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The Ox was glad, as well he might,
Thought a green meadow no bad sight,
And frisk'd, to shew his huge delight,

Much like a beast of spirit.

III.

Stop, Neighbours / stop ! why these alarms ?

The Ox is only glad—
But still they pour from cots and farms—
Halloo ! the parish is

up
in

arms,
(A hoaxing-hunt has always charms)

Halloo ! the Ox is mad.

IV.

The frighted beast scamper'd about;

Plunge ! through the hedge he drove--
The mob pursue with hideous rout,
A bull-dog fastens on his snout;
He gores the dog, his tongue hangs out ;

He's mad ! he's mad, by Jove !

v.

*

Stop, Neighbours, stop!” aloud did call

A sage of sober hue.
But all, at once, on him they fall,
And women squeak and children squall,
“What ! would you have him toss us all ?

“ And damme ! who are you?”

* “You cruel dog !" at once they bawl-1798.

VI.
Oh ! hapless sage, his ears they stun,

And curse him o'er and o'er-
“You bloody-minded dog!” cries one,
“To slit your windpipe were good fun,-
'Od blast you for an *impious son

Of a presbyterian whore !”

VII.

“ You'd have him gore the parish-priest,

And run † against the altar-
You fiend !” The sage his warnings ceased,
And north and south, and west and east,
Halloo ! they follow the poor beast,

Mat, Dick, Tom, Bob and Walter.

VIII.
Old Lewis ('twas his evil day),

Stood trembling in his shoes;
The Ox was his—what could he say?
His legs were stiffen'd with dismay,
The Ox ran o'er him mid the fray,
And
gave

him his death's bruise.

* One of the many fine words which the most uneducated had about this time a constant opportunity of acquiring from the sermons in the pulpit and the proclamations in the

corners.

+ Drive-1798.

I Rogue-Il.

VOL. II.

L

IX.

The frighted beast ran on—but here,

(No tale, tho' in print, more true is) *
My Muse stops short in mid career-
Nay, gentle reader ! do not sneer!
I cannot choose but drop a tear,

A tear for good old Lewis !

X. The frighted beast ran through the town; †

All follow'd, boy and dad, Bull-dog, Parson, Shopman, Clown : The Publicans rush'd from the Crown, “Halloo ! hamstring him ! cut him down !"

THEY DROVE THE POOR OX MAD.

XI.

Should you a Rat to madness tease

Why even a Rat may plague you : There's no Philosopher but sees That Rage and Fear are one diseaseThough that may burn and this may freeze,

They're both alike the Ague.

XII.
And so this Ox, in frantic mood,

Faced round like any Bull

* The baited ox drove on-but here

The gospel scarce more true is—1798. † The ox drove on right through the town—16.

The mob turn'd tail, and he pursued,
Till they with heat and fright * were stew'd,
And not a chick of all this brood

But had his belly full.

XIII.
Old Nick's astride the beast, 'tis clear-

Old Nicholas, to a tittle !
But all agree, he'd disappear,
Would but the Parson venture near,
And through his teeth,t right o'er the steer,

Squirt out some fasting-spittle.

XIV.

Achilles was a warrior fleet,

The Trojans he could worry-
Our Parson too was swift of feet,
But shew'd it chiefly in retreat :
The victor Ox scour'd down the street,

The mob fled hurry-scurry.

XV.

Through gardens, lanes and fields new-plough’d,

Through his hedge, and through her hedge,
He plunged and toss'd and bellow'd loud,
Till in his madness he grew proud
To see this helter-skelter crowd

That had more wrath than courage.

* With fright and fear-1798.

+ According to the superstition of the West-Countries, if you meet the Devil, you may either cut him in half with a straw, or force him to disappear by spitting over his horns.

XVI.
Alas! to mend the breaches wide

He made for these poor ninnies,
They all must work, whate'er betide,
Both days and months, and pay beside
(Sad news for Avarice and for Pride),

A sight of golden guineas !

XVII.
But here once more to view did pop

The man that kept his senses ;
And now he cried,-“Stop, neighbours ! stop;
The Ox is mad! I would not swop,
No ! not a school-boy's farthing-top

For all the parish-fences."

XVIII.
“ The Ox is mad! Ho! Dick, Bob, Mat !”
o6

What means this coward fuss ?
Ho! stretch this rope across the plat-
'Twill trip him up—or if not that,
Why, damme! we must lay him flat-

See, here's my blunderbuss.

XIX.

A lying dog ! * just now he said

The Ox was only gladLet's break his presbyterian head !“Hush !” quoth the sage, "you've been misled; No quarrels now let's all make head

YOU DROVE THE POOR OX MAD.”

* A barefaced dog !-1798.

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