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Their ale they quaff’d; And as they swigg'd the nappy,
They both agreed, 'tis said,
That trade was wond'rous dead,
They jok’d, sung, laughed,
And were completely happy.
The landlord's eye, bright as his sparkling ale,
Glisten’d to see them the brown pitcher hug ;
For ev'ry jest, and song, and merry tale,
Had this blithe ending—“ Bring us t’other mug!' Now Dick the glazier feels his bosom burn, To do his friend Tom Tinker a good turn; And where the heart to friendship feels inclin’d, Occasion seldom loiters far behind. The kettle, gaily singing on the fire, Gives Dick a hint just to his heart's desire ; And, while to draw more ale the landlord goes, Dick in the ashes all the water throws ; Then puts the kettle on the fire again,
And at the tinker winks,
As 16 Trade success!” he drinks,
Nor doubts the wish'd success Tom will obtain.
Our landlord ne'er could such a toast withstand ;
So giving each kind customer a hand,
His friendship too display'd,
And drank-" Success to trade !''
But, oh! how pleasure vanish'd from his eye,
How long and rueful his round visage grew,
Soon as he saw the kettle's bottom fly,
Soder the only fluid he could view!
He raved, he caper'd, and he swore,
And damn'd the kettle's body o'er and o’er.
says Dick, “ fetch us, my friend, more ale; All trades you know must live; Let's drink—- May trade with none of us e'er fail !'
The job to Tom then give :
And, for the ale he drinks, my lad of metal,
Take my word for it, soon will mend your
The landlord yields; but hopes ’tis no offence
To curse the trade that thrives at his expense.
Tom undertakes the job; to work he goes,
And just concludes it with the evening's close.
Souls so congenial had friends Tom and Dick,
They might be fairly called brother and brother.
Thought Tom, “ To serve my friend I know a trick,
And one good turn always deserves another."
Out he now slily slips,
But not a word he said :
The plot was in his head,
And off he nimbly trips.
Swift to the neighboring church his way he takes;
Nor in the dark,
Misses his mark,
But ev'ry pane of glass he quickly breaks.
But as he goes,
His bosom glows,
To think how great will be his friend Dick's joy
At getting so much excellent employ.
Return'd, he beckoning draws his friend aside,
Importance in his face,
And, to Dick's ear his mouth applied,
Thus briefly states the case :
"Dick, I may give you joy; you're a made man ;
I've done your business most complete, my friend : I'm off—the devil catch me, if he can
Each window of the church you've got to mend ;
Ingratitude's worst curse on my head fall,
If for your sake. I have not broke them all.”
Tom, with surprise, sees Dick turn pale ;
Who deeply sighs—"Oh, la!'
Then drops his under jaw,
And all his powers of utterance fail ;
While horror in his ghastly face,
And bursting eye-balls, Tom can trace;
Whose sympathetic muscles, just and true,
Share, with his heart,
Dick's unknown smart, And two such phizzes ne'er met mortal view. At length friend Dick his speech regain’d, And soon the mystery explain’d“You have indeed my business done! And I, as well as you must run ; For, let me act the best I can, Tom, Tom, I am a ruined man ! Zounds, zounds! this piece of friendship costs me dear; 'I always mend church windows by the year!"
Down drops he then from off his horse,
And, all agog to enter,
Unceremonious takes his course,
Seeking his hasty way to force
E'en to the kitchen's centre.
But not a foot of room was there,
The guests were wedg'd together ;
They had no single thought to spare,
From landlord's fire and landlord's fare,
Nor reck'd they now the weather.
The trav’ller rueful looked about ;
At length, with lungs most able,
He bids Will Ostler carry out
A peck of oysters, fresh and stout,
To Dobbin in the stable.
“A peck of oysters ! oats, good heart !”'
Cries Will with peals of laughter ; “No! oysters, fellow ! quick depart ! Out runs the man-and at one start
The whole mob rushes after.
All mad to see this wond'rous steed,
(By serious aspect cheated)
They guess him of some monstrous breed,
Some strange sea-horse; while now, with greed
The traveller gets seated.
Back posts the ostler ; all, as fleet,
The troop of fools pursue him :
“Lord, sir !" says Will, “I never see't
Such a thing !—your horse won't eat
The oysters that I threw him."
"The deuce he won't?—then faith / must!
So place me here at table-
And bring my bread, both crumb and crust,
Pepper and vinegar; and I trust
That I'm both glad and able.”
OHN DAY he was the biggest man of all the coachman kind,
With back too broad to be conceived by any narrow mind.
The bar-maid of the 66 Crown” he loved, from whom he never ranged ;
For, though he changed his horses there, his love he never changed !
One day, as she was sitting down beside the porter pomp,
He came, and knelt—with all his fat—and made an offer, plump!
Said she, “ My taste will never learn to like so huge a man,
So I must beg you will come here--as little as you can!”
In vain he wooed—in vain he sued !-the maid was cold and proud,
And sent him off to 56 Coventry” while on the way to Stroud ;
He fretted all the way to Stroud, and thence all back to town:
The course of love was never smooth, so his went up and down.
At last her coldness made him pine to merely bones and skin,
But still he loved, like one resolved to love through thick and thin!
“O Mary! view my wasted back, and see my dwindled calf'!
Though I have never had a wife, I've lost my better half !”
Worn out, at last he made a vow to break his being's link,
For he was so reduced in size, at nothing he could shrink.
Now, some will talk in water's praise, and waste a deal of breath ;
But John, though he drank nothing else, he drank himself to death!
The cruel maid, that caused his love, found out the fatal close ;
For, looking in the butt, she saw—the butt-end of his woes!...
Some say his spirit haunts the “ Crown;''—but that is only talk ;
For, after riding all his life, his ghost objects to “ walk.”
XLI.—THE JESTER'S SERMON.
HE Jester shook his hood and bells, and leaped upon a chair ;
The pages laughed; the women screamed, and tossed their scented hair ; The falcon whistled ; stag-hounds bayed; the lap-dog barked without ; The scullion dropped the pitcher brown; the cook railed at the lout; The steward, counting out his gold, let pouch and money fall, And why!' Because the jester rose to say grace in the hall.
The page played with the heron's plume, the steward with his chain ;
The butler drummed upon the board, and laughed with might and main ;
The grooms beat on their metal cans, and roared till they were red,
But still the jester shut his eyes, and rolled his witty head,
And when they grew a little still, read half a yard of text,
And, waving hand, struck on the desk, and frowned like one perplexed.
“ Dear sinners all,” the fool began, “ man's life is but a jest,
A dream, a shadow, bubble, air, a vapor at the best.
In a thousand pounds of law, I find not a single ounce of love,
A blind man killed the parson's cow in shooting at the dove.
The fool that eats till he is sick must fast till he is well.
The wooer who can flatter most will bear away the belle.
“ Let no man halloo he is safe, till he is through the wood.
He who will not when he may must tarry when he should.
He who laughs at crooked men should need walk very straight.
Oh! he who once has won a name may lie abed till eight.
Make haste to purchase house and land: be very slow to wed.
True coral needs no painter's brush, nor need be daubed with red.
To travel well,-an ass's cars, ape's face, hogs mouth, and ostrich legs.
He does not care a pin for thieves, who limps about and begs.
Be always first man at a feast, and last man at a fray.
The short way round, in spite of all, is still the longest way.
Then loud they laughed; the fat cook's tears ran down into the pan ; The steward shook, that he was forced to drop the brimming can; And then again the women screamed, and every stag-hound bayed, And why? Because the motley fool so wise a sermon made.
XLII.--A CHINESE STORY.
C. P. CRANCH.
ONE are so wise as they who make pretense
To know what fate conceals from mortal sense.
This moral from a tale of Ho-hang-ho
Might have been drawn a thousand years ago,
When men were left to their unaided senses,
Long ere the day of spectacles and lenses.
Two young, short-sighted fellows, Chang and Ching,
Over their chopsticks idle chattering,
Fell to disputing which could see the best ;
At last they agreed to put it to the test,
Said Chang, “A marble tablet, so I hear,
Is placed upon tbe Bo-hee temple near,
With an inscription on it.
And read it (since you boast your optics so).
Standing together at a certain place
In front, where we the letters just may trace;
Then he who quickest reads the inscription there,
The palm for keenest eye henceforth shall bear.”
“Agreed,” said Ching, “but let us try it soon :
Suppose we say to-morrow afternoon.''
“Nay, not so soon,” said Chang : “I'm bound to go
To-morrow a day's ride from Ho-hang-ho,
And shan't be ready till the following day :
At ten A. M. on Thursday, let us say.”
So t'was arranged ; but Ching was wide awake :
Time by the forelock he resolved to take ;
And to the temple went at once and read
Upon the tablet : “To the illustrious dead,
The chief of mandarins, the great Go-Bang.'
Scarce had he gone when stealthily came Chang,
Who read the same ; but peering closer, he
Spied in a corner what Ching failed to see-
The words, “This tabled is erected here
By those to whom the great Goh-Bang was dear.”
So on the appointed day—both innocent
As babes, of course—these honest fellows went,
And took their distant station : and Ching said,
“I can read plainly, “To the illustrious dead,