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He soon replied, I do admire
Then over all, that he might be Of womankind but one,
Equipped from top to toe, And you are she, my dearest dear,
His long red cloak, well brushed and neat, Therefore it shall be done.
He manfully did throw. I am a linen-draper bold,
Now see him mounted once again As all the world doth know,
Upon his nimble steed, And my good friend the calender
Full slowly pacing o'er the stones, Will lend his horse to go.
With caution and good heed. Quoth Mrs. Gilpin, That's well said;
But finding soon a smoother road And, for that wine is dear,
Beneath his well-shod feet, We will be furnished with our own,
The snorting beast began to trot, Which is both bright and clear.
Which galled him in his seat. John Gilpin kissed his loving wife;
So, fair and softly, John he cried, O'erjoyed was he to find
But John he cried in vain; That, though on pleasure she was bent,
That trot became a gallop soon,
In spite of curb and rein.
Who cannot sit upright,
He grasped the mane with both his hands, Should say that she was proud.
And eke with all his might. So three doors off the chaise was stayed,
His horse, who never in that sort Where they did all get in;
Had handled been before, Six precious souls, and all agog
What thing upon his back had got To dash through thick and thin.
Did wonder more and more. Smack went the whip, round went the wheels, Away went Gilpin, neck or nought; Were never folk so glad,
Away went hat and wig;
He little dreamt when he set out,
Of running such a rig.
The wind did blow, the cloak did fly Seized fast the flowing mane,
Like streamer long and gay,
Till, loop and button failing both,
At last it flew away.
Then might all people well discern
The bottles he had slung;
A bottle swinging at each side,
As hath been said or sung.
The dogs did bark, the children screamed, Although it grieved him sore;
Up flew the windows all; Yet loss of pence, full well he knew,
And every soul cried out, Well done! Would trouble him much more.
As loud as he could bawl. 'Twas long before the customers
Away went Gilpin—who but he ?
His fame soon spread around,
He carries weight! he rides a race! “ The wine is left behind!”
'Tis for a thousand pound! Good lack! quoth he-yet bring it me,
And still, as fast as he drew near,
'Twas wonderful to view In which I bear my trusty sword
How in a trice the turnpike men
Their gates wide open threw.
And now, as he went bowing down
His reeking head full low,
The bottles twain behind his back
Were shattered at a blow.
Down ran the wine into the road,
Most piteous to be seen,
Which made his horse's flanks to smoke, To make his balance true.
As they had basted been.
But still he seemed to carry weight,
He held them up, and in his turn With leathern girdle braced ;
Thus showed his ready wit, For all might see the bottle-necks
My head is twice as big as yours, Still dangling at his waist.
They therefore needs must fit. Thus all through merry Islington
But let me scrape the dirt away, These gambols he did play,
That hangs upon your face; Until he came unto the Wash
And stop and eat, for well you may Of Edmonton so gay:
Be in a hungry case. And there he threw the wash about
Said John, it is my wedding-day, On both sides of the way,
And all the world would stare Just like unto a trundling mop,
If wife should dine at Edmonton, Or a wild goose at play.
And I should dine at Ware. At Edmonton his loving wife
So turning to his horse, he said, From the balcony spied
I am in haste to dine; Her tender husband, wondering much
'Twas for your pleasure you came here, To see how he did ride.
You shall go back for mine. Stop, stop, John Gilpin!—Here's the house Ah luckless speech, and bootless boast? They all at once did cry;
For which he paid full dear; The dinner waits, and we are tired:
For, while he spake, a braying ass Said Gilpin-So am I!
Did sing most loud and clear; But yet his horse was not a whit
Whereat his horse did snort, as he Inclined to tarry there;
Had heard a lion roar, For why?-his owner had a house
And galloped off with all his might, Full ten miles off, at Ware.
As he had done before. So like an arrow swift he flew,
Away went Gilpin, and away Shot by an archer strong;
Went Gilpin's hat and wig. So did he fly—which brings me to
He lost them sooner than at first, The middle of my song.
For why?—they were too big. Away went Gilpin out of breath,
Now mistress Gilpin, when she saw And sore against his will,
Her husband posting down Till at his friend the calender's
Into the country far away, His horse at last stood still.
She pulled out half a crown; The calender, amazed to see
And thus unto the youth she said, His neighbour in such trim,
That drove them to the Bell, Laid down his pipe, flew to the gate,
This shall be yours when you bring back And thus accosted him.
My husband safe and well. What news? what news? your tidings tell;
The youth did ride, and soon did meet Tell me you must and shall
John coming back amain; Say why bare-headed you are come,
Whom in a trice he tried to stop, Or why you come at all?
By catching at his rein; Now Gilpin had a pleasant wit,
But not performing what he meant, And loved a timely joke!
And gladly would have done, And thus unto the calender
The frighted steed he frighted more, In merry guise he spoke:
And made him faster run. I came because your horse would come;
Away went Gilpin, and away And, if I well forbode,
Went post-boy at his heels, My hat and wig will soon be here,
The post-boy's horse right glad to miss They are upon the road.
The lumbering of the wheels. The calender, right glad to find
Six gentlemen upon the road His friend in merry pin,
Thus seeing Gilpin fly, Returned him not a single word,
With post-boy scampering in the rear, But to the house went in;
They raised the hue and cry: Whence straight he came with hat and wig; Stop thief! stop thief !—a highwayman! A wig that flowed behind,
Not one of them was mute; A hat not much the worse for wear,
And all and each that passed that way Each comely in its kind.
Did join in the pursuit.
And now the turnpike gates again
Their length and colour from the locks they spare;
The elastic spring of an unwearied foot,
That mounts the stile with ease, or leaps the fence,
That play of lungs, inhaling and again
Respiring freely the fresh air, that makes
Swift pace or steep ascent no toil to me,
Mine have not pilfered yet; nor yet impaired
My relish of fair prospect; scenes that soothed
Or charmed me young, no longer young, I find
Still soothing, and of power to charm me still.
And witness, dear companiou of my walks,
Whose arm this twentieth winter I perceive
Fast locked in mine, with pleasure such as love,
Confirmed by long experience of thy worth
Witness a joy that thou hast doubled long.
Thou knowest my praise of nature most sincere,
How oft upon yon eminence our pace His legs depending at the open door.
Has slackened to a pause, and we have borne Sweet sleep enjoys the curate in his desk,
The ruffling wind, scarce conscious that it blew, The tedious rector drawling over his head;
While admiration, feeding at the eye, And sweet the clerk below. But neither sleep And still unsated, dwelt upon the scene. Of lazy nurse, who snores the sick man dead, Thence with what pleasure have we just discerned Nor his, who quits the box at midnight hour The distant plough still moving, and beside To slumber in the carriage more secure,
His labouring team, that swerved not from the track, Nor sleep enjoyed by curate in his desk,
The sturdy swain diminished to a boy! Nor yet the dozings of the clerk, are sweet,
Here Ouse, slow winding through a level plain Compared with the repose the sofa yields.
Of spacious meads with cattle sprinkled o'er, Oh may I live exempted (while I live
Conducts the eye along his sinuous course Guiltless of pampered appetite obscene)
Delighted. There, fast rooted in their bank, From pangs arthritic, that infest the toe
Stand, never overlooked, our favourite elms, Of libertine excess. The sofa suits
That screen the herdsmau's solitary hut; The gouty limb, 'tis true; but gouty limb,
While far beyond, and overthwart the stream Though on a sofa, may I never feel:
That, as with molten glass, inlays the vale,
Of hedge-row beauties numberless, square tower,
Groves, heaths, and smoking villages, remote.
Please daily, and whose novelty survives
Praise justly due to those that I describe.
Nor rural sights alone, but rural sounds,
Exhilirate the spirit, and restore
The tone of languid Nature. Mighty winds,
That sweep the skirt of some far-spreading wood
Of ancient growth, make music not unlike
The dash of ocean on his winding shore,
And lull the spirit while they fill the mind;
Unnumbered branches waving in the blast, Nor sofa then I needed. Youth repairs
And all their leaves fast fluttering, all at once.
Nor less composure waits upon the roar
Of neighbouring fountain, or of rills that slip
Through the cleft rock, and, chiming as they fall And not a year but pilfers as he goes
Upon loose pebbles, lose themselves at length
In matted grass, that with a livelier green
Betrays the secret of their silent cour
An instant's pause, and lives but while she moves. Nature inanimate employs sweet sounds,
Its own revolvency upholds the world. But animated nature sweeter still,
Winds from all quarters agitate the air,
And fit the limpid element for use,
Ey restless undulation: even the oak
He seems indeed indignant, and to feel
The impression of the blast with proud disdain,
The law, by which all creatures else are bound,
Binds man the lord of all. Himself derives ON THE TOWN AND COUNTRY.
No mean advantage from a kindred cause,
From strenuous toil his hours of sweetest ease.
When custom bids, but no refreshment find,
For none they need: the languid eye, the cheek The folded gates would bar my progress now,
Deserted of its bloom, the flaccid, shrunk, But that the lord of this enclosed demesne,
And withered muscle, and the vapid soul, Communicative of the good he owns,
Reproach their owner with that love of rest, Admits me to a share; the guiltless eye
To which he forfeits even the rest he loves. Commits no wrong, nor wastes what it enjoys.
Not such the alert and active. Measure life Refreshing change! where now the blazing sun? By its true worth, the comforts it affords, By short transition we have lost his glare,
And theirs alone seems worthy of the name. And stepped at once into a cooler clime.
Good health, and, its associate in the most, Ye fallen avenues! once more I mourn
Good temper; spirits prompt to undertake, Your fate unmerited, once more rejoice
And not soon spent, though in an arduous task; That yet a remnant of your race survives.
The powers of fancy and strong thought are theirs; How airy and how light the graceful arch,
age itself seems privileged in them, Yet awful as the consecrated roof
With clear exemption from its own defects.
A sparkling eye beneath a wrinkled front
Like a coy maiden, ease, when courted most,
Who oftenest sacrifice are favoured least.
Who, self-imprisoned in their proud saloons,
Renounce the odours of the open field
Prefer to the performance of a God
But Nature's works far lovelier. I admire,
Who shows me that which I shall never see, Come hither, ye that press your beds of down,
Conveys a distant country into mine, And sleep not; see him sweating o'er his bread
And throws Italian light on English walls; Before he eats it.—'Tis the primal curse,
But imitative strokes can do no more But softened into mercy; made the pledge
Than please the eye-sweet Nature's every sense. Of cheerful days, and nights without a groan.
The air salubrious of her lofty hills, By ceaseless action all that is subsists.
The cheering fragrance of her dewy vales, Constant rotation of the unwearied wheel
And music of her woods-no works of man That nature rides upon maintains her health,
May rival these, these all bespeak a power Her beauty; her fertility. She dreads
Peculiar, and exclusively her own.
Beneath the open sky she spreads the feast; Beneath the rosy cloud, while yet the beams
Of day-spring overshoot his humble nest.
The peasant too, a witness of his song,
Himself a songster, is as gay as he.
But save me from the gaiety of those,
And save me too from theirs, whose haggard eyes
Flash desperation, and betray their pangs
For property stripped off by cruel chance;
From gaiety, that fills the bones with pain,
The earth was made so various, that the mind
Of desultory man, studious of change,
And pleased with novelty, might be indulged.
Prospects, however lovely, may be seen
Till half their beauties fade; the weary sight,
Too well acquainted with their smiles, slides off
Fastidious, seeking less familiar scenes.
Then snug enclosures in the sheltered vale,
Where frequent hedges intercept the eye,
Delight us; happy to renounce awhile,
Not senseless of its charms, what still we love,
That such short absence may endear it more. The lowering eye, the petulance, the frown,
Then forests, or the savage rock, may please, And sullen sadness, that o'ershade, distort,
That hides the sea-mew in his hollow clefts
Above the reach of man.
His hoary head,
Conspicuous many a league, the mariner
Bound homeward, and in hope already there,
A girdle of half-withered shrubs he shows,
And at his feet the baffled billows die.
And decks itself with ornaments of gold,
Yields no unpleasing ramble; there the turf
Smells fresh, and rich in odoriferous herbs
And fungous fruits of earth, regales the sense
There often wanders one, whom better days
With lace, and hat with splendid ribband bound.
A serving maid was she, and fell in love
With one who left her, went to sea, and died.
Her fancy followed him through foaming waves Others are dragged into the crowded rooin
To distant shores; and she would sit and weep
At what a sailor suffers ; fancy too,
Delusive most where warmest wishes are,
Would oft anticipate his glad return,
And dream of transports she was not to know.
She heard the doleful tidings of his death
And never smiled again! and now she roams
The dreary waste; there spends the livelong day,
And there, unless when charity forbids,
The livelong night. A tattered apron hides,
Worn as a cloak, and hardly hides, a gowo
More tattered still; and both but ill conceal
A bosom heaved with never-ceasing sighs.
She begs an idle pin of all she meets,
And hoards them in her sleeve; but needful food,
Though pressed with hunger oft, or comelier That dries his feathers, saturate with dew,