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Country Sentiment

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A FROSTY NIGHT. MotherAlice, dear, what ails you,Dazed and white and shaken?Has the chill night numbed you?Is it fright you have taken?Alice Mother, I am very well,I felt never better,Mother, do not hold me so,Let me write my letter.MotherSweet, my dear, what ails you?AliceNo, but I am well;The night was cold and frosty,There's no more to tell.MotherAy, the night was frosty,Coldly gaped the moon,Yet the birds seemed twitteringThrough green boughs of June.Soft and thick the snow lay,Stars danced in the sky.Not all the lambs of May-daySkip so bold and high.Your feet were dancing, Alice,Seemed to dance on air,You looked a ghost or angelIn the starlight there.Your eyes were frosted starlight,Your heart fire and snow.Who was it said, "I love you"?AliceMother, let me go!

A SONG FOR TWO CHILDREN. "Make a song, father, a new little song,All for Jenny and Nancy."Balow lalow or Hey derry down,Or else what might you fancy?Is there any song sweet enoughFor Nancy and for Jenny?Said Simple Simon to the pieman,"Indeed I know not any.""I've counted the miles to Babylon,I've flown the earth like a bird,I've ridden cock-horse to Banbury Cross,But no such song have I heard.""Some speak of Alexander,And some of Hercules,But where are there any like Nancy and Jenny,Where are there any like these?"

DICKY. MotherOh, what a heavy sigh!Dicky, are you ailing?DickyEven by this fireside, mother,My heart is failing.To-night across the down,Whistling and jolly,I sauntered out from townWith my stick of holly.Bounteous and cool from seaThe wind was blowing,Cloud shadows under the moonComing and going.I sang old roaring songs,Ran and leaped quick,And turned home by St. Swithin'sTwirling my stick.And there as I was passingThe churchyard gateAn old man stopped me, "Dicky,You're walking late."I did not know the man,I grew afearedAt his lean lolling jaw,His spreading beard.His garments old and musty,Of antique cut,His body very lean and bony,His eyes tight shut.Oh, even to tell it nowMy courage ebbs...His face was clay, mother,His beard, cobwebs.In that long horrid pause"Good-night," he said,Entered and clicked the gate,"Each to his bed."MotherDo not sigh or fear, Dicky,How is it rightTo grudge the dead their ghostly darkAnd wan moonlight?We have the glorious sun,Lamp and fireside.Grudge not the dead their moonshineWhen abroad they ride.

THE THREE DRINKERS. Blacksmith Green had three strong sons,With bread and beef did fill 'em,Now John and Ned are perished and dead,But plenty remains of William.John Green was a whiskey drinker,The Land of Cakes supplied him,Till at last his soul flew out by the holeThat the fierce drink burned inside him.Ned Green was a water drinker,And, Lord, how Ned would fuddle!He rotted away his mortal clayLike an old boot thrown in a puddle.Will Green was a wise young drinker,Shrank from whiskey or water,But he made good cheer with headstrong beer,And married an alderman's daughter.