FIDDLER JOHN : A COUNTRY TALE.
FIDDLER, JOHN he used to dwell
A long while since, so I've heard tell, In.= old thatched house with a leaving wall That .always looked just ready to fall . . . And wherever you went both far and near When folks did meet to make good cheer, Why, every time you'd find in the.middle Old bent John and his. old cracked fiddle. .
With a catch, a round and a country dance, A fine new tune a la mode de France, A stave for sorrow, a stave for mirth, This for a bridal and that for a birth . . .
" Ground for the Floor " and "The Green Grass grows " . . .
" Man's life's a vapour and full of woes " .
An alehouse jig when the full quarts foam, And a right jolly lilt for a harvest hemp I Fiddler John, he grew so old He kept his bed, so I've been told, Ile kept his bed and there he lay
I n. his old thatched house for many a day; And the lads and the lasses loitering by On summer nights they 'ud linger nigh, To hear him play by the light o' the moon On his old cracked fiddle each old, old tune.
Fiddler John, he is dead and gone, His green, green grave the grass grows on; Dead he lies and deep in the ground, And the green grass grows all around, all around.
His bones are dust and his fiddle's rotten, And his old, old tunes they are all forgotten, And the old thatched place where he used to dwell, It leaned some more and down it fell. . . .
But still, they say, when the moon's. at the full, And the mist on the common's as white as wool, When the river's loud on the distant weirs, And they're all abed at the 'Crook and Shears,' By Fiddler's Field, if you're homeward going, You'll see what looks like a garden growing. . Ranks of carrots and beans and peas, Plums and apples on gnarled old trees, Tall white lilies as straight as arrows, Sprouts and cabbage and big green 'narrows. . And out o' the house that stands in the middle You can hear a sound like an old cracked fiddle .
With a catch, a round, and a country dance, A fine new tune a la mode de France, A stave for sorrow, a stave for mirth, This for a bridal and that for a birth . . .
"Ground for the Floor" and "Tbe Green Grass grows" , . .
" Man's life's a vapour and full of woes" . . .
An alehouse jig when the brown jugs foam, And a right jolly lilt for the last lead home!
C. Fox SMITII.