The Ingoldsby Legends, by Thomas Ingoldsby

The Forlorn One.

Ah! why those piteous sounds of woe,

Lone wanderer of the dreary night?

Thy gushing tears in torrents flow,

Thy bosom pants in wild affright!

And thou, within whose iron breast

Those frowns austere too truly tell,

Mild pity, heaven-descended guest,

Hath never, never deign’d to dwell.

‘That rude, uncivil touch forego,’

Stern despot of a fleeting hour!

Nor ‘make the angels weep’ to know

The fond ‘fantastic tricks’ of power!

Know’st thou not ‘mercy is not strain’d,

But droppeth as the gentle dew,’

And while it blesseth him who gain’d,

It blesseth him who gave it, too!

Say, what art thou? and what is he,

Pale victim of despair and pain,

Whose streaming eyes and bended knee

Sue to thee thus — and sue in vain?

Cold, callous man! — he scorns to yield,

Or ought relax his felon gripe,

But answers, — ’ I’m Inspector Field!

And this here warment’s prigg’d your wipe.’

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:56