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“I can dream, sir,
If I eat well and sleep well.”—The Mad Lower.
IF I could scare the light away,
No sun should ever shine ;
If I could bid the clouds obey,
Thick darkness should be mine:
Where'er my weary footsteps roam,
I hate whate’er I see:
And Fancy builds a fairer home
In slumber's hour for me.
I had a vision yesternight
Of a lovelier land than this,
Where heaven was clothed in warmth and
Where earth was full of bliss;
And every tree was rich with fruits,
And every field with flowers,
And every zephyr wakened lutes
In passion-haunted bowers.
I clambered up a lofty rock,
And did not find it steep ;
I read through a page and a half of Locke,
And did not fall asleep;
I said whate’er I may but feel,
I paid whate’er I owe ;
And I danced one day an Irish reel,
With the gout in every toe.
And I was more than six feet high,
And fortunate and wise;
And I had a voice of melody,
And beautiful black eyes:
My horses like the lightning went,
My barrels carried true,
And I held my tongue at an argument,
And winning cards at Loo.
I saw an old Italian priest
Who spoke without disguise;
I dined with a judge who swore, like Best,
All libels should be lies:
I bought for a penny a twopenny loaf,
Of wheat and nothing more ;
I danced with a female philosophe,
Who was not quite a bore.
The kitchens there had richer roast,
The sheep wore whiter wool;
I read a witty Morning Post,
And an innocent John Bull;
The jailers had nothing at all to do,
The hangman looked forlorn,
And the Peers had passed a vote or two
For freedom of trade in corn.
There was a crop of wheat, which grew
Where plough was never brought;
There was a noble Lord, who knew
What he was never taught :
A scheme appeared in the Gazette
For a lottery with no blanks :
And a Parliament had lately met,
Without a single Bankes.
And there were kings who never went
To cuffs for half-a-crown ;
And lawyers who were eloquent
Without a wig and gown ;
And sportsmen who forbore to praise
Their greyhounds and their guns;
And poets who deserved the bays,
And did not dread the duns.
And boroughs were bought without a test,
And no man feared the Pope;
And the Irish cabins were all possessed
Of liberty and soap ;
And the Chancellor, feeling very sick,
Had just resigned the seals;
And a clever little Catholic
Was hearing Scotch appeals.
I went one day to a Court of Law
Where a fee had been refused ;
And a Public School I really saw
Where the rod was never used:
And the sugar still was very sweet,
Though all the slaves were free ;
And all the folk in Downing street
Had learned the rule of three.
There love had never a fear or doubt;
December breathed like June :
The Prima Donna ne'er was out
Of temper—or of tune;
The streets were paved with mutton pies,
Potatoes ate like pine ;
Nothing looked black but woman's eyes;
Nothing grew old but wine.
It was an idle dream ; but thou,
The worshipped one, wert there,
With thy dark clear eyes and beaming brow,
White neck and floating hair;
And, oh! I had an honest heart,
And a house of Portland stone;
And thou wert dear, as still thou art,
And more than dear, my own
Oh, bitterness!—the morning broke
Alike for boor and bard;
And thou wert married when I woke,
And all the rest was marred :
And toil and trouble, noise and steam,
Came back with the coming ray;
And, if I thought the dead could dream,
I’d hang myself to-day !
You precious winners all,”--- Winter's Tale,
FAIR Lady, ere you put to sea,
You and your mate together,
I meant to hail you lovingly,
And wish you pleasant weather.
I took my fiddle from the shelf;
But vain was all my labour;
For still I thought about myself,
And not about my neighbour.
Safe from the perils of the war,
Nor killed, nor hurt, nor missing—
Since many things in common are
Between campaigns and kissing—