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Poem by Eugene Field

Béranger's To My Old Coat

Still serve me in my age, I pray,
  As in my youth, O faithful one;
For years I've brushed thee every day
  Could Socrates have better done?
What though the fates would wreak on thee
  The fulness of their evil art?
Use thou philosophy, like me
  And we, old friend, shall never part!

I thinkI often think of it
  The day we twain first faced the crowd;
My roistering friends impeached your fit,
  But you and I were very proud!
Those jovial friends no more make free
  With us (no longer new and smart),
But rather welcome you and me
  As loving friends that should not part.

The patch? Oh, yesone happy night
  "Lisette," says I, "it's time to go"
She clutched this sleeve to stay my flight,
  Shrieking: "What! leave so early? No!"
To mend the ghastly rent she'd made,
  Three days she toiled, dear patient heart!
And Iright willingly I staid
  Lisette decreed we should not part!

No incense ever yet profaned
  This honest, shiny warp of thine,
Nor hath a courtier's eye disdained
  Thy faded hue and quaint design;
Let servile flattery be the price
  Of ribbons in the royal mart
A roadside posie shall suffice
  For us two friends that must not part!

Fear not the recklessness of yore
  Shall re-occur to vex thee now;
Alas, I am a youth no more
  I'm old and sere, and so art thou!
So bide with me unto the last
  And with thy warmth caress this heart
That pleads, by memories of the Past,
  That two such friends should never part!

Eugene Field

Eugene Field's other poems:
  1. Abu Midjan
  2. Ballad of Women I Love
  3. Guess
  4. The Broken Ring
  5. The Wind

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