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ANNE HATHAWAY.*_EDMUND Falconer. A traditionary ballad, sung to a day-dreamer by the murmurs of Shottery Brook No beard on thy chin, but a fire in thine eye, With lustiest manhood's in passion to vie, A stripling in form, with a tongue that can make The oldest folks listen, maids sweethearts forsake, Hie over the fields at the first blush of May, And give thy boy's heart unto Anne Hathaway. She's a stout yeoman's daughter and prizes herself, She'll marry an esquire or lie on the shelf; 'Tis just ten years gone, since in maidenhood's prime, To a farmer she said, “Nay, I'll bide my own time;" Now“Out and alas !” all the kind neighbors say, “She has married a stripling, has Anne Hathaway.” That day ten years past-it was then autumn time, And the Shottery orchards were in their full prime; Young Willie came over from Stratford to see If any windfalls in Anne's pocket might be: *For a kiss or an apple now come you to-day?” “Why, for both,” said the shrewd boy to Anne Hathaway. The farmer he sat on the steps by the door, "I've kine, sheep, and homestead, what can you want more?” The little boy answered, ne'er dreaming how true, “When I am her sweetheart, she cannot want you?Anne stooped down and kissed him, and said, in mere play,

Yes, Willie's the sweetheart for Anne Hathaway." The farmer langhed loud, “What a fine man he be, You may kiss the wee laddie and ne'er jealous me.” Willie blushing replied, “ You're a fool, it is plain, Or you'd not want 'No' said more than once and again." The farmer trudged off, and scarce bade them good-day, And the boy ate sour apples with Anne Hathaway.

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*William Shakspeare, was boru at Stratford-upon-Avon, April 23 1564. In his eighteenth year he married Anne Hathaway, the daughter of a substantial yeoman in the neighborhood, who was eight years older than himself, domestic establishment, or professional occupation, at this time, nothing determinate is recorded; but it appears that he was wild and irregular, from the fact of his connection with a party who made a practice of stealing the deer of Sir Thomas Lucy, of Charlecote, near Stratford. This imprudence brought upon him a prosecution, which he rendered more severe hy a lampoon upon that gentleman, in the form of a ballal, which he had affixed to his park gates. He also indulges in a vein of splenetic drollery upon the same magistrate, in the cha racter of Juutice Shallow, in the opening scene of The Merry Wirex of Windsor. He was finally driven to Loudon for shelter, which removal is supposed to have taken place when he was in his twenty-second year.

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Then long years went over, and “ Anne's hard to please,”
Said yeomen at stacking, said shepherds on leas-
Till she went o'er to Welford to see the May Queen,
And met there little Willie, just aged eighteen;
Who, slighting young lasses, was heard oft to say,
"That the Queen of all queens there was Anne Hathaway."
At sundown the shortest way home he could show,
O'er the ford and by field-paths (much longer we know);
But he talked all the way with such marvelous skill,
Anne doubted her eyes when they reached Baudon Hill.
And at Shottery Brook she'd no power to say “Nay,"
When he said, “You're my sweetheart, proud Anne Hatha-

way.
He came o'er the fields at the next even-song,
And Anne, half-ashamed, stole to meet him along,
But the full-breasted passion of Shakspeare's love-dream
Swept her will where it willed, like a waif on a stream;
" It was wooing and wedding at once," the folks say,
“For the green callant Willie with Anne Hathaway.”
Now, a matron demure, Anne a formal life led,
She got up betimes and went early to bed;
But Willie at sundown, when staid folks went home,
Hied up Welcomb Hill through the wild woods to roam;
Or would sit by the fire till the fresh blush of day,
Writing sonnets, sheer nonsense, tọ Anne Hathaway.
A store of old saws Anne could speak off by rote,
And oft wanted Willie their wisdom to note.
And he listened at times, but provokingly smiled,
Like a sage brought to book by an overwise child,
Or strangely perverting, with new riıymes, each say,
Took the wind from the sails of poor Anne Hathaway.
In the woods around Charlcote, the moon thought one night
'Twas Endymion again singing hymns to her light;
But the park-keepers knew it was Will, and one swore
That the buck some sly poacher had just tumbled o'er
llad been slain by his hand, and, for all W'ill could say,
He was stocked as a scapegrace-sad Anne Hathaway!
Then Willie, who chafed under sense of deep wrong,
From Apollo's own bow sent a shaft in a song,
Which pricked and so venomed the knight Lucy's breast,
That his frowns and his threats all the Shakspeares oppregt;

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So Will for their sakes fled from Stratford away,
And left a grass-widow in Anne Hathaway.
To her father's home then Anne as housekeeper went,
And sad months and years half-dependent there spent;
For the old folks in hard times were testy, cross-grained,
And oft of her children as burdens complained;
And in their best tempers were still heard to say
“That a miss was the marriage of Anne Hathaway."
By the wagon from London a small packet came
For
ye

Mistress Anne, Hymen Shakspeare did name;"
In it were kind words and of high hopes a store,
But good moneys too, and a promise of more;
Which was kept in due season, and made the folks say,
That some wives were worse of than Anne Hathaway.
Next came down rich dresses that made poor Anne stare,
She was fearful to handle and much more to wear;
When to church in the plainest she one Sunday went,
All eyes in astonishment on her were bent;
But Anne tossed her head, for she heard the folks say,
That a far-seeing wench had been Anne Hathaway.
The newsmongers, now that the Scots Queen was dead,
And the Spanish Armada thrashed, captured, or fled,
And laid up were Frobisher, Hawkins, and Drake,
Of Shakspeare's new fortunes much marvel did make;
And when the truth failed them would whisper and say
That the Queen was thought jealous of Anne Hathaway.
With faith in broad acres, full barns, flocks and herds,
Anne doubted much profit from rhymes and fine words;
She saw no work done to insure wealth of gold,
In the distance its growth but a dream-life could hold,
From which waking up, her boy-husband, one day,
Might come home broken-hearted to Anne Hathaway.
One evening in Autumn deep sadness came o'er,
As her pitcher she filled in the well near the door,
For an overripe apple she found by the brim,
And she thought wbat a gift it had once been for him;
A drop specked its bloom, and it came spite of “ Nay,"
From thy heart, not the cold well, proud Anne Hathaway.
She set down the pitcher and leaned o'er the gate,
To tell the young truants their supper did wait;

Susannah was spelling for Judith a book,
And Hamnet was paddling about in the brook;
And she saw near the bridge, just a stone's throw away,
One who seemed a great lord unto Anne Hathaway.
His doublet and trunks were of velvet, that shone
Like the mellow-green moss on an old coping-stone,
A plume of white feathers his felt hat did grace,
And his collar and ruffles were broad Flanders lace;
With his buff-boots and spurs he looked gallant and gay,
Yet were tears in his eyes then, cold Anne Hathaway.
Susannah stopped reading, and bade Judith look,
For Hamnet stood fast in the mud of the brook;
With his eyes wonder-fixed, and his mouth open wide.
Then the stranger advanced, and when close by Anne's side,
Though his bearded lip quivered, did smilingly say,
“Will you give me an apple, dear Anne Hathaway?”
Anne started, and trembled, and looked in his face,
Oh! could it be Willie's with majesty's grace?
Though it beamed youthful still-there the boy was no more,
For the full front of power and command it now wore;
And she shrank back afraid when she heard Shakspeare say
* Don't you know your own husband, dear Anne Hathaway ?”
“ 'Tis my father!” cried Susan, and sprung to his breast,-
From that moment ever beloved there the best, -
But the others be called, and with hand and lip graced,
And tenderly their coy mother embraced :
“When I asked for an apple you never said ‘Nay,'
But a kiss was a great gift from Anne Hathaway.”
He went o'er to Stratford the very next morn,
And bought the great house where the Clopton was born,
And rich lands round Welcomb he purchased right out,
And a propertied gontleman was, past all doubt;
And though the great title his fame flouts to-day,
Still, she married an Esquire, did Anne Hathaway!

MR. BOWSER TAKES PRECAUTIONS. Mr. Bowser doesn't intend to let sickness or death get ahead of us as a family if any effort of his can prevent, und he is always doing the right thing in the nick of time. One day he came home an hour ahead of time, his countenance wearing a very important look, and the first thing he did was to bolt upstairs to our bedroom and lower the window, although I had just closed it after airing the room for two hours. He then came clattering down to ask me for a pan.

" What on earth do you want of a pan?” I asked. “ To save all our lives,” he answered. “ How?

“Your bedroom is full of poisonous gases, which must be absorbed by an open vessel of water."

“Nonsense!”

“I expected it. That's the weapon of the ignorant ! Mrs. Bowser, if you want to die by poisonous gases poi. soning the blood I have nothing to say, but I shall save the life of our child, if possible. I have felt a strange lassitude for several days, and a sanitary plumber tells me that we have poisoned air in the room.

“ Your lassitude couldn't have come from being out to club and lodge four successive nights until twelve o'clock, could it?"

He seized the pan and hurried upstairs, and when he had filled it at the lavatory he set it in the middle of the floor and came down with a relieved look on his face, to say: "See if you don't feel better tomorrow than you have for a month. It's a wonder we are not all dead."

“ Did the ancients know about these poisonous gases ?" I asked.

“ Not a thing. They never gave them a thought.” “ And yet the average

of health was seventeen per cent. above that of to-day, and the average of mortality that much lower! How do you account for it?”

"Oh, well, if you want to die, go ahead. I'll even buy a rope and help you to hang yourself. I expected this of course, but ridicule never moves me, Mrs. Bowser, never!”

Two hours later he went upstairs in his slippers to look for a paper in another coat, and, of course, he set

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