Page images

Young Jehu, tott'ring in his seat,

Now wish'd to pull them in ; But pulling from so young a hand

They valued not a pin.

half the way;

A drove of grunting pigs before

Fill'd up
Dash through the midst the horses drove,

And made a rueful day :

For some were trampled under foot,

Some crush'd beneath the wheel;
Lord! how the drivers curs'd and swore,

And how the pigs did squeal !

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

A farmer's wife, on old blind Ball,

Went slowly on the road,
With butter, eggs, and cheese, and cream,

In two large panniers stow'd.

Ere Ball could stride the rut, amain

The gig came thund'ring on,
Crash went the panniers, and the dane

And Ball lay overthrown.

Now through the town the mettled pair

Ran ratt'ling o'er the stones;
They drove the crowd from side to side,

And shook poor Jehu's bones.

When lo! directly in their course,

A monstrous form appear'd;
A shaggy bear that stalk'd and roar’d,

On hinder legs uprear'd.

Sideways they started at the sight,

And whisk'd the gig half round, Then cross the crowded market-place

They flew with furious bound.

First o'er a heap of crock'ry ware

The rapid car they whirld ; And jugs, and mugs, and pots, and pans,

In fragments wide they hurl'd.

A booth stood near with tempting cakes

And groc'ry richly fraught; All Birmingham on t'other side

The dazzled optics caught.

With active spring the nimble steeds

Rush'd through the pass between, And scarcely touch'd ; the car behind,

Got through not quite so clean :

For while one wheel one stall engag'd,

Its fellow took the other ; Dire was the clash ; down fell the booths,

And made a dreadful pother.

Nuts, oranges, and gingerbread,

And figs here rollid around;
And scissars, knives, and thimbles there

Bestrew'd the glitt'ring ground.

The fall of boards, the shouts and cries,

Urg'd on the horses faster; And as they flew, at ev'ry step

They caus'd some new disaster.

Here lay o'erturn'd, in woful plight,

A pedlar and his pack;
There, in a showman's broken box,

All London went to wrack.

But now the fates decreed to stop

The ruin of the day,
And make the gig and driver too

A heavy reck'ning pay.


A ditch there lay both broad and deep,

Where streams as black as Styx From every quarter of the town

Their muddy currents mix.

Down to its brink in heedless haste

The frantic horses flew,
And in the midst, with sudden jerk,

Their burden overthrew.

The prostrate gig with despårate force

They soon pull'd out again, And at their heels, in ruin dire,

Dragg'd lumb'ring o'er the plain.'

Here lay a wheel, the axle there,

The body there remain'd,
Till, sever'd limb from limb, the car

Nor name nor shape retain'd.

[ocr errors]

But Jehu must not be forgot,

Left flound'ring in the flood, With clothes all drenchd, and mouth and eyes

Beplaster'd o'er with mud.

In piteous case he waded through

And gain'd the slipp'ry side,
Where grioning crowds were gather'd round

To mock his fallen pride.

They led him to a neighbouring pump

To clear bis dismal face,
Whence cold and heartless home he slunk

Involvd in sore disgrace.
And many a bill for damage done

His father had to pay.
Take warning, youthful drivers all !

From Jehu's first essay.



Papa (said Lucy,) I have been reading to-day, that Sir Isaac Newton was led to make some of his great discoveries by seeing an apple fall from a tree.

What was there extraordinary in that?

P. There was nothing extraordinary ; but it happened to catch his attention, and set him a thinking.

L. And what did he think about?

A. He thought by what means the apple was brought to the ground.

L. Why I could have told him that --because the stalk gave way, and there was nothing to support it.

P. And what then ?

L. Why then-it must fall, you know.

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »