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For then, by toil subdu'd, he drank
No poet wept him : but the page
Of narrative sincere,
Is wet with Anson's tear.
I therefore purpose not, or dream,
Descanting on his fate,
A more enduring date.
No voice divine the storm allay'd,
No light propitious shone ;
We perish'd each alone :
THE YEARLY DISTRESS,
TITHING TIME AT STOCK, IN ESSEX.
Verses addressed to a country clergyman, com
plaining of the disagreeableness of the day annually appointed for receiving the dues at the parsonage.
Come, ponder well, for 'tis no jest,
To laugh it would be wrong,
The burden of my song.
Three quarters of the year,
When tithing time draws near.
As one at point to die,
He heaves up many a sigh.
For then the farmers come, jog, jog,
Along the miry road,
To make their payments good.
In sooth, the sorrow of such days
Is not to be express'd, When he that takes, and he that pays,
Are both alike distress'd.
Now all unwelcome at his gates
The clumsy swains alight,
He trembles at the sight.
And well he may, for well he knows
Each bumpkin of the clan, Instead of paying what he owes,
Will cheat him if he can.
So in they come-each makes his leg.
And flings his head before, And looks as if he came to beg,
And not to quit a score.
"And how does miss and madam do,
"The little boy, and all !" “All tight and well. And how do you
“Good Mr. What-d'ye call ?'' The dinner comes, and down they sit :
Were e'er such hungry folk ?
There's little talking, and no wit ;
It is no time to joke.
One wipes his nose upon his sleeve,
One spits upon the floor,
Holds up the cloth before.
The punch goes round, and they are dull
And lumpish still as ever ;
They only weigh the heavier.
“Come, neighbours, we must wag" The money chinks, down drop their chins,
Each lugging out his bag.
And one of storms of hail,
By maggots at the tail.
Quoth one, A rarer man than you
In pulpit none shall hear; “But yet, methinks, to tell you true,
“You sell it plaguy dear.”
O why are farmers made so coarse,
Or clergy made so fine ?
May kill a sound divine.