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Sir-I never drink; Roger and I are exceedingly moral — Aren't we, Roger?-See him wink!
Well, something hot, then—we won't quarrel. He's thirsty, too-see him nod his head ?
What a pity, Sir, that dogs can't talk ! He understands every word that's said
And he knows good milk from water-and-chalk.
The truth is, Sir, now I reflect,
I've been so sadly given to grog, I wonder I've not lost the respect
(Here's to you, Sir !) even of my dog. But he sticks by, through thick and thin;
And this old coat, with its empty pockets, And rags
that smell of tobacco and gin, He'll follow while he has eyes in his sockets. There isn't another creature living
Would do it, and prove, through every disaster, So fond, so faithful, and so forgiving,
To such a miserable, thankless master ! No, Sir !—see him wag his tail, and grin!
By George! it makes old eyes water That is, there's something in this gin
That chokes a fellow. But no matter.
We'll have some music, if you're willing,
And Roger here (what a plague a cough is, Sir!) Shall march a little. -Start, you villain !
Paws up! Eyes front! Salute your officer ! 'Bout face! Attention! Take
rifle ! (Some dogs have arms, you see !) Now hold your Cap while the gentlemen give a trifle,
To aid a poor old patriot soldier !
When he stands up to hear his sentence.
To honour a jolly new acquaintance.
The night's before us, fill the glasses ! -
Some brandy-thank you—there !--it passes ! Why not reform ? That's easily said ;
But I've gone through such wretched treatment, Sometimes forgetting the taste of bread,
And scarce remembering what meat meant, That my poor stomach's past reform;
And there are times when, mad with thinking, I'd sell out heaven for something warm
To prop a horrible inward sinking. Is there a way to forget to think?
At your age, Sir, home, fortune, friends, A dear girl's love—but I took to drink ;
The same old story; you know how it ends. If you
could have seen these classic featuresYou needn't laugh, Sir; they were not then Such a burning libel on God's creatures :
I was one of your handsome men ! If you
had seen her, so fair and young, Whose head was happy on this breast ! If you
could have heard the songs I sung When the wine went round, you wouldn't have gnessed That ever I, Sir, should be straying
From door to door, with fiddle and dog, Ragged and penniless,' and playing
To you to-night for a glass of grog!
She's married since—a parson's wife:
part Better the soberest, prosiest life
Than a blasted home and a broken heart. I have seen her ? Once: I was weak and spent
On the dusty road : a carriage stopped : But little she dreamed, as on she went,
Who kissed the coin that her fingers dropped !
You've set me talking, Sir; I'm sorry :
It makes me wild to think of the change! What do you care for a beggar's story?
Is it amusing? you find it strange? I had a mother so proud of me!
'Twas well she died before If the happy spirits in heaven can see
The ruin and wretchedness here below ?
Another glass, and strong, to deaden
This pain; then Roger and I will start. I wonder, has he such a lumpish, leaden,
Aching thing, in place of a heart ? He is sad sometimes, and would weep, if he could,
No doubt, remembering things that wereA virtuous kennel, with plenty of food,
And himself a sober, respectable cur. I'm better now; that glass was wa g.
You rascal! limber your lazy feet!
We must be fiddling and performing
and bed, or starve in the street. –
think? But soon we shall go where lodgings are free, And the sleepers need neither victuals nor drink ;
The sooner, the better for Roger and me.
(A cruel old Tartar, as rich as the Khan) Whose castle was built on a splendid plan,
With gardens and groves and plantations; But his shaggy beard was as blue as the sky, And he lived alone, for his neighbours were shy, And had heard hard stories, by-the-by,
About his domestic relations.
Just on the opposite side of the plain
Was a beautiful little treasure :
Said they'd do themselves the pleasure.
As soon as there happened a pleasant day, They dressed themselves in a sumptuous way, And rode to the castle as proud and gay
As silks and jewels could make them; And they were received in the finest style, And saw every thing that was worth their while, In the halls of BLUEBEARD's grand old pile,
Where he was so kind as to take them.
The ladies were all enchanted quite;
And frequently called thereafter.
With feasting and with laughter.
As kind a husband as ever was seen
And as happy as she could be, too.
There is business for me to see to.
“The keys of my castle I leave with you;
Farewell, FATIMA! Remember!”