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But finding soon a smoother road beneath his well-shod
feet, The snorting beast began to trot, which galled him in his
“So, fair and softly !" John he cried; but John he cried
in vain : That trot became a gallop soon, in spite of curb and rein. So stooping down, as needs he must who cannot sit upright, He grasped the mane with both his hands and eke with all
His horse, which never, in that sort, had handled been
before, What thing upon his back had got, did wonder more and
Away went Gilpin, neck or nought; away went hat and wig; He little dreamt when he set out, of running such a rig. The wind did blow, the cloak did fly like streamer long and
gay, Till, loop and button failing both, at last it flew away. The dogs did bark, the children screamed, up flew the win
dows all, And every soul cried out“Well done !” as loud as he could
Away went Gilpin ; — who but he? his fame soon spread
around : “He carries weight !-he rides a race !-'tis for a thousand
And still, as fast as he drew near, 'twas wonderful to view How, in a trice, the turnpike men the gates wide open
THE HORSE OVERSHOOTS THE MARK. At Edmonton his loving wife from the balcony spied Her tender husband, wondering much to see how he did
ride. Stop, stop, John Gilpin ! — Here's the house,”— they all
aloud did cry,
“The dinner waits, and we are tired." Said Gilpin, “ So
But yet his horse was not a whit inclined to tarry there: For why ? his owner had a house full ten miles off, at Ware. So like an arrow swift, he flew, shot by an archer strong ; So did he fly: which brings me to the middle of my song.
THE HORSE STOPS AT ITS OWN STALL.
The calender, amazed to see his neighbour in such trim, Laid down his pipe, flew to the gate, and thus accosted him: “What news? what news ?— Your tidings tell ! — Tell me
you must and shall: Say why bare-headed you are come ? or why you come at
Now Gilpin had a pleasant wit, and loved a timely joke, And thus unto the calender, in merry guise, he spoke : “I come because your horse would come; and, if I well
forebode, My hat and wig will soon be here, they are upon the
road." The calender, right glad to find his friend in merry pin, Returned him not a single word, but to the house went in; Whence straight he came with hat and wig, - a wig that
flowed behind, A hat not much the worse for wear, - each comely in its
JOHN GILPIN TRIES AGAIN.
Then, turning to his horse, John said, — “I am in haste to
dine: 'Twas for your pleasure you came here; you
back for mine." A luckless speech and bootless boast, for which he paid full
dear; For while he spake a braying ass did sing most loud and
clear; Whereat his horse did snort as he had heard a lion
roar, And galloped off with all his might, as he had done before. Away went Gilpin, and away went Gilpin's hat and wig: He lost them sooner than at first: for why?— they were
MRS. GILPIN MAKES MATTERS WORSE.
Now Mistress Gilpin, when she saw her husband posting
down Into the country far away, she pulled out half-a-crown; And then unto the youth she said, that drove them to the
Bell, “ This shall be yours when you bring back my
husband safe and well.” The youth did ride, and soon did meet John coming back
again, Whom in a trice he tried to stop, by catching at his rein; But not performing what he meant, and gladly would have
done, The frighted steed he frighted more, and made him faster run. Away went Gilpin, and away went postboy at his heels; The postboy's horse right glad to miss the lumbering of the
Six gentlemen upon the road, thus seeing Gilpin fly,
Stop thief I stop thief ! a highwayman!” - not one of
them was mute, And all and each that passed that way did join in the
pursuit. And now the turnpike gates again flew open in short space, The tollman thinking, as before, that Gilpin rode a race. And so he did, and won it too; for he got first to town, Nor stopped till where he had got up he did again get down. Now let us sing “long live the king," and Gilpin long
live he, And when he next doth ride abroad may I be there to see.
THE TOY OF THE GIANT'S CHILD.
Burg NIEDECK is a mountain in Alsace, high and strong, Where once a noble castle stood; the giants held it long. Its
very ruins now are lost, its site * is waste and lone, And if you ask for giants there, they all are dead and gone. The giant's daughter once came forth the castle-gate before, And played with all a child's delight beside her father's door; Then sauntering down the precipice, the girl did gladly go To see, perchance, how matters went in the little world below. With few and easy steps she passed the mountain and the
wood; At length near Haslach, at the place where mankind dwelt,
she stood; And
many a town and village fair, and many a field so green, Before her wondering eyes appeared, a strange and curious
And as she gazed, in wonder lost, on all the scene around, She saw a peasant at her feet, bent busy at the ground: The little creature crawled about so slowly here and there, And, lighted by the morning sun, his plough shone bright
and fair. “Oh, pretty plaything !" cried the child, “I'll take thee
home with me!” Then with her infant hands she spread her kerchief on her
knee, And, cradling horse and man and plough all gently in her
arm, She bore them home with cautious steps, afraid to do them
* Site, ground on which a building stands.