Poems of Rural Life in the Dorset Dialect, by William Barnes

Second Collection.

Blackmwore Maidens.

The primrwose in the sheäde do blow,

The cowslip in the zun,

The thyme upon the down do grow,

The clote where streams do run;

An’ where do pretty maïdens grow

An’ blow, but where the tow’r

Do rise among the bricken tuns,

In Blackmwore by the Stour.

If you could zee their comely gaït,

An’ prettÿ feäces’ smiles,

A-trippèn on so light o’ waïght,

An’ steppèn off the stiles;

A-gwaïn to church, as bells do swing

An’ ring ’ithin the tow’r,

You’d own the pretty maïdens’ pleäce

Is Blackmwore by the Stour.

If you vrom Wimborne took your road,

To Stower or Paladore,

An’ all the farmers’ housen show’d

Their daughters at the door;

You’d cry to bachelors at hwome —

“Here, come: ’ithin an hour

You’ll vind ten maïdens to your mind,

In Blackmwore by the Stour.”

An’ if you look’d ’ithin their door,

To zee em in their pleäce,

A-doèn housework up avore

Their smilèn mother’s feäce;

You’d cry —“Why, if a man would wive

An’ thrive, ’ithout a dow’r,

Then let en look en out a wife

In Blackmwore by the Stour.”

As I upon my road did pass

A school-house back in Maÿ,

There out upon the beäten grass

Wer maïdens at their plaÿ;

An’ as the pretty souls did tweil

An’ smile, I cried, “The flow’r

O’ beauty, then, is still in bud

In Blackmwore by the Stour.”

My Orcha’d in Linden Lea.

’Ithin the woodlands, flow’ry gleäded,

By the woak tree’s mossy moot,

The sheenèn grass-bleädes, timber-sheäded,

Now do quiver under voot;

An’ birds do whissle over head,

An’ water’s bubblèn in its bed,

An’ there vor me the apple tree

Do leän down low in Linden Lea.

When leaves that leätely wer a-springèn

Now do feäde ’ithin the copse,

An’ païnted birds do hush their zingèn

Up upon the timber’s tops;

An’ brown-leav’d fruit’s a-turnèn red,

In cloudless zunsheen, over head,

Wi’ fruit vor me, the apple tree

Do leän down low in Linden Lea.

Let other vo’k meäke money vaster

In the aïr o’ dark-room’d towns,

I don’t dread a peevish meäster;

Though noo man do heed my frowns,

I be free to goo abrode,

Or teäke ageän my hwomeward road

To where, vor me, the apple tree

Do leän down low in Linden Lea.

Bishop’s Caundle.

At peace day, who but we should goo

To Caundle vor an’ hour or two:

As gaÿ a day as ever broke

Above the heads o’ Caundle vo’k,

Vor peace, a-come vor all, did come

To them wi’ two new friends at hwome.

Zoo while we kept, wi’ nimble peäce,

The wold dun tow’r avore our feäce,

The aïr, at last, begun to come

Wi’ drubbèns ov a beäten drum;

An’ then we heärd the horns’ loud droats

Plaÿ off a tuen’s upper notes;

An’ then ageän a-risèn cheärm

Vrom tongues o’ people in a zwarm:

An’ zoo, at last, we stood among

The merry feäces o’ the drong.

An’ there, wi’ garlands all a-tied

In wreaths an’ bows on every zide,

An’ color’d flags, a fluttrèn high

An’ bright avore the sheenèn sky,

The very guide-post wer a-drest

Wi’ posies on his eärms an’ breast.

At last, the vo’k zwarm’d in by scores

An’ hundreds droo the high barn-doors,

To dine on English feäre, in ranks,

A-zot on chairs, or stools, or planks,

By bwoards a-reachèn, row an’ row,

Wi’ cloths so white as driven snow.

An’ while they took, wi’ merry cheer,

Their pleäces at the meat an’ beer,

The band did blow an’ beät aloud

Their merry tuèns to the crowd;

An’ slowly-zwingèn flags did spread

Their hangèn colors over head.

An’ then the vo’k, wi’ jaÿ an’ pride,

Stood up in stillness, zide by zide,

Wi’ downcast heads, the while their friend

Rose up avore the teäble’s end,

An’ zaid a timely greäce, an’ blest

The welcome meat to every guest.

An’ then arose a mingled naïse

O’ knives an’ pleätes, an’ cups an’ traÿs,

An’ tongues wi’ merry tongues a-drown’d

Below a deaf’nèn storm o’ sound.

An’ zoo, at last, their worthy host

Stood up to gi’e em all a twoast,

That they did drink, wi’ shouts o’ glee,

An’ whirlèn eärms to dree times dree.

An’ when the bwoards at last wer beäre

Ov all the cloths an’ goodly feäre,

An’ froth noo longer rose to zwim

Within the beer-mugs sheenèn rim,

The vo’k, a-streamèn drough the door,

Went out to geämes they had in store

An’ on the blue-reäv’d waggon’s bed,

Above his vower wheels o’ red,

Musicians zot in rows, an’ plaÿ’d

Their tuèns up to chap an’ maïd,

That beät, wi’ plaÿsome tooes an’ heels,

The level ground in nimble reels.

An’ zome ageän, a-zet in line,

An’ startèn at a given sign,

Wi’ outreach’d breast, a-breathèn quick

Droo op’nèn lips, did nearly kick

Their polls, a-runnèn sich a peäce,

Wi’ streamèn heäir, to win the reäce.

An’ in the house, an’ on the green,

An’ in the shrubb’ry’s leafy screen,

On ev’ry zide we met sich lots

O’ smilèn friends in happy knots,

That I do think, that drough the feäst

In Caundle, vor a day at leäst,

You woudden vind a scowlèn feäce

Or dumpy heart in all the pleäce.

Hay Meaken — Nunchen Time.

Anne an’ John a-ta’kèn o’t.

A. Back here, but now, the jobber John

Come by, an’ cried, “Well done, zing on,

I thought as I come down the hill,

An’ heärd your zongs a-ringèn sh’ill,

Who woudden like to come, an’ fling

A peäir o’ prongs where you did zing?”

J. Aye, aye, he woudden vind it plaÿ,

To work all day a-meäkèn haÿ,

Or pitchèn o’t, to eärms a-spread

By lwoaders, yards above his head,

’T’ud meäke en wipe his drippèn brow.

A. Or else a-reäken after plow.

J. Or workèn, wi’ his nimble pick,

A-stiffled wi’ the haÿ, at rick.

A. Our Company would suit en best,

When we do teäke our bit o’ rest,

At nunch, a-gather’d here below

The sheäde theäse wide-bough’d woak do drow,

Where hissèn froth mid rise, an’ float

In horns o’ eäle, to wet his droat.

J. Aye, if his zwellèn han’ could drag

A meat-slice vrom his dinner bag.

’T’ud meäke the busy little chap

Look rather glum, to zee his lap

Wi’ all his meal ov woone dry croust,

An’ vinny cheese so dry as doust.

A. Well, I don’t grumble at my food,

’Tis wholesome, John, an’ zoo ’tis good.

J. Whose reäke is that a-lyèn there?

Do look a bit the woo’se vor wear.

A. Oh! I mus’ get the man to meäke

A tooth or two vor thik wold reäke,

’Tis leäbour lost to strik a stroke

Wi’ him, wi’ half his teeth a-broke.

J. I should ha’ thought your han’ too fine

To break your reäke, if I broke mine.

A. The ramsclaws thin’d his wooden gum

O’ two teeth here, an’ here were zome

That broke when I did reäke a patch

O’ groun’ wi’ Jimmy, vor a match:

An’ here’s a gap ov woone or two

A-broke by Simon’s clumsy shoe,

An’ when I gi’ed his poll a poke,

Vor better luck, another broke.

In what a veag have you a-swung

Your pick, though, John? His stem’s a-sprung.

J. When I an’ Simon had a het

O’ pookèn, yonder, vor a bet,

The prongs o’n gi’ed a tump a poke,

An’ then I vound the stem a-broke,

Bût they do meäke the stems o’ picks

O’ stuff so brittle as a kicks.

A. There’s poor wold Jeäne, wi’ wrinkled skin,

A-tellèn, wi’ her peakèd chin,

Zome teäle ov her young days, poor soul.

Do meäke the young-woones smile. ’Tis droll.

What is it? Stop, an’ let’s goo near.

I do like theäse wold teäles. Let’s hear.

A Father Out, an’ Mother Hwome.

The snow-white clouds did float on high

In shoals avore the sheenèn sky,

An’ runnèn weäves in pon’ did cheäse

Each other on the water’s feäce,

As hufflèn win’ did blow between

The new-leav’d boughs o’ sheenèn green.

An’ there, the while I walked along

The path, drough leäze, above the drong,

A little maïd, wi’ bloomèn feäce,

Went on up hill wi’ nimble peäce,

A-leänèn to the right-han’ zide,

To car a basket that did ride,

A-hangèn down, wi’ all his heft,

Upon her elbow at her left.

An’ yet she hardly seem’d to bruise

The grass-bleädes wi’ her tiny shoes,

That pass’d each other, left an’ right.

In steps a’most too quick vor zight.

But she’d a-left her mother’s door

A-bearèn vrom her little store

Her father’s welcome bit o’ food,

Where he wer out at work in wood;

An’ she wer bless’d wi’ mwore than zwome —

A father out, an’ mother hwome.

An’ there, a-vell’d ’ithin the copse,

Below the timber’s new-leav’d tops,

Wer ashèn poles, a-castèn straïght,

On primrwose beds, their langthy waïght;

Below the yollow light, a-shed

Drough boughs upon the vi’let’s head,

By climèn ivy, that did reach,

A sheenèn roun’ the dead-leav’d beech.

An’ there her father zot, an’ meäde

His hwomely meal bezide a gleäde;

While she, a-croopèn down to ground,

Did pull the flowers, where she vound

The droopèn vi’let out in blooth,

Or yollow primrwose in the lewth,

That she mid car em proudly back,

An’ zet em on her mother’s tack;

Vor she wer bless’d wi’ mwore than zwome —

A father out, an’ mother hwome.

A father out, an’ mother hwome,

Be blessèns soon a-lost by zome;

A-lost by me, an’ zoo I pray’d

They mid be speär’d the little maïd.


Anne an’ Joey a-ta’ken.

A. A plague! theäse cow wont stand a bit,

Noo sooner do she zee me zit

Ageän her, than she’s in a trot,

A-runnèn to zome other spot.

J. Why ’tis the dog do sceäre the cow,

He worried her a-vield benow.

A. Goo in, Ah! Liplap, where’s your taïl!

J. He’s off, then up athirt the raïl.

Your cow there, Anne’s a-come to hand

A goodish milcher. A. If she’d stand,

But then she’ll steäre an’ start wi’ fright

To zee a dumbledore in flight.

Last week she het the païl a flought,

An’ flung my meal o’ milk half out.

J. Ha! Ha! But Anny, here, what lout

Broke half your small païl’s bottom out?

A. What lout indeed! What, do ye own

The neäme? What dropp’d en on a stwone?

J. Hee! Hee! Well now he’s out o’ trim

Wi’ only half a bottom to en;

Could you still vill en’ to the brim

An’ yit not let the milk run drough en?

A. Aye, as for nonsense, Joe, your head

Do hold it all so tight’s a blather,

But if ’tis any good, do shed

It all so leäky as a lather.

Could you vill païls ’ithout a bottom,

Yourself that be so deeply skill’d?

J. Well, ees, I could, if I’d a-got em

Inside o’ bigger woones a-vill’d.

A. La! that is zome’hat vor to hatch!

Here answer me theäse little catch.

Down under water an’ o’ top o’t

I went, an’ didden touch a drop o’t,

J. Not when at mowèn time I took

An’ pull’d ye out o’ Longmeäd brook,

Where you’d a-slidder’d down the edge

An’ zunk knee-deep bezide the zedge,

A-tryèn to reäke out a clote.

A. Aye I do hear your chucklèn droat

When I athirt the brudge did bring

Zome water on my head vrom spring.

Then under water an’ o’ top o’t,

Wer I an’ didden touch a drop o’t.

J. O Lauk! What thik wold riddle still,

Why that’s as wold as Duncliffe Hill;

“A two-lagg’d thing do run avore

An’ run behind a man,

An’ never run upon his lags

Though on his lags do stan’.”

What’s that?

I don’t think you do know.

There idden sich a thing to show.

Not know? Why yonder by the stall

’S a wheel-barrow bezide the wall,

Don’t he stand on his lags so trim,

An’ run on nothèn but his wheels wold rim.

A. There’s horn vor Goodman’s eye-zight seäke;

There’s horn vor Goodman’s mouth to teäke;

There’s horn vor Goodman’s ears, as well

As horn vor Goodman’s nose to smell —

What horns be they, then? Do your hat

Hold wit enough to tell us that?

J. Oh! horns! but no, I’ll tell ye what,

My cow is hornless, an’ she’s knot.

A. Horn vor the mouth’s a hornèn cup.

J. An’ eäle’s good stuff to vill en up.

A. An’ horn vor eyes is horn vor light,

Vrom Goodman’s lantern after night;

Horn vor the ears is woone to sound

Vor hunters out wi’ ho’se an’ hound;

But horn that vo’k do buy to smell o’

Is hart’s-horn. J. Is it? What d’ye tell o’

How proud we be, vor ben’t we smart?

Aye, horn is horn, an’ hart is hart.

Well here then, Anne, while we be at it,

’S a ball vor you if you can bat it.

On dree-lags, two-lags, by the zide

O’ vower-lags, woonce did zit wi’ pride,

When vower-lags, that velt a prick,

Vrom zix-lags, het two lags a kick.

An’ two an’ dree-lags vell, all vive,

Slap down, zome dead an’ zome alive.

A. Teeh! heeh! what have ye now then, Joe,

At last, to meäke a riddle o’?

J. Your dree-lagg’d stool woone night did bear

Up you a milkèn wi’ a peäir;

An’ there a zix-lagg’d stout did prick

Your vow’r-lagg’d cow, an meäke her kick,

A-hettèn, wi’ a pretty pat,

Your stool an’ you so flat’s a mat.

You scrambled up a little dirty,

But I do hope it didden hurt ye.

A. You hope, indeed! a likely ceäse,

Wi’ thik broad grin athirt your feäce

You saucy good-vor-nothèn chap,

I’ll gi’e your grinnèn feäce a slap,

Your drawlèn tongue can only run

To turn a body into fun.

J. Oh! I woont do ’t ageän. Oh dear!

Till next time, Anny. Oh my ear!

Oh! Anne, why you’ve a-het my hat

’Ithin the milk, now look at that.

A. Do sar ye right, then, I don’t ceäre.

I’ll thump your noddle — there — there — there.

Day’s Work A-Done.

And oh! the jaÿ our rest did yield,

At evenèn by the mossy wall,

When we’d a-work’d all day a-vield,

While zummer zuns did rise an’ vall;

As there a-lettèn

Goo all frettèn,

An’ vorgettèn all our tweils,

We zot among our childern’s smiles.

An’ under skies that glitter’d white,

The while our smoke, arisèn blue,

Did melt in aiër, out o’ zight,

Above the trees that kept us lew;

Wer birds a-zingèn,

Tongues a-ringèn,

Childern springèn, vull o’ jaÿ,

A-finishèn the day in plaÿ.

An’ back behind, a-stannèn tall,

The cliff did sheen to western light;

An’ while avore the water-vall,

A-rottlèn loud, an’ foamèn white.

The leaves did quiver,

Gnots did whiver,

By the river, where the pool,

In evenèn aïr did glissen cool.

An’ childern there, a-runnèn wide,

Did plaÿ their geämes along the grove,

Vor though to us ’twer jaÿ to bide

At rest, to them ’twer jaÿ to move.

The while my smilèn

Jeäne, beguilèn,

All my tweilèn, wi’ her ceäre,

Did call me to my evenèn feäre.

Light Or Sheäde.

A Maÿtide’s evenèn wer a-dyèn,

Under moonsheen, into night,

Wi’ a streamèn wind a-sighèn

By the thorns a-bloomèn white.

Where in sheäde, a-zinkèn deeply,

Wer a nook, all dark but lew,

By a bank, arisèn steeply,

Not to let the win’ come drough.

Should my love goo out, a-showèn

All her smiles, in open light;

Or, in lewth, wi’ wind a-blowèn,

Staÿ in darkness, dim to zight?

Staÿ in sheäde o’ bank or wallèn,

In the warmth, if not in light;

Words alwone vrom her a-vallèn,

Would be jaÿ vor all the night.

The Waggon A-Stooded.

Dree o’m a-ta’kèn o’t.

(1) Well, here we be, then, wi’ the vu’st poor lwoad

O’ vuzz we brought, a-stoodèd in the road.

(2) The road, George, no. There’s na’r a road. That’s wrong.

If we’d a road, we mid ha’ got along.

(1) Noo road! Ees ’tis, the road that we do goo.

(2) Do goo, George, no. The pleäce we can’t get drough.

(1) Well, there, the vu’st lwoad we’ve a-haul’d to day

Is here a-stoodèd in theäse bed o’ clay.

Here’s rotten groun’! an’ how the wheels do cut!

The little woone’s a-zunk up to the nut.

(3) An’ yeet this rotten groun’ don’t reach a lug.

(1) Well, come, then, gi’e the plow another tug.

(2) They meäres wull never pull the waggon out,

A-lwoaded, an’ a-stoodèd in thik rout.

(3) We’ll try. Come, Smiler, come! C’up, Whitevoot, gee!

(2) White-voot wi’ lags all over mud! Hee! Hee!

(3) ’Twoon’t wag. We shall but snap our gear,

An’ overstraïn the meäres. ’Twoon’t wag, ’tis clear.

(1) That’s your work, William. No, in coo’se, ’twoon’t wag.

Why did ye drēve en into theäse here quag?

The vore-wheels be a-zunk above the nuts.

(3) What then? I coulden leäve the beäten track,

To turn the waggon over on the back

Ov woone o’ theäsem wheel-high emmet-butts.

If you be sich a drēver, an’ do know’t,

You drēve the plow, then; but you’ll overdrow ’t.

(1) I drēve the plow, indeed! Oh! ees, what, now

The wheels woont wag, then, I mid drēve the plow!

We’d better dig away the groun’ below

The wheels. (2) There’s na’r a speäde to dig wi’.

(1) An’ teäke an’ cut a lock o’ frith, an’ drow

Upon the clay. (2) Nor hook to cut a twig wi’.

(1) Oh! here’s a bwoy a-comèn. Here, my lad,

Dost know vor a’r a speäde, that can be had?

(B) At father’s. (1) Well, where’s that? (Bwoy) At Sam’el Riddick’s.

(1) Well run, an’ ax vor woone. Fling up your heels,

An’ mind: a speäde to dig out theäsem wheels,

An’ hook to cut a little lock o’ widdicks.

(3) Why, we shall want zix ho’ses, or a dozen,

To pull the waggon out, wi’ all theäse vuzzen.

(1) Well, we mus’ lighten en; come, Jeämes, then, hop

Upon the lwoad, an’ jus’ fling off the top.

(2) If I can clim’ en; but ’tis my consaït,

That I shall overzet en wi’ my waïght.

(1) You overzet en! No, Jeämes, he won’t vall,

The lwoad’s a-built so firm as any wall.

(2) Here! lend a hand or shoulder vor my knee

Or voot. I’ll scramble to the top an’ zee

What I can do. Well, here I be, among

The fakkets, vor a bit, but not vor long.

Heigh, George! Ha! ha! Why this wull never stand.

Your firm ’s a wall, is all so loose as zand;

’Tis all a-come to pieces. Oh! Teäke ceäre!

Ho! I’m a-vallèn, vuzz an’ all! Haë! There!

(1) Lo’k there, thik fellor is a-vell lik’ lead,

An’ half the fuzzen wi ’n, heels over head!

There’s all the vuzz a-lyèn lik’ a staddle,

An’ he a-deäb’d wi’ mud. Oh! Here’s a caddle!

(3) An’ zoo you soon got down zome vuzzen, Jimmy.

(2) Ees, I do know ’tis down. I brought it wi’ me.

(3) Your lwoad, George, wer a rather slick-built thing,

But there, ’twer prickly vor the hands! Did sting?

(1) Oh! ees, d’ye teäke me vor a nincompoop,

No, no. The lwoad wer up so firm’s a rock,

But two o’ theäsem emmet-butts would knock

The tightest barrel nearly out o’ hoop.

(3) Oh! now then, here ’s the bwoy a-bringèn back

The speäde. Well done, my man. That idder slack.

(2) Well done, my lad, sha’t have a ho’se to ride

When thou’st a meäre. (Bwoy) Next never’s-tide.

(3) Now let’s dig out a spit or two

O’ clay, a-vore the little wheels;

Oh! so’s, I can’t pull up my heels,

I be a-stogg’d up over shoe.

(1) Come, William, dig away! Why you do spuddle

A’most so weak’s a child. How you do muddle!

Gi’e me the speäde a-bit. A pig would rout

It out a’most so nimbly wi’ his snout.

(3) Oh! so’s, d’ye hear it, then. How we can thunder!

How big we be, then George! what next I wonder?

(1) Now, William, gi’e the waggon woone mwore twitch,

The wheels be free, an’ ’tis a lighter nitch.

(3) Come, Smiler, gee! C’up, White-voot. (1) That wull do.

(2) Do wag. (1) Do goo at last. (3) Well done. ’Tis drough.

(1) Now, William, till you have mwore ho’ses’ lags,

Don’t drēve the waggon into theäsem quags.

(3) You build your lwoads up tight enough to ride.

(1) I can’t do less, d’ye know, wi’ you vor guide.

Gwaïn Down the Steps Vor Water.

While zuns do roll vrom east to west

To bring us work, or leäve us rest,

There down below the steep hill-zide,

Drough time an’ tide, the spring do flow;

An’ mothers there, vor years a-gone,

Lik’ daughters now a-comèn on,

To bloom when they be weak an’ wan,

Went down the steps vor water.

An’ what do yonder ringers tell

A-ringèn changes, bell by bell;

Or what’s a-show’d by yonder zight

O’ vo’k in white, upon the road,

But that by John o’ Woodleys zide,

There’s now a-blushèn vor his bride,

A pretty maïd that vu’st he spied,

Gwaïn down the steps vor water.

Though she, ’tis true, is feäir an’ kind,

There still be mwore a-left behind;

So cleän ’s the light the zun do gi’e,

So sprack ’s a bee when zummer’s bright;

An’ if I’ve luck, I woont be slow

To teäke off woone that I do know,

A-trippèn gaïly to an’ fro,

Upon the steps vor water.

Her father idden poor — but vew

In parish be so well to do;

Vor his own cows do swing their taïls

Behind his païls, below his boughs:

An’ then ageän to win my love,

Why, she’s as hwomely as a dove,

An’ don’t hold up herzelf above

Gwaïn down the steps vor water.

Gwaïn down the steps vor water! No!

How handsome it do meäke her grow.

If she’d be straïght, or walk abrode,

To tread her road wi’ comely gaït,

She coulden do a better thing

To zet herzelf upright, than bring

Her pitcher on her head, vrom spring

Upon the steps, wi’ water.

No! don’t ye neäme in woone seäme breath

Wi’ bachelors, the husband’s he’th;

The happy pleäce, where vingers thin

Do pull woone’s chin, or pat woone’s feäce.

But still the bleäme is their’s, to slight

Their happiness, wi’ such a zight

O’ maïdens, mornèn, noon, an’ night,

A-gwaïn down steps vor water.

Ellen Brine Ov Allenburn.

Noo soul did hear her lips complaïn,

An’ she’s a-gone vrom all her païn,

An’ others’ loss to her is gaïn

For she do live in heaven’s love;

Vull many a longsome day an’ week

She bore her aïlèn, still, an’ meek;

A-workèn while her strangth held on,

An’ guidèn housework, when ’twer gone.

Vor Ellen Brine ov Allenburn,

Oh! there be souls to murn.

The last time I’d a-cast my zight

Upon her feäce, a-feäded white,

Wer in a zummer’s mornèn light

In hall avore the smwold’rèn vier,

The while the childern beät the vloor,

In plaÿ, wi’ tiny shoes they wore,

An’ call’d their mother’s eyes to view

The feät’s their little limbs could do.

Oh! Ellen Brine ov Allenburn,

They childern now mus’ murn.

Then woone, a-stoppèn vrom his reäce,

Went up, an’ on her knee did pleäce

His hand, a-lookèn in her feäce,

An’ wi’ a smilèn mouth so small,

He zaid, “You promised us to goo

To Shroton feäir, an’ teäke us two!”

She heärd it wi’ her two white ears,

An’ in her eyes there sprung two tears,

Vor Ellen Brine ov Allenburn

Did veel that they mus’ murn.

September come, wi’ Shroton feäir,

But Ellen Brine wer never there!

A heavy heart wer on the meäre

Their father rod his hwomeward road.

’Tis true he brought zome feärèns back,

Vor them two childern all in black;

But they had now, wi’ plaÿthings new,

Noo mother vor to shew em to,

Vor Ellen Brine ov Allenburn

Would never mwore return.

The Motherless Child.

The zun’d a-zet back tother night,

But in the zettèn pleäce

The clouds, a-redden’d by his light,

Still glow’d avore my feäce.

An’ I’ve a-lost my Meäry’s smile,

I thought; but still I have her chile,

Zoo like her, that my eyes can treäce

The mother’s in her daughter’s feäce.

O little feäce so near to me,

An’ like thy mother’s gone; why need I zay

Sweet night cloud, wi’ the glow o’ my lost day,

Thy looks be always dear to me.

The zun’d a-zet another night;

But, by the moon on high,

He still did zend us back his light

Below a cwolder sky.

My Meäry’s in a better land

I thought, but still her chile’s at hand,

An’ in her chile she’ll zend me on

Her love, though she herzelf’s a-gone.

O little chile so near to me,

An’ like thy mother gone; why need I zay,

Sweet moon, the messenger vrom my lost day,

Thy looks be always dear to me.

The Leädy’s Tower.

An’ then we went along the gleädes

O’ zunny turf, in quiv’rèn sheädes,

A-windèn off, vrom hand to hand,

Along a path o’ yollow zand,

An’ clomb a stickle slope, an’ vound

An open patch o’ lofty ground,

Up where a steätely tow’r did spring,

So high as highest larks do zing.

“Oh! Meäster Collins,” then I zaid,

A-lookèn up wi’ back-flung head;

Vor who but he, so mild o’ feäce,

Should teäke me there to zee the pleäce.

“What is it then theäse tower do meän,

A-built so feäir, an’ kept so cleän?”

“Ah! me,” he zaid, wi’ thoughtvul feäce,

“’Twer grief that zet theäse tower in pleäce.

The squier’s e’thly life’s a-blest

Wi’ gifts that mwost do teäke vor best;

The lofty-pinion’d rufs do rise

To screen his head vrom stormy skies;

His land’s a-spreadèn roun’ his hall,

An’ hands do leäbor at his call;

The while the ho’se do fling, wi’ pride,

His lofty head where he do guide;

But still his e’thly jaÿ’s a-vled,

His woone true friend, his wife, is dead.

Zoo now her happy soul’s a-gone,

An’ he in grief’s a-ling’rèn on,

Do do his heart zome good to show

His love to flesh an’ blood below.

An’ zoo he rear’d, wi’ smitten soul,

Theäse Leädy’s Tower upon the knowl.

An’ there you’ll zee the tow’r do spring

Twice ten veet up, as roun’s a ring,

Wi’ pillars under mwolded eäves,

Above their heads a-carv’d wi’ leaves;

An’ have to peäce, a-walkèn round

His voot, a hunderd veet o’ ground.

An’ there, above his upper wall,

A roundèd tow’r do spring so tall

’S a springèn arrow shot upright,

A hunderd giddy veet in height.

An’ if you’d like to straïn your knees

A-climèn up above the trees,

To zee, wi’ slowly wheelèn feäce,

The vur-sky’d land about the pleäce,

You’ll have a flight o’ steps to wear

Vor forty veet, up steäir by steäir,

That roun’ the risèn tow’r do wind,

Like withwind roun’ the saplèn’s rind,

An’ reach a landèn, wi’ a seat,

To rest at last your weary veet,

’Ithin a breast be-screenèn wall,

To keep ye vrom a longsome vall.

An’ roun’ the windèn steäirs do spring

Aïght stwonèn pillars in a ring,

A-reachèn up their heavy strangth

Drough forty veet o’ slender langth,

To end wi’ carvèd heads below

The broad-vloor’d landèn’s aïry bow.

Aïght zides, as you do zee, do bound

The lower buildèn on the ground,

An’ there in woone, a two-leav’d door

Do zwing above the marble vloor:

An’ aÿe, as luck do zoo betide

Our comèn, wi’ can goo inside.

The door is oben now. An’ zoo

The keeper kindly let us drough.

There as we softly trod the vloor

O’ marble stwone, ’ithin the door,

The echoes ov our vootsteps vled

Out roun’ the wall, and over head;

An’ there a-païnted, zide by zide,

In memory o’ the squier’s bride,

In zeven païntèns, true to life,

Wer zeven zights o’ wedded life.”

Then Meäster Collins twold me all

The teäles a-païntèd roun’ the wall;

An’ vu’st the bride did stan’ to plight

Her weddèn vow, below the light

A-shootèn down, so bright’s a fleäme,

In drough a churches window freäme.

An’ near the bride, on either hand,

You’d zee her comely bridemaïds stand,

Wi’ eyelashes a-bent in streäks

O’ brown above their bloomèn cheäks:

An’ sheenèn feäir, in mellow light,

Wi’ flowèn heäir, an’ frocks o’ white.

“An’ here,” good Meäster Collins cried,

“You’ll zee a creädle at her zide,

An’ there’s her child, a-lyèn deep

’Ithin it, an’ a-gone to sleep,

Wi’ little eyelashes a-met

In fellow streäks, as black as jet;

The while her needle, over head,

Do nimbly leäd the snow-white thread,

To zew a robe her love do meäke

Wi’ happy leäbor vor his seäke.

“An’ here a-geän’s another pleäce,

Where she do zit wi’ smilèn feäce,

An’ while her bwoy do leän, wi’ pride,

Ageän her lap, below her zide,

Her vinger tip do leäd his look

To zome good words o’ God’s own book.

“An’ next you’ll zee her in her pleäce,

Avore her happy husband’s feäce,

As he do zit, at evenèn-tide,

A-restèn by the vier-zide.

An’ there the childern’s heads do rise

Wi’ laughèn lips, an’ beamèn eyes,

Above the bwoard, where she do lay

Her sheenèn tacklèn, wi’ the tea.

“An’ here another zide do show

Her vinger in her scizzars’ bow

Avore two daughters, that do stand,

Wi’ leärnsome minds, to watch her hand

A-sheäpèn out, wi’ skill an’ ceäre,

A frock vor them to zew an’ wear.

“Then next you’ll zee her bend her head

Above her aïlèn husband’s bed,

A-fannèn, wi’ an inward praÿ’r,

His burnèn brow wi’ beäten aïr;

The while the clock, by candle light,

Do show that ’tis the dead o’ night.

“An’ here ageän upon the wall,

Where we do zee her last ov all,

Her husband’s head’s a-hangèn low,

’Ithin his hands in deepest woe.

An’ she, an angel ov his God,

Do cheer his soul below the rod,

A-liftèn up her han’ to call

His eyes to writèn on the wall,

As white as is her spotless robe,

‘Hast thou rememberèd my servant Job?’

“An’ zoo the squier, in grief o’ soul,

Built up the Tower upon the knowl.”


Let en zit, wi’ his dog an’ his cat,

Wi’ their noses a-turn’d to the vier,

An’ have all that a man should desire;

But there idden much reädship in that.

Whether vo’k mid have childern or no,

Wou’dden meäke mighty odds in the maïn;

They do bring us mwore jaÿ wi’ mwore ho,

An’ wi’ nwone we’ve less jaÿ wi’ less païn

We be all lik’ a zull’s idle sheäre out,

An’ shall rust out, unless we do wear out,

Lik’ do-nothèn, rue-nothèn,

Dead alive dumps.

As vor me, why my life idden bound

To my own heart alwone, among men;

I do live in myzelf, an’ ageän

In the lives o’ my childern all round:

I do live wi’ my bwoy in his plaÿ,

An’ ageän wi’ my maïd in her zongs;

An’ my heart is a-stirr’d wi’ their jaÿ,

An’ would burn at the zight o’ their wrongs.

I ha’ nine lives, an’ zoo if a half

O’m do cry, why the rest o’m mid laugh

All so plaÿvully, jaÿvully,

Happy wi’ hope.

Tother night I come hwome a long road,

When the weather did sting an’ did vreeze;

An’ the snow — vor the day had a-snow’d —

Wer avroze on the boughs o’ the trees;

An’ my tooes an’ my vingers wer num’,

An’ my veet wer so lumpy as logs,

An’ my ears wer so red’s a cock’s cwom’;

An’ my nose wer so cwold as a dog’s;

But so soon’s I got hwome I vorgot

Where my limbs wer a-cwold or wer hot,

When wi’ loud cries an’ proud cries

They coll’d me so cwold.

Vor the vu’st that I happen’d to meet

Come to pull my girtcwoat vrom my eärm,

An’ another did rub my feäce warm,

An’ another hot-slipper’d my veet;

While their mother did cast on a stick,

Vor to keep the red vier alive;

An’ they all come so busy an’ thick

As the bees vlee-èn into their hive,

An’ they meäde me so happy an’ proud,

That my heart could ha’ crow’d out a-loud;

They did tweil zoo, an’ smile zoo,

An’ coll me so cwold.

As I zot wi’ my teacup, at rest,

There I pull’d out the taÿs I did bring;

Men a-kickèn, a-wagg’d wi’ a string,

An’ goggle-ey’d dolls to be drest;

An’ oh! vrom the childern there sprung

Such a charm when they handled their taÿs,

That vor pleasure the bigger woones wrung

Their two hands at the zight o’ their jaÿs;

As the bwoys’ bigger vaïces vell in

Wi’ the maïdens a-titterèn thin,

An’ their dancèn an’ prancèn,

An’ little mouth’s laughs.

Though ’tis hard stripes to breed em all up,

If I’m only a-blest vrom above,

They’ll meäke me amends wi’ their love,

Vor their pillow, their pleäte, an’ their cup;

Though I shall be never a-spweil’d

Wi’ the sarvice that money can buy;

Still the hands ov a wife an’ a child

Be the blessèns ov low or ov high;

An’ if there be mouths to be ved,

He that zent em can zend me their bread,

An’ will smile on the chile

That’s a-new on the knee.

The Maid O’ Newton.

In zummer, when the knaps wer bright

In cool-aïr’d evenèn’s western light,

An’ haÿ that had a-dried all day,

Did now lie grey, to dewy night;

I went, by happy chance, or doom,

Vrom Broadwoak Hill, athirt to Coomb,

An’ met a maïd in all her bloom:

The feaïrest maïd o’ Newton.

She bore a basket that did ride

So light, she didden leän azide;

Her feäce wer oval, an’ she smil’d

So sweet’s a child, but walk’d wi’ pride.

I spoke to her, but what I zaid

I didden know; wi’ thoughts a-vled,

I spoke by heart, an’ not by head,

Avore the maïd o’ Newton.

I call’d her, oh! I don’t know who,

’Twer by a neäme she never knew;

An’ to the heel she stood upon,

She then brought on her hinder shoe,

An’ stopp’d avore me, where we met,

An’ wi’ a smile woone can’t vorget,

She zaid, wi’ eyes a-zwimmèn wet,

“No, I be woone o’ Newton.”

Then on I rambled to the west,

Below the zunny hangèn’s breast,

Where, down athirt the little stream,

The brudge’s beam did lie at rest:

But all the birds, wi’ lively glee,

Did chirp an’ hop vrom tree to tree,

As if it wer vrom pride, to zee

Goo by the maïd o’ Newton.

By fancy led, at evenèn’s glow,

I woonce did goo, a-rovèn slow,

Down where the elèms, stem by stem,

Do stan’ to hem the grove below;

But after that, my veet vorzook

The grove, to seek the little brook

At Coomb, where I mid zometimes look,

To meet the maïd o’ Newton.


Aye, at that time our days wer but vew,

An’ our lim’s wer but small, an’ a-growèn;

An’ then the feäir worold wer new,

An’ life wer all hopevul an’ gaÿ;

An’ the times o’ the sproutèn o’ leaves,

An’ the cheäk-burnèn seasons o’ mowèn,

An’ bindèn o’ red-headed sheaves,

Wer all welcome seasons o’ jaÿ.

Then the housen seem’d high, that be low,

An’ the brook did seem wide that is narrow,

An’ time, that do vlee, did goo slow,

An’ veelèns now feeble wer strong,

An’ our worold did end wi’ the neämes

Ov the Sha’sbury Hill or Bulbarrow;

An’ life did seem only the geämes

That we plaÿ’d as the days rolled along.

Then the rivers, an’ high-timber’d lands,

An’ the zilvery hills, ’ithout buyèn,

Did seem to come into our hands

Vrom others that own’d em avore;

An’ all zickness, an’ sorrow, an’ need,

Seem’d to die wi’ the wold vo’k a-dyèn,

An’ leäve us vor ever a-freed

Vrom evils our vorefathers bore.

But happy be childern the while

They have elders a-livèn to love em,

An’ teäke all the wearisome tweil

That zome hands or others mus’ do;

Like the low-headed shrubs that be warm,

In the lewth o’ the trees up above em,

A-screen’d vrom the cwold blowèn storm

That the timber avore em must rue.

Meäry’s Smile.

When mornèn winds, a-blowèn high,

Do zweep the clouds vrom all the sky,

An’ laurel-leaves do glitter bright,

The while the newly broken light

Do brighten up, avore our view,

The vields wi’ green, an’ hills wi’ blue;

What then can highten to my eyes

The cheerful feäce ov e’th an’ skies,

But Meäry’s smile, o’ Morey’s Mill,

My rwose o’ Mowy Lea.

An’ when, at last, the evenèn dews

Do now begin to wet our shoes;

An’ night’s a-ridèn to the west,

To stop our work, an’ gi’e us rest,

Oh! let the candle’s ruddy gleäre

But brighten up her sheenèn heäir;

Or else, as she do walk abroad,

Let moonlight show, upon the road,

My Meäry’s smile, o’ Morey’s Mill,

My rwose o’ Mowy Lea.

An’ O! mid never tears come on,

To wash her feäce’s blushes wan,

Nor kill her smiles that now do plaÿ

Like sparklèn weäves in zunny Maÿ;

But mid she still, vor all she’s gone

Vrom souls she now do smile upon,

Show others they can vind woone jaÿ

To turn the hardest work to plaÿ.

My Meäry’s smile, o’ Morey’s Mill,

My rwose o’ Mowy Lea.

Meäry Wedded.

The zun can zink, the stars mid rise,

An’ woods be green to sheenèn skies;

The cock mid crow to mornèn light,

An’ workvo’k zing to vallèn night;

The birds mid whissle on the spraÿ,

An’ childern leäp in merry plaÿ,

But our’s is now a lifeless pleäce,

Vor we’ve a-lost a smilèn feäce —

Young Meäry Meäd o’ merry mood,

Vor she’s a-woo’d an’ wedded.

The dog that woonce wer glad to bear

Her fondlèn vingers down his heäir,

Do leän his head ageän the vloor,

To watch, wi’ heavy eyes, the door;

An’ men she zent so happy hwome

O’ Zadurdays, do seem to come

To door, wi’ downcast hearts, to miss

Wi’ smiles below the clematis,

Young Meäry Meäd o’ merry mood,

Vor she’s a-woo’d an’ wedded.

When they do draw the evenèn blind,

An’ when the evenèn light’s a-tin’d,

The cheerless vier do drow a gleäre

O’ light ageän her empty chair;

An’ wordless gaps do now meäke thin

Their talk where woonce her vaïce come in.

Zoo lwonesome is her empty pleäce,

An’ blest the house that ha’ the feäce

O’ Meäry Meäd, o’ merry mood,

Now she’s a-woo’d and wedded.

The day she left her father’s he’th,

Though sad, wer kept a day o’ me’th,

An’ dry-wheel’d waggons’ empty beds

Wer left ’ithin the tree-screen’d sheds;

An’ all the hosses, at their eäse,

Went snortèn up the flow’ry leäse,

But woone, the smartest for the roäd,

That pull’d away the dearest lwoad —

Young Meäry Meäd o’ merry mood,

That wer a-woo’d an’ wedded.

The Stwonen Bwoy Upon the Pillar.

Wi’ smokeless tuns an’ empty halls,

An’ moss a-clingèn to the walls,

In ev’ry wind the lofty tow’rs

Do teäke the zun, an’ bear the show’rs;

An’ there, ’ithin a geät a-hung,

But vasten’d up, an’ never swung,

Upon the pillar, all alwone,

Do stan’ the little bwoy o’ stwone;

’S a poppy bud mid linger on,

Vorseäken, when the wheat’s a-gone.

An’ there, then, wi’ his bow let slack,

An’ little quiver at his back,

Drough het an’ wet, the little chile

Vrom day to day do stan’ an’ smile.

When vu’st the light, a-risèn weak,

At break o’ day, do smite his cheäk,

Or while, at noon, the leafy bough

Do cast a sheäde a-thirt his brow,

Or when at night the warm-breath’d cows

Do sleep by moon-belighted boughs;

An’ there the while the rooks do bring

Their scroff to build their nest in Spring,

Or zwallows in the zummer day

Do cling their little huts o’ clay,

’Ithin the raïnless sheädes, below

The steadvast arches’ mossy bow.

Or when, in Fall, the woak do shed

The leaves, a-wither’d, vrom his head,

An’ western win’s, a-blowèn cool,

Do dreve em out athirt the pool,

Or Winter’s clouds do gather dark

An’ wet, wi’ raïn, the elem’s bark,

You’ll zee his pretty smile betwixt

His little sheädemark’d lips a-fix’d;

As there his little sheäpe do bide

Drough day an’ night, an’ time an’ tide,

An’ never change his size or dress,

Nor overgrow his prettiness.

But, oh! thik child, that we do vind

In childhood still, do call to mind

A little bwoy a-call’d by death,

Long years agoo, vrom our sad he’th;

An’ I, in thought, can zee en dim

The seäme in feäce, the seäme in lim’,

My heäir mid whiten as the snow,

My limbs grow weak, my step wear slow,

My droopèn head mid slowly vall

Above the han’-staff’s glossy ball,

An’ yeet, vor all a wid’nèn span

Ov years, mid change a livèn man,

My little child do still appear

To me wi’ all his childhood’s gear,

’Ithout a beard upon his chin,

’Ithout a wrinkle in his skin,

A-livèn on, a child the seäme

In look, an’ sheäpe, an’ size, an’ neäme.

The Young That Died in Beauty.

If souls should only sheen so bright

In heaven as in e’thly light,

An’ nothèn better wer the ceäse,

How comely still, in sheäpe an’ feäce,

Would many reach thik happy pleäce —

The hopeful souls that in their prime

Ha’ seem’d a-took avore their time —

The young that died in beauty.

But when woone’s lim’s ha’ lost their strangth

A-tweilèn drough a lifetime’s langth,

An’ over cheäks a-growèn wold

The slowly-weästen years ha’ rolled,

The deep’nèn wrinkle’s hollow vwold;

When life is ripe, then death do call

Vor less ov thought, than when do vall

On young vo’ks in their beauty.

But pinèn souls, wi’ heads a-hung

In heavy sorrow vor the young,

The sister ov the brother dead,

The father wi’ a child a-vled,

The husband when his bride ha’ laid

Her head at rest, noo mwore to turn,

Have all a-vound the time to murn

Vor youth that died in beauty.

An’ yeet the church, where praÿer do rise

Vrom thoughtvul souls, wi’ downcast eyes.

An’ village greens, a-beät half beäre

By dancers that do meet, an’ weär

Such merry looks at feäst an’ feäir,

Do gather under leàtest skies,

Their bloomèn cheäks an’ sparklèn eyes,

Though young ha’ died in beauty.

But still the dead shall mwore than keep

The beauty ov their eärly sleep;

Where comely looks shall never weär

Uncomely, under tweil an’ ceäre.

The feäir at death be always feäir,

Still feäir to livers’ thought an’ love,

An’ feäirer still to God above,

Than when they died in beauty.

Fair Emily Ov Yarrow Mill.

Dear Yarrowham, ’twer many miles

Vrom thy green meäds that, in my walk,

I met a maïd wi’ winnèn smiles,

That talk’d as vo’k at hwome do talk;

An’ who at last should she be vound,

Ov all the souls the sky do bound,

But woone that trod at vu’st thy groun’

Fair Emily ov Yarrow Mill.

But thy wold house an’ elmy nook,

An’ wall-screen’d geärden’s mossy zides,

Thy grassy meäds an’ zedgy brook,

An’ high-bank’d leänes, wi’ sheädy rides,

Wer all a-known to me by light

Ov eärly days, a-quench’d by night,

Avore they met the younger zight

Ov Emily ov Yarrow Mill.

An’ now my heart do leäp to think

O’ times that I’ve a-spent in plaÿ,

Bezide thy river’s rushy brink,

Upon a deäizybed o’ Maÿ;

I lov’d the friends thy land ha’ bore,

An’ I do love the paths they wore,

An’ I do love thee all the mwore,

Vor Emily ov Yarrow Mill.

When bright above the e’th below

The moon do spread abroad his light,

An’ aïr o’ zummer nights do blow

Athirt the vields in plaÿsome flight,

’Tis then delightsome under all

The sheädes o’ boughs by path or wall,

But mwostly thine when they do vall

On Emily ov Yarrow Mill.

The Scud.

Aye, aye, the leäne wi’ flow’ry zides

A-kept so lew, by hazzle-wrides,

Wi’ beds o’ graegles out in bloom,

Below the timber’s windless gloon

An’ geäte that I’ve a-swung,

An’ rod as he’s a-hung,

When I wer young, in Woakley Coomb.

’Twer there at feäst we all did pass

The evenèn on the leänezide grass,

Out where the geäte do let us drough,

Below the woak-trees in the lew,

In merry geämes an’ fun

That meäde us skip an’ run,

Wi’ burnèn zun, an’ sky o’ blue.

But still there come a scud that drove

The titt’rèn maïdens vrom the grove;

An’ there a-left wer flow’ry mound,

’Ithout a vaïce, ’ithout a sound,

Unless the aïr did blow,

Drough ruslèn leaves, an’ drow,

The raïn drops low, upon the ground.

I linger’d there an’ miss’d the naïse;

I linger’d there an’ miss’d our jaÿs;

I miss’d woone soul beyond the rest;

The maïd that I do like the best.

Vor where her vaïce is gaÿ

An’ where her smiles do plaÿ,

There’s always jaÿ vor ev’ry breast.

Vor zome vo’k out abroad ha’ me’th,

But nwone at hwome bezide the he’th;

An’ zome ha’ smiles vor strangers’ view;

An’ frowns vor kith an’ kin to rue;

But her sweet vaïce do vall,

Wi’ kindly words to all,

Both big an’ small, the whole day drough.

An’ when the evenèn sky wer peäle,

We heärd the warblèn nightèngeäle,

A-drawèn out his lwonesome zong,

In windèn music down the drong;

An’ Jenny vrom her he’th,

Come out, though not in me’th,

But held her breath, to hear his zong.

Then, while the bird wi’ oben bill

Did warble on, her vaïce wer still;

An’ as she stood avore me, bound

In stillness to the flow’ry mound,

“The bird’s a jaÿ to zome,”

I thought, “but when he’s dum,

Her vaïce will come, wi’ sweeter sound.”

Minden House.

’Twer when the vo’k wer out to hawl

A vield o’ haÿ a day in June,

An’ when the zun begun to vall

Toward the west in afternoon,

Woone only wer a-left behind

To bide indoors, at hwome, an’ mind

The house, an’ answer vo’k avore

The geäte or door — young Fanny Deäne.

The aïr ’ithin the geärden wall

Wer deadly still, unless the bee

Did hummy by, or in the hall

The clock did ring a-hettèn dree,

An’ there, wi’ busy hands, inside

The iron ceäsement, oben’d wide,

Did zit an’ pull wi’ nimble twitch

Her tiny stitch, young Fanny Deäne.

As there she zot she heärd two blows

A-knock’d upon the rumblèn door,

An’ laid azide her work, an’ rose,

An’ walk’d out feäir, athirt the vloor;

An’ there, a-holdèn in his hand

His bridled meäre, a youth did stand,

An’ mildly twold his neäme and pleäce

Avore the feäce o’ Fanny Deäne.

He twold her that he had on hand

Zome business on his father’s zide,

But what she didden understand;

An’ zoo she ax’d en if he’d ride

Out where her father mid be vound,

Bezide the plow, in Cowslip Ground;

An’ there he went, but left his mind

Back there behind, wi’ Fanny Deäne.

An’ oh! his hwomeward road wer gaÿ

In aïr a-blowèn, whiff by whiff,

While sheenèn water-weäves did plaÿ

An’ boughs did swaÿ above the cliff;

Vor Time had now a-show’d en dim

The jaÿ it had in store vor him;

An’ when he went thik road ageän

His errand then wer Fanny Deäne.

How strangely things be brought about

By Providence, noo tongue can tell,

She minded house, when vo’k wer out,

An’ zoo mus’ bid the house farewell;

The bees mid hum, the clock mid call

The lwonesome hours ’ithin the hall,

But in behind the woaken door,

There’s now noo mwore a Fanny Deäne.

The Lovely Maïd Ov Elwell Meäd.

A maïd wi’ many gifts o’ greäce,

A maïd wi’ ever-smilèn feäce,

A child o’ yours my chilhood’s pleäce,

O leänèn lawns ov Allen;

’S a-walkèn where your stream do flow,

A-blushèn where your flowers do blow,

A-smilèn where your zun do glow,

O leänèn lawns ov Allen.

An’ good, however good’s a-waïgh’d,

’S the lovely maïd ov Elwell Meäd.

An’ oh! if I could teäme an’ guide

The winds above the e’th, an’ ride

As light as shootèn stars do glide,

O leänèn lawns ov Allen,

To you I’d teäke my daily flight,

Drough dark’nèn aïr in evenèn’s light,

An’ bid her every night “Good night,”

O leänèn lawns ov Allen.

Vor good, however good’s a-waïgh’d,

’S the lovely maïd ov Elwell Meäd.

An’ when your hedges’ slooes be blue,

By blackberries o’ dark’nèn hue,

An’ spiders’ webs behung wi’ dew,

O leänèn lawns ov Allen

Avore the winter aïr’s a-chill’d,

Avore your winter brook’s a-vill’d

Avore your zummer flow’rs be kill’d,

O leänèn lawns ov Allen;

I there would meet, in white arraÿ’d,

The lovely maïd ov Elwell Meäd.

For when the zun, as birds do rise,

Do cast their sheädes vrom autum’ skies,

A-sparklèn in her dewy eyes,

O leänèn lawns ov Allen

Then all your mossy paths below

The trees, wi’ leaves a-vallèn slow,

Like zinkèn fleäkes o’ yollow snow,

O leänèn lawns ov Allen.

Would be mwore teäkèn where they straÿ’d

The lovely maïd ov Elwell Meäd.

Our Fathers’ Works.

Ah! I do think, as I do tread

Theäse path, wi’ elems overhead,

A-climèn slowly up vrom Bridge,

By easy steps, to Broadwoak Ridge,

That all theäse roads that we do bruise

Wi’ hosses’ shoes, or heavy lwoads;

An’ hedges’ bands, where trees in row

Do rise an’ grow aroun’ the lands,

Be works that we’ve a-vound a-wrought

By our vorefathers’ ceäre an’ thought.

They clear’d the groun’ vor grass to teäke

The pleäce that bore the bremble breäke,

An’ draïn’d the fen, where water spread,

A-lyèn dead, a beäne to men;

An’ built the mill, where still the wheel

Do grind our meal, below the hill;

An’ turn’d the bridge, wi’ arch a-spread,

Below a road, vor us to tread.

They vound a pleäce, where we mid seek

The gifts o’ greäce vrom week to week;

An’ built wi’ stwone, upon the hill,

A tow’r we still do call our own;

With bells to use, an’ meäke rejaïce,

Wi’ giant vaïce, at our good news:

An’ lifted stwones an’ beams to keep

The raïn an’ cwold vrom us asleep.

Zoo now mid nwone ov us vorget

The pattern our vorefathers zet;

But each be fäin to underteäke

Some work to meäke vor others’ gaïn,

That we mid leäve mwore good to sheäre,

Less ills to bear, less souls to grieve,

An’ when our hands do vall to rest,

It mid be vrom a work a-blest.

The Wold Vo’k Dead.

My days, wi’ wold vo’k all but gone,

An’ childern now a-comèn on,

Do bring me still my mother’s smiles

In light that now do show my chile’s;

An’ I’ve a-sheär’d the wold vo’ks’ me’th,

Avore the burnèn Chris’mas he’th,

At friendly bwoards, where feäce by feäce,

Did, year by year, gi’e up its pleäce,

An’ leäve me here, behind, to tread

The ground a-trod by wold vo’k dead.

But wold things be a-lost vor new,

An’ zome do come, while zome do goo:

As wither’d beech-tree leaves do cling

Among the nesh young buds o’ Spring;

An’ frettèn worms ha’ slowly wound,

Droo beams the wold vo’k lifted sound,

An’ trees they planted little slips

Ha’ stems that noo two eärms can clips;

An’ grey an’ yollow moss do spread

On buildèns new to wold vo’k dead.

The backs of all our zilv’ry hills,

The brook that still do dreve our mills,

The roads a-climèn up the brows

O’ knaps, a-screen’d by meäple boughs,

Wer all a-mark’d in sheäde an’ light

Avore our wolder fathers’ zight,

In zunny days, a-gied their hands

For happy work, a-tillèn lands,

That now do yield their childern bread

Till they do rest wi’ wold vo’k dead.

But livèn vo’k, a-grievèn on,

Wi’ lwonesome love, vor souls a-gone,

Do zee their goodness, but do vind

All else a-stealèn out o’ mind;

As air do meäke the vurthest land

Look feäirer than the vield at hand,

An’ zoo, as time do slowly pass,

So still’s a sheäde upon the grass,

Its wid’nèn speäce do slowly shed

A glory roun’ the wold vo’k dead.

An’ what if good vo’ks’ life o’ breath

Is zoo a-hallow’d after death,

That they mid only know above,

Their times o’ faïth, an’ jaÿ, an’ love,

While all the evil time ha’ brought

’S a-lost vor ever out o’ thought;

As all the moon that idden bright,

’S a-lost in darkness out o’ zight;

And all the godly life they led

Is glory to the wold vo’k dead.

If things be zoo, an’ souls above

Can only mind our e’thly love,

Why then they’ll veel our kindness drown

The thoughts ov all that meäde em frown.

An’ jaÿ o’ jaÿs will dry the tear

O’ sadness that do trickle here,

An’ nothèn mwore o’ life than love,

An’ peace, will then be know’d above.

Do good, vor that, when life’s a-vled,

Is still a pleasure to the dead.

Culver Dell and the Squire.

There’s noo pleäce I do like so well,

As Elem Knap in Culver Dell,

Where timber trees, wi’ lofty shouds,

Did rise avore the western clouds;

An’ stan’ ageän, wi’ veathery tops,

A-swayèn up in North–Hill Copse.

An’ on the east the mornèn broke

Above a dewy grove o’ woak:

An’ noontide shed its burnèn light

On ashes on the southern height;

An’ I could vind zome teäles to tell,

O’ former days in Culver Dell.

An’ all the vo’k did love so well

The good wold squire o’ Culver Dell,

That used to ramble drough the sheädes

O’ timber, or the burnèn gleädes,

An’ come at evenèn up the leäze

Wi’ red-eär’d dogs bezide his knees.

An’ hold his gun, a-hangèn drough

His eärmpit, out above his tooe.

Wi’ kindly words upon his tongue,

Vor vo’k that met en, wold an’ young,

Vor he did know the poor so well

’S the richest vo’k in Culver Dell.

An’ while the woäk, wi’ spreadèn head,

Did sheäde the foxes’ verny bed;

An’ runnèn heäres, in zunny gleädes,

Did beät the grasses’ quiv’rèn’ bleädes;

An’ speckled pa’tridges took flight

In stubble vields a-feädèn white;

Or he could zee the pheasant strut

In sheädy woods, wi’ païnted cwoat;

Or long-tongued dogs did love to run

Among the leaves, bezide his gun;

We didden want vor call to dwell

At hwome in peace in Culver Dell.

But now I hope his kindly feäce

Is gone to vind a better pleäce;

But still, wi’ vo’k a-left behind

He’ll always be a-kept in mind,

Vor all his springy-vooted hounds

Ha’ done o’ trottèn round his grounds,

An’ we have all a-left the spot,

To teäke, a-scatter’d, each his lot;

An’ even Father, lik’ the rest,

Ha’ left our long vorseäken nest;

An’ we should vind it sad to dwell,

Ageän at hwome in Culver Dell.

The aïry mornèns still mid smite

Our windows wi’ their rwosy light,

An’ high-zunn’d noons mid dry the dew

On growèn groun’ below our shoe;

The blushèn evenèn still mid dye,

Wi’ viry red, the western sky;

The zunny spring-time’s quicknèn power

Mid come to oben leaf an’ flower;

An’ days an’ tides mid bring us on

Woone pleasure when another’s gone.

But we must bid a long farewell

To days an’ tides in Culver Dell.

Our Be’thplace.

How dear’s the door a latch do shut,

An’ geärden that a hatch do shut,

Where vu’st our bloomèn cheäks ha’ prest

The pillor ov our childhood’s rest;

Or where, wi’ little tooes, we wore

The paths our fathers trod avore;

Or clim’d the timber’s bark aloft,

Below the zingèn lark aloft,

The while we heärd the echo sound

Drough all the ringèn valley round.

A lwonesome grove o’ woak did rise,

To screen our house, where smoke did rise,

A-twistèn blue, while yeet the zun

Did langthen on our childhood’s fun;

An’ there, wi’ all the sheäpes an’ sounds

O’ life, among the timber’d grounds,

The birds upon their boughs did zing,

An’ milkmaïds by their cows did zing,

Wi’ merry sounds, that softly died,

A-ringèn down the valley zide.

By river banks, wi’ reeds a-bound,

An’ sheenèn pools, wi’ weeds a-bound,

The long-neck’d gander’s ruddy bill

To snow-white geese did cackle sh’ill;

An’ stridèn peewits heästen’d by,

O’ tiptooe wi’ their screamèn cry;

An’ stalkèn cows a-lowèn loud,

An’ struttèn cocks a-crowèn loud,

Did rouse the echoes up to mock

Their mingled sounds by hill an’ rock.

The stars that clim’d our skies all dark,

Above our sleepèn eyes all dark,

An’ zuns a-rollèn round to bring

The seasons on, vrom Spring to Spring,

Ha’ vled, wi’ never-restèn flight,

Drough green-bough’d day, an’ dark-tree’d night;

Till now our childhood’s pleäces there,

Be gaÿ wi’ other feäces there,

An’ we ourselves do vollow on

Our own vorelivers dead an’ gone.

The Window Freäm’d Wi’ Stwone.

When Pentridge House wer still the nest

O’ souls that now ha’ better rest,

Avore the viër burnt to ground

His beams an’ walls, that then wer sound,

’Ithin a naïl-bestudded door,

An’ passage wi’ a stwonèn vloor,

There spread the hall, where zun-light shone

In drough a window freäm’d wi’ stwone.

A clavy-beam o’ sheenèn woak

Did span the he’th wi’ twistèn smoke,

Where fleämes did shoot in yollow streaks,

Above the brands, their flashèn peaks;

An’ aunt did pull, as she did stand

O’-tip-tooe, wi’ her lifted hand,

A curtain feäded wi’ the zun,

Avore the window freäm’d wi’ stwone.

When Hwome-ground grass, below the moon,

Wer damp wi’ evenèn dew in June,

An’ aunt did call the maïdens in

Vrom walkèn, wi’ their shoes too thin,

They zot to rest their litty veet

Upon the window’s woaken seat,

An’ chatted there, in light that shone

In drough the window freäm’d wi’ stwone.

An’ as the seasons, in a ring,

Roll’d slowly roun’ vrom Spring to Spring,

An’ brought em on zome holy-tide,

When they did cast their tools azide;

How glad it meäde em all to spy

In Stwonylands their friends draw nigh,

As they did know em all by neäme

Out drough the window’s stwonèn freäme.

O evenèn zun, a-ridèn drough

The sky, vrom Sh’oton Hill o’ blue,

To leäve the night a-broodèn dark

At Stalbridge, wi’ its grey-wall’d park;

Small jaÿ to me the vields do bring,

Vor all their zummer birds do zing,

Since now thy beams noo mwore do fleäme

In drough the window’s stwonèn freäme.

The Water-Spring in the Leane.

Oh! aye! the spring ’ithin the leäne,

A-leäden down to Lyddan Brook;

An’ still a-nesslèn in his nook,

As weeks do pass, an’ moons do weäne.

Nwone the drier,

Nwone the higher,

Nwone the nigher to the door

Where we did live so long avore.

An’ oh! what vo’k his mossy brim

Ha’ gathered in the run o’ time!

The wife a-blushèn in her prime;

The widow wi’ her eyezight dim;

Maïdens dippèn,

Childern sippèn,

Water drippèn, at the cool

Dark wallèn ov the little pool.

Behind the spring do lie the lands

My father till’d, vrom Spring to Spring,

Awäitèn on vor time to bring

The crops to paÿ his weary hands.

Wheat a-growèn,

Beäns a-blowèn,

Grass vor mowèn, where the bridge

Do leäd to Ryall’s on the ridge.

But who do know when liv’d an’ died

The squier o’ the mwoldrèn hall;

That lined en wi’ a stwonèn wall,

An’ steän’d so cleän his wat’ry zide?

We behind en,

Now can’t vind en,

But do mind en, an’ do thank

His meäker vor his little tank.

The Poplars.

If theäse day’s work an’ burnèn sky

’V’a-zent hwome you so tired as I,

Let’s zit an’ rest ’ithin the screen

O’ my wold bow’r upon the green;

Where I do goo myself an’ let

The evenèn aiër cool my het,

When dew do wet the grasses bleädes,

A-quiv’rèn in the dusky sheädes.

There yonder poplar trees do plaÿ

Soft music, as their heads do swaÿ,

While wind, a-rustlèn soft or loud,

Do stream ageän their lofty sh’oud;

An’ seem to heal the ranklèn zore

My mind do meet wi’ out o’ door,

When I’ve a-bore, in downcast mood,

Zome evil where I look’d vor good.

O’ they two poplars that do rise

So high avore our naïghbours’ eyes,

A-zet by gramfer, hand by hand,

Wi’ grammer, in their bit o’ land;

The woone upon the western zide

Wer his, an’ woone wer grammer’s pride,

An’ since they died, we all do teäke

Mwore ceäre o’m vor the wold vo’k’s seäke.

An’ there, wi’ stems a-growèn tall

Avore the houses mossy wall,

The while the moon ha’ slowly past

The leafy window, they’ve a-cast

Their sheädes ’ithin the window peäne;

While childern have a-grown to men,

An’ then ageän ha’ left their beds,

To bear their childern’s heavy heads.

The Linden On the Lawn.

No! Jenny, there’s noo pleäce to charm

My mind lik’ yours at Woakland farm,

A-peärted vrom the busy town,

By longsome miles ov aïry down,

Where woonce the meshy wall did gird

Your flow’ry geärden, an’ the bird

Did zing in zummer wind that stirr’d

The spreädèn linden on the lawn.

An’ now ov all the trees wi’ sheädes

A-wheelèn round in Blackmwore gleädes,

There’s noo tall poplar by the brook,

Nor elem that do rock the rook,

Nor ash upon the shelvèn ledge,

Nor low-bough’d woak bezide the hedge,

Nor withy up above the zedge,

So dear’s thik linden on the lawn.

Vor there, o’ zummer nights, below

The wall, we zot when aïr did blow,

An’ sheäke the dewy rwose a-tied

Up roun’ the window’s stwonèn zide.

An’ while the carter rod’ along

A-zingèn, down the dusky drong,

There you did zing a sweeter zong

Below the linden on the lawn.

An’ while your warbled ditty wound

Drough plaÿsome flights o’ mellow sound,

The nightèngeäle’s sh’ill zong, that broke

The stillness ov the dewy woak,

Rung clear along the grove, an’ smote

To sudden stillness ev’ry droat;

As we did zit, an’ hear it float

Below the linden on the lawn.

Where dusky light did softly vall

’Ithin the stwonèn-window’d hall,

Avore your father’s blinkèn eyes,

His evenèn whiff o’ smoke did rise,

An’ vrom the bedroom window’s height

Your little John, a-cloth’d in white,

An’ gwaïn to bed, did cry “good night”

Towards the linden on the lawn.

But now, as Dobbin, wi’ a nod

Vor ev’ry heavy step he trod,

Did bring me on, to-night, avore

The geäbled house’s pworchèd door,

Noo laughèn child a-cloth’d in white,

Look’d drough the stwonèn window’s light,

An’ noo vaïce zung, in dusky night,

Below the linden on the lawn.

An’ zoo, if you should ever vind

My kindness seem to grow less kind,

An’ if upon my clouded feäce

My smile should yield a frown its pleäce,

Then, Jenny, only laugh an’ call

My mind ’ithin the geärden wall,

Where we did plaÿ at even-fall,

Below the linden on the lawn.

Our Abode in Arby Wood.

Though ice do hang upon the willows

Out bezide the vrozen brook,

An’ storms do roar above our pillows,

Drough the night, ’ithin our nook;

Our evenèn he’th’s a-glowèn warm,

Drough wringèn vrost, an’ roarèn storm,

Though winds mid meäke the wold beams sheäke,

In our abode in Arby Wood.

An’ there, though we mid hear the timber

Creake avore the windy raïn;

An’ climèn ivy quiver, limber,

Up ageän the window peäne;

Our merry vaïces then do sound,

In rollèn glee, or dree-vaïce round;

Though wind mid roar, ’ithout the door,

Ov our abode in Arby Wood.

Slow to Come, Quick Agone.

Ah! there’s a house that I do know

Besouth o’ yonder trees,

Where northern winds can hardly blow

But in a softest breeze.

An’ there woonce sounded zongs an’ teäles

Vrom vaïce o’ maïd or youth,

An’ sweeter than the nightèngeäle’s

Above the copses lewth.

How swiftly there did run the brooks,

How swift wer winds in flight,

How swiftly to their roost the rooks

Did vlee o’er head at night.

Though slow did seem to us the peäce

O’ comèn days a-head,

That now do seem as in a reäce

Wi’ aïr-birds to ha’ vled.

The Vier-Zide.

’Tis zome vo’ks jaÿ to teäke the road,

An’ goo abro’d, a-wand’rèn wide,

Vrom shere to shere, vrom pleäce to pleäce,

The swiftest peäce that vo’k can ride.

But I’ve a jaÿ ’ithin the door,

Wi’ friends avore the vier-zide.

An’ zoo, when winter skies do lour,

An’ when the Stour’s a-rollèn wide,

Drough bridge-voot raïls, a-païnted white,

To be at night the traveller’s guide,

Gi’e me a pleäce that’s warm an’ dry,

A-zittèn nigh my vier-zide.

Vor where do love o’ kith an’ kin,

At vu’st begin, or grow an’ wride,

Till souls a-lov’d so young, be wold,

Though never cwold, drough time nor tide

But where in me’th their gather’d veet

Do often meet — the vier-zide.

If, when a friend ha’ left the land,

I shook his hand a-most wet-eyed,

I velt too well the ob’nèn door

Would leäd noo mwore where he did bide

An’ where I heärd his vaïces sound,

In me’th around the vier-zide.

As I’ve a-zeed how vast do vall

The mwold’rèn hall, the wold vo’ks pride,

Where merry hearts wer woonce a-ved

Wi’ daily bread, why I’ve a-sigh’d,

To zee the wall so green wi’ mwold,

An’ vind so cwold the vier-zide.

An’ Chris’mas still mid bring his me’th

To ouer he’th, but if we tried

To gather all that woonce did wear

Gay feäces there! Ah! zome ha’ died,

An’ zome be gone to leäve wi’ gaps

O’ missèn laps, the vier-zide.

But come now, bring us in your hand,

A heavy brand o’ woak a-dried,

To cheer us wi’ his het an’ light,

While vrosty night, so starry-skied,

Go gather souls that time do speäre

To zit an’ sheäre our vier-zide.


I don’t want to sleep abrode, John,

I do like my hwomeward road, John;

An’ like the sound o’ Knowlwood bells the best.

Zome would rove vrom pleäce to pleäce, John,

Zome would goo from feäce to feäce, John,

But I be happy in my hwomely nest;

An’ slight’s the hope vor any pleäce bezide,

To leäve the plaïn abode where love do bide.

Where the shelvèn knap do vall, John,

Under trees a-springèn tall, John;

’Tis there my house do show his sheenèn zide,

Wi’ his walls vor ever green, John,

Under ivy that’s a screen, John,

Vrom wet an’ het, an’ ev’ry changèn tide,

An’ I do little ho vor goold or pride,

To leäve the plaïn abode where love do bide.

There the bendèn stream do flow, John,

By the mossy bridge’s bow, John;

An’ there the road do wind below the hill;

There the miller, white wi’ meal, John,

Deafen’d wi’ his foamy wheel, John,

Do stan’ o’ times a-lookèn out o’ mill:

The while ’ithin his lightly-sheäken door.

His wheatèn flour do whitèn all his floor.

When my daily work’s a-done, John,

At the zettèn o’ the zun, John,

An’ I all day ’ve a-plaÿ’d a good man’s peärt,

I do vind my ease a-blest, John,

While my conscience is at rest, John;

An’ while noo worm’s a-left to fret my heart;

An’ who vor finer hwomes o’ restless pride,

Would pass the plaïn abode where peace do bide?

By a windor in the west, John,

There upon my fiddle’s breast, John,

The strings do sound below my bow’s white heäir;

While a zingèn drush do swaÿ, John,

Up an’ down upon a spraÿ, John,

An’ cast his sheäde upon the window square;

Vor birds do know their friends, an’ build their nest,

An’ love to roost, where they can live at rest.

Out o’ town the win’ do bring, John,

Peals o’ bells when they do ring, John,

An’ roun’ me here, at hand, my ear can catch

The maïd a-zingèn by the stream, John,

Or carter whislèn wi’ his team, John,

Or zingèn birds, or water at the hatch;

An’ zoo wi’ sounds o’ vaïce, an’ bird an’ bell,

Noo hour is dull ’ithin our rwosy dell.

An’ when the darksome night do hide, John,

Land an’ wood on ev’ry zide, John;

An’ when the light’s a-burnèn on my bwoard,

Then vor pleasures out o’ door, John,

I’ve enough upon my vloor, John:

My Jenny’s lovèn deed, an’ look, an’ word,

An’ we be lwoth, lik’ culvers zide by zide,

To leäve the plaïn abode where love do bide.

Hallowed Pleäces.

At Woodcombe farm, wi’ ground an’ tree

Hallow’d by times o’ youthvul glee,

At Chris’mas time I spent a night

Wi’ feäces dearest to my zight;

An’ took my wife to tread, woonce mwore,

Her maïden hwome’s vorseäken vloor,

An’ under stars that slowly wheel’d

Aloft, above the keen-aïr’d vield,

While night bedimm’d the rus’lèn copse,

An’ darken’d all the ridges’ tops,

The hall, a-hung wi’ holly, rung

Wi’ many a tongue o’ wold an’ young.

There, on the he’th’s well-hetted ground,

Hallow’d by times o’ zittèn round,

The brimvul mug o’ cider stood

An’ hiss’d avore the bleäzèn wood;

An’ zome, a-zittèn knee by knee,

Did tell their teäles wi’ hearty glee,

An’ others gamboll’d in a roar

O’ laughter on the stwonèn vloor;

An’ while the moss o’ winter-tide

Clung chilly roun’ the house’s zide,

The hall, a-hung wi’ holly, rung

Wi’ many a tongue o’ wold an’ young.

There, on the pworches bench o’ stwone,

Hallow’d by times o’ youthvul fun,

We laugh’d an’ sigh’d to think o’ neämes

That rung there woonce, in evenèn geämes;

An’ while the swaÿèn cypress bow’d,

In chilly wind, his darksome sh’oud

An’ honeyzuckles, beäre o’ leäves,

Still reach’d the window-sheädèn eaves

Up where the clematis did trim

The stwonèn arches mossy rim,

The hall, a-hung wi’ holly, rung

Wi’ many a tongue o’ wold an’ young.

There, in the geärden’s wall-bound square,

Hallow’d by times o’ strollèn there,

The winter wind, a-hufflèn loud,

Did swaÿ the pear-tree’s leafless sh’oud,

An’ beät the bush that woonce did bear

The damask rwose vor Jenny’s heäir;

An’ there the walk o’ peävèn stwone

That burn’d below the zummer zun,

Struck icy-cwold drough shoes a-wore

By maïdens vrom the hetted vloor

In hall, a-hung wi’ holm, where rung

Vull many a tongue o’ wold an’ young.

There at the geäte that woonce wer blue

Hallow’d by times o’ passèn drough,

Light strawmotes rose in flaggèn flight,

A-floated by the winds o’ night,

Where leafy ivy-stems did crawl

In moonlight on the windblown wall,

An’ merry maïdens’ vaïces vled

In echoes sh’ill, vrom wall to shed,

As shiv’rèn in their frocks o’ white

They come to bid us there “Good night,”

Vrom hall, a-hung wi’ holm, that rung

Wi’ many a tongue o’ wold an’ young.

There in the narrow leäne an’ drong

Hallow’d by times o’ gwaïn along,

The lofty ashes’ leafless sh’ouds

Rose dark avore the clear-edged clouds,

The while the moon, at girtest height,

Bespread the pooly brook wi’ light,

An’ as our child, in loose-limb’d rest,

Lay peäle upon her mother’s breast,

Her waxen eyelids seal’d her eyes

Vrom darksome trees, an’ sheenèn skies,

An’ halls a-hung wi’ holm, that rung

Wi’ many a tongue, o’ wold an’ young.

The Wold Wall.

Here, Jeäne, we vu’st did meet below

The leafy boughs, a-swingèn slow,

Avore the zun, wi’ evenèn glow,

Above our road, a-beamèn red;

The grass in zwath wer in the meäds,

The water gleam’d among the reeds

In aïr a-steälèn roun’ the hall,

Where ivy clung upon the wall.

Ah! well-a-day! O wall adieu!

The wall is wold, my grief is new.

An’ there you walk’d wi’ blushèn pride,

Where softly-wheelèn streams did glide,

Drough sheädes o’ poplars at my zide,

An’ there wi’ love that still do live,

Your feäce did wear the smile o’ youth,

The while you spoke wi’ age’s truth,

An’ wi’ a rwosebud’s mossy ball,

I deck’d your bosom vrom the wall.

Ah! well-a-day! O wall adieu!

The wall is wold, my grief is new.

But now when winter’s raïn do vall,

An’ wind do beät ageän the hall,

The while upon the wat’ry wall

In spots o’ grey the moss do grow;

The ruf noo mwore shall overspread

The pillor ov our weary head,

Nor shall the rwose’s mossy ball

Behang vor you the house’s wall.

Ah! well-a-day! O wall adieu!

The wall is wold, my grief is new.

Bleäke’s House in Blackmwore.

John Bleäke he had a bit o’ ground

Come to en by his mother’s zide;

An’ after that, two hunderd pound

His uncle left en when he died;

“Well now,” cried John, “my mind’s a-bent

To build a house, an’ paÿ noo rent.”

An’ Meäry gi’ed en her consent.

“Do, do,”— the maïdens cried

“True, true,”— his wife replied.

“Done, done — a house o’ brick or stwone,”

Cried merry Bleäke o’ Blackmwore.

Then John he call’d vor men o’ skill,

An’ builders answer’d to his call;

An’ met to reckon, each his bill;

Vor vloor an’ window, ruf an’ wall.

An’ woone did mark it on the groun’,

An’ woone did think, an’ scratch his crown,

An’ reckon work, an’ write it down:

“Zoo, zoo,”— woone treädesman cried,

“True, true,”— woone mwore replied.

“Aye, aye — good work, an’ have good paÿ,”

Cried merry Bleäke o’ Blackmwore.

The work begun, an’ trowels rung,

An’ up the brickèn wall did rise,

An’ up the slantèn refters sprung,

Wi’ busy blows, an’ lusty cries!

An’ woone brought planks to meäke a vloor,

An’ woone did come wi’ durns or door,

An’ woone did zaw, an’ woone did bore,

“Brick, brick — there down below,

Quick, quick — why b’ye so slow?”

“Lime, lime — why we do weäste the time,

Vor merry Bleäke o’ Blackmwore.”

The house wer up vrom groun’ to tun,

An’ thatch’d ageän the raïny sky,

Wi’ windows to the noonday zun,

Where rushy Stour do wander by.

In coo’se he had a pworch to screen

The inside door, when win’s wer keen,

An’ out avore the pworch, a green.

“Here! here!”— the childern cried:

“Dear! dear!”— the wife replied;

“There, there — the house is perty feäir,”

Cried merry Bleäke o’ Blackmwore.

Then John he ax’d his friends to warm

His house, an’ they, a goodish batch,

Did come alwone, or eärm in eärm,

All roads, a-meäkèn vor his hatch:

An’ there below the clavy beam

The kettle-spout did zing an’ steam;

An’ there wer ceäkes, an’ tea wi’ cream.

“Lo! lo!”— the women cried;

“Ho! ho!”— the men replied;

“Health, health — attend ye wi’ your wealth,

Good merry Bleäke o’ Blackmwore.”

Then John, a-praïs’d, flung up his crown,

All back a-laughèn in a roar.

They praïs’d his wife, an’ she look’d down

A-simperèn towards the vloor.

Then up they sprung a-dancèn reels,

An’ up went tooes, an’ up went heels,

A-windèn roun’ in knots an’ wheels.

“Brisk, brisk,”— the maïdens cried;

“Frisk, frisk,”— the men replied;

“Quick, quick — there wi’ your fiddle-stick,”

Cried merry Bleäke o’ Blackmwore.

An’ when the morrow’s zun did sheen,

John Bleäke beheld, wi’ jaÿ an’ pride,

His brickèn house, an’ pworch, an’ green,

Above the Stour’s rushy zide.

The zwallows left the lwonesome groves,

To build below the thatchèn oves,

An’ robins come vor crumbs o’ lwoaves:

“Tweet, tweet,”— the birds all cried;

“Sweet, sweet,”— John’s wife replied;

“Dad, dad,”— the childern cried so glad,

To merry Bleäke o’ Blackmwore.

John Bleäke at Hwome at Night.

No: where the woak do overspread,

The grass begloom’d below his head,

An’ water, under bowèn zedge,

A-springèn vrom the river’s edge,

Do ripple, as the win’ do blow,

An’ sparkle, as the sky do glow;

An’ grey-leav’d withy-boughs do cool,

Wi’ darksome sheädes, the clear-feäced pool,

My chimny smoke, ’ithin the lew

O’ trees is there arisèn blue;

Avore the night do dim our zight,

Or candle-light, a-sheenèn bright,

Do sparkle drough the window.

When crumpled leaves o’ Fall do bound

Avore the wind, along the ground,

An’ wither’d bennet-stems do stand

A-quiv’rèn on the chilly land;

The while the zun, wi’ zettèn rim,

Do leäve the workman’s pathway dim;

An’ sweet-breath’d childern’s hangèn heads

Be laid wi’ kisses, on their beds;

Then I do seek my woodland nest,

An’ zit bezide my vier at rest,

While night’s a-spread, where day’s a-vled,

An’ lights do shed their beams o’ red,

A-sparklèn drough the window.

If winter’s whistlèn winds do vreeze

The snow a-gather’d on the trees,

An’ sheädes o’ poplar stems do vall

In moonlight up athirt the wall;

An’ icicles do hang below

The oves, a-glitt’rèn in a row,

An’ risèn stars do slowly ride

Above the ruf’s upslantèn zide;

Then I do lay my weary head

Asleep upon my peaceful bed,

When middle-night ha’ quench’d the light

Ov embers bright, an’ candles white

A-beamèn drough the window.

Milken Time.

’Twer when the busy birds did vlee,

Wi’ sheenèn wings, vrom tree to tree,

To build upon the mossy lim’,

Their hollow nestes’ rounded rim;

The while the zun, a-zinkèn low,

Did roll along his evenèn bow,

I come along where wide-horn’d cows,

’Ithin a nook, a-screen’d by boughs,

Did stan’ an’ flip the white-hoop’d païls

Wi’ heäiry tufts o’ swingèn taïls;

An’ there wer Jenny Coom a-gone

Along the path a vew steps on.

A-beärèn on her head, upstraïght,

Her païl, wi’ slowly-ridèn waïght,

An’ hoops a-sheenèn, lily-white,

Ageän the evenèn’s slantèn light;

An’ zo I took her païl, an’ left

Her neck a-freed vrom all his heft;

An’ she a-lookèn up an’ down,

Wi’ sheäpely head an’ glossy crown,

Then took my zide, an’ kept my peäce

A-talkèn on wi’ smilèn feäce,

An’ zettèn things in sich a light,

I’d faïn ha’ heär’d her talk all night;

An’ when I brought her milk avore

The geäte, she took it in to door,

An’ if her païl had but allow’d

Her head to vall, she would ha’ bow’d,

An’ still, as ’twer, I had the zight

Ov her sweet smile droughout the night.

When Birds Be Still.

Vor all the zun do leäve the sky,

An’ all the sounds o’ day do die,

An’ noo mwore veet do walk the dim

Vield-path to clim’ the stiel’s bars,

Yeet out below the rizèn stars,

The dark’nèn day mid leäve behind

Woone tongue that I shall always vind,

A-whisperèn kind, when birds be still.

Zoo let the day come on to spread

His kindly light above my head,

Wi’ zights to zee, an’ sounds to hear,

That still do cheer my thoughtvul mind;

Or let en goo, an’ leäve behind

An’ hour to stroll along the gleädes,

Where night do drown the beeches’ sheädes,

On grasses’ bleädes, when birds be still.

Vor when the night do lull the sound

O’ cows a-bleärèn out in ground,

The sh’ill-vaïc’d dog do stan’ an’ bark

’Ithin the dark, bezide the road;

An’ when noo cracklèn waggon’s lwoad

Is in the leäne, the wind do bring

The merry peals that bells do ring

O ding-dong-ding, when birds be still.

Zoo teäke, vor me, the town a-drown’d,

’Ithin a storm o’ rumblèn sound,

An’ gi’e me vaïces that do speak

So soft an’ meek, to souls alwone;

The brook a-gurglèn round a stwone,

An’ birds o’ day a-zingèn clear,

An’ leaves, that I mid zit an’ hear

A-rustlèn near, when birds be still.

Riden Hwome at Night.

Oh! no, I quite injaÿ’d the ride

Behind wold Dobbin’s heavy heels,

Wi’ Jeäne a-prattlèn at my zide,

Above our peäir o’ spinnèn wheels,

As grey-rin’d ashes’ swaÿèn tops

Did creak in moonlight in the copse,

Above the quiv’rèn grass, a-beät

By wind a-blowèn drough the geät.

If weary souls did want their sleep,

They had a-zent vor sleep the night;

Vor vo’k that had a call to keep

Awake, lik’ us, there still wer light.

An’ He that shut the sleepers’ eyes,

A-waïtèn vor the zun to rise,

Ha’ too much love to let em know

The ling’rèn night did goo so slow.

But if my wife did catch a zight

O’ zome queer pollard, or a post,

Poor soul! she took en in her fright

To be a robber or a ghost.

A two-stump’d withy, wi’ a head,

Mus’ be a man wi’ eärms a-spread;

An’ foam o’ water, round a rock,

Wer then a drownèn leädy’s frock.

Zome staddle stwones to bear a mow,

Wer dancèn veäries on the lag;

An’ then a snow-white sheeted cow

Could only be, she thought, their flag,

An owl a-vleèn drough the wood

Wer men on watch vor little good;

An’ geätes a slam’d by wind, did goo,

She thought, to let a robber drough.

But after all, she lik’d the zight

O’ cows asleep in glitt’rèn dew;

An’ brooks that gleam’d below the light,

An’ dim vield paths ’ithout a shoe.

An’ gaïly talk’d bezide my ears,

A-laughèn off her needless fears:

Or had the childern uppermost

In mind, instead o’ thief or ghost.

An’ when our house, wi’ open door,

Did rumble hollow round our heads,

She heästen’d up to tother vloor,

To zee the childern in their beds;

An’ vound woone little head awry,

Wi’ woone a-turn’d toward the sky;

An’ wrung her hands ageän her breast,

A-smilèn at their happy rest.


Where the western zun, unclouded,

Up above the grey hill-tops,

Did sheen drough ashes, lofty sh’ouded

On the turf bezide the copse,

In zummer weather,

We together,

Sorrow-slightèn, work-vorgettèn.

Gambol’d wi’ the zun a-zetten.

There, by flow’ry bows o’ bramble,

Under hedge, in ash-tree sheädes,

The dun-heaïr’d ho’se did slowly ramble

On the grasses’ dewy bleädes,

Zet free o’ lwoads,

An’ stwony rwoads,

Vorgetvul o’ the lashes frettèn,

Grazèn wi’ the zun a-zettèn.

There wer rooks a-beätèn by us

Drough the aïr, in a vlock,

An’ there the lively blackbird, nigh us,

On the meäple bough did rock,

Wi’ ringèn droat,

Where zunlight smote

The yollow boughs o’ zunny hedges

Over western hills’ blue edges.

Waters, drough the meäds a-purlèn,

Glissen’d in the evenèn’s light,

An’ smoke, above the town a-curlèn,

Melted slowly out o’ zight;

An’ there, in glooms

Ov unzunn’d rooms,

To zome, wi’ idle sorrows frettèn,

Zuns did set avore their zettèn.

We were out in geämes and reäces,

Loud a-laughèn, wild in me’th,

Wi’ windblown heäir, an’ zunbrown’d feäces,

Leäpen on the high-sky’d e’th,

Avore the lights

Wer tin’d o’ nights,

An’ while the gossamer’s light nettèn

Sparkled to the zun a-zettèn.


Now the zunny aïr’s a-blowèn

Softly over flowers a-growèn;

An’ the sparklèn light do quiver

On the ivy-bough an’ river;

Bleätèn lambs, wi’ woolly feäces,

Now do plaÿ, a-runnèn reäces;

An’ the springèn

Lark’s a-zingèn,

Lik’ a dot avore the cloud,

High above the ashes sh’oud.

Housèn, in the open brightness,

Now do sheen in spots o’ whiteness;

Here an’ there, on upland ledges,

In among the trees an’ hedges,

Where, along by vlocks o’ sparrows,

Chatt’rèn at the ploughman’s harrows.

Dousty rwoaded,


Jenny, though her cloak is thin,

Do wish en hwome upon the pin.

Zoo come along, noo longer heedvul

Ov the viër, leätely needvul,

Over grass o’ slopèn leäzes,

Zingèn zongs in zunny breezes;

Out to work in copse, a-mootèn,

Where the primrwose is a-shootèn,

An in gladness,

Free o’ sadness,

In the warmth o’ Spring vorget

Leafless winter’s cwold an’ wet.

The Zummer Hedge.

As light do gleäre in ev’ry ground,

Wi’ boughy hedges out a-round

A-climmèn up the slopèn brows

O’ hills, in rows o’ sheädy boughs:

The while the hawthorn buds do blow

As thick as stars, an’ white as snow;

Or cream-white blossoms be a-spread

About the guelder-rwoses’ head;

How cool’s the sheäde, or warm’s the lewth,

Bezide a zummer hedge in blooth.

When we’ve a-work’d drough longsome hours,

Till dew’s a-dried vrom dazzlèn flow’rs,

The while the climmèn zun ha’ glow’d

Drough mwore than half his daily road:

Then where the sheädes do slily pass

Athirt our veet upon the grass,

As we do rest by lofty ranks

Ov elems on the flow’ry banks;

How cool’s the sheäde, or warm’s the lewth,

Bezide a zummer hedge in blooth.

But oh! below woone hedge’s zide

Our jaÿ do come a-most to pride;

Out where the high-stemm’d trees do stand,

In row bezide our own free land,

An’ where the wide-leav’d clote mid zwim

’Ithin our water’s rushy rim:

An’ raïn do vall, an’ zuns do burn,

An’ each in season, and in turn,

To cool the sheäde or warm the lewth

Ov our own zummer hedge in blooth.

How soft do sheäke the zummer hedge —

How soft do sway the zummer zedge —

How bright be zummer skies an’ zun —

How bright the zummer brook do run;

An’ feäir the flow’rs do bloom, to feäde

Behind the swaÿen mower’s bleäde;

An’ sweet be merry looks o’ jaÿ,

By weäles an’ pooks o’ June’s new haÿ,

Wi’ smilèn age, an laughèn youth,

Bezide the zummer hedge in blooth.

The Water Crowvoot.

O’ small-feäc’d flow’r that now dost bloom

To stud wi’ white the shallow Frome,

An’ leäve the clote to spread his flow’r

On darksome pools o’ stwoneless Stour,

When sof’ly-rizèn aïrs do cool

The water in the sheenèn pool,

Thy beds o’ snow-white buds do gleam

So feäir upon the sky-blue stream,

As whitest clouds, a-hangèn high

Avore the blueness o’ the sky;

An’ there, at hand, the thin-heäir’d cows,

In aïry sheädes o’ withy boughs,

Or up bezide the mossy raïls,

Do stan’ an’ zwing their heavy taïls,

The while the ripplèn stream do flow

Below the dousty bridge’s bow;

An’ quiv’rèn water-gleams do mock

The weäves, upon the sheäded rock;

An’ up athirt the copèn stwone

The laïtren bwoy do leän alwone,

A-watchèn, wi’ a stedvast look,

The vallèn waters in the brook,

The while the zand o’ time do run

An’ leäve his errand still undone.

An’ oh! as long’s thy buds would gleam

Above the softly-slidèn stream,

While sparklèn zummer-brooks do run

Below the lofty-climèn zun,

I only wish that thou could’st staÿ

Vor noo man’s harm, an’ all men’s jaÿ.

But no, the waterman ’ull weäde

Thy water wi’ his deadly bleäde,

To slay thee even in thy bloom,

Fair small-feäced flower o’ the Frome.

The Lilac.

Dear lilac-tree, a-spreadèn wide

Thy purple blooth on ev’ry zide,

As if the hollow sky did shed

Its blue upon thy flow’ry head;

Oh! whether I mid sheäre wi’ thee

Thy open aïr, my bloomèn tree,

Or zee thy blossoms vrom the gloom,

’Ithin my zunless workèn-room,

My heart do leäp, but leäp wi’ sighs,

At zight o’ thee avore my eyes,

For when thy grey-blue head do swaÿ

In cloudless light, ’tis Spring, ’tis Maÿ.

’Tis Spring, ’tis Maÿ, as Maÿ woonce shed

His glowèn light above thy head —

When thy green boughs, wi’ bloomy tips,

Did sheäde my childern’s laughèn lips;

A-screenèn vrom the noonday gleäre

Their rwosy cheäks an’ glossy heäir;

The while their mother’s needle sped,

Too quick vor zight, the snow-white thread,

Unless her han’, wi’ lovèn ceäre,

Did smooth their little heads o’ heäir;

Or wi’ a sheäke, tie up anew

Vor zome wild voot, a slippèn shoe;

An’ I did leän bezide thy mound

Ageän the deäsy-dappled ground,

The while the woaken clock did tick

My hour o’ rest away too quick,

An’ call me off to work anew,

Wi’ slowly-ringèn strokes, woone, two.

Zoo let me zee noo darksome cloud

Bedim today thy flow’ry sh’oud,

But let en bloom on ev’ry spraÿ,

Drough all the days o’ zunny Maÿ.

The Blackbird.

’Twer out at Penley I’d a-past

A zummer day that went too vast,

An’ when the zettèn zun did spread

On western clouds a vi’ry red;

The elems’ leafy limbs wer still

Above the gravel-bedded rill,

An’ under en did warble sh’ill,

Avore the dusk, the blackbird.

An’ there, in sheädes o’ darksome yews,

Did vlee the maïdens on their tooes,

A-laughèn sh’ill wi’ merry feäce

When we did vind their hidèn pleäce.

’Ithin the loose-bough’d ivys gloom,

Or lofty lilac, vull in bloom,

Or hazzle-wrides that gi’ed em room

Below the zingèn blackbird.

Above our heads the rooks did vlee

To reach their nested elem-tree,

An’ splashèn vish did rise to catch

The wheelèn gnots above the hatch;

An’ there the miller went along,

A-smilèn, up the sheädy drong,

But yeet too deaf to hear the zong

A-zung us by the blackbird.

An’ there the sh’illy-bubblèn brook

Did leäve behind his rocky nook,

To run drough meäds a-chill’d wi’ dew,

Vrom hour to hour the whole night drough;

But still his murmurs wer a-drown’d

By vaïces that mid never sound

Ageän together on that ground,

Wi’ whislèns o’ the blackbird.

The Slantèn Light O’ Fall.

Ah! Jeäne, my maïd, I stood to you,

When you wer christen’d, small an’ light,

Wi’ tiny eärms o’ red an’ blue,

A-hangèn in your robe o’ white.

We brought ye to the hallow’d stwone,

Vor Christ to teäke ye vor his own,

When harvest work wer all a-done,

An’ time brought round October zun —

The slantèn light o’ Fall.

An’ I can mind the wind wer rough,

An’ gather’d clouds, but brought noo storms,

An’ you did nessle warm enough,

’Ithin your smilèn mother’s eärms.

The whindlèn grass did quiver light,

Among the stubble, feäded white,

An’ if at times the zunlight broke

Upon the ground, or on the vo’k,

’Twer slantèn light o’ Fall.

An’ when we brought ye drough the door

O’ Knapton Church, a child o’ greäce,

There cluster’d round a’most a score

O’ vo’k to zee your tiny feäce.

An’ there we all did veel so proud,

To zee an’ op’nèn in the cloud,

An’ then a stream o’ light break drough,

A-sheenèn brightly down on you —

The slantèn light o’ Fall.

But now your time’s a-come to stand

In church, a-blushèn at my zide,

The while a bridegroom vrom my hand

Ha’ took ye vor his faïthvul bride.

Your christèn neäme we gi’d ye here,

When Fall did cool the weästèn year;

An’ now, ageän, we brought ye drough

The doorway, wi’ your surneäme new,

In slantèn light o’ Fall.

An’ zoo vur, Jeäne, your life is feäir,

An’ God ha’ been your steadvast friend,

An’ mid ye have mwore jaÿ than ceäre,

Vor ever, till your journey’s end.

An’ I’ve a-watch’d ye on wi’ pride,

But now I soon mus’ leäve your zide,

Vor you ha’ still life’s spring-tide zun,

But my life, Jeäne, is now a-run

To slantèn light o’ Fall.


The thissledown by wind’s a-roll’d

In Fall along the zunny plaïn,

Did catch the grass, but lose its hold,

Or cling to bennets, but in vaïn.

But when it zwept along the grass,

An’ zunk below the hollow’s edge,

It lay at rest while winds did pass

Above the pit-bescreenèn ledge.

The plaïn ha’ brightness wi’ his strife,

The pit is only dark at best,

There’s pleasure in a worksome life,

An’ sloth is tiresome wi’ its rest.

Zoo, then, I’d sooner beär my peärt,

Ov all the trials vo’k do rue,

Than have a deadness o’ the heart,

Wi’ nothèn mwore to veel or do.

The May-Tree.

I’ve a-come by the Maÿ-tree all times o’ the year,

When leaves wer a-springèn,

When vrost wer a-stingèn,

When cool-winded mornèn did show the hills clear,

When night wer bedimmèn the vields vur an’ near.

When, in zummer, his head wer as white as a sheet,

Wi’ white buds a-zwellèn,

An’ blossom, sweet-smellèn,

While leaves wi’ green leaves on his bough-zides did meet,

A-sheädèn the deäisies down under our veet.

When the zun, in the Fall, wer a-wanderèn wan,

An’ haws on his head

Did sprinkle en red,

Or bright drops o’ raïn wer a-hung loosely on,

To the tips o’ the sprigs when the scud wer a-gone.

An’ when, in the winter, the zun did goo low,

An’ keen win’ did huffle,

But never could ruffle

The hard vrozen feäce o’ the water below,

His limbs wer a-fringed wi’ the vrost or the snow.

Lydlinch Bells.

When skies wer peäle wi’ twinklèn stars,

An’ whislèn aïr a-risèn keen;

An’ birds did leäve the icy bars

To vind, in woods, their mossy screen;

When vrozen grass, so white’s a sheet,

Did scrunchy sharp below our veet,

An’ water, that did sparkle red

At zunzet, wer a-vrozen dead;

The ringers then did spend an hour

A-ringèn changes up in tow’r;

Vor Lydlinch bells be good vor sound,

An’ liked by all the naïghbours round.

An’ while along the leafless boughs

O’ ruslèn hedges, win’s did pass,

An’ orts ov haÿ, a-left by cows,

Did russle on the vrozen grass,

An’ maïdens’ païls, wi’ all their work

A-done, did hang upon their vurk,

An’ they, avore the fleämèn brand,

Did teäke their needle-work in hand,

The men did cheer their heart an hour

A-ringèn changes up in tow’r;

Vor Lydlinch bells be good vor sound,

An’ liked by all the naïghbours round.

There sons did pull the bells that rung

Their mothers’ weddèn peals avore,

The while their fathers led em young

An’ blushèn vrom the churches door,

An’ still did cheem, wi’ happy sound,

As time did bring the Zundays round,

An’ call em to the holy pleäce

Vor heav’nly gifts o’ peace an’ greäce;

An’ vo’k did come, a-streamèn slow

Along below the trees in row,

While they, in merry peals, did sound

The bells vor all the naïghbours round.

An’ when the bells, wi’ changèn peal,

Did smite their own vo’ks window-peänes,

Their sof’en’d sound did often steal

Wi’ west winds drough the Bagber leänes;

Or, as the win’ did shift, mid goo

Where woody Stock do nessle lew,

Or where the risèn moon did light

The walls o’ Thornhill on the height;

An’ zoo, whatever time mid bring

To meäke their vive clear vaïces zing,

Still Lydlinch bells wer good vor sound,

An’ liked by all the naïghbours round.

The Stage Coach.

Ah! when the wold vo’k went abroad

They thought it vast enough,

If vow’r good ho’ses beät the road

Avore the coach’s ruf;

An’ there they zot,

A-cwold or hot,

An’ roll’d along the ground,

While the whip did smack

On the ho’ses’ back,

An’ the wheels went swiftly round, Good so’s;

The wheels went swiftly round.

Noo iron raïls did streak the land

To keep the wheels in track.

The coachman turn’d his vow’r-inhand,

Out right, or left, an’ back;

An’ he’d stop avore

A man’s own door,

To teäke en up or down:

While the reïns vell slack

On the ho’ses’ back,

Till the wheels did rottle round ageän;

Till the wheels did rottle round.

An’ there, when wintry win’ did blow,

Athirt the plaïn an’ hill,

An’ the zun wer peäle above the snow,

An’ ice did stop the mill,

They did laugh an’ joke

Wi’ cwoat or cloke,

So warmly roun’ em bound,

While the whip did crack

On the ho’ses’ back,

An’ the wheels did trundle round, d’ye know;

The wheels did trundle round.

An’ when the rumblèn coach did pass

Where hufflèn winds did roar,

They’d stop to teäke a warmèn glass

By the sign above the door;

An’ did laugh an’ joke

An’ ax the vo’k

The miles they wer vrom town,

Till the whip did crack

On the ho’ses back,

An’ the wheels did truckle roun’, good vo’k;

The wheels did truckle roun’.

An’ gaïly rod wold age or youth,

When zummer light did vall

On woods in leaf, or trees in blooth,

Or girt vo’ks parkzide wall.

An’ they thought they past

The pleäces vast,

Along the dousty groun’,

When the whip did smack

On the ho’ses’ back,

An’ the wheels spun swiftly roun’. Them days

The wheels spun swiftly roun’.


The sky wer clear, the zunsheen glow’d

On droopèn flowers drough the day,

As I did beät the dousty road

Vrom hinder hills, a-feädèn gray;

Drough hollows up the hills,

Vrom knaps along by mills,

Vrom mills by churches tow’rs, wi’ bells

That twold the hours to woody dells.

An’ when the windèn road do guide

The thirsty vootman where mid flow

The water vrom a rock bezide

His vootsteps, in a sheenèn bow;

The hand a-hollow’d up

Do beät a goolden cup,

To catch an’ drink it, bright an’ cool,

A-vallèn light ’ithin the pool.

Zoo when, at last, I hung my head

Wi’ thirsty lips a-burnèn dry,

I come bezide a river-bed

Where water flow’d so blue’s the sky;

An’ there I meäde me up

O’ coltsvoot leaf a cup,

Where water vrom his lip o’ gray,

Wer sweet to sip thik burnèn day.

But when our work is right, a jaÿ

Do come to bless us in its traïn,

An’ hardships ha’ zome good to paÿ

The thoughtvul soul vor all their päin:

The het do sweetèn sheäde,

An’ weary lim’s ha’ meäde

A bed o’ slumber, still an’ sound,

By woody hill or grassy mound.

An’ while I zot in sweet delay

Below an elem on a hill,

Where boughs a-halfway up did swaÿ

In sheädes o’ lim’s above em still,

An’ blue sky show’d between

The flutt’rèn leäves o’ green;

I woulden gi’e that gloom an’ sheäde

Vor any room that weälth ha’ meäde.

But oh! that vo’k that have the roads

Where weary-vooted souls do pass,

Would leäve bezide the stwone vor lwoads,

A little strip vor zummer grass;

That when the stwones do bruise

An’ burn an’ gall our tooes,

We then mid cool our veet on beds

O’ wild-thyme sweet, or deäisy-heads.

The Leane.

They do zay that a travellèn chap

Have a-put in the newspeäper now,

That the bit o’ green ground on the knap

Should be all a-took in vor the plough.

He do fancy ’tis easy to show

That we can be but stunpolls at best,

Vor to leäve a green spot where a flower can grow,

Or a voot-weary walker mid rest.

Tis hedge-grubbèn, Thomas, an’ ledge-grubbèn,

Never a-done

While a sov’rèn mwore’s to be won.

The road, he do zay, is so wide

As ’tis wanted vor travellers’ wheels,

As if all that did travel did ride

An’ did never get galls on their heels.

He would leäve sich a thin strip o’ groun’,

That, if a man’s veet in his shoes

Wer a-burnèn an’ zore, why he coulden zit down

But the wheels would run over his tooes.

Vor ’tis meäke money, Thomas, an’ teäke money,

What’s zwold an’ bought

Is all that is worthy o’ thought.

Years agoo the leäne-zides did bear grass,

Vor to pull wi’ the geeses’ red bills,

That did hiss at the vo’k that did pass,

Or the bwoys that pick’d up their white quills.

But shortly, if vower or vive

Ov our goslèns do creep vrom the agg,

They must mwope in the geärden, mwore dead than alive,

In a coop, or a-tied by the lag.

Vor to catch at land, Thomas, an’ snatch at land,

Now is the plan;

Meäke money wherever you can.

The childern wull soon have noo pleäce

Vor to plaÿ in, an’ if they do grow,

They wull have a thin musheroom feäce,

Wi’ their bodies so sumple as dough.

But a man is a-meäde ov a child,

An’ his limbs do grow worksome by plaÿ;

An’ if the young child’s little body’s a-spweil’d,

Why, the man’s wull the sooner decaÿ.

But wealth is wo’th now mwore than health is wo’th;

Let it all goo,

If’t ’ull bring but a sov’rèn or two.

Vor to breed the young fox or the heäre,

We can gi’e up whole eäcres o’ ground,

But the greens be a-grudg’d, vor to rear

Our young childern up healthy an’ sound,

Why, there woont be a-left the next age

A green spot where their veet can goo free;

An’ the goocoo wull soon be committed to cage

Vor a trespass in zomebody’s tree.

Vor ’tis lockèn up, Thomas, an’ blockèn up,

Stranger or brother,

Men mussen come nigh woone another.

Woone day I went in at a geäte,

Wi’ my child, where an echo did sound,

An’ the owner come up, an’ did reäte

Me as if I would car off his ground.

But his vield an’ the grass wer a-let,

An’ the damage that he could a-took

Wer at mwost that the while I did open the geäte

I did rub roun’ the eye on the hook.

But ’tis drevèn out, Thomas, an’ hevèn out.

Trample noo grounds,

Unless you be after the hounds.

Ah! the Squiër o’ Culver-dell Hall

Wer as diff’rent as light is vrom dark,

Wi’ zome vo’k that, as evenèn did vall,

Had a-broke drough long grass in his park;

Vor he went, wi’ a smile, vor to meet

Wi’ the trespassers while they did pass,

An’ he zaid, “I do fear you’ll catch cwold in your veet,

You’ve a-walk’d drough so much o’ my grass.”

His mild words, Thomas, cut em like swords, Thomas,

Newly a-whet,

An’ went vurder wi’ them than a dreat.

The Railroad.

I took a flight, awhile agoo,

Along the raïls, a stage or two,

An’ while the heavy wheels did spin

An’ rottle, wi’ a deafnèn din,

In clouds o’ steam, the zweepèn traïn

Did shoot along the hill-bound plaïn,

As sheädes o’ birds in flight, do pass

Below em on the zunny grass.

An’ as I zot, an’ look’d abrode

On leänen land an’ windèn road,

The ground a-spread along our flight

Did vlee behind us out o’ zight;

The while the zun, our heav’nly guide,

Did ride on wi’ us, zide by zide.

An’ zoo, while time, vrom stage to stage,

Do car us on vrom youth to age,

The e’thly pleasures we do vind

Be soon a-met, an’ left behind;

But God, beholdèn vrom above

Our lowly road, wi’ yearnèn love,

Do keep bezide us, stage by stage,

Vrom be’th to youth, vrom youth to age.

The Railroad.

An’ while I went ’ithin a traïn,

A-ridèn on athirt the plaïn,

A-cleären swifter than a hound,

On twin-laid rails, the zwimmèn ground;

I cast my eyes ’ithin a park,

Upon a woak wi’ grey-white bark,

An’ while I kept his head my mark,

The rest did wheel around en.

An’ when in life our love do cling

The clwosest round zome single thing,

We then do vind that all the rest

Do wheel roun’ that, vor vu’st an’ best;

Zoo while our life do last, mid nought

But what is good an’ feäir be sought,

In word or deed, or heart or thought,

An’ all the rest wheel round it.


When starbright maïdens be to zit

In silken frocks, that they do wear,

The room mid have, as ’tis but fit,

A han’some seat vor vo’k so feäir;

But we, in zun-dried vield an’ wood,

Ha’ seats as good’s a goolden chair.

Vor here, ’ithin the woody drong,

A ribbèd elem-stem do lie,

A-vell’d in Spring, an’ stratch’d along

A bed o’ grægles up knee-high,

A sheädy seat to rest, an’ let

The burnèn het o’ noon goo by.

Or if you’d look, wi’ wider scope,

Out where the gray-tree’d plaïn do spread,

The ash bezide the zunny slope,

Do sheäde a cool-aïr’d deäisy bed,

An’ grassy seat, wi’ spreadèn eaves

O’ rus’lèn leaves, above your head.

An’ there the traïn mid come in zight,

Too vur to hear a-rollèn by,

A-breathèn quick, in heästy flight,

His breath o’ tweil, avore the sky,

The while the waggon, wi’ his lwoad,

Do crawl the rwoad a-windèn nigh.

Or now theäse happy holiday

Do let vo’k rest their weäry lim’s,

An’ lwoaded hay’s a-hangèn gray,

Above the waggon-wheels’ dry rims,

The meäd ha’ seats in weäles or pooks,

By windèn brooks, wi’ crumblèn brims.

Or if you’d gi’e your thoughtvul mind

To yonder long-vorseäken hall,

Then teäke a stwonèn seat behind

The ivy on the broken wall,

An’ learn how e’thly wealth an’ might

Mid clim’ their height, an’ then mid vall.

Sound O’ Water.

I born in town! oh no, my dawn

O’ life broke here beside theäse lawn;

Not where pent aïr do roll along,

In darkness drough the wall-bound drong,

An’ never bring the goo-coo’s zong,

Nor sweets o’ blossoms in the hedge,

Or bendèn rush, or sheenèn zedge,

Or sounds o’ flowèn water.

The aïr that I’ve a-breath’d did sheäke

The draps o’ raïn upon the breäke,

An’ bear aloft the swingèn lark,

An’ huffle roun’ the elem’s bark,

In boughy grove, an’ woody park,

An’ brought us down the dewy dells,

The high-wound zongs o’ nightingeäles.

An’ sounds o’ flowèn water.

An’ when the zun, wi’ vi’ry rim,

’S a-zinkèn low, an’ wearèn dim,

Here I, a-most too tired to stand,

Do leäve my work that’s under hand

In pathless wood or oben land,

To rest ’ithin my thatchèn oves,

Wi’ ruslèn win’s in leafy groves,

An’ sounds o’ flowèn water.

Trees Be Company.

When zummer’s burnèn het’s a-shed

Upon the droopèn grasses head,

A-drevèn under sheädy leaves

The workvo’k in their snow-white sleeves,

We then mid yearn to clim’ the height,

Where thorns be white, above the vern;

An’ aïr do turn the zunsheen’s might

To softer light too weak to burn —

On woodless downs we mid be free,

But lowland trees be company.

Though downs mid show a wider view

O’ green a-reachèn into blue

Than roads a-windèn in the glen,

An’ ringèn wi’ the sounds o’ men;

The thissle’s crown o’ red an’ blue

In Fall’s cwold dew do wither brown,

An’ larks come down ’ithin the lew,

As storms do brew, an’ skies do frown —

An’ though the down do let us free,

The lowland trees be company.

Where birds do zing, below the zun,

In trees above the blue-smok’d tun,

An’ sheädes o’ stems do overstratch

The mossy path ’ithin the hatch;

If leaves be bright up over head,

When Maÿ do shed its glitt’rèn light;

Or, in the blight o’ Fall, do spread

A yollow bed avore our zight —

Whatever season it mid be,

The trees be always company.

When dusky night do nearly hide

The path along the hedge’s zide,

An’ dailight’s hwomely sounds be still

But sounds o’ water at the mill;

Then if noo feäce we long’d to greet

Could come to meet our lwonesome treäce

Or if noo peäce o’ weary veet,

However fleet, could reach its pleäce —

However lwonesome we mid be,

The trees would still be company.

A Pleäce in Zight.

As I at work do look aroun’

Upon the groun’ I have in view,

To yonder hills that still do rise

Avore the skies, wi’ backs o’ blue;

’Ithin the ridges that do vall

An’ rise roun’ Blackmwore lik’ a wall,

’Tis yonder knap do teäke my zight

Vrom dawn till night, the mwost ov all.

An’ there, in Maÿ, ’ithin the lewth

O’ boughs in blooth, be sheädy walks,

An’ cowslips up in yollow beds

Do hang their heads on downy stalks;

An’ if the weather should be feäir

When I’ve a holiday to speäre,

I’ll teäke the chance o’ gettèn drough

An hour or two wi’ zome vo’k there.

An’ there I now can dimly zee

The elem-tree upon the mound,

An’ there meäke out the high-bough’d grove

An’ narrow drove by Redcliff ground;

An’ there by trees a-risèn tall,

The glowèn zunlight now do vall,

Wi’ shortest sheädes o’ middle day,

Upon the gray wold house’s wall.

An’ I can zee avore the sky

A-risèn high the churches speer,

Wi’ bells that I do goo to swing,

An’ like to ring, an’ like to hear;

An’ if I’ve luck upon my zide,

They bells shall sound bwoth loud an’ wide,

A peal above they slopes o’ gray,

Zome merry day wi’ Jeäne a bride.

Gwain to Brookwell.

At Easter, though the wind wer high,

We vound we had a zunny sky,

An’ zoo wold Dobbin had to trudge

His dousty road by knap an’ brudge,

An’ jog, wi’ hangèn vetterlocks

A-sheäkèn roun’ his heavy hocks,

An’ us, a lwoad not much too small,

A-ridèn out to Brookwell Hall;

An’ there in doust vrom Dobbin’s heels,

An’ green light-waggon’s vower wheels,

Our merry laughs did loudly sound,

In rollèn winds athirt the ground;

While sheenèn-ribbons’ color’d streäks

Did flutter roun’ the maïdens’ cheäks,

As they did zit, wi’ smilèn lips,

A-reachèn out their vinger-tips

Toward zome teäkèn pleäce or zight

That they did shew us, left or right;

An’ woonce, when Jimmy tried to pleäce

A kiss on cousin Polly’s feäce,

She push’d his hat, wi’ wicked leers,

Right off above his two red ears,

An’ there he roll’d along the groun’

Wi’ spreadèn brim an’ rounded crown,

An’ vound, at last, a cowpon’s brim,

An’ launch’d hizzelf, to teäke a zwim;

An’ there, as Jim did run to catch

His neäked noddle’s bit o’ thatch,

To zee his straïnèns an’ his strides,

We laugh’d enough to split our zides.

At Harwood Farm we pass’d the land

That father’s father had in hand,

An’ there, in oben light did spread,

The very groun’s his cows did tread,

An’ there above the stwonèn tun

Avore the dazzlèn mornèn zun,

Wer still the rollèn smoke, the breath

A-breath’d vrom his wold house’s he’th;

An’ there did lie below the door,

The drashol’ that his vootsteps wore;

But there his meäte an’ he bwoth died,

Wi’ hand in hand, an’ zide by zide;

Between the seäme two peals a-rung,

Two Zundays, though they wer but young,

An’ laid in sleep, their worksome hands,

At rest vrom tweil wi’ house or lands.

Then vower childern laid their heads

At night upon their little beds,

An’ never rose ageän below

A mother’s love, or father’s ho:

Dree little maïdens, small in feäce,

An’ woone small bwoy, the fourth in pleäce

Zoo when their heedvul father died,

He call’d his brother to his zide,

To meäke en stand, in hiz own stead,

His childern’s guide, when he wer dead;

But still avore zix years brought round

The woodland goo-coo’s zummer sound,

He weästed all their little store,

An’ hardship drove em out o’ door,

To tweil till tweilsome life should end.

’Ithout a single e’thly friend.

But soon wi’ Harwood back behind,

An’ out o’ zight an’ out o’ mind,

We went a-rottlèn on, an’ meäde

Our way along to Brookwell Sleäde;

An’ then we vound ourselves draw nigh

The Leädy’s Tow’r that rose on high,

An’ seem’d a-comèn on to meet,

Wi’ growèn height, wold Dobbin’s veet.


Well, I do zay ’tis wo’th woone’s while

To beät the doust a good six mile

To zee the pleäce the squier plann’d

At Brookwell, now a-meäde by hand;

Wi’ oben lawn, an’ grove, an’ pon’,

An’ gravel-walks as cleän as bron;

An’ grass a’most so soft to tread

As velvet-pile o’ silken thread;

An’ mounds wi’ mæsh, an’ rocks wi’ flow’rs,

An’ ivy-sheäded zummer bow’rs,

An’ dribblèn water down below

The stwonèn archès lofty bow.

An’ there do sound the watervall

Below a cavern’s maeshy wall,

Where peäle-green light do struggle down

A leafy crevice at the crown.

An’ there do gush the foamy bow

O’ water, white as driven snow:

An’ there, a zittèn all alwone,

A little maïd o’ marble stwone

Do leän her little cheäk azide

Upon her lily han’, an’ bide

Bezide the vallèn stream to zee

Her pitcher vill’d avore her knee.

An’ then the brook, a-rollèn dark

Below a leänèn yew-tree’s bark,

Wi’ plaÿsome ripples that do run

A-flashèn to the western zun,

Do shoot, at last, wi’ foamy shocks,

Athirt a ledge o’ craggy rocks,

A-castèn in his heästy flight,

Upon the stwones a robe o’ white;

An’ then ageän do goo an’ vall

Below a bridge’s archèd wall,

Where vo’k agwaïn athirt do pass

Vow’r little bwoys a-cast in brass;

An’ woone do hold an angler’s wand,

Wi’ steady hand, above the pond;

An’ woone, a-pweïntèn to the stream

His little vinger-tip, do seem

A-showèn to his playmeätes’ eyes,

Where he do zee the vishes rise;

An’ woone ageän, wi’ smilèn lips,

Do put a vish his han’ do clips

’Ithin a basket, loosely tied

About his shoulder at his zide:

An’ after that the fourth do stand

A-holdèn back his pretty hand

Behind his little ear, to drow

A stwone upon the stream below.

An’ then the housèn, that be all

Sich pretty hwomes, vrom big to small,

A-lookèn south, do cluster round

A zunny ledge o’ risèn ground,

Avore a wood, a-nestled warm,

In lewth ageän the northern storm,

Where smoke, a-wreathèn blue, do spread

Above the tuns o’ dusky red,

An’ window-peänes do glitter bright

Wi’ burnèn streams o’ zummer light,

Below the vine, a-traïn’d to hem

Their zides ’ithin his leafy stem,

An’ rangle on, wi’ flutt’rèn leaves,

Below the houses’ thatchen eaves.

An’ drough a lawn a-spread avore

The windows, an’ the pworchèd door,

A path do wind ’ithin a hatch,

A-vastèn’d wi’ a clickèn latch,

An’ there up over ruf an’ tun,

Do stan’ the smooth-wall’d church o’ stwone,

Wi’ carvèd windows, thin an’ tall,

A-reachèn up the lofty wall;

An’ battlements, a-stannèn round

The tower, ninety veet vrom ground,

Vrom where a teäp’rèn speer do spring

So high’s the mornèn lark do zing.

Zoo I do zay ’tis wo’th woone’s while

To beät the doust a good six mile,

To zee the pleäce the squier plann’d

At Brookwell, now a-meäde by hand.

The Shy Man.

Ah! good Meäster Gwillet, that you mid ha’ know’d,

Wer a-bred up at Coomb, an’ went little abroad:

An’ if he got in among strangers, he velt

His poor heart in a twitter, an’ ready to melt;

Or if, by ill luck, in his rambles, he met

Wi’ zome maïdens a-titt’rèn, he burn’d wi’ a het,

That shot all drough the lim’s o’n, an’ left a cwold zweat,

The poor little chap wer so shy,

He wer ready to drap, an’ to die.

But at last ’twer the lot o’ the poor little man

To vall deeply in love, as the best ov us can;

An’ ’twer noo easy task vor a shy man to tell

Sich a dazzlèn feäir maïd that he loved her so well;

An’ woone day when he met her, his knees nearly smote

Woone another, an’ then wi’ a struggle he bro’t

A vew vords to his tongue, wi’ some mwore in his droat.

But she, ’ithout doubt, could soon vind

Vrom two words that come out, zix behind.

Zoo at langth, when he vound her so smilèn an’ kind,

Why he wrote her zome laïns, vor to tell her his mind,

Though ’twer then a hard task vor a man that wer shy,

To be married in church, wi’ a crowd stannèn by.

But he twold her woone day, “I have housen an’ lands,

We could marry by licence, if you don’t like banns,”

An’ he cover’d his eyes up wi’ woone ov his han’s,

Vor his head seem’d to zwim as he spoke,

An’ the aïr look’d so dim as a smoke.

Well! he vound a good naïghbour to goo in his pleäce

Vor to buy the goold ring, vor he hadden the feäce.

An’ when he went up vor to put in the banns,

He did sheäke in his lags, an’ did sheäke in his han’s.

Then they ax’d vor her neäme, an’ her parish or town,

An’ he gi’ed em a leaf, wi’ her neäme a-wrote down;

Vor he coulden ha’ twold em outright, vor a poun’,

Vor his tongue wer so weak an’ so loose,

When he wanted to speak ’twer noo use.

Zoo they went to be married, an’ when they got there

All the vo’k wer a-gather’d as if ’twer a feäir,

An’ he thought, though his pleäce mid be pleazèn to zome,

He could all but ha’ wish’d that he hadden a-come.

The bride wer a-smilèn as fresh as a rwose,

An’ when he come wi’ her, an’ show’d his poor nose.

All the little bwoys shouted, an’ cried “There he goes,”

“There he goes.” Oh! vor his peärt he velt

As if the poor heart o’n would melt.

An’ when they stood up by the chancel together,

Oh! a man mid ha’ knock’d en right down wi’ a veather,

He did veel zoo asheäm’d that he thought he would rather

He wërden the bridegroom, but only the father.

But, though ’tis so funny to zee en so shy,

Yeet his mind is so lowly, his aïms be so high,

That to do a meän deed, or to tell woone a lie,

You’d vind that he’d shun mwore by half,

Than to stan’ vor vo’ks fun, or their laugh.

The Winter’s Willow.

There Liddy zot bezide her cow,

Upon her lowly seat, O;

A hood did overhang her brow,

Her païl wer at her veet, O;

An’ she wer kind, an’ she wer feäir,

An’ she wer young, an’ free o’ ceäre;

Vew winters had a-blow’d her heäir,

Bezide the Winter’s Willow.

She idden woone a-rear’d in town

Where many a gaÿer lass, O,

Do trip a-smilèn up an’ down,

So peäle wi’ smoke an’ gas, O;

But here, in vields o’ greäzèn herds,

Her väice ha’ mingled sweetest words

Wi’ evenèn cheärms o’ busy birds,

Bezide the Winter’s Willow.

An’ when, at last, wi’ beätèn breast,

I knock’d avore her door, O,

She ax’d me in to teäke the best

O’ pleäces on the vloor, O;

An’ smilèn feäir avore my zight,

She blush’d bezide the yollow light

O’ bleäzèn brands, while winds o’ night

Do sheäke the Winter’s Willow.

An’ if there’s readship in her smile,

She don’t begrudge to speäre, O,

To zomebody, a little while,

The empty woaken chair, O;

An’ if I’ve luck upon my zide,

Why, I do think she’ll be my bride

Avore the leaves ha’ twice a-died

Upon the Winter’s Willow.

Above the coach-wheels’ rollèn rims

She never rose to ride, O,

Though she do zet her comely lim’s

Above the mare’s white zide, O;

But don’t become too proud to stoop

An’ scrub her milkèn païl’s white hoop,

Or zit a-milkèn where do droop,

The wet-stemm’d Winter’s Willow.

An’ I’ve a cow or two in leäze,

Along the river-zide, O,

An’ païls to zet avore her knees,

At dawn an’ evenèn-tide, O;

An’ there she still mid zit, an’ look

Athirt upon the woody nook

Where vu’st I zeed her by the brook

Bezide the Winter’s Willow.

Zoo, who would heed the treeless down,

A-beät by all the storms, O,

Or who would heed the busy town,

Where vo’k do goo in zwarms, O;

If he wer in my house below

The elems, where the vier did glow

In Liddy’s feäce, though winds did blow

Ageän the Winter’s Willow.

I Know Who.

Aye, aye, vull rathe the zun mus’ rise

To meäke us tired o’ zunny skies,

A-sheenèn on the whole day drough,

From mornèn’s dawn till evenèn’s dew.

When trees be brown an’ meäds be green,

An’ skies be blue, an’ streams do sheen,

An’ thin-edg’d clouds be snowy white

Above the bluest hills in zight;

But I can let the daylight goo,

When I’ve a-met wi’— I know who.

In Spring I met her by a bed

O’ laurels higher than her head;

The while a rwose hung white between

Her blushes an’ the laurel’s green;

An’ then in Fall, I went along

The row of elems in the drong,

An’ heärd her zing bezide the cows,

By yollow leaves o’ meäple boughs;

But Fall or Spring is feäir to view

When day do bring me — I know who.

An’ when, wi’ wint’r a-comèn roun’,

The purple he’th’s a-feädèn brown,

An’ hangèn vern’s a-sheäkèn dead,

Bezide the hill’s besheäded head:

An’ black-wing’d rooks do glitter bright

Above my head, in peäler light;

Then though the birds do still the glee

That sounded in the zummer tree,

My heart is light the winter drough,

In me’th at night, wi’— I know who.

Jessie Lee.

Above the timber’s bendèn sh’ouds,

The western wind did softly blow;

An’ up avore the knap, the clouds

Did ride as white as driven snow.

Vrom west to east the clouds did zwim

Wi’ wind that plied the elem’s lim’;

Vrom west to east the stream did glide,

A-sheenèn wide, wi’ windèn brim.

How feäir, I thought, avore the sky

The slowly-zwimmèn clouds do look;

How soft the win’s a-streamèn by;

How bright do roll the weävy brook:

When there, a-passèn on my right,

A-waikèn slow, an’ treadèn light,

Young Jessie Lee come by, an’ there

Took all my ceäre, an’ all my zight.

Vor lovely wer the looks her feäce

Held up avore the western sky:

An’ comely wer the steps her peäce

Did meäke a-walkèn slowly by:

But I went east, wi’ beätèn breast,

Wi’ wind, an’ cloud, an’ brook, vor rest,

Wi’ rest a-lost, vor Jessie gone

So lovely on, toward the west.

Blow on, O winds, athirt the hill;

Zwim on, O clouds; O waters vall,

Down mæshy rocks, vrom mill to mill;

I now can overlook ye all.

But roll, O zun, an’ bring to me

My day, if such a day there be,

When zome dear path to my abode

Shall be the road o’ Jessie Lee.

True Love.

As evenèn aïr, in green-treed Spring,

Do sheäke the new-sprung pa’sley bed,

An’ wither’d ash-tree keys do swing

An’ vall a-flutt’rèn roun’ our head:

There, while the birds do zing their zong

In bushes down the ash-tree drong,

Come Jessie Lee, vor sweet’s the pleäce

Your vaïce an’ feäce can meäke vor me.

Below the buddèn ashes’ height

We there can linger in the lew,

While boughs, a-gilded by the light,

Do sheen avore the sky o’ blue:

But there by zettèn zun, or moon

A-risèn, time wull vlee too soon

Wi’ Jessie Lee, vor sweet’s the pleäce

Her vaïce an’ feäce can meäke vor me.

Down where the darksome brook do flow,

Below the bridge’s archèd wall,

Wi’ alders dark, a-leanèn low,

Above the gloomy watervall;

There I’ve a-led ye hwome at night,

Wi’ noo feäce else ’ithin my zight

But yours so feäir, an’ sweet’s the pleäce

Your vaïce an’ feäce ha’ meäde me there.

An’ oh! when other years do come,

An’ zettèn zuns, wi’ yollow gleäre,

Drough western window-peänes, at hwome,

Do light upon my evenèn chair:

While day do weäne, an’ dew do vall,

Be wi’ me then, or else in call,

As time do vlee, vor sweet’s the pleäce

Your vaïce an’ feäce do meäke vor me.

Ah! you do smile, a-thinkèn light

O’ my true words, but never mind;

Smile on, smile on, but still your flight

Would leäve me little jaÿ behind:

But let me not be zoo a-tried

Wi’ you a-lost where I do bide,

O Jessie Lee, in any pleäce

Your vaïce an’ feäce ha’ blest vor me.

I’m sure that when a soul’s a-brought

To this our life ov aïr an’ land,

Woone mwore’s a-mark’d in God’s good thought,

To help, wi’ love, his heart an’ hand.

An’ oh! if there should be in store

An angel here vor my poor door,

’Tis Jessie Lee, vor sweet’s the pleäce

Her vaïce an’ feace can meäke vor me.

The Bean Vield.

’Twer where the zun did warm the lewth,

An’ win’ did whiver in the sheäde,

The sweet-aïr’d beäns were out in blooth,

Down there ’ithin the elem gleäde;

A yollow-banded bee did come,

An’ softly-pitch, wi’ hushèn hum,

Upon a beän, an’ there did sip,

Upon a swaÿèn blossom’s lip:

An’ there cried he, “Aye, I can zee,

This blossom’s all a-zent vor me.”

A-jilted up an’ down, astride

Upon a lofty ho’se a-trot,

The meäster then come by wi’ pride,

To zee the beäns that he’d a-got;

An’ as he zot upon his ho’se,

The ho’se ageän did snort an’ toss

His high-ear’d head, an’ at the zight

Ov all the blossom, black an’ white:

“Ah! ah!” thought he, the seäme’s the bee,

“Theäse beäns be all a-zent vor me.”

Zoo let the worold’s riches breed

A strife o’ claïms, wi’ weak and strong,

Vor now what cause have I to heed

Who’s in the right, or in the wrong;

Since there do come drough yonder hatch,

An’ bloom below the house’s thatch,

The best o’ maïdens, an’ do own

That she is mine, an’ mine alwone:

Zoo I can zee that love do gi’e

The best ov all good gifts to me.

Vor whose be all the crops an’ land

A-won an’ lost, an’ bought, an zwold

Or whose, a-roll’d vrom hand to hand,

The highest money that’s a-twold?

Vrom man to man a passèn on,

’Tis here today, tomorrow gone.

But there’s a blessèn high above

It all — a soul o’ stedvast love:

Zoo let it vlee, if God do gi’e

Sweet Jessie vor a gift to me.

Wold Friends A-Met.

Aye, vull my heart’s blood now do roll,

An’ gaÿ do rise my happy soul,

An’ well they mid, vor here our veet

Avore woone vier ageän do meet;

Vor you’ve avoun’ my feäce, to greet

Wi’ welcome words my startlèn ear.

An’ who be you, but John o’ Weer,

An’ I, but William Wellburn.

Here, light a candle up, to shed

Mwore light upon a wold friend’s head,

An’ show the smile, his feäce woonce mwore

Ha’ brought us vrom another shore.

An’ I’ll heave on a brand avore

The vier back, to meäke good cheer,

O’ roarèn fleämes, vor John o’ Weer

To chat wi’ William Wellburn.

Aye, aye, it mid be true that zome,

When they do wander out vrom hwome,

Do leäve their nearest friends behind,

Bwoth out o’ zight, an’ out o’ mind;

But John an’ I ha’ ties to bind

Our souls together, vur or near,

For, who is he but John o’ Weer.

An’ I, but William Wellburn.

Look, there he is, with twinklèn eyes,

An’ elbows down upon his thighs.

A-chucklèn low, wi’ merry grin.

Though time ha’ roughen’d up his chin,

’Tis still the seäme true soul ’ithin,

As woonce I know’d, when year by year,

Thik very chap, thik John o’ Weer,

Did plaÿ wi’ William Wellburn.

Come, John, come; don’t be dead-alive

Here, reach us out your clust’r o’ vive.

Oh! you be happy. Ees, but that

Woon’t do till you can laugh an’ chat.

Don’t blinky, lik’ a purrèn cat,

But leäp an’ laugh, an’ let vo’k hear

What’s happen’d, min, that John o’ Weer

Ha’ met wi’ William Wellburn.

Vor zome, wi’ selfishness too strong

Vor love, do do each other wrong;

An’ zome do wrangle an’ divide

In hets ov anger, bred o’ pride;

But who do think that time or tide

Can breed ill-will in friends so dear,

As William wer to John o’ Weer,

An’ John to William Wellburn?

If other vo’ks do gleen to zee

How lovèn an’ how glad we be,

What, then, poor souls, they had but vew

Sich happy days, so long agoo,

As they that I’ve a-spent wi’ you;

But they’d hold woone another dear,

If woone o’ them wer John o’ Weer,

An’ tother William Wellburn.


’Twer where my fondest thoughts do light,

At Fifehead, while we spent the night;

The millwheel’s restèn rim wer dry,

An’ houn’s held up their evenèn cry;

An’ lofty, drough the midnight sky,

Above the vo’k, wi’ heavy heads,

Asleep upon their darksome beds,

The stars wer all awake, John.

Noo birds o’ day wer out to spread

Their wings above the gully’s bed,

An’ darkness roun’ the elem-tree

’D a-still’d the charmy childern’s glee.

All he’ths wer cwold but woone, where we

Wer gaÿ, ’tis true, but gaÿ an’ wise,

An’ laugh’d in light o’ maïden’s eyes,

That glissen’d wide awake, John.

An’ when we all, lik’ loosen’d hounds,

Broke out o’ doors, wi’ merry sounds,

Our friends among the plaÿsome team,

All brought us gwäin so vur’s the stream.

But Jeäne, that there, below a gleam

O’ light, watch’d woone o’s out o’ zight;

Vor willènly, vor his “Good night,”

She’d longer bide awake, John.

An’ while up Leighs we stepp’d along

Our grassy path, wi’ joke an’ zong,

There Plumber, wi’ its woody ground,

O’ slopèn knaps a-screen’d around,

Rose dim ’ithout a breath o’ sound,

The wold abode o’ squiers a-gone,

Though while they lay a-sleepèn on,

Their stars wer still awake, John.

Ivy Hall.

If I’ve a-stream’d below a storm,

An’ not a-velt the raïn,

An’ if I ever velt me warm,

In snow upon the plaïn,

’Twer when, as evenèn skies wer dim,

An’ vields below my eyes wer dim,

I went alwone at evenèn-fall,

Athirt the vields to Ivy Hall.

I voun’ the wind upon the hill,

Last night, a-roarèn loud,

An’ rubbèn boughs a-creakèn sh’ill

Upon the ashes’ sh’oud;

But oh! the reelèn copse mid groan;

An’ timber’s lofty tops mid groan;

The hufflèn winds be music all,

Bezide my road to Ivy Hall.

A sheädy grove o’ ribbèd woaks,

Is Wootton’s shelter’d nest,

An’ woaks do keep the winter’s strokes

Vrom Knapton’s evenèn rest.

An’ woaks ageän wi’ bossy stems,

An’ elems wi’ their mossy stems,

Do rise to screen the leafy wall

An’ stwonèn ruf ov Ivy Hall.

The darksome clouds mid fling their sleet.

An’ vrost mid pinch me blue,

Or snow mid cling below my veet,

An’ hide my road vrom view.

The winter’s only jaÿ ov heart,

An’ storms do meäke me gaÿ ov heart,

When I do rest, at evenèn-fall,

Bezide the he’th ov Ivy Hall.

There leafy stems do clim’ around

The mossy stwonèn eaves;

An’ there be window-zides a-bound

Wi’ quiv’rèn ivy-leaves.

But though the sky is dim ’ithout,

An’ feäces mid be grim ’ithout,

Still I ha’ smiles when I do call,

At evenèn-tide, at Ivy Hall.

False Friends-Like.

When I wer still a bwoy, an’ mother’s pride,

A bigger bwoy spoke up to me so kind-like,

“If you do like, I’ll treat ye wi’ a ride

In theäse wheel-barrow here.” Zoo I wer blind-like

To what he had a-workèn in his mind-like,

An’ mounted vor a passenger inside;

An’ comèn to a puddle, perty wide,

He tipp’d me in, a-grinnèn back behind-like.

Zoo when a man do come to me so thick-like,

An’ sheäke my hand, where woonce he pass’d me by,

An’ tell me he would do me this or that,

I can’t help thinkèn o’ the big bwoy’s trick-like.

An’ then, vor all I can but wag my hat

An’ thank en, I do veel a little shy.

The Bachelor.

No! I don’t begrudge en his life,

Nor his goold, nor his housen, nor lands;

Teäke all o’t, an’ gi’e me my wife,

A wife’s be the cheapest ov hands.

Lie alwone! sigh alwone! die alwone!

Then be vorgot.

No! I be content wi’ my lot.

Ah! where be the vingers so feäir,

Vor to pat en so soft on the feäce,

To mend ev’ry stitch that do tear,

An’ keep ev’ry button in pleäce?

Crack a-tore! brack a-tore! back a-tore!

Buttons a-vled!

Vor want ov a wife wi’ her thread.

Ah! where is the sweet-perty head

That do nod till he’s gone out o’ zight?

An’ where be the two eärms a-spread,

To show en he’s welcome at night?

Dine alwone! pine alwone! whine alwone!

Oh! what a life!

I’ll have a friend in a wife.

An’ when vrom a meetèn o’ me’th

Each husban’ do leäd hwome his bride,

Then he do slink hwome to his he’th,

Wi’ his eärm a-hung down his cwold zide.

Slinkèn on! blinkèn on! thinkèn on!

Gloomy an’ glum;

Nothèn but dullness to come.

An’ when he do onlock his door,

Do rumble as hollow’s a drum,

An’ the veäries a-hid roun’ the vloor,

Do grin vor to see en so glum.

Keep alwone! sleep alwone! weep alwone!

There let en bide,

I’ll have a wife at my zide.

But when he’s a-laid on his bed

In a zickness, O, what wull he do!

Vor the hands that would lift up his head,

An’ sheäke up his pillor anew.

Ills to come! pills to come! bills to come!

Noo soul to sheäre

The trials the poor wratch must bear.

Married Peäir’s Love Walk.

Come let’s goo down the grove to-night;

The moon is up, ’tis all so light

As day, an’ win’ do blow enough

To sheäke the leaves, but tiddèn rough.

Come, Esther, teäke, vor wold time’s seäke,

Your hooded cloke, that’s on the pin,

An’ wrap up warm, an’ teäke my eärm,

You’ll vind it better out than in.

Come, Etty dear; come out o’ door,

An’ teäke a sweetheart’s walk woonce mwore.

How charmèn to our very souls,

Wer woonce your evenèn maïden strolls,

The while the zettèn zunlight dyed

Wi’ red the beeches’ western zide,

But back avore your vinger wore

The weddèn ring that’s now so thin;

An’ you did sheäre a mother’s ceäre,

To watch an’ call ye eärly in.

Come, Etty dear; come out o’ door,

An’ teäke a sweetheart’s walk woonce mwore.

An’ then ageän, when you could slight

The clock a-strikèn leäte at night,

The while the moon, wi’ risèn rim,

Did light the beeches’ eastern lim’.

When I’d a-bound your vinger round

Wi’ thik goold ring that’s now so thin,

An’ you had nwone but me alwone

To teäke ye leäte or eärly in.

Come, Etty dear; come out o’ door,

An’ teäke a sweetheart’s walk woonce mwore.

But often when the western zide

O’ trees did glow at evenèn-tide,

Or when the leäter moon did light

The beeches’ eastern boughs at night,

An’ in the grove, where vo’k did rove

The crumpled leaves did vlee an’ spin,

You couldèn sheäre the pleasure there:

Your work or childern kept ye in.

Come, Etty dear, come out o’ door,

An’ teäke a sweetheart’s walk woonce mwore.

But ceäres that zunk your oval chin

Ageän your bosom’s lily skin,

Vor all they meäde our life so black,

Be now a-lost behind our back.

Zoo never mwope, in midst of hope,

To slight our blessèns would be sin.

Ha! ha! well done, now this is fun;

When you do like I’ll bring ye in.

Here, Etty dear; here, out o’ door,

We’ll teäke a sweetheart’s walk woonce mwore.

A Wife A-Praïs’d.

’Twer Maÿ, but ev’ry leaf wer dry

All day below a sheenèn sky;

The zun did glow wi’ yollow gleäre,

An’ cowslips blow wi’ yollow gleäre,

Wi’ grægles’ bells a-droopèn low,

An’ bremble boughs a-stoopèn low;

While culvers in the trees did coo

Above the vallèn dew.

An’ there, wi’ heäir o’ glossy black,

Bezide your neck an’ down your back,

You rambled gaÿ a-bloomèn feäir;

By boughs o’ maÿ a-bloomèn feäir;

An’ while the birds did twitter nigh,

An’ water weäves did glitter nigh,

You gather’d cowslips in the lew,

Below the vallèn dew.

An’ now, while you’ve a-been my bride

As years o’ flow’rs ha’ bloom’d an’ died,

Your smilèn feäce ha’ been my jaÿ;

Your soul o’ greäce ha’ been my jaÿ;

An’ wi’ my evenèn rest a-come,

An’ zunsheen to the west a-come,

I’m glad to teäke my road to you

Vrom vields o’ vallèn dew.

An’ when the raïn do wet the maÿ,

A-bloomèn where we woonce did straÿ,

An’ win’ do blow along so vast,

An’ streams do flow along so vast;

Ageän the storms so rough abroad,

An’ angry tongues so gruff abroad,

The love that I do meet vrom you

Is lik’ the vallèn dew.

An’ you be sprack’s a bee on wing,

In search ov honey in the Spring:

The dawn-red sky do meet ye up;

The birds vu’st cry do meet ye up;

An’ wi’ your feäce a-smilèn on,

An’ busy hands a-tweilèn on,

You’ll vind zome useful work to do

Until the vallèn dew.

The Wife A-Lost.

Since I noo mwore do zee your feäce,

Up steäirs or down below,

I’ll zit me in the lwonesome pleäce,

Where flat-bough’d beech do grow:

Below the beeches’ bough, my love,

Where you did never come,

An’ I don’t look to meet ye now,

As I do look at hwome.

Since you noo mwore be at my zide,

In walks in zummer het,

I’ll goo alwone where mist do ride,

Drough trees a-drippèn wet:

Below the raïn-wet bough, my love,

Where you did never come,

An’ I don’t grieve to miss ye now,

As I do grieve at home.

Since now bezide my dinner-bwoard

Your vaïce do never sound,

I’ll eat the bit I can avword,

A-vield upon the ground;

Below the darksome bough, my love,

Where you did never dine,

An’ I don’t grieve to miss ye now,

As I at hwome do pine.

Since I do miss your vaïce an’ feäce

In praÿer at eventide,

I’ll praÿ wi’ woone said vaïce vor greäce

To goo where you do bide;

Above the tree an’ bough, my love,

Where you be gone avore,

An’ be a-waïtèn vor me now,

To come vor evermwore.

The Thorns in the Geäte.

Ah! Meäster Collins overtook

Our knot o’ vo’k a-stannèn still,

Last Zunday, up on Ivy Hill,

To zee how strong the corn did look.

An’ he stay’d back awhile an’ spoke

A vew kind words to all the vo’k,

Vor good or joke, an’ wi’ a smile

Begun a-plaÿèn wi’ a chile.

The zull, wi’ iron zide awry,

Had long a-vurrow’d up the vield;

The heavy roller had a-wheel’d

It smooth vor showers vrom the sky;

The bird-bwoy’s cry, a-risèn sh’ill,

An’ clacker, had a-left the hill,

All bright but still, vor time alwone

To speed the work that we’d a-done.

Down drough the wind, a-blowèn keen,

Did gleäre the nearly cloudless sky,

An’ corn in bleäde, up ancle-high,

’lthin the geäte did quiver green;

An’ in the geäte a-lock’d there stood

A prickly row o’ thornèn wood

Vor vo’k vor food had done their best,

An’ left to Spring to do the rest.

“The geäte,” he cried, “a-seal’d wi’ thorn

Vrom harmvul veet’s a-left to hold

The bleäde a-springèn vrom the mwold,

While God do ripen it to corn.

An’ zoo in life let us vulvil

Whatever is our Meäker’s will,

An’ then bide still, wi’ peacevul breast,

While He do manage all the rest.”

Angels by the Door.

Oh! there be angels evermwore,

A-passèn onward by the door,

A-zent to teäke our jaÿs, or come

To bring us zome — O Meärianne.

Though doors be shut, an’ bars be stout,

Noo bolted door can keep em out;

But they wull leäve us ev’ry thing

They have to bring — My Meärianne.

An’ zoo the days a-stealèn by,

Wi’ zuns a-ridèn drough the sky,

Do bring us things to leäve us sad,

Or meäke us glad — O Meärianne.

The day that’s mild, the day that’s stern,

Do teäke, in stillness, each his turn;

An’ evils at their worst mid mend,

Or even end — My Meärianne.

But still, if we can only bear

Wi’ faïth an’ love, our païn an’ ceäre,

We shan’t vind missèn jaÿs a-lost,

Though we be crost — O Meärianne.

But all a-took to heav’n, an’ stow’d

Where we can’t weäste em on the road,

As we do wander to an’ fro,

Down here below — My Meärianne.

But there be jaÿs I’d soonest choose

To keep, vrom them that I must lose;

Your workzome hands to help my tweil,

Your cheerful smile — O Meärianne.

The Zunday bells o’ yonder tow’r,

The moonlight sheädes o’ my own bow’r,

An’ rest avore our vier-zide,

At evenèn-tide — My Meärianne.

Vo’k a-Comèn Into Church.

The church do zeem a touchèn zight,

When vo’k, a-comèn in at door,

Do softly tread the long-aïl’d vloor

Below the pillar’d arches’ height,

Wi’ bells a-pealèn,

Vo’k a-kneelèn,

Hearts a-healèn, wi’ the love

An’ peäce a-zent em vrom above.

An’ there, wi’ mild an’ thoughtvul feäce,

Wi’ downcast eyes, an’ vaïces dum’,

The wold an’ young do slowly come,

An’ teäke in stillness each his pleäce,

A-zinkèn slowly,

Kneelèn lowly,

Seekèn holy thoughts alwone,

In praÿ’r avore their Meäker’s throne.

An’ there be sons in youthvul pride,

An’ fathers weak wi’ years an’ païn,

An’ daughters in their mother’s traïn.

The tall wi’ smaller at their zide;

Heads in murnèn

Never turnèn,

Cheäks a-burnèn, wi’ the het

O’ youth, an’ eyes noo tears do wet.

There friends do settle, zide by zide,

The knower speechless to the known;

Their vaïce is there vor God alwone

To flesh an’ blood their tongues be tied.

Grief a-wringèn,

Jaÿ a-zingèn,

Pray’r a-bringèn welcome rest

So softly to the troubled breast.

Woone Rule.

An’ while I zot, wi’ thoughtvul mind,

Up where the lwonesome Coombs do wind,

An’ watch’d the little gully slide

So crookèd to the river-zide;

I thought how wrong the Stour did zeem

To roll along his ramblèn stream,

A-runnèn wide the left o’ south,

To vind his mouth, the right-hand zide.

But though his stream do teäke, at mill.

An’ eastward bend by Newton Hill,

An’ goo to lay his welcome boon

O’ daïly water round Hammoon,

An’ then wind off ageän, to run

By Blanvord, to the noonday zun,

’Tis only bound by woone rule all,

An’ that’s to vall down steepest ground.

An’ zoo, I thought, as we do bend

Our waÿ drough life, to reach our end,

Our God ha’ gi’ed us, vrom our youth,

Woone rule to be our guide — His truth.

An’ zoo wi’ that, though we mid teäke

Wide rambles vor our callèns’ seäke,

What is, is best, we needen fear,

An’ we shall steer to happy rest.

Good Meäster Collins.

Aye, Meäster Collins wer a-blest

Wi’ greäce, an’ now’s a-gone to rest;

An’ though his heart did beät so meek

’S a little child’s, when he did speak,

The godly wisdom ov his tongue

Wer dew o’ greäce to wold an’ young.

’Twer woonce, upon a zummer’s tide,

I zot at Brookwell by his zide,

Avore the leäke, upon the rocks,

Above the water’s idle shocks,

As little plaÿsome weäves did zwim

Ageän the water’s windy brim,

Out where the lofty tower o’ stwone

Did stan’ to years o’ wind an’ zun;

An’ where the zwellèn pillars bore

A pworch above the heavy door,

Wi’ sister sheädes a-reachèn cool

Athirt the stwones an’ sparklèn pool.

I spoke zome word that meäde en smile,

O’ girt vo’k’s wealth an’ poor vo’k’s tweil,

As if I pin’d, vor want ov greäce,

To have a lord’s or squier’s pleäce.

“No, no,” he zaid, “what God do zend

Is best vor all o’s in the end,

An’ all that we do need the mwost

Do come to us wi’ leäst o’ cost; —

Why, who could live upon the e’th

’Ithout God’s gïft ov aïr vor breath?

Or who could bide below the zun

If water didden rise an’ run?

An’ who could work below the skies

If zun an’ moon did never rise?

Zoo aïr an’ water, an’ the light,

Be higher gifts, a-reckon’d right,

Than all the goold the darksome claÿ

Can ever yield to zunny daÿ:

But then the aïr is roun’ our heads,

Abroad by day, or on our beds;

Where land do gi’e us room to bide,

Or seas do spread vor ships to ride;

An’ He do zend his waters free,

Vrom clouds to lands, vrom lands to sea:

An’ mornèn light do blush an’ glow,

’Ithout our tweil —’ithout our ho.

“Zoo let us never pine, in sin,

Vor gifts that ben’t the best to win;

The heaps o’ goold that zome mid pile,

Wi’ sleepless nights an’ peaceless tweil;

Or manor that mid reach so wide

As Blackmwore is vrom zide to zide,

Or kingly swaÿ, wi’ life or death,

Vor helpless childern ov the e’th:

Vor theäse ben’t gifts, as He do know,

That He in love should vu’st bestow;

Or else we should have had our sheäre

O’m all wi’ little tweil or ceäre.

“Ov all His choicest gifts, His cry

Is, ‘Come, ye moneyless, and buy.’

Zoo blest is he that can but lift

His prayer vor a happy gift.”


Zoo then the leädy an’ the squier,

At Chris’mas, gather’d girt an’ small,

Vor me’th, avore their roarèn vier,

An! roun’ their bwoard, ’ithin the hall;

An’ there, in glitt’rèn rows, between

The roun’-rimm’d pleätes, our knives did sheen,

Wi’ frothy eäle, an’ cup an’ can,

Vor maïd an’ man, at Herrenston.

An’ there the jeints o’ beef did stand,

Lik’ cliffs o’ rock, in goodly row;

Where woone mid quarry till his hand

Did tire, an’ meäke but little show;

An’ after we’d a-took our seat,

An’ greäce had been a-zaid vor meat,

We zet to work, an’ zoo begun

Our feäst an’ fun at Herrenston.

An’ mothers there, bezide the bwoards,

Wi’ little childern in their laps,

Did stoop, wi’ lovèn looks an’ words,

An’ veed em up wi’ bits an’ draps;

An’ smilèn husbands went in quest

O’ what their wives did like the best;

An’ you’d ha’ zeed a happy zight,

Thik merry night, at Herrenston.

An’ then the band, wi’ each his leaf

O’ notes, above us at the zide,

Play’d up the praïse ov England’s beef

An’ vill’d our hearts wi’ English pride;

An’ leafy chaïns o’ garlands hung,

Wi’ dazzlèn stripes o’ flags, that swung

Above us, in a bleäze o’ light,

Thik happy night, at Herrenston.

An’ then the clerk, avore the vier,

Begun to lead, wi’ smilèn feäce,

A carol, wi’ the Monkton quire,

That rung drough all the crowded pleäce.

An’ dins’ o’ words an’ laughter broke

In merry peals drough clouds o’ smoke;

Vor hardly wer there woone that spoke,

But pass’d a joke, at Herrenston.

Then man an’ maïd stood up by twos,

In rows, drough passage, out to door,

An’ gaïly beät, wi’ nimble shoes,

A dance upon the stwonèn floor.

But who is worthy vor to tell,

If she that then did bear the bell,

Wer woone o’ Monkton, or o’ Ceäme,

Or zome sweet neäme ov Herrenston.

Zoo peace betide the girt vo’k’s land,

When they can stoop, wi’ kindly smile,

An’ teäke a poor man by the hand,

An’ cheer en in his daily tweil.

An’ oh! mid He that’s vur above

The highest here, reward their love,

An’ gi’e their happy souls, drough greäce,

A higher pleäce than Herrenston.

Out at Plough.

Though cool avore the sheenèn sky

Do vall the sheädes below the copse,

The timber-trees, a-reachèn high,

Ha’ zunsheen on their lofty tops,

Where yonder land’s a-lyèn plow’d,

An’ red, below the snow-white cloud,

An’ vlocks o’ pitchèn rooks do vwold

Their wings to walk upon the mwold.

While floods be low,

An’ buds do grow,

An’ aïr do blow, a-broad, O.

But though the aïr is cwold below

The creakèn copses’ darksome screen,

The truest sheäde do only show

How strong the warmer zun do sheen;

An’ even times o’ grief an’ païn,

Ha’ good a-comèn in their traïn,

An’ ’tis but happiness do mark

The sheädes o’ sorrow out so dark.

As tweils be sad,

Or smiles be glad,

Or times be bad, at hwome, O

An’ there the zunny land do lie

Below the hangèn, in the lew,

Wi’ vurrows now a-crumblèn dry,

Below the plowman’s dousty shoe;

An’ there the bwoy do whissel sh’ill,

Below the skylark’s merry bill,

Where primrwose beds do deck the zides

O’ banks below the meäple wrides.

As trees be bright

Wi’ bees in flight,

An’ weather’s bright, abroad, O.

An’ there, as sheenèn wheels do spin

Vull speed along the dousty rwoad,

He can but stan’, an’ wish ’ithin

His mind to be their happy lwoad,

That he mid gaïly ride, an’ goo

To towns the rwoad mid teäke en drough,

An’ zee, for woonce, the zights behind

The bluest hills his eyes can vind,

O’ towns, an’ tow’rs,

An’ downs, an’ flow’rs,

In zunny hours, abroad, O.

But still, vor all the weather’s feäir,

Below a cloudless sky o’ blue,

The bwoy at plough do little ceäre

How vast the brightest day mid goo;

Vor he’d be glad to zee the zun

A-zettèn, wi’ his work a-done,

That he, at hwome, mid still injaÿ

His happy bit ov evenèn plaÿ,

So light’s a lark

Till night is dark,

While dogs do bark, at hwome, O.

The Bwoat.

Where cows did slowly seek the brink

O’ Stour, drough zunburnt grass, to drink;

Wi’ vishèn float, that there did zink

An’ rise, I zot as in a dream.

The dazzlèn zun did cast his light

On hedge-row blossom, snowy white,

Though nothèn yet did come in zight,

A-stirrèn on the straÿèn stream;

Till, out by sheädy rocks there show’d,

A bwoat along his foamy road,

Wi’ thik feäir maïd at mill, a-row’d

Wi’ Jeäne behind her brother’s oars.

An’ steätely as a queen o’ vo’k,

She zot wi’ floatèn scarlet cloak,

An’ comèn on, at ev’ry stroke,

Between my withy-sheäded shores.

The broken stream did idly try

To show her sheäpe a-ridèn by,

The rushes brown-bloom’d stems did ply,

As if they bow’d to her by will.

The rings o’ water, wi’ a sock,

Did break upon the mossy rock,

An’ gi’e my beätèn heart a shock,

Above my float’s up-leapèn quill.

Then, lik’ a cloud below the skies,

A-drifted off, wi’ less’nèn size,

An’ lost, she floated vrom my eyes,

Where down below the stream did wind;

An’ left the quiet weäves woonce mwore

To zink to rest, a sky-blue’d vloor,

Wi’ all so still’s the clote they bore,

Aye, all but my own ruffled mind.

The Pleäce Our Own Ageän.

Well! thanks to you, my faïthful Jeäne,

So worksome wi’ your head an’ hand,

We seäved enough to get ageän

My poor vorefather’s plot o’ land.

’Twer folly lost, an’ cunnèn got,

What should ha’ come to me by lot.

But let that goo; ’tis well the land

Is come to hand, by be’th or not.

An’ there the brook, a-windèn round

The parrick zide, do run below

The grey-stwon’d bridge wi’ gurglèn sound,

A-sheäded by the arches’ bow;

Where former days the wold brown meäre,

Wi’ father on her back, did wear

Wi’ heavy shoes the grav’ly leäne,

An’ sheäke her meäne o’ yollor heäir.

An’ many zummers there ha’ glow’d,

To shrink the brook in bubblèn shoals,

An’ warm the doust upon the road,

Below the trav’ller’s burnèn zoles.

An’ zome ha’ zent us to our bed

In grief, an’ zome in jaÿ ha’ vled;

But vew ha’ come wi’ happier light

Than what’s now bright, above our head.

The brook did peärt, zome years agoo,

Our Grenley meäds vrom Knapton’s Ridge

But now you know, between the two,

A-road’s a-meäde by Grenley Bridge.

Zoo why should we shrink back at zight

Ov hindrances we ought to slight?

A hearty will, wi’ God our friend,

Will gaïn its end, if ’tis but right.


John an’ Thomas.


How b’ye, then, John, to-night; an’ how

Be times a-waggèn on w’ ye now?

I can’t help slackenèn my peäce

When I do come along your pleäce,

To zee what crops your bit o’ groun’

Do bear ye all the zummer roun’.

’Tis true you don’t get fruit nor blooth,

’Ithin the glassèn houses’ lewth;

But if a man can rear a crop

Where win’ do blow an’ raïn can drop,

Do seem to come, below your hand,

As fine as any in the land.


Well, there, the geärden stuff an’ flow’rs

Don’t leäve me many idle hours;

But still, though I mid plant or zow,

’Tis Woone above do meäke it grow.


Aye, aye, that’s true, but still your strip

O’ groun’ do show good workmanship:

You’ve onions there nine inches round,

An’ turmits that would waïgh a pound;

An’ cabbage wi’ its hard white head,

An’ teäties in their dousty bed,

An’ carrots big an’ straïght enough

Vor any show o’ geärden stuff;

An’ trees ov apples, red-skinn’d balls

An’ purple plums upon the walls,

An’ peas an’ beäns; bezides a store

O’ heärbs vor ev’ry païn an’ zore.


An’ over hedge the win’s a-heärd,

A ruslèn drough my barley’s beard;

An’ swaÿen wheat do overspread

Zix ridges in a sheet o’ red;

An’ then there’s woone thing I do call

The girtest handiness ov all:

My ground is here at hand, avore

My eyes, as I do stand at door;

An’ zoo I’ve never any need

To goo a mile to pull a weed.


No, sure, a miël shoulden stratch

Between woone’s geärden an’ woone’s hatch.

A man would like his house to stand

Bezide his little bit o’ land.


Ees. When woone’s groun’ vor geärden stuff

Is roun’ below the house’s ruf,

Then woone can spend upon woone’s land

Odd minutes that mid lie on hand,

The while, wi’ night a-comèn on,

The red west sky’s a-wearèn wan;

Or while woone’s wife, wi’ busy hands,

Avore her vier o’ burnèn brands,

Do put, as best she can avword,

Her bit o’ dinner on the bwoard.

An’ here, when I do teäke my road,

At breakfast-time, agwaïn abrode,

Why, I can zee if any plot

O’ groun’ do want a hand or not;

An’ bid my childern, when there’s need,

To draw a reäke or pull a weed,

Or heal young beäns or peas in line,

Or tie em up wi’ rods an’ twine,

Or peel a kindly withy white

To hold a droopèn flow’r upright.


No. Bits o’ time can zeldom come

To much on groun’ a mile vrom hwome.

A man at hwome should have in view

The jobs his childern’s hands can do,

An’ groun’ abrode mid teäke em all

Beyond their mother’s zight an’ call,

To get a zoakèn in a storm,

Or vall, i’ may be, into harm.


Ees. Geärden groun’, as I’ve a-zed,

Is better near woone’s bwoard an’ bed.

Pentridge by the River.

Pentridge! — oh! my heart’s a-zwellèn

Vull o’ jaÿ wi’ vo’k a-tellèn

Any news o’ thik wold pleäce,

An’ the boughy hedges round it,

An’ the river that do bound it

Wi’ his dark but glis’nèn feäce.

Vor there’s noo land, on either hand,

To me lik’ Pentridge by the river.

Be there any leaves to quiver

On the aspen by the river?

Doo he sheäde the water still,

Where the rushes be a-growèn,

Where the sullen Stour’s a-flowèn

Drough the meäds vrom mill to mill?

Vor if a tree wer dear to me,

Oh! ’twer thik aspen by the river.

There, in eegrass new a-shootèn,

I did run on even vootèn,

Happy, over new-mow’d land;

Or did zing wi’ zingèn drushes

While I plaïted, out o’ rushes,

Little baskets vor my hand;

Bezide the clote that there did float,

Wi’ yollow blossoms, on the river.

When the western zun’s a vallèn,

What sh’ill vaïce is now a-callèn

Hwome the deäiry to the païls;

Who do dreve em on, a-flingèn

Wide-bow’d horns, or slowly zwingèn

Right an’ left their tufty taïls?

As they do goo a-huddled drough

The geäte a-leädèn up vrom river.

Bleäded grass is now a-shootèn

Where the vloor wer woonce our vootèn,

While the hall wer still in pleäce.

Stwones be looser in the wallèn;

Hollow trees be nearer vallèn;

Ev’ry thing ha’ chang’d its feäce.

But still the neäme do bide the seäme —

’Tis Pentridge — Pentridge by the river.


In brown-leav’d Fall the wheat a-left

’Ithin its darksome bed,

Where all the creakèn roller’s heft

Seal’d down its lowly head,

Sprung sheäkèn drough the crumblèn mwold,

Green-yollow, vrom below,

An’ bent its bleädes, a-glitt’rèn cwold,

At last in winter snow.

Zoo luck betide

The upland zide,

Where wheat do wride,

In corn-vields wide,

By crowns o’ Do’set Downs, O.

An’ while the screamèn bird-bwoy shook

Wi’ little zun-burnt hand,

His clacker at the bright-wing’d rook,

About the zeeded land;

His meäster there did come an’ stop

His bridle-champèn meäre,

Wi’ thankvul heart, to zee his crop

A-comèn up so feäir.

As there awhile

By geäte or stile,

He gi’ed the chile

A cheerèn smile,

By crowns o’ Do’set Downs, O.

At last, wi’ eärs o’ darksome red,

The yollow stalks did ply,

A-swaÿèn slow, so heavy ’s lead,

In aïr a-blowèn by;

An’ then the busy reapers laid

In row their russlèn grips,

An’ sheäves, a-leänèn head by head,

Did meäke the stitches tips.

Zoo food’s a-vound,

A-comèn round,

Vrom zeed in ground,

To sheaves a-bound,

By crowns o’ Do’set Downs, O.

An’ now the wheat, in lofty lwoads,

Above the meäres’ broad backs,

Do ride along the cracklèn rwoads,

Or dousty waggon-tracks.

An’ there, mid every busy pick,

Ha’ work enough to do;

An’ where, avore, we built woone rick,

Mid theäse year gi’e us two;

Wi’ God our friend,

An’ wealth to spend,

Vor zome good end,

That times mid mend,

In towns, an’ Do’set Downs, O.

Zoo let the merry thatcher veel

Fine weather on his brow,

As he, in happy work, do kneel

Up roun’ the new-built mow,

That now do zwell in sich a size,

An’ rise to sich a height,

That, oh! the miller’s wistful eyes

Do sparkle at the zight

An’ long mid stand,

A happy band,

To till the land,

Wi’ head an’ hand,

By crowns o’ Do’set Downs, O.

The Meäd in June.

Ah! how the looks o’ sky an’ ground

Do change wi’ months a-stealèn round,

When northern winds, by starry night,

Do stop in ice the river’s flight;

Or brooks in winter raïns do zwell,

Lik’ rollèn seas athirt the dell;

Or trickle thin in zummer-tide;

Among the mossy stwones half dried;

But still, below the zun or moon,

The feàrest vield’s the meäd in June.

An’ I must own, my heart do beät

Wi’ pride avore my own blue geäte,

Where I can bid the steätely tree

Be cast, at langth, avore my knee;

An’ clover red, an’ deäzies feaïr,

An’ gil’cups wi’ their yollow gleäre,

Be all a-match’d avore my zight

By wheelèn buttervlees in flight,

The while the burnèn zun at noon

Do sheen upon my meäd in June.

An’ there do zing the swingèn lark

So gaÿ’s above the finest park,

An’ day do sheäde my trees as true

As any steätely avenue;

An’ show’ry clouds o’ Spring do pass

To shed their raïn on my young grass,

An’ aïr do blow the whole day long,

To bring me breath, an’ teäke my zong,

An’ I do miss noo needvul boon

A-gi’ed to other meäds in June.

An’ when the bloomèn rwose do ride

Upon the boughy hedge’s zide,

We haymeäkers, in snow-white sleeves,

Do work in sheädes o’ quiv’rèn leaves,

In afternoon, a-liftèn high

Our reäkes avore the viery sky,

A-reäken up the hay a-dried

By day, in lwongsome weäles, to bide

In chilly dew below the moon,

O’ shorten’d nights in zultry June.

An’ there the brook do softly flow

Along, a-bendèn in a bow,

An’ vish, wi’ zides o’ zilver-white,

Do flash vrom shoals a dazzlèn light;

An’ alders by the water’s edge,

Do sheäde the ribbon-bleäded zedge,

An’ where, below the withy’s head,

The zwimmèn clote-leaves be a-spread,

The angler is a-zot at noon

Upon the flow’ry bank in June.

Vor all the aiër that do bring

My little meäd the breath o’ Spring,

By day an’ night’s a-flowèn wide

Above all other vields bezide;

Vor all the zun above my ground

’S a-zent vor all the naïghbours round,

An’ raïn do vall, an’ streams do flow,

Vor lands above, an’ lands below,

My bit o’ meäd is God’s own boon,

To me alwone, vrom June to June.

Early Risèn.

The aïr to gi’e your cheäks a hue

O’ rwosy red, so feaïr to view,

Is what do sheäke the grass-bleädes gray

At breäk o’ day, in mornèn dew;

Vor vo’k that will be rathe abrode,

Will meet wi’ health upon their road.

But bidèn up till dead o’ night,

When han’s o’ clocks do stan’ upright,

By candle-light, do soon consume

The feäce’s bloom, an’ turn it white.

An’ light a-cast vrom midnight skies

Do blunt the sparklèn ov the eyes.

Vor health do weäke vrom nightly dreams

Below the mornèn’s eärly beams,

An’ leäve the dead-aïr’d houses’ eaves,

Vor quiv’rèn leaves, an’ bubblèn streams,

A-glitt’rèn brightly to the view,

Below a sky o’ cloudless blue.

Zellen Woone’s Honey to Buy Zome’hat Sweet.

Why, his heart’s lik’ a popple, so hard as a stwone,

Vor ’tis money, an’ money’s his ho,

An’ to handle an’ reckon it up vor his own,

Is the best o’ the jaÿs he do know.

Why, vor money he’d gi’e up his lags an’ be leäme,

Or would peärt wi’ his zight an’ be blind,

Or would lose vo’k’s good will, vor to have a bad neäme,

Or his peace, an’ have trouble o’ mind.

But wi’ ev’ry good thing that his meänness mid bring,

He’d paÿ vor his money,

An’ only zell honey to buy zome’hat sweet.

He did whisper to me, “You do know that you stood

By the Squier, wi’ the vote that you had,

You could ax en to help ye to zome’hat as good,

Or to vind a good pleäce vor your lad.”

“Aye, aye, but if I wer beholdèn vor bread

To another,” I zaid, “I should bind

All my body an’ soul to the nod of his head,

An’ gi’e up all my freedom o’ mind.”

An’ then, if my païn wer a-zet wi’ my gaïn,

I should paÿ vor my money,

An’ only zell honey to buy zome’hat sweet.

Then, if my bit o’ brook that do wind so vur round,

Wer but his, why, he’d straïghten his bed,

An’ the wold stunpole woak that do stan’ in my ground,

Shoudden long sheäde the grass wi’ his head.

But if I do vind jaÿ where the leaves be a-shook

On the limbs, wi’ their sheädes on the grass,

Or below, in the bow o’ the withy-bound nook,

That the rock-washèn water do pass,

Then wi’ they jaÿs a-vled an’ zome goold in their stead,

I should pay vor my money,

An’ only zell honey to buy zome’hat sweet.

No, be my lot good work, wi’ the lungs well in plaÿ,

An’ good rest when the body do tire,

Vor the mind a good conscience, wi’ hope or wi’ jaÿ,

Vor the body, good lewth, an’ good vire,

There’s noo good o’ goold, but to buy what ’ull meäke

Vor our happiness here among men;

An’ who would gi’e happiness up vor the seäke

O’ zome money to buy it ageän?

Vor ’twould seem to the eyes ov a man that is wise,

Lik’ money vor money,

Or zellèn woone’s honey to buy zome’hat sweet.

Dobbin Dead.

Thomas (1) an’ John (2) a-ta’èn o’t.

2. I do veel vor ye, Thomas, vor I be a-feär’d

You’ve a-lost your wold meäre then, by what I’ve a-heärd.

1. Ees, my meäre is a-gone, an’ the cart’s in the shed

Wi’ his wheelbonds a-rustèn, an’ I’m out o’ bread;

Vor what be my han’s vor to eärn me a croust,

Wi’ noo meäre’s vower legs vor to trample the doust.

2. Well, how did it happen? He vell vrom the brim

Ov a cliff, as the teäle is, an’ broke ev’ry lim’.

1. Why, I gi’ed en his run, an’ he shook his wold meäne,

An’ he rambled a-veedèn in Westergap Leäne;

An’ there he must needs goo a-riggèn, an’ crope

Vor a vew bleädes o’ grass up the wo’st o’ the slope;

Though I should ha’ thought his wold head would ha’ know’d

That vor stiff lags, lik’ his, the best pleäce wer the road.

2. An’ you hadden a-kept en so short, he must clim’,

Lik’ a gwoat, vor a bleäde, at the risk ov a lim’.

1. Noo, but there, I’m a-twold, he did clim’ an’ did slide,

An’ did screäpe, an’ did slip, on the shelvèn bank-zide,

An’ at langth lost his vootèn, an’ roll’d vrom the top,

Down, thump, kick, an’ higgledly, piggledly, flop.

2. Dear me, that is bad! I do veel vor your loss,

Vor a vew years agoo, Thomas, I lost my ho’se.

1. How wer’t? If I heärd it, I now ha’ vorgot;

Wer the poor thing bewitch’d or a-pweison’d, or what?

2. He wer out, an’ a-meäkèn his way to the brink

O’ the stream at the end o’ Church Leäne, vor to drink;

An’ he met wi’ zome yew-twigs the men had a-cast

Vrom the yew-tree, in churchyard, the road that he past.

He wer pweison’d. (1.) O dear, ’tis a hard loss to bear,

Vor a tranter’s whole bread is a-lost wi’ his meäre;

But ov all churches’ yew-trees, I never zet eyes

On a tree that would come up to thik woone vor size.

2. Noo, ’tis long years agone, but do linger as clear

In my mind though as if I’d a-heärd it to year.

When King George wer in Do’set, an’ show’d us his feäce

By our very own doors, at our very own pleäce,

That he look’d at thik yew-tree, an’ nodded his head,

An’ he zaid — an’ I’ll tell ye the words that he zaid:—

“I’ll be bound, if you’ll sarch my dominions all drough.

That you woon’t vind the fellow to thik there wold yew.”


Ah! you do seem to think the ground,

Where happiness is best a-vound,

Is where the high-peäl’d park do reach

Wi’ elem-rows, or clumps o’ beech;

Or where the coach do stand avore

The twelve-tunn’d house’s lofty door,

Or men can ride behin’ their hounds

Vor miles athirt their own wide grounds,

An’ seldom wi’ the lowly;

Upon the green that we do tread,

Below the welsh-nut’s wide-limb’d head,

Or grass where apple trees do spread?

No, so’s; no, no: not high nor low:

’Tis where the heart is holy.

’Tis true its veet mid tread the vloor,

’Ithin the marble-pillar’d door,

Where day do cast, in high-ruf’d halls.

His light drough lofty window’d walls;

An’ wax-white han’s do never tire

Wi’ strokes ov heavy work vor hire,

An’ all that money can avword

Do lwoad the zilver-brighten’d bwoard:

Or mid be wi’ the lowly,

Where turf’s a-smwolderèn avore

The back, to warm the stwonèn vloor

An’ love’s at hwome ’ithin the door?

No, so’s; no, no; not high nor low:

’Tis where the heart is holy.

An’ ceäre can come ’ithin a ring

O’ sworded guards, to smite a king,

Though he mid hold ’ithin his hands

The zwarmèn vo’k o’ many lands;

Or goo in drough the iron-geäte

Avore the house o’ lofty steäte;

Or reach the miser that do smile

A-buildèn up his goolden pile;

Or else mid smite the lowly,

That have noo pow’r to loose or bind

Another’s body, or his mind,

But only hands to help mankind.

If there is rest ’ithin the breast,

’Tis where the heart is holy.

Gruffmoody Grim.

Aye, a sad life his wife must ha’ led,

Vor so snappish he’s leätely a-come,

That there’s nothèn but anger or dread

Where he is, abroad or at hwome;

He do wreak all his spite on the bwones

O’ whatever do vlee, or do crawl;

He do quarrel wi’ stocks, an’ wi’ stwones,

An’ the raïn, if do hold up or vall;

There is nothèn vrom mornèn till night

Do come right to Gruffmoody Grim.

Woone night, in his anger, he zwore

At the vier, that didden burn free:

An’ he het zome o’t out on the vloor,

Vor a vlanker it cast on his knee.

Then he kicked it vor burnèn the child,

An’ het it among the cat’s heaïrs;

An’ then beät the cat, a-run wild,

Wi’ a spark on her back up the steaïrs:

Vor even the vier an’ fleäme

Be to bleäme wi’ Gruffmoody Grim.

Then he snarl’d at the tea in his cup,

Vor ’twer all a-got cwold in the pot,

But ’twer woo’se when his wife vill’d it up

Vrom the vier, vor ’twer then scaldèn hot;

Then he growl’d that the bread wer sich stuff

As noo hammer in parish could crack,

An’ flung down the knife in a huff;

Vor the edge o’n wer thicker’n the back.

Vor beäkers an’ meäkers o’ tools

Be all fools wi’ Gruffmoody Grim.

Oone day as he vish’d at the brook,

He flung up, wi’ a quick-handed knack,

His long line, an’ his high-vleèn hook

Wer a-hitch’d in zome briars at his back.

Then he zwore at the brembles, an’ prick’d

His beäre hand, as he pull’d the hook free;

An’ ageän, in a rage, as he kick’d

At the briars, wer a-scratch’d on the knee.

An’ he wish’d ev’ry bremble an’ briar

Wer o’ vier, did Gruffmoody Grim.

Oh! he’s welcome, vor me, to breed dread

Wherever his sheäde mid alight,

An’ to live wi’ noo me’th round his head,

An’ noo feäce wi’ a smile in his zight;

But let vo’k be all merry an’ zing

At the he’th where my own logs do burn,

An’ let anger’s wild vist never swing

In where I have a door on his durn;

Vor I’ll be a happier man,

While I can, than Gruffmoody Grim.

To zit down by the vier at night,

Is my jaÿ— vor I woon’t call it pride —

Wi’ a brand on the bricks, all alight,

An’ a pile o’ zome mwore at the zide.

Then tell me o’ zome’hat that’s droll,

An’ I’ll laugh till my two zides do eäche

Or o’ naïghbours in sorrow o’ soul,

An’ I’ll tweil all the night vor their seäke;

An’ show that to teäke things amiss

Idden bliss, to Gruffmoody Grim.

An’ then let my child clim’ my lag,

An’ I’ll lift en, wi’ love, to my chin;

Or my maïd come an’ coax me to bag

Vor a frock, an’ a frock she shall win;

Or, then if my wife do meäke light

O’ whatever the bwoys mid ha’ broke,

It wull seem but so small in my zight,

As a leaf a-het down vrom a woak

An’ not meäke me ceäper an’ froth

Vull o’ wrath, lik’ Gruffmoody Grim.

The Turn O’ The Days.

O the wings o’ the rook wer a-glitterèn bright,

As he wheel’d on above, in the zun’s evenèn light,

An’ noo snow wer a-left, but in patches o’ white,

On the hill at the turn o’ the days.

An’ along on the slope wer the beäre-timber’d copse,

Wi’ the dry wood a-sheäkèn, wi’ red-twiggèd tops.

Vor the dry-flowèn wind, had a-blow’d off the drops

O’ the raïn, at the turn o’ the days.

There the stream did run on, in the sheäde o’ the hill,

So smooth in his flowèn, as if he stood still,

An’ bright wi’ the skylight, did slide to the mill,

By the meäds, at the turn o’ the days.

An’ up by the copse, down along the hill brow,

Wer vurrows a-cut down, by men out at plough,

So straïght as the zunbeams, a-shot drough the bough

O’ the tree at the turn o’ the days.

Then the boomèn wold clock in the tower did mark

His vive hours, avore the cool evenèn wer dark,

An’ ivy did glitter a-clung round the bark

O’ the tree, at the turn o’ the days.

An’ womèn a-fraïd o’ the road in the night,

Wer a-heästenèn on to reach hwome by the light,

A-castèn long sheädes on the road, a-dried white,

Down the hill, at the turn o’ the days.

The father an’ mother did walk out to view

The moss-bedded snow-drop, a-sprung in the lew,

An’ hear if the birds wer a-zingèn anew,

In the boughs, at the turn o’ the days.

An’ young vo’k a-laughèn wi’ smooth glossy feäce,

Did hie over vields, wi’ a light-vooted peäce,

To friends where the tow’r did betoken a pleäce

Among trees, at the turn o’ the days.

The Sparrow Club.

Last night the merry farmers’ sons,

Vrom biggest down to leäst, min,

Gi’ed in the work of all their guns,

An’ had their sparrow feäst, min.

An’ who vor woone good merry soul

Should goo to sheäre their me’th, min,

But Gammon Gaÿ, a chap so droll,

He’d meäke ye laugh to death, min.

Vor heads o’ sparrows they’ve a-shot

They’ll have a prize in cwein, min,

That is, if they can meäke their scot,

Or else they’ll paÿ a fine, min.

An’ all the money they can teäke

’S a-gather’d up there-right, min,

An’ spent in meat an’ drink, to meäke

A supper vor the night, min.

Zoo when they took away the cloth,

In middle of their din, min,

An’ cups o’ eäle begun to froth,

Below their merry chin, min.

An’ when the zong, by turn or chaïce,

Went roun’ vrom tongue to tongue, min,

Then Gammon pitch’d his merry vaïce,

An’ here’s the zong he zung, min.


If you’ll but let your clackers rest

Vrom jabberèn an’ hootèn,

I’ll teäke my turn, an’ do my best,

To zing o’ sparrow shootèn.

Since every woone mus’ pitch his key,

An’ zing a zong, in coo’se, lads,

Why sparrow heads shall be today

The heads o’ my discoo’se, lads.

We’ll zend abroad our viery haïl

Till ev’ry foe’s a-vled, lads,

An’ though the rogues mid all turn taïl,

We’ll quickly show their head, lads.

In corn, or out on oben ground,

In bush, or up in tree, lads,

If we don’t kill em, I’ll be bound,

We’ll meäke their veathers vlee, lads.

Zoo let the belted spwortsmen brag

When they’ve a-won a neäme, so’s,

That they do vind, or they do bag,

Zoo many head o’ geäme, so’s;

Vor when our cwein is woonce a-won,

By heads o’ sundry sizes,

Why, who can slight what we’ve a-done?

We’ve all a-won head prizes.

Then teäke a drap vor harmless fun,

But not enough to quarrel;

Though where a man do like the gun,

He can’t but need the barrel.

O’ goodly feäre, avore we’ll start,

We’ll zit an’ teäke our vill, min;

Our supper-bill can be but short,

’Tis but a sparrow-bill, min.

Gammony Gaÿ.

Oh! thik Gammony Gaÿ is so droll,

That if he’s at hwome by the he’th,

Or wi’ vo’k out o’ door, he’s the soul

O’ the meetèn vor antics an’ me’th;

He do cast off the thoughts ov ill luck

As the water’s a-shot vrom a duck;

He do zing where his naïghbours would cry

He do laugh where the rest o’s would sigh:

Noo other’s so merry o’ feäce,

In the pleäce, as Gammony Gaÿ.

An’ o’ workèn days, Oh! he do wear

Such a funny roun’ hat — you mid know’t —

Wi’ a brim all a-strout roun’ his heäir,

An’ his glissenèn eyes down below’t;

An’ a cwoat wi’ broad skirts that do vlee

In the wind ov his walk, round his knee;

An’ a peäir o’ girt pockets lik’ bags,

That do swing an’ do bob at his lags:

While me’th do walk out drough the pleäce,

In the feäce o’ Gammony Gaÿ.

An’ if he do goo over groun’

Wi’ noo soul vor to greet wi’ his words,

The feäce o’n do look up an’ down,

An’ round en so quick as a bird’s;

An’ if he do vall in wi’ vo’k,

Why, tidden vor want ov a joke,

If he don’t zend em on vrom the pleäce

Wi’ a smile or a grin on their feäce:

An’ the young wi’ the wold have a-heärd

A kind word vrom Gammony Gaÿ.

An’ when he do whissel or hum,

’Ithout thinkèn o’ what he’s a-doèn,

He’ll beät his own lags vor a drum,

An’ bob his gaÿ head to the tuèn;

An’ then you mid zee, ’etween whiles,

His feäce all alive wi’ his smiles,

An’ his gaÿ-breathèn bozom do rise,

An’ his me’th do sheen out ov his eyes:

An’ at last to have praïse or have bleäme,

Is the seäme to Gammony Gaÿ.

When he drove his wold cart out, an’ broke

The nut o’ the wheel at a butt.

There wer “woo’se things,” he cried, wi’ a joke.

“To grieve at than crackèn a nut.”

An’ when he tipp’d over a lwoad

Ov his reed-sheaves woone day on the rwoad,

Then he spet in his han’s, out o’ sleeves,

An’ whissel’d, an’ flung up his sheaves,

As very vew others can wag,

Eärm or lag, but Gammony Gaÿ.

He wer wi’ us woone night when the band

Wer a-come vor to gi’e us a hop,

An’ he pull’d Grammer out by the hand

All down drough the dance vrom the top;

An’ Grammer did hobble an’ squall,

Wi’ Gammon a-leädèn the ball;

While Gammon did sheäke up his knee

An’ his voot, an’ zing “Diddle-ee-dee!”

An’ we laugh’d ourzelves all out o’ breath

At the me’th o’ Gammony Gaÿ.

When our tun wer’ o’ vier he rod

Out to help us, an’ meäde us sich fun,

Vor he clomb up to dreve in a wad

O’ wet thorns, to the he’th, vrom the tun;

An’ there he did stamp wi’ his voot,

To push down the thorns an’ the zoot,

Till at last down the chimney’s black wall

Went the wad, an’ poor Gammon an’ all:

An’ seäfe on the he’th, wi’ a grin

On his chin pitch’d Gammony Gaÿ.

All the house-dogs do waggle their taïls,

If they do but catch zight ov his feäce;

An’ the ho’ses do look over raïls,

An’ do whicker to zee’n at the pleäce;

An’ he’ll always bestow a good word

On a cat or a whisselèn bird;

An’ even if culvers do coo,

Or an owl is a-cryèn “Hoo, hoo,”

Where he is, there’s always a joke

To be spoke, by Gammony Gaÿ.

The Heare.

(Dree o’m a-ta’kèn o’t.)

(1) There be the greyhounds! lo’k! an’ there’s the heäre!

(2) What houn’s, the squier’s, Thomas? where, then, where?

(1) Why, out in Ash Hill, near the barn, behind

Thik tree. (3) The pollard? (1) Pollard! no, b’ye blind?

(2) There, I do zee em over-right thik cow.

(3) The red woone? (1) No, a mile beyand her now.

(3) Oh! there’s the heäre, a-meäkèn for the drong.

(2) My goodness! How the dogs do zweep along,

A-pokèn out their pweinted noses’ tips.

(3) He can’t allow hizzelf much time vor slips!

(1) They’ll hab’en, after all, I’ll bet a crown.

(2) Done vor a crown. They woon’t! He’s gwäin to groun’.

(3) He is! (1) He idden! (3) Ah! ’tis well his tooes

Ha’ got noo corns, inside o’ hobnaïl shoes.

(1) He’s geäme a runnèn too. Why, he do mwore

Than eärn his life. (3) His life wer his avore.

(1) There, now the dogs wull turn en. (2) No! He’s right.

(1) He idden! (2) Ees he is! (3) He’s out o’ zight.

(1) Aye, aye. His mettle wull be well a-tried

Agwaïn down Verny Hill, o’ tother zide.

They’ll have en there. (3) O no! a vew good hops

Wull teäke en on to Knapton Lower Copse.

(2) An’ that’s a meesh that he’ve a-took avore.

(3) Ees, that’s his hwome. (1) He’ll never reach his door.

(2) He wull. (1) He woon’t. (3) Now, hark, d’ye heär em now?

(2) O! here’s a bwoy a-come athirt the brow

O’ Knapton Hill. We’ll ax en. (1) Here, my bwoy!

Can’st tell us where’s the heäre? (4) He’s got awoy.

(2) Ees, got awoy, in coo’se, I never zeed

A heäre a-scotèn on wi’ half his speed.

(1) Why, there, the dogs be wold, an’ half a-done.

They can’t catch anything wi’ lags to run.

(2) Vrom vu’st to last they had but little chance

O’ catchèn o’n. (3) They had a perty dance.

(1) No, catch en, no! I little thought they would;

He know’d his road too well to Knapton Wood.

(3) No! no! I wish the squier would let me feäre

On rabbits till his hounds do catch thik heäre.

Nanny Gill.

Ah! they wer times, when Nanny Gill

Went so’jerèn ageänst her will,

Back when the King come down to view

His ho’se an’ voot, in red an’ blue,

An’ they did march in rows,

An’ wheel in lines an’ bows,

Below the King’s own nose;

An’ guns did pwoint, an’ swords did gleäre,

A-fightèn foes that werden there.

Poor Nanny Gill did goo to zell

In town her glitt’rèn macarel,

A-pack’d wi’ ceäre, in even lots,

A-ho’seback in a peäir o’ pots.

An’ zoo when she did ride

Between her panniers wide,

Red-cloked in all her pride,

Why, who but she, an’ who but broke

The road avore her scarlet cloke!

But Nanny’s ho’se that she did ride,

Woonce carr’d a sword ageän his zide,

An’ had, to prick en into rank,

A so’jer’s spurs ageän his flank;

An’ zoo, when he got zight

O’ swords a-gleamèn bright,

An’ men agwaïn to fight,

He set his eyes athirt the ground,

An’ prick’d his ears to catch the sound.

Then Nanny gi’ed his zide a kick,

An’ het en wi’ her limber stick;

But suddenly a horn did sound,

An’ zend the ho’semen on vull bound;

An’ her ho’se at the zight

Went after em, vull flight,

Wi’ Nanny in a fright,

A-pullèn, wi’ a scream an’ grin,

Her wold brown raïns to hold en in.

But no! he went away vull bound,

As vast as he could tear the ground,

An’ took, in line, a so’jer’s pleäce,

Vor Nanny’s cloke an’ frighten’d feäce;

While vo’k did laugh an’ shout

To zee her cloke stream out,

As she did wheel about,

A-cryèn, “Oh! la! dear!” in fright,

The while her ho’se did plaÿ sham fight.

Moonlight On the Door.

A-swaÿèn slow, the poplar’s head,

Above the slopèn thatch did ply,

The while the midnight moon did shed

His light below the spangled sky.

An’ there the road did reach avore

The hatch, all vootless down the hill;

An’ hands, a-tired by day, wer still,

Wi’ moonlight on the door.

A-boomèn deep, did slowly sound

The bell, a-tellèn middle night;

The while the quiv’rèn ivy, round

The tree, did sheäke in softest light.

But vootless wer the stwone avore

The house where I, the maïdens guest,

At evenèn, woonce did zit at rest

By moonlight on the door.

Though till the dawn, where night’s a-meäde

The day, the laughèn crowds be gaÿ,

Let evenèn zink wi’ quiet sheäde,

Where I do hold my little swaÿ.

An’ childern dear to my heart’s core,

A-sleep wi’ little heavèn breast,

That pank’d by day in plaÿ, do rest

Wi’ moonlight on the door.

But still ’tis good, woonce now an’ then

To rove where moonlight on the land

Do show in vaïn, vor heedless men,

The road, the vield, the work in hand.

When curtains be a-hung avore

The glitt’rèn windows, snowy white,

An’ vine-leaf sheädes do sheäke in light

O’ moonlight on the door.

My Love’s Guardian Angel.

As in the cool-aïr’d road I come by,

— in the night,

Under the moon-clim’d height o’ the sky,

— in the night,

There by the lime’s broad lim’s as I staÿ’d,

Dark in the moonlight, bough’s sheädows plaÿ’d

Up on the window-glass that did keep

Lew vrom the wind, my true love asleep,

— in the night.

While in the grey-wall’d height o’ the tow’r,

— in the night,

Sounded the midnight bell wi’ the hour,

— in the night,

There lo! a bright-heäir’d angel that shed

Light vrom her white robe’s zilvery thread,

Put her vore-vinger up vor to meäke

Silence around lest sleepers mid weäke,

— in the night.

“Oh! then,” I whisper’d, do I behold

— in the night.

Linda, my true-love, here in the cwold,

— in the night?”

“No,” she meäde answer, “you do misteäke:

She is asleep, but I that do weäke,

Here be on watch, an’ angel a-blest,

Over her slumber while she do rest,

— in the night.”

“Zee how the winds, while here by the bough,

— in the night,

They do pass on, don’t smite on her brow,

in the night;

Zee how the cloud-sheädes naïseless do zweep

Over the house-top where she’s asleep.

You, too, goo by, in times that be near,

You too, as I, mid speak in her ear

— in the night.”

Leeburn Mill,

Ov all the meäds wi’ shoals an’ pools,

Where streams did sheäke the limber zedge,

An’ milkèn vo’k did teäke their stools,

In evenèn zun-light under hedge:

Ov all the wears the brook did vill,

Or all the hatches where a sheet

O’ foam did leäp below woone’s veet,

The pleäce vor me wer Leeburn Mill.

An’ while below the mossy wheel

All day the foamèn stream did roar,

An’ up in mill the floatèn meal

Did pitch upon the sheäkèn vloor.

We then could vind but vew han’s still,

Or veet a-restèn off the ground,

An’ seldom hear the merry sound

O’ geämes a-play’d at Leeburn Mill.

But when they let the stream goo free,

Bezide the drippèn wheel at rest,

An’ leaves upon the poplar-tree

Wer dark avore the glowèn west;

An’ when the clock, a-ringèn sh’ill,

Did slowly beät zome evenèn hour,

Oh! then ’ithin the leafy bow’r

Our tongues did run at Leeburn Mill.

An’ when November’s win’ did blow,

Wi’ hufflèn storms along the plaïn,

An’ blacken’d leaves did lie below

The neäked tree, a-zoak’d wi’ raïn,

I werden at a loss to vill

The darkest hour o’ raïny skies,

If I did vind avore my eyes

The feäces down at Leeburn Mill.

Praise O’ Do’set.

We Do’set, though we mid be hwomely,

Be’nt asheäm’d to own our pleäce;

An’ we’ve zome women not uncomely;

Nor asheäm’d to show their feäce:

We’ve a meäd or two wo’th mowèn,

We’ve an ox or two we’th showèn,

In the village,

At the tillage,

Come along an’ you shall vind

That Do’set men don’t sheäme their kind.

Friend an’ wife,

Fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers,

Happy, happy, be their life!

Vor Do’set dear,

Then gi’e woone cheer;

D’ye hear? woone cheer!

If you in Do’set be a-roamèn,

An’ ha’ business at a farm,

Then woont ye zee your eäle a-foamèn!

Or your cider down to warm?

Woont ye have brown bread a-put ye,

An’ some vinny cheese a-cut ye?

Butter? — rolls o’t!

Cream? — why bowls o’t!

Woont ye have, in short, your vill,

A-gi’ed wi’ a right good will?

Friend an’ wife,

Fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers.

Happy, happy, be their life!

Vor Do’set dear,

Then gi’e woone cheer;

D’ye hear? woone cheer!

An’ woont ye have vor ev’ry shillèn,

Shillèn’s wo’th at any shop,

Though Do’set chaps be up to zellèn,

An’ can meäke a tidy swop?

Use em well, they’ll use you better;

In good turns they woont be debtor.

An’ so comely,

An’ so hwomely,

Be the maïdens, if your son

Took woone o’m, then you’d cry “Well done!”

Friend an’ wife,

Fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers,

Happy, happy, be their life!

Vor Do’set dear,

Then gi’e woone cheer;

D’ye hear? woone cheer!

If you do zee our good men travel,

Down a-voot, or on their meäres,

Along the windèn leänes o’ gravel,

To the markets or the feäirs —

Though their ho’ses cwoats be ragged,

Though the men be muddy-laggèd,

Be they roughish,

Be they gruffish,

They be sound, an’ they will stand

By what is right wi’ heart an’ hand.

Friend an’ wife,

Fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers,

Happy, happy, be their life!

Vor Do’set dear,

Then gi’e woone cheer;

D’ye hear? woone cheer!


Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:52