The Walshes Came to Burgundy

Some hundred fifty years ago
A young man left his home;
Good-bye to hills of Ireland,
To make it on his own.
At age eighteen, he had no fear
To cross the ocean wide,
Although he made the trip alone,
With no one by his side.

His storm-tossed ship went off its course,
So, Boston was its end.
He went ashore, with Irish luck,
And found himself a friend.
His benefactor sheltered him
And taught him all he knew.
Young Thomas Walsh was learning
All the things good tradesmen do.


The Wake Of Tim O'Hara

TO the Wake of O’Hara
Came company;
All St. Patrick’s Alley
Was there to see,
With the friends and kinsmen
Of the family.
On the long deal table lay Tim in white,
And at his pillow the burning light.
Pale as himself, with the tears on her cheek,
The mother receiv’d us, too full to speak;
But she heap’d the fire, and on the board
Set the black bottle with never a word,
While the company gather’d, one and all,
Men and women, big and small:


The Twins Of Lucky Strike

I've sung of Violet de Vere, that slinky, minky dame,
Of Gertie of the Diamond Tooth, and Touch-the-Button Nell,
And Maye Lamore,--at eighty-four I oughta blush wi' shame
That in my wild and wooly youth I knew them ladies well.
And Klondike Kit, and Gumboot Sue, and many I've forgot;
They had their faults, as I recall, the same as you and me;
But come to take them all in all, the daisy of the lot,
The glamour queen of dance-hall dames was Montreal Maree.
And yet her heart was bigger than a barn, the boys would say;


The Valley of the Shadow

There were faces to remember in the Valley of the Shadow,
There were faces unregarded, there were faces to forget;
There were fires of grief and fear that are a few forgotten ashes,
There were sparks of recognition that are not forgotten yet.
For at first, with an amazed and overwhelming indignation
At a measureless malfeasance that obscurely willed it thus,
They were lost and unacquainted—till they found themselves in others,
Who had groped as they were groping where dim ways were perilous.


The True Born Englishman excerpt

...
Thus from a mixture of all kinds began,
That het'rogeneous thing, an Englishman:
In eager rapes, and furious lust begot,
Betwixt a painted Britain and a Scot.
Whose gend'ring off-spring quickly learn'd to bow,
And yoke their heifers to the Roman plough:
From whence a mongrel half-bred race there came,
With neither name, nor nation, speech nor fame.
In whose hot veins new mixtures quickly ran,
Infus'd betwixt a Saxon and a Dane.
While their rank daughters, to their parents just,


The Three Bares

Ma tried to wash her garden slacks but couldn't get 'em clean
And so she thought she'd soak 'em in a bucket o' benzine.
It worked all right. She wrung 'em out then wondered what she'd do
With all that bucket load of high explosive residue.
She knew that it was dangerous to scatter it around,
For Grandpa liked to throw his lighted matches on the ground.
Somehow she didn't dare to pour it down the kitchen sink,
And what the heck to do with it, poor Ma jest couldn't think.

Then Nature seemed to give the clue, as down the garden lot


The Task Book IV, The Winter Evening excerpts

Hark! 'tis the twanging horn! O'er yonder bridge,
That with its wearisome but needful length
Bestrides the wintry flood, in which the moon
Sees her unwrinkled face reflected bright,
He comes, the herald of a noisy world,
With spatter'd boots, strapp'd waist, and frozen locks;
News from all nations lumb'ring at his back.
True to his charge, the close-pack'd load behind,
Yet careless what he brings, his one concern
Is to conduct it to the destin'd inn:
And, having dropp'd th' expected bag, pass on.


The Transparent Man

I'm mighty glad to see you, Mrs. Curtis,
And thank you very kindly for this visit--
Especially now when all the others here
Are having holiday visitors, and I feel
A little conspicuous and in the way.
It's mainly because of Thanksgiving. All these mothers
And wives and husbands gaze at me soulfully
And feel they should break up their box of chocolates
For a donation, or hand me a chunk of fruitcake.
What they don't understand and never guess
Is that it's better for me without a family;


The Tiger

The tiger, on the other hand,
Is kittenish and mild,
And makes a pretty playfellow
For any little child.
And mothers of large families
(Who claim to common sense)
Will find a tiger well repays
The trouble and expense.


The Sunderland Calamity

'Twas in the town of Sunderland, and in the year of 1883,
That about 200 children were launch'd into eternity
While witnessing an entertainment in Victoria Hall,
While they, poor little innocents, to God for help did call.

The entertainment consisted of conjuring, and the ghost illusion play,
Also talking waxworks, and living marionettes, and given by Mr. Fay;
And on this occasion, presents were to be given away,
But in their anxiety of getting presents they wouldn't brook delay,


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