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Poem by John Skelton


Mannerly Margery Milk and Ale


Aye, beshrew you, by my fay,
These wanton clerks be nice alway,
Avaunt, avaunt, my popagay!
"What, will ye do nothing but play?"
Tilly vally straw, let be I say!
Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery milk and Ale.

"By God, ye be a pretty pode,
And I love you an whole cartload."
Straw, James Foder, ye play the fode,
I am no hackney for your rod:
Go watch a bull, your back is broad!
Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery milk and ale.

Ywis ye deal uncourteously;
What, would ye frumple me? now fie!
"What, and ye shall not be my pigsny?"
By Christ, ye shall not, no hardily:
I will not be japed bodily!
Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery milk and ale.

"Walk forth your way, ye cost me naught;
Now have I found that I have sought:
The best cheap flesh that ever I bought."
Yet, for his love that hath all wrought,
Wed me, or else I die for thought.
Gup, Christian Clout, your breath is stale!
With Mannerly Margery milk and ale!
Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery milk and ale. 



John Skelton


John Skelton's other poems:
  1. Against the Scots
  2. Cardinal Wolsey in Hell
  3. On Time
  4. Duke of Albany
  5. Upon a Dead Man's Head


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