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HER, that yer Honor was spakin' to ?

Whin, yer Honor ? last year Standin' here be the bridge, when last yer

Honor was here ? An' yer Honor ye gev her the top of the

mornin', · To-morra,' says she. What did they call her, yer Honor ? They

call'd her Molly Magee. An' yer Honor's the thrue ould blood that

always manes to be kind, But there's rason in all things, yer Honor,

for Molly was out of her mind.

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Shure, an' meself remimbers wan night

comin' down be the sthrame, An' it seems to me now like a bit of yisther

day in a dhrame Here where yer Honor seen her there

was but a slip of a moon, But I hard thim Molly Magee wid her

bachelor, Danny O'Roon • You've been takin’a dhrop o' the crathur,'

an' Danny says, “Troth, an' I been Dhrinkin' yer health wid Shamus O'Shea

at Katty's shebeen; ? But I must be lavin' ye soon.' Ochone,

are ye goin' away?' •Goin' to cut the Sassenach whate,' he says,

over the say’• An' whin will ye meet me agin ?' an' I

hard him, · Molly asthore, I'll meet you agin to-morra,' says he, 'be

the chapel-door.' * An' whin are ye goin' to lave me?' “O'

Monday mornin',' says he; • An’ shure thin ye 'll meet me to-morra ?'

• To-morra, to-morra, machree! Thin Molly's ould mother, yer Honor, that had no likin' for Dan,

1 Grog-shop

Och, Molly Magee, wid the red o' the rose

an’the white o' the may, An' yer bair as black as the night, an' yer

eyes as bright as the day ! Achora. yer laste little whishper was sweet

as the lilt of a bird ! Acushla, ye set me heart batin' to music

wid ivery word ! An' sorra the Queen wid her sceptre in

sich an illigant ban', An' the fall of yer foot in the dance was as

light as snow an the lan', An' the sun kem out of a cloud whiniver

ye walkt in the shtreet, An' Shamus O'Shea was yer shadda, an' laid

himself undber yer feet, An’I loved ye meself wid a heart an'a

half, me darlin', and be 'Ud 'a shot his own sowl dead for a kiss of

ye, Molly Magee.

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An' Shamus along wid the rest, but she put

thim all to the door. An', afther, I thried her meself av the bird

'ud come to me call, But Molly, begorrah, 'ud listhen to naither

at all, at all.

An' sorra the bog that's in hiven wid all

the light an' the glow, An' there's hate enough, shure, widout

thim in the divil's kitchen below.

X

VI

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An' her nabors an' frinds 'ud consowl an'

condowl wid ber, airly an' late, • Your Danny,' they says, ' niver crasst over

say to the Sassenach whate; He's gone to the States, aroor., an' he's

married another wife, An' ye 'll niver sct eyes an the face of the

thraithur agin in life ! An' to dhrame of a married man, death

alive, is a mortial sin.' But Molly says, 'I'd his hand-promise, an'

shüre he 'll meet me agin.'

XI

50

How-an-iver they laid this body they foun'

an the grass, Be the chapel-door, an' the people 'ud see

it that wint in to mass — But a frish gineration had riz, an' most of

the ould was few, An' I did n't know him meself, an' nõne of

the parish knew

VIS

XII

<

An' afther her paärints had inter'd glory,

an' both in wan day, She began to spake to herself, the crathur,

an' whishper, an' say, • To-morra, to-morra !' an' Father Mo

lowny he tuk her in han', Molly, you 're manin',' he says, 'me dear,

av I undherstan', That

ye

'll meet your paärints agin an' yer

Danny OʻRoon afore God Wid his blessed Marthyrs an' Saints;' an'

she gev him a frindly nod, • To-morra, to-morra,' she says, an' she

did n't intind to desave, But her wits wor dead, an' her hair was as

white as the snow an a grave.

But Molly kem limpin' up wid her stick,

she was lamed iv a knee, Thin a slip of a gossoon callid, Div ye

know him, Molly Magee?' An' she stood up strait as the queen of the

world - sbe lifted her head · He said he would meet me to-morra !'

an'dhropt down dead an the dead. &

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VIII

Arrah now, here last month they wor dig

gin' the bog, an' they foun' Dhrownded in black bog-wather a corp

lyin' undher groun'.

XIII Och, Molly, we thought, machree, ye would

start back agin into life, Whin we laid yez, aich be aich, at yer

wake like husban' an' wife. Sorra the dhry eye thin but was wet for the frinds that was gone

! Sorra the silent throat but we hard it

cryin', ‘Ochone !' An' Shamus O'Shea that has now ten

childer, hansome an' tall, Him an' his childer wor keenin' as if he

had lost thim all.

IX

XIV

Yer Honor's own agint, he says to me

wanst, at Katty's shebeen, The divil take all the black lan', for a

blessin' 'ud come wid the green !! An' where 'ud the poor man, thin, cut his

bit o' turf for the fire ? But och ! bad scran to the bogs whin they

swallies the man intire !

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as ye

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May all the flowers o' Jeroosilim blossom

an' spring from the grass, Imbrashin' an' kissin' aich other did

over yer Crass ! An' the lark fly out o'the flowers wid his

song to the sun an' the moon, An' tell thim in hiven about Molly Magee

an' her Danny O'Roon, Till Holy Saint Pether gets up wid his kays

an' opens the gate ! An' shure, be the Crass, that's betther nor

cuttin' the Sassenach whate,
To be there wid the Blessed Mother an'

Saints an' Marthyrs galore,
An' singin' yer · Aves an' Pathers' for

iver an' ivermore.

Rob, coom oop 'ere o' my knee. Thou sees

that i' spite o' the men I 'a kep' thruf thick an' thin my two

'oonderd a-year to mysen; Yis ! thaw tha call’d me es pretty es ony

lass i' the Shere; An' thou be es pretty a tabby, but Robby I seed thruf

ya

theere.

V

6

XVI

An' now that I tould yer Honor whativer

I hard an' seen,
Yer Honor 'ill give me a thrifle to dbrink

yer health in potheen.

Feyther ’ud saäy I wur ugly es sin, an' I

beänt not vaäin, But I niver wur downright hugly, thaw

soom 'ud 'a thowt ma plaain, An' I was n't sa plaäin i' pink ribbons — ye

said I wur pretty i' pinks, An' I liked to 'ear it I did, but I beänt

sich a fool as ye thinks; Ye was stroäkin' ma down wi' the 'air, as I be a-stroäkin' o'

you, But whiniver I loooked i' the glass I wur

sewer that it could n't be true; Niver wur pretty, not I, but ye knaw'd it

wur pleasant to 'ear, Thaw it warn't not me es wur pretty, but

my two 'oonderd a-year.

20

THE SPINSTER'S SWEET-ARTS

I

VI

II

Milk for my sweet-arts, Bess ! fur it mun D' ya mind the murnin' when we was be the time about now

a-walkin' togither, an' stood When Molly cooms in fro' the far-end close By the claäy'd-oop pond, that the foalk be wi' her paäils fro' the cow.

sa scared at, i' Gigglesby wood, Eh! tha be new to the plaäce — thou 'rt Wheer the poor wench drowndid hersen, gaäpin' - does n't tha see

black Sal, es 'ed been disgraäced ? I calls 'em arter the fellers es once was An' I feel'd thy arm es I stood wur sweet upo' me ?

a-creeäpin' about my waäist; An' me es wur allus afear'd of a man's git

tin' ower fond, Naäy, to be sewer, it be past 'er time. I sidled awaäy an' awaäy till I plumpt foot Wbat maäkes 'er sa laäte ?

fust i’ the pond; Goa to the laane at the back, an' looök thruf And, Robby, I niver 'a liked tha sa well, as Maddison's gaäte !

I did that daäy,
Fur tha joompt in thysen, an' tha hoickt

my feet wi' a flop fro' the claäy. 30 Sweet-arts ! Molly belike may 'a lighted | Ay, stick oop thy back, an' set oop thy to-night upo' one.

taäil, tha may gie ma a kiss, Sweet-arts ! thanks to the Lord that I niver Fur I walk'd wi' tha all the way hoäm an' not listen'd to noän !

wur niver sa nigh saäyin' Yis. So I sits i' my oän armchair wi' my oän But wa boath was i' sich a clat we was kettle theere o' the hob,

shaämed to cross Gigglesby Greeän, An' Tommy the fust, an' Tommy the sec- Fur a cat may looök at a king, thou knaws, ond, an' Steevie an' Rob.

but the cat inun be clean.

III

10

X

60

Sa we boäth on us kep' out o' sight o' the

winders o' Gigglesby Hinn Naäy, but the claws o' tha ! quiet ! they Sweärin' ageän, you Toms, as ye used to do pricks clean thruf to the skin

twelve year sin'! An' wa boäth slinkt 'oäm by the brokken Ye niver eärd Steevie swear 'cep' it wur at shed i' the laäne at the back,

a dog coomin' in, Wheer the poodle runn'd at tha once, an' An' boäth o' ye mun be fools to be ballus thou runn'd oop o' the thack;

a-sbawin' your claws, An' tha squeedg’d my 'and i' the shed, fur Fur I niver cared nothink for neither theere we was forced to 'ide,

one o' ye deäd, ye knaws ! Fur I seed that Steevie wur coomin', and Coom, give hoäver then, weänt ye? I warone o' the Tommies beside.

rant ye Soom fine daäy Theere, lig down - I shall hev to gie one

or tother awaäy. Theere now, what art 'a mewin' at, Stee

Can't ye taäke pattern by Steevie ? ye vie ? for owt I can tell —

shan't hev a drop fro' the paäil. Robby wur fust, to be sewer, or I mowt 'a

Steevie be right good manners bang thruf liked tha as well.

to the tip o' the taäil.

an'

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VII

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Robby, git down wi' tha, wilt tha ? let

Steevie coom oop o' my knee. Steevie, my lad, thou 'ed very nigh been

the Steevie fur me ! Robby wur fust, to be sewer,

'e an' bred i' the 'ouse, But thou be es 'ansom a tabby es iver patted

wur burn

a mouse.

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XII

But, Robby, I thowt o' tha all the while I

wur chaängin' my gown, An' I thowt, shall I chaänge my staäte ?

but, O Lord, upo' coomin' down My bran-new carpet es fresh es a midder

o'flowers i' Maäy Why 'ed n't tha wiped thy shoes ? it wur

clatted all ower wi' claäy. An' I could 'a cried ammost, fur I seed that

it could n't be, An', Robby, I gied tha a raätin' that sat

tled thy coortin' o' me. An' Molly an' me was agreed, as we was

a-cleanin' the floor, That a man be a durty thing an'a trouble

an' plague wi' indoor. But I rued it arter a bit, fur I stuck to tha

moor na the rest, But I could n't 'a lived wi' a man, an' I

knaws it be all fur the best.

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IX

An' I beänt not vaäin, but I knaws I 'ed

led tha a quieter life Nor her wi’ the hepitaph yonder ! •A

faäithful an' loovin' wife !' An' 'cos o' thy farm by the beck, an' thy

windmill oop o' the croft, Tha thowt tha would marry ma, did tha ?

but that wur a bit ower soft, Thaw thou was es soäber es daäy, wi' a

niced red faäce, an' es cleän Es a shillin' fresh fro' the mint wi' a bran

new 'eäd o' the Queeän,
An' thy farmin' es cleän es thysen, fur,

Steevie, tha kep' it sa neät
That I niver not spied sa much es a poppy

along wi' the wheät,
An' the wool of a thistle a-flyin' an' seeädin'

tha haäted to see; 'T wur es bad es a battle-twig ''ere i' my

oän blue chaumber to me. Ay, roob thy whiskers ageän ma, fur I

could 'a taäen to tha well, But fur thy bairns, poor Steevie, a bouncin' boy an'a gell.

1 Earwig.

Naäy – let ma stroäk tha down till I

maäkes tha es smooth es silk, But if I 'ed married tha, Robby, thou 'd

not 'a been worth thy milk, Thou 'd niver 'a cotch'd ony mice but ’a

left me the work to do, And 'a taäen to the bottle beside, so es all

that I 'ears be true; But I loovs tha to maäke thysen 'appy, an’

soä purr awaäy, my dear, Thou ’ed wellnigh purr'd ma awaäy fro' my

oän two 'oonderd a-year.

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XIII An' thou was es fond o' thy bairns es I be mysen

o'

my cats, But I niver not wish'd fur childer, I hev u't

naw likin' fur brats; Pretty anew when ya dresses 'em oop, au’

they goäs fur a walk, Or sits wi' their 'auds afoor 'em, an' does n't

not 'inder the talk ! But their bottles o' pap, an' their mucky

bibs, an' the clats an' the clouts, An' their mashin' their toys to pieäces an'

maäkin' ma deaf wi' their shonts, An' hallus a-joompin' about ma as if they

was set upo' springs, An' a haxin' ma bawkard questions, an'

saäyin' ondecent things, An'a-callin' ma 'hugly' mayhap to my

faäce, or a-teärin' my gown Dear! dear! dear! I mun part them

Tommies — Steevie, git down.

XVII An' the little gells bobs to ma hoffens es I

be abroad i' the laänes, When I goäs fur to coomfut the poor es be

down wi' their haäches au' their

paäins: An'a haäf-pot o' jam, or a mossel o' meät

when it beänt too dear, They maäkes ma a graäter lady nor 'er i'

the mansion theer, Hes 'es hallus to hax of a man how much

to spare or to spend; An' a spinster I be an' I will be, if soä

please God, to the hend.

IIO

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XIV

XVIII Mew! mew! — Bess wi' the milk! what

ba maäde our Molly sa laäte ? It should ’a been 'ere by seven, au’ theere

- it be strikin' height •Cushie wur craäzed fur 'er cauf,' well

I 'eärd 'er a-maäkin' 'er moän, An' I thowt to mysen, 'thank God that I

hev n't naw cauf o' my oän.' Theere ! Set it down!

Now, Robby! You Tommies shall waait to-night Till Robby an' Steevie 'es 'ed their lap

an’ it sarves ye right.

6

Ye be wuss nor the men-tommies, you. I

tellid ya, na moor o' that ! Tom, lig theere o' the cushion, au’ tother

Tom 'ere o' the mat.

PROLOGUE

TO GENERAL HAMLEY

XV Theere ! I ha' master'd them! Hed I mar

ried the Tommies — O Lord, To loove an'obaäy the Tommies ! I could n't

'a stuck by my word. To be horder'd about, an' waäked, when

Molly 'd put out the light, By a man coomin' in wi' a hiccup at ony

hour o' the night! An' the taäble staäin’d wi' 'is aäle, an' the

mud o' 'is boots o' the stairs, An' the stink o' 'is pipe i' the 'ouse, an' the

mark o' 'is 'eäd o' the chairs ! An' noän o' my four sweet-arts 'ud 'a let

me 'a hed my oän waäy, Sa I likes 'em best wi' taäils when they

'ev n't a word to saäy.

100

a

The poem introduced by this Prologue was printed in . Macmillan's Magazine' for March, 1882. The Prologue and Epilogue were added when it appeared in the Tiresias' volume, 1885.

Sir Edward Bruce Hamley was born at Bodwin in Cornwall, April 27, 1824. He entered the army in 1843 ; served in the Crimean War; was successively professor of military history and commandant at the Staff College, Sandhurst (1858–77); was chief of the commission for the delimitation of the Balkan and Armenian frontiers (1879–80); and commanded a division in the Egyptian war of 1882. He was also the author of several works on military subjects. He died August 12, 1893.

XVI

An' I sits i' my oän little parlor, an' sarved

by my oän little lass, Wi' my oän little garden outside, an' my

oän bed o' sparrow-grass, An' my oän door-poorch wi' the woodbine

an' jessmine a-dressin' it greeän, An' my oän fine Jackman i' purple a

roäbin' the 'ouse like a queeän.

Our birches yellowing and from each

The light leaf falling fast,

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