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For he had rode but once before
On London's flood so merry: And then he cross'd from Kent's fair shore,
To Limehouse, in a wherry.
Now marshes on each side
appear; Swift are the paddles turned ; But soon a fairer scene is near,
For Erith is discerned.
BENEATH the woody heights of Lesnes,
Unite the Cray (8) and Darent(o)Give tribute to majestic Thames,
And slumber with their parent.
Past Purfleet and each magazine
The steamer now is gliding;
While slowly runs the tide in.
And Greenhithe, too, in foliage drest;
With Ingress Park uniting; And Fidler's Reach,(10) and Thurrock West;
And town of Grays inviting.
The pretty village of Northfleet
Invites the eye's attention;
The work of Art's invention. (ll)
Oldstock ne'er thought he was so near
To Gravesend's town, so noted,
The merry vessel floated.
But who is yon fair, comely dame,
Who on the pier is standing ?She's just arrived in the “ Fame” –
Its passengers are landing.
She meets the astonish'd gaze of John,
Joy from each eye is flashing: But, lo! the steamer still drives on,
And past the place is dashing.
And then, too late, our hero saw
That he had made a blunder; And now the sun's bright beams withdraw,
And loudly rolls the thunder.
Chang'd is the aspect of the scene
Dark, heavy clouds impending; * The lightning's vivid flash is seen;
The rain is fast descending.
Friend John was one who seldom sighed
At actions past controlling; Each frown of fate he still defied
Life's shadows backward rolling.
Some would have fum'd and made complaint,
And wish'd them back in London ; This was his maxim-true, though quaint,
66 What's done, cannot be undone.”
It rain'd until the Fort, (12) to view,
A speck seem'd in the distance; While swifter still the vessel flew,
And bray'd the tide's resistance.
Securely shelter'd from the blast,
Sly Mirth each head is ducking ;Whilst Chalk, Higham, and Cliff, are pass'd;
East Tilbury, too, and Mucking.
Yon heap likewise, o'er whose fair bow'rs
Destruction long has hoverd:
With ivy richly cover'd.
But summer's stormy clouds will fade,
When Sol peeps in the distance:
We pass our brief existence.