,—
    It's a grand an' encouragin' thowt!

Then tha calls me a Bard
Says mi song, "Bowton's Yard,"
    Has boath pleased folk an' mended 'em to'!
An' 'at Jammie wi' th' bell
Has made theawsands to yell;
    Neaw that's just what aw meant 'em to do.

Then tha names other rhymes,
'At aw've published at times
    "Bonny Brid," "Ode to th' Sun," "Thee an' Me;"
An' tha'rt bold to proclaim
These'll add to mi fame;
    But that's hardish to tell—we shall see.

Th' next tha calls me a preacher,
A plain whomly teacher,
    Whose sarmons contain good advice.
Well, aw've tried, aw must say,
I' mi own humble way,
    To give yo' booath Med'cine an' Spice.

Then tha names lookin' back
Upo' life's rugged track,
    'An says it must cheer a chap's mind
To know what he's writ
Must have helped foalk a bit,
    An' thus leetened th' cares o' mankind.

Well, good neet, dear friend B.;
An' aw'll try not to dee
    Till aw've finished mi wark here below;
An' when yonder aboon
Aw strike up a new tune,
    Tha'll be somewheer abeawt me aw know!

 

_______________________________

 
TH' OWD PEDLAR'S GONE WHOAW.


TH' owd pedlar's packed up an' gone whoam;
    He'll go eawt wi' his basket no moor.
Who is there 'at doesn't remember owd John
    Comin' reawnd once a week to their door?
An' whoa isn't sorry he's dead?
    Soa kind an' soa gentle was he!
Alas! it's too true what we've often yeard said,
    "Thoose we love th' best are oft th' furst to dee."

Thank God! he's neaw londed safe whoam,
    Wheer th' weary an' careworn can rest!
Wheer noa mack o' grief or misfortune can come,
    An' noa foe can disturb or molest.
Then let's noan to frettin' give way,
    Although there's nowt wrong in a tear;
We shall noan see his equal for mony a long day;
    He're a favourite amongst us when here.

When hearty he loiked a good joke;
    An' often he'd merrily chat;
But his dear lovin' partner drooped deawn at his side,
    An' he never looked reet after that.
He sawntered abeawt wi' his wares,
    An' tried to cheer up, as i' th' past;
But his sorrow wur moor than he're able to bear,
    An' he had to give in to 't at last.

Th' owd basket he carried so long,
    We'll carefully treasure as gowd;
For th' arm wheer it hung, once nimble an' strong,
    Neaw lies by his side stiff an' cowd.
We've ta'en him an' put him i' th' grave,
    Wheer his dear wife an' childer are laid;
There's noa stone to mark th' spot; it's a green grassy
            meawnd,
    Happ'd an patted wi' th' owd sexton's spade.

Th' armcheer 'at he's ceawered in for years,
    We've carefully laid by i' th' nook:
An' oft are these een o' eawers wetted wi' tears,
    As on that dear relic we look.
For we loved that owd chap wi' th' grey hairs,
    An' he's missed bi ole th' nayburs i' th' street;
For he'll come here no moor to exhibit his wares,
    Or bid us his well-known "Good neet!"

He're a honest owd creatur' wur John;
    An' his bobbins an' thread wur furst-class;
An' whoever had th' fortune to trade wi' th' owd mon,
    Geet plenty o' stuff for their brass.
But he's made his last bargain deawn here,
    An' there's just one indulgence we crave—
An' that is, to neaw an' then drop a warm tear,
    To moisten th' wild fleawers o'er his grave.

 

_______________________________

 
TH' COARTIN' NEET.
PART FIRST.


IT'S time for me to leov mi wark,
    An' wesh an' dress misel;
Becose to-neet, at th' edge o' dark,
    Aw meet wi' Rosy Bell.
When leovin' th' lass o' Sunday neet,
    Aw took her hont i' mine,
Aw said, aw'd go iv o wur reet,
    An' th' weather midlin' fine.

We're rare an' nicely matched, us two;
    That's plain enuff to see;
For nob'dy could mak' moor ado
    Than Rosy does o' me.
We allis meet abeawt one place,
    At th' side o' th' garden wo;
Hoo grins an' laughs all o'er her face,
    Aw grin an' laugh an o!

Her mother looked as shy as owt
    Th' furst neet aw went i' th' heawse;
Aw dursn't speak, nor cough, nor nowt,
    But ceawered theer like a meawse.
Aw think hoo saw what th' visit meant,
    Before aw coom away;
For, do yo know, th' next time aw went,
    Hoo axed me to mi tay.

An' neaw aw'm just as welcome theer,
    As ony lad i' th' teawn;
They allis reach me th' two-arm cheer,
    An' tell me t' sit me deawn.
Th' owd chap's a horse worth twenty peawnd,
    Besides a lot o' ceaws;
An' a bit o' rare good pasture greawnd
    Wheer th' sheep an' cattle breawse.

Neaw, dunno think aw'm after th' brass,
    For aw wouldn't thank for th' spot
Wi' th' pigs, an' th' ceaws, an' o he has,
    Unless aw'd hur i' th' lot.
But yonder Rosy comes, aw see,
    Hoo's just shut th' garden gate;
An' neaw hoo's lookin' eawt for me,
    So aw musn't let her wait.

_______________________________

 
TH' COARTIN' NEET.
PART SECOND.


AW'VE made it up wi' Rosy Bell;
    We've booath agreed t' be wed;
But didn't th' lass have a cryin' spell!
    An' didn't her face go red!
Aw axed her nicely iv hoo wished
    Mi bed an' board to share;
Hoo turned her yead aside an' blushed,
    An' said hoo didn't care.

Neaw, dunno let this secret eawt,
    Nor mention what aw've towd;
Aw wouldn't have it talked abeawt,
    For fifty peawnd i' gowd.
Keep quiet, wait on patiently,
    Till th' rumour's made a fact;
An' then aw meon to let yo see
    Heaw aw intend to act.

Yo'll noan find me like some; for lo!—
    As soon as th' weddin's o'er,
There's sich a change—they're nowt at o
    Like what they wur before.
Aw'll turn mi hond to ony job,—
    Keep Johnny eawt o' th' durt,
Or sit bi th' hob an' nurse eawr Bob,
    While Rosy mends mi shirt.

Aw never wish to be admired
    For hondlin' broom or cleawt;
But when aw see th' lass gettin' tired
    Aw meon to help her eawt.
Aw'll try an' save her o aw con,
    An' when hoo's noan so well,
Aw'll poo mi cooat off, like a mon,
    An' wesh an' bake misel.

So long as th' harston's cleon an' white,
    An' th' fender nice an' breet,
Aw shall allis feel it a delight
    To stop i' th' heawse at neet.
Aw'll ne'er put Rosy eawt o' tune
    Wi' daubin' th' parlour floor;
But allis—when aw've durty shoon,
    Aw'll wipe 'em weel at th' door.

I' winter time, when th' neets are long,
    Aw'll ceawer me deawn i' th' nook;
An', while th' wife sews, aw'll sing a song,
    Or read fro' th' Sacred Book.
Yo may co it vain, conceited pride,—
    But a chap 'at connot see
Nice pictur's at his own fireside,—
    Well, he's nowt akin to me!

_______________________________

 
EAWR POOASTMEN.


AS aw'rn sittin' one day i' mi cottage,
    An' runnin' things o'er i' mi knob,
Aw saw a few wrongs needed tacklin';
    Soa aw buckled misel' to mi job.
Aw wur thinkin'—'mong other odd matters—
    Abeawt these big sal'ries we give
To theawsands o' drones 'at ne'er do nowt,
    While we've bees 'at have hard wark to live.

As an instance o' this—there's eawr pooastman—
    A very deservin' owd breek—
Well, aw'm towd 'at he tak's eawt ole th' letters
    For a paltry five shillin's a week.
Neaw, yo' couldn't ha' thowt it soa, could yo'?
    But it's perfectly true as th' tale goas;
An' further than this, aw can tell yo'—
    They don't even find him his clooas.

Neaw, aw've noa wish for gettin' up taxes,
    Soa dunno throw that i' mi face;
But to think o' what taxes are paid for—
    Why, foalk, it's a burnin' disgrace!
Aw should just like to know heaw it happens
    That numbskulls wi' nowt i' their yead
Are up to their shoulders i' clover,
    While others are starvin' for bread.

Heaw is it 'at some men are honoured
    For bringin' us into disgrace,
While others are deein'—neglected—
    Real friends to their country an' race!
Can England believe in her Bible,
    An' at th' same time consider it reight
To starve an' neglect her real heroes,
    While we pay men to plunder an' feight?

What does war do but bring want an' ruin!
    An' soa long as we've th' "piper to pay"
It's eawr interest, as well as eawr duty
    To sweep these dire evils away.
Whoa amongst us would harbour a greyhound,
    If it did nowt but worry an' bark?
If we've sense wi shall pay nob'dy wages,
    But thoose 'at do good honest wark.

Let's clear eawt ole th' drones 'at are useless,
    An' get workin' bees into th' hive;
An' let nob'dy eat th' honey 'at makes none,
    Then eawr commerce an' trade may revive.
But soa long as we keep public sarvants,
    To give us their time an' their aid,
Let's treat 'em as men should be treated,
    An' see 'at they're properly paid.

An' whoa's more desarvin' than th' pooastmen?
    What a lot o' hard wark they get through!
An' yet, wheer are th' Government sarvants,
    'At get as ill paid as they do?
Th' idea of a mon in his senses,
    Gooin' slpashin' thro' mire an' thro' clay,
Th' public sarvant for o' th' foalk i' th' village,
    For less than a shillin' a day!

Neaw, iv aw'd a noice seot at Saint Stephens,
    Aw'd regulate th' sal'ries, an' soon:—
Why, bless us! a poor country pooastman
    May spend ole he gets up o' shoon!
But aw'll write up to th' Pooastmaister General,
    An' tho' aw know th' Government's poor,
Aw'll try if aw connot persuade him
    To give th' chap a "bob" or two moor.

_______________________________

 
CHARLES BRADLAUGH.

Charles Bradlaugh (1833–91) was a social reformer, secularist, teetotaller and, from 1860, editor of the free-thinking weekly National Reformer.  He was an early advocate of woman's suffrage, birth control, free speech, national education, trade unionism, and other causes that were controversial at the time. After several unsuccessful attempts Bradlaugh was, in 1880, elected Liberal M.P. for Northampton. Rather than take an oath on the Bible when being sworn in as a member of Parliament, Bradlaugh demanded the right to "affirm", an act that provoked much controversy, and it was not until 1886 that the matter was settled in his favour.


ANOTHER comrade's said "Good-neet," an' left us;
    Another warrior's laid his weapons deawn;
He fowt life's battles bravely—won his laurels,
    An left behind a well-deserved reneawn.

He fowt 'gainst shams, 'gainst creeds worn out, an' musty;
    He fowt 'gainst "beasts," as Paul once did of owd;
He sowt not wealth; refused to barter freedom,
    Or sell his birthright for a mint o' gowd.

Heaven's richer neaw; but, oh! we're vastly poorer;
    A king 'mongst men has fall'n fro' th' rank, to day;
His orders came to join th' great band o' martyrs,
    An', like ole soldiers, knew he must obey.

He'd won his battles; friends were ole unitin'
    I' one loud song th' event to celebrate;
But th' tired-eawt warrior heeded not their praises,
    His ears wur closed; these honours coom to' late!

Men oft get wrong—mistakin' good for evil;
    Imagine folly's wisdom, bitter sweet;
But wheer eawr friend's gone ole these wrongs are
             reighted,
    An' tho' man fails i' justice, God does reet!

 

_______________________________

 
THANK YO', SIR!
ON RECEIVIN' A KESMUS GOOSE FRO' A PARSON.


LAST Setturday neet, as aw'r nursin' eawr Bob,
An' runnin' a toothry things o'er I' mi nob,
Someb'dy pood at eawr bell, so aw went to th' front dur,
An' when aw geet theer some astonished aw wur,
When a young woman muttered some sort of excuse,
An' said "If you please, Sir, I've brought you a goose."
"Mi good woman," aw said, "yo're mistacken, aw fear;
Aw think yo'll do wrong iv yo' leoven it here."

"I am perfectly right, I assure you," hoo said,
Soa aw stood toothry seconds theer scratchin' mi yead;
An' this young woman stood theer quite fast what to do,
Whoile aw're lookin' sheepish, an' feelin' soa too.
At length aw said, "Well, iv it's eawrs bring it in,
But aw'm thinkin' it welly ameawnts to a sin,
For poor foalk loike we are to fare i' this style;
It's eawt o' eawr way this bi monny a long mile.

"Sheep yeads, an' red herrin', an' that mack o' stuff
Are moor i' eawr loine, an' are quite good enuff;
For one hasn't a desoire to be same as owd Peel,
'At dee'd th' other Sunday through livin' so weel,—
He ate so much cabbage an' mate o' that kind,
'At he didn't leov heawse-reawm enuff for his woind.
He'r a foine-lookin' fellow as ever one see'd,
Wur owd Mestur Peel; it's a pity he deed."

Well, yo'r reverence, aw'm forty year owd—rayther moor,
But aw've ne'er seen a goose come i' eawr heawse afoor;
An' we dunno know heaw we're to cook sich like things,
Dun yo' eat ole the job lot—th' tail, fithers, an' wings?
Dun yo' roast 'em, or boil 'em, or fry 'em, or what?
Eawr Jack says he dar' say they're done up i' fat,
Same as fish, cowd potatoes, an' stuff o' that mack,
But aw neer tak noa notice at ole o' eawr Jack.

Well, mi thanks Mister Parson, for th' present yo'n sent,
An' aw hope at yo'll ne'er ha' no cause to repent
Havin' sent a poor fellow a goose to his dinner,
For it's one o'th' best ways o' convertin' a sinner.
Yo'r sermons, tho' good, aren't o hawve as mich use
For rousin' one up as a savery goose;
If yo'd mak' an impression on sich loike as me,
Yo'll ha' to appeal to eawr stomachs, yo see.

Neaw aw've noa deawt at ole but i' this sort o' weather
A goose spoiced wi' gospel would do weel together;
Eawr Saviour saw th' wisdom o' this, for we read,
At He once gav' His hungry disciples a feed.
Well, aw'll drop it, yo'r reverence, aw've said enuff neaw,
An' aw've managed to get thro' mi tale o' sumheaw.
One met go on further, but then what's the use?
Ole aw want to say's this—Aw'm obliged for that goose.



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