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Not wise they sang, nor well,
Drowning the sexton's bell,

While all the church wondered.
Dire the precentor's glare,
Flashed his pitchfork in air,
Sounding fresh keys to bear

Out the Old Hundred.
Swiftly he turned his back,
Reached he his hat from rack,
Then from the screaming pack

Himself he sundered.

Tenors to right of him,
Trebles to left of him,
Discords behind him,

Bellowed and thundered.
Oh, the wild howls they wrought;
Right to the end they fought!
Some tune they sung, but not,

Not the Old Hundred.

THE PARTY CAUCUS.-HORACE B. DURANT.

Wrillen expressly for this Collection.
(Enter Politicians.)
Ha, ha! well met," said Twist; "as I'm alive,
The powers that be are here,—the mighty five
That rule the county !”

“Gentlemen,” said Bland, Soft stroking his plump face with dimpled hand, “ 'Tis no small honor thus to hold the fates Of o'er a million, and their candidates! We 'pull the wires;' we meet to lay them now And voters vote just as we tell them how'Tis better than an office!”

“Why, we fill The most responsible positions! Still In office-ha, ha, ha!--- none turn us out; And whom the people choose, we lead about,Mere creatures at our will! They do, in fact, Just what we please,” said Chuff; "each act That we contrive is given to their trust; And as we make them what they are, they must Obey, or else 'step down and out!””

“There, hold!"
Cried Tubbs; "all true ; but yet, you make a bold
Quotation, that I do not like in this
Connection. Poetry was never bliss
Unto my ear. 'Tis nonsence at the best,
And in this instance, silly!”

All the rest
Enjoyed a chorus laugh at Tubbs' expense:
He was fac simile of name, and hence,
Though ample in dimension as to skull,
Yet was his stare so comical and dull,
His puffing air showed such a lack of brain,
That scarce a soul that saw him could refrain
For life, from laughing.
(Enter Chairman Snobbs.)

Gentlemen,” said Snobbs
“Let's get to business. All this jesting robs
Of precious time. Let's see—'tis getting late-
'Tis almost seven, and I must go at eight,
To Mrs. Fangle's party; 'tis, you know,
Selectbut five or six of us, or so-
Who are the candidates announced beside
The Colonel, here?”

With that he took a stride
With self-important air across the room ;
He was a portly, pompous man, whose doom
Fixed all political. With some, this seems to be
Hereditary to a great degree.
“Who are the candidates announced ?” again
Asked Snobbs, “ be expeditious - very, men !
We cannot wait;" and stopping short, he turned
And waited for an answer. “We're concerned,"
Continued he,“ in this election more
Than any in the county, heretofore.”
Here, as bis usual custom was, he gave
His ample vest an extra hitch.

The grave

Assemblage sat quite mute. The first thing Chuff
Attempted, was to take a pinch of snuff
From out his ample box; and being quite
Diminutive, perhaps he had the right
To call attention to himself, by some
Eccentric act or other. Bland was dumb;
Which was unusual, very. First, his cheek
He stroked, and then his chin, but did not speak;

Which must have been unpleasant quite, to him;
For Bland loves much to talk. His sight is dim,
Poor man, at times, and then, 'tis said, that he
Requires a glass or two, to make him see!
At any rate, he sat there mute as death,
Intently watching Snobbs.

Twist drew his breath
With a peculiar hiss between his teeth;
He first looked up, and then he looked beneath;
Then wriggled all about, as if to find
Relief from something pressing on his mind,
Yet not a single word he spoke.

Just here,
We'll take a look at Tubbs. From ear to ear,
His mouth was open wide. He seemed to think,
And yet 'twas plainly nothing but a blink
That died out in a fixed and vacant stare.
His wits seemed crooked as his hair,
Of which he had a red, abundant stock,
Each hair of which stood out as if a shock
Electrical had struck it. He was first
To break the awkward silence.

“I've the worst
Of memories," said he, “and I'm afraid
The query that the Chairman just has made,
Is hard to answer.” Saying this, he swept
With rapid hand the bristling shock, that kept
At sword's points ever, as it seemed, around
His huge and puzzled poll.

Snobbs darkly frowned.
“This is consuming time,” said be; “suppose
We take Assembly up to-night; who knows
Enough to give us any light upon
That subject? Let us get this matter done-
That much to-night, at least.”

(Chuff makes trouble.) Just here, Chuff sneezed Which had a marvelous effect, and eased Himself and all the rest at once. That pinch Did thorough work! Twist took a sudden clinch Upon his seat, and sneezed. And still it worked Bland raised his chin some ten degrees, then jerked It quickly down, and with a rapid wave Of both his hands in swimmer's style, he gave Such loud report from both his nose and lungs That 'twas enough to loosen all their tongues!

Nor did the mischief end with this, if it
Might thus be termed. Snobbs took a coughing it
Now, he to such attacks not being used,
To cough, at first, with dignity refused;
And held his breath until he well-nigh burst!
'Twould come—'twere better had it come at first
For, as the pent-up tempest gathers strength,
So had that cough, when it burst forth at length;
It shook the house, and lesser noises drowned,
Just as the deafʼning thunder shakes the ground;
And then besides, with both hands on his knees,
With all the rest, he had the self-same sneeze!
A while the two ran riot as they pleased;
Hesneezed and coughed; and then he coughed and sneezed
And then at last, to make the matter worse,
He ended his performance with a curse
At Chuff, who at the scene unable more
To keep his chair, had slidden to the floor;
And in his mirth that could not be controlled,
He rolled and laughed; and then he laughed and rolled!

“ Confound you and that filthy box of yours!
I have a mind to pitch you out of doors !”
Said Snobbs, himself now laughing at a sight
He caught just then of Tubbs. He sat upright,
Or nearly so--a little forward bent,
Supported by his hands; and his intent
Was plain enough to sneeze. But nought availed;
Midway in air his hands were poised; he shut
His eyes; his mouth still wider opened; but
'Twas all in vain-he could not sneeze! At last,
He gave it up in sheer despair!

Thus passed
Ten minutes of their time beyond recall,
Ere this queer tableau ceased; then all
Went instantly to work. Chuff had assumed
A serious look, and all the rest resumed
Their usual composure. The last stroke
Of seven was dying out, when thus Twist spoke:

“I heartily concur in the desire
To know our candidates. It will require
The utmost vigilance to hold our power,
And to elect our men. The coming hour,
As has been said, will be momentous—Why?
Because there are three parties now that cry

For favor. Politics and temperance mix-
Or rather must not mix together. Tricks
That have been found efficient heretofore,
To reconcile such factions, are no more
Of any use. I have a hearty love
For temperance-always had, but yet above
All that ranks policy!”

“Those are my views
Exactly,” Bland replied ; “and we must use
The greatest caution. Prohibition cranks,”
Continued he,“ with their detested pranks,
Claim close attention. If they should advance,
Wbat would become of all true temperance?
Farewell all hope, if they should take our stools!
Au fails, if whisky fails! 'Tis liquor rules
The floating masses, sir, and makes us votes;
'Tis whisky rules the polls, and wets the throats
Of half our orators. Wbat should we do
Without the aid of wbisky?.
(A familiar scene.)

Here, Bland drew
A flask from out a pocket at bis side,
As if all further question to decide;
And giving all around a knowing wink,
He paused in his remarks to take a drink!
When he had swallowed full a gill or so,
He smacked his lips, and said, “ Ha! ha! we owe
A vast amount of our prosperity-
Well known to politicians such as we-
To lager beer and whisky!”

Saying that,
He was just putting back the flask, when at
That moment Chuff exclaimed: “Hold ! not so fast;
Just pass it round; there seems enough to last
For several drinks apiece.” As soon as said,
Bland handed Twist the flask, who threw his head
Back as he took a hearty pull; then passed
It round; still round again it went.

The last
To drink was Tubbs, who lay full length displayed
Upon a bench. He seized the flask, and made
An end of it, by drinking every drop,
Ere any one the selfish act could stop!
He then rolled off the bench, which made a stir.
And lay too drunk to rise !

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