Charles Stuart Calverley ( )


The Auld Wife


PART I

The auld wife sat at her ivied door,
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
A thing she had frequently done before;
And her spectacles lay on her aprond knees.

The piper he pipd on the hill-top high,
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
Till the cow said, I die, and the goose asked Why?
And the dog said nothing, but searchd for fleas.

The farmer he strode through the square farmyard;
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
His last brew of ale was a trifle hard,
The connection of which with the plot one sees.

The farmers daughter hath frank blue eyes;
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
She hears the rooks caw in the windy skies,
As she sits at her lattice and shells her peas.

The farmers daughter hath ripe red lips;
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
If you try to approach her away she skips
Over tables and chairs with apparent ease.

The farmers daughter hath soft brown hair;
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
And I met with a ballad, I cant say where,
Which wholly consisted of lines like these.

PART II

She sat with her hands neath her dimpled cheeks,
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
And spake not a word. While a lady speaks
There is hope, but she did nt even sneeze.

She sat with her hands neath her crimson cheeks;
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
She gave up mending her fathers breeks,
And let the cat roll in her best chemise.

She sat with her hands neath her burning cheeks,
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
And gazd at the piper for thirteen weeks;
Then she followd him out oer the misty leas.

Her sheep followd her, as their tails did them,
(Butter and eggs and a pound of cheese)
And this song is considerd a perfect gem;
And as to the meaning, it s what you please. 



Charles Stuart Calverley's other poems:
  1. Ode to Tobacco
  2. Peace. A Study
  3. A, B, C.
  4. Visions
  5. Love


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