Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

Moreover, he had a Golden Ass,
Sometimes at stall, and sometimes at grass,

That was worth his own weight in money
And a golden hive, on a Golden Bank,
Where golden bees, by alchemical prank,

Gather'd gold instead of honey.

Gold ! and gold ! and gold without end !
He had gold to lay by, and gold to spend,
Gold to give, and gold to lend,

And reversions of gold in futuro.
In wealth the family revell’d and roll'd,
Himself and wife and sons so bold ;-
And his daughters sang to their harps of gold

O bella eta del' oro !"

Such was the tale of the Kilmansegg Kin,
In golden text on a vellum skin,
Though certain people would wink and grin,

And declare the whole story a parable-
That the Ancestor rich was one Jacob Ghrimes,
Who held a long lease, in prosperous times,

Of acres, pasture and arable.

That as money makes money, his golden bees Were the Five per Cents., or which you please

When his cash was more than plentyThat the golden cups were racing affairs ; And his daughters, who sang Italian airs,

Had their golden harps of Clementi.

That the Golden Ass, or Golden Bull,
Was English John, with his pockets full,

Then at war by land and water :
While beef, and mutton, and other meat,
Were almost as dear as money to eat,
And Farmers reaped Golden Harvests of wheat

At the Lord knows what per quarter!

HER BIRTH.
What different dooms our birthdays bring
For instance, one little manikin thing

Survives to wear many a wrinkle ;
While Death forbids another to wake,
And a son that it took nine moons to make

Expires without even a twinkle!

Into this world we come like ships,
Launch'd from the docks, and stocks, ani slips,

For fortune fair or fatal ;
And one little craft is cast away
In its very first trip in Babbicome Bay,

While another rides safe at Port Natal.

What different lots our stars accord !
This babe to be hail'd and woo'd as a Lord !

And that to be shunn'd like a leper !
One, to the world's wine, honey, and corn,
Another, like Colchester native, born

To its vinegar, only, and pepper.

One is litter'd under a roof
Neither wind nor water proof-

That's the prose of Love in a Cottage-
A puny, naked, shivering wretch,

The whole of whose birthright would not fetch. Though Rohins himself drew up the sketch

The bid of “a mess of pottage."

Born of Fortunatus's kin,
Another comes tenderly ushered in

To a prospect all bright and burnish'd :
No tenant he for life's back slums-
He comes to the world, as a gentleman comes

To a lodging ready furnish'd.

And the other sex—the tender-the fair-
What wide reverses of fate are there !
Whilst Margaret, charm'd by the Bulbul rare,

In a garden of Gul reposes
Poor Peggy hawks nosegays from street to street
Till—think of that, who find life so sweet! -

She hates the smell of roses !

Not so with the infant Kilmansegg !
She was not born to steal or beg,

Or gather cresses in ditches ;
To plait the straw, or bind the shoe,
Or sit all day to hem and sew,
As females must—and not a few-

To fill their insides with stitches!

She was not doom'd, for bread to eat,
To be put to her hands as well as her feet

To carry home linen from mangles-
Or heavy-hearted, and weary-limb’d,
To dance on a rope in a jacket trimm'd

With as many blows as spangles.

She was one of those who by Fortune's boun Are born, as they say, with a silver spoon

In her mouth, not a wooden ladle : To speak according to poet's wont, Plutus as sponsor stood at her font,

And Midas rock'd the cradle.

At her first debut she found her head
On a pillow of down, in a downy bed,

With a damask canopy over.
For although, by the vulgar popular saw.
Ad mothers are said to be “in the straw."

Some children are born in clover.

!

Her very first draught of vital air,
It was not the common chameleon fare
Of plebeian lungs and noses, —

No-her earliest sniff

Of this world was a whiff
Of the genuine Otto of Roses !

[ocr errors]

When she saw the light, it was no mere ray
Of that light so common-so everyday-

That the sun each morning launches-
But six wax tapers dazzled her eyes,
From a thing—a gooseberry bush for size-

With a golden stem and branches,

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

She was born exactly at half-past two,
As witness'd a time-piece in or-molu
That stood on a marble table-
Showing at once the time of day,
And a team of Gildings running away

As fast as they were able,
With a golden God, with a golden Star,
And a golden Spear, in a golden Car,

According to Grecian table.

T.ike other babes, at her birth she cried ;
Which made a sensation far and wide-

Ay, for twenty miles around her:
For though to the ear 'twas nothing more
Than an infant's squall, it was really the roar
Of a Fifty-thousand Pounder!

It shook the next heir

In his library chair,
And made him cry, “Confound her!"

Of signs and omens there was no dearth,
Any more than at Owen Glendower's birth,

Or the advent of other great people :

Two bullocks dropp'd dead,
As if knock'd on the head,
And barrels of stout

And ale ran about,
And the village-bells such a peal rang cus

That they crack'd the village-steeple.

In no time at all, like mushroom spawn,
Tables sprang up all over the lawn;
Not furnish'd scantly or shabbily,

But on scale as vast
As that huge repast,
With its loads and cargoes

Of drink and botargoes,
At the birth of the Babe in Rabelais.

Hundreds of men were turn'd into beasts,
Like the guests at Circe's horrible feasts,

By the magic of ale and cider :
And each country lass, and each country lad.
Began to caper and dance like mad,
And ev'n some old ones appear'd to have had

A bite from the Naples Spider.

Then as night came on,

It had scared King Jcan
Who considered such signs not risible,

To have seen the marooni,
And the whirling moons,
And the serpents of flame,

And wheels of the same,
That according to some were “whizzable.

Oh, happy Hope of the Kilmanseggs!
Thrice happy in head, and body, and legs,

« AnteriorContinuar »