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XXVI. PETER TWINK.
A PARODY ON A PARODY.
TWAS Peter Twink, aunt Thompson's son, set out for Montserrat,
But first he drank a quart of gin, though none the more for that; And by the great John Bull, he cried, for Peter never swore. Till I have sold my loading off, you'll never see me more.
Now Peter had a barrow got, and by his aunt's desire,
He fill'd it up with eggs and cheese, and jugs of liquid fire,
And forth from Clam-shell-alley, then right bravely sallied he,
And soon he reached the tented field in Upper Beverly.
And now, quoth Peter, here I am, let him who wants, begin-
And here am I, Poll Rankins cried, I want a glass of gin;
Now Polly had a round red face, which some in fun have said
Looks somewhat like a washing tub, and some, a cabbage-head!
And when she laugh'd, which (heaven be praised) was very seldom seen,
'Twas cut in two, and four long teeth came sticking out between ;
O'ertopping this, her yellow hair hung tangling down her neck, And children asked, as well they might, what carrots were a peck!
Across her broad capacious back, a tattered shawl was thrown, On which three tom-cats long had slept, and mark'd it as their
And then her eye--with two such eyes the world had been undone,
So old dame Nature wisely chose the jade should have but one.
Now Peter had a thumping dram, prepared with matchless skill, Which Polly took without ado, and drank with right good will, And giving then her lips a smack, with tears of joy she said, The lad that can such toddy make, by me shall be repaid;
For fifty years are past and gone since I my course begun,
And from henceforth, know all the world, we two shall be but
If you're in earnest then, we will, the trembling Peter cried, As with a laugh-provoking phiz, he turned his head aside, And arm in arm they started off their recent match to close, But where they went, or how they fare, the d--l only knows.
XXVII. THE SHAM ACTION.
[New-Hampshire Sentinel. Keene.]
'Twas autumn and the day was bright-
Well armed the soldiers were and brave,
With powder furnished for a fight-
If noise and smoke such name may have,
A sham-fight called throughout the land
By men the highest in command!
My Sunday-clothes I hurried on,
And hied me to the "tented field,"
To see a battle lost or won-
To see troops conquer, run, or yield :-
For then I doubted not there'd be
Some awful" tugs of war" to see.
There muskets glistened, bright and clean,
And swords gleamed terribly to view→
The deep-mouthed cannon there was seen,
And deadly rifles, always true!
With pistols, such as wounded Mac,
When Cumming shot him in the back!*
Great folks were there, with epaulette
On shoulder, big as bruin's paw—
With feathers in their bonnets set,
As large as e'er old Priam saw;
Badges of office, called, to show,
To what high honours some may grow!
There too, were buxom lasses fair,
In front of where the army stood-
And oft I turned to ogle there,
The charming creatures looked so good—
For well ween on such a day,
There's nought looks prettier than they!
Some held their sweet-hearts by the hand,
Some unattended tripped alone-
My heart was not at my command,
Or I had caught one for my own-
For nothing ever thrilled so sweet,
As when our ogling chanced to meet!
But hark! the stunning cannon's roar !
riatoons of musquetry we hear--
Columns of solid smoke now pour
Along contending van and rear ;
Alluding to a recent series of sham duels between two honourable gentlemen of the south. ED.
Beware for hearts and heads are broke
With weapons lighter far than smoke!
Now hear the colonel's loud command-
The squads, obedient, retire,
Reload, then wheel--march up and stand,
Make ready, aim, and snap—or fire!
Had there been bullets in each gun,
Zounds!-many must have fell-or run!
Lo! from the wood, with horrid yell,
The sham-made savage bounds in sight,
And like the soldiery of H-11,
Exulting, joins the blood-less fight!
Though Indian dressed, and painted skin,
There's savage out-side less than in!
Now, now the battle rages hot,
Shrill bugles scream--sharp sabres clash,
Some victim trembles every shot,
And soldiers quake at every flash!
For who 'till now did ever see
Such fighting and such rivalry !
Long they contend-hard is the fight,
The ring of sword and scimitar,
The battle's roar, from left to right,
Is heard in awful din afar!
Nor thinks a man to shrink or tail,
'Till strength or ammunition fail.
Then ends the fray-they leave the field,
And if a conquest or retreat--
If either conquer, either yield,
Is known to only those that beat!
But 'twas a glorious sight, to see
Such smoke, and sweat and chivalry!
XXVIII. THE GATHERING.*
IN IMITATION OF BURNS.
THE light just streaked the eastling blue
When ilka street and neuk was fu'
*To enable the reader to understand fully this Jeu d'esprit, it may be remarked that, on the morning of a late review at "Tapley's Brook," in Danvers, while a Salem regiment was forming, another from Beverly marched by, ready formed, and that the former, to be first on the ground, found it necessary to march, quick time, a little sooner than was otherwise intended.
Of skelpin chiefs, wha tried to show
A warlike look;
While they gaed to the grand review
At Tapley's brook.
Now ilka lad, in cap and feather,
Wi' nerves weel braced wi' straps o' leather,
Fu' boldly marched in troops thegither,
In fierce array,
A' joyed to find sic pleasant weather,
For training day.
At bugle call, the troops convene—
And weel wot they a' looked clean;
The state did gie their claes, so sheen,
Wi' liberal hand.
Mars cannot find more friends, I ween,
Throughout the land:
The auld and young, of ilka callin',
In order close were made to fall in;
Aiblins, to drown the unco bawlin'
O' bletherin' louns,
Fu' twenty drummers 'gan their rawlin',
Wi' doolful souns.
Wi' bugles playing, banners fleeing,
Fu' brave each sodier lad was speeing
His neebor's nose, by which agreeing
The line was strait.
Twad make ane fierce, by only seeing
Sic gallant gate.
Anither clan, sa fate had sealed,
Gaed by, as ours did lea'e the field,
And sae, wi' flying colours, wheeled
Between them twa.
Ah! muckle skin, I wat, was peeled
Fra' heels that day.
Gin ye had seen them scower the street,
Like bounding deers, and fu' at fleet,
You'd 'hought the de'il been in their feet,
Or in each head.
The chiefs kent na', by this strange feat,
Wha's troops they led.
Determined each, by hook or crook,
The first to be at Tapley's Brook,
It is na' strange the laddies took
Their sprattling leap.
-Fu' weel I ken they a' did look
Like frightened sheep,
And as they gaed to muster ground,
Fu' many a lass's head turned round,
To see her bonnie sodger crowned
Wi' powthered head;
For syne so spruce her lad is found,
She vowed to wed.
'Tis lang syne crowds, like these, were seen.
Baith young and auld, wi' glowerin' een,
And chiels and hizzies, too, I ween,
Did rin in haste.
Ane wife wi' squattling chittering wean,
And some ainmaist.
Unlike some troops, the bard has seen,
Maist a' had guns, wi' barrels sheen,
And stocks, and locks wi' touch-holes clean,
And flints and steels,
Yet in the ranks were some, I ween,
Less carefu' chiels.
Ye wha ha' been at Waterloo,
Where fast the fatal bullets flew,
To fill wi' heaps of bones each sleugh,
Ha' seen a sight,
Which was na' brought again to view
By this day's fight.
'Mid clouds o' smeek the squadrons reeled,
In ingle blaze they unskaithed wheeled,
Where rattling guns, like thunder, pealed;
And yet 'tis true,
That nane were killed, as on the field
Now soon the march for hame is ta'en,
By a', wha could march straight alane;
But many a ane did there remain
Till next day's light,
Wha feared to see their hame again,
In sic a plight.
'Tis mirk! the guns have ceased their roaring, And ilka chief in bed is snoring,
Whose pow, that day, was proudly soaring,
And scorned to jouk.
The muse must stop-night's curtain's lowering
Owre Tapley's Brook.