« ForrigeFortsett »
I'm sure we're not half so bad as other businesses
with their bawlings. For instance, the general postmen, that at six
o'clock go about ringing, And wake up all the babbies that their mothers
have just got to sleep with singing. Greens oughtn't to be cried no more than blacks
to do the unpartial job, If they bring in a Sooty Bill, they ought to have
brought in a Dusty Bob. Is a dustman's voice more sweet than ourn, when
he comes a seeking arter the cinders, Instead of a little boy like a blackbird in spring,
singing merrily under your windows ? There 's the omnibus cads as plies in Cheapside,
and keeps calling out Bank and City ; Let his Worship, the Mayor, decide if our call of
Sweep is not just as pretty. I can't see why the Jews should be let go about
crying Old Close thro' their hooky noses, And Christian laws should be ten times more hard
than the old stone laws of Moses. Why isn't the mouths of the muffin-men com
pelled to be equally shut ? Why, because Parliament members eat muffins,
but they never eat no sut. Next year there won't be any May-day at all, we
shan't have no heart to dance, And Jack in the Green will go in black like
mourning for our mischance ;
If we live as long as May, that is to say, through
the hard winter and pinching weather, For I don't see how we're to earn enough to keep
body and soul together. I only wish Mr. Wilberforce or some of them that
pities the niggers, Would take a peep down in our cellars, and look
at our miserable starving figures, A-sitting idle on our empty sacks, and all ready to
eat each other. And a brood of little ones crying for bread to a
heart-breaking Father and Mother. They haven't a rag of clothes to mend, if their
mothers had thread and needles, But crawl naked about the cellars, poor things,
like a swarm of common black beadles. If they 'd only inquired before passing the Act
and taken a few such peeps, I don't think that any real gentleman would have
set his face against sweeps. Climbing 's an ancient respectable art, and if His
tory's of any vally, Was recommended by Queen Elizabeth to the
great Sir Walter Raleigh, When he wrote on a pane of glass how I'd climb,
if the way I only knew, And she writ beneath, if your heart's afeared,
don't venture up the flue. As for me I was always loyal, and respected all
powers that are higher,
But how can I now say God save the King, if I
an't to be a Cryer ? There's London milk, that's one of the cries, even
on Sunday the law allows, But ought black sweeps, that are human beasts, to
be worser off than black cows ? Do we go calling about, when it's church time,
like the noisy Billingsgate vermin, And disturb the parson with “All alive O!” in the
middle of a funeral sermon ? But the fish won't keep, not the mackarel won't,
is the cry of the Parliament elves, Every thing, except the sweeps I think, is to be
allowed to keep themselves ! Lord help us ! what's to become of us if we
mustn't cry no more ? We shan't do for black mutes to go a standing at
a death's door. And we shan't do to emigrate, no not even to the
Hottentot nations, For as time wears on, our black will wear off, and
then think of our situations ! And we should not do, in lieu of black-a-moor
footmen, to serve ladies of quality nimbly, For when we were drest in our sky-blue and
silver, and large frills, all clean and neat, and white silk stockings, if they pleased to desire us to sweep the hearth, we couldn't resist the chimbley.
It was a brave and jolly wight,
His cheek was baked and brown, For he had been in many climes
With captains of renown, And fought with those who fought so well
At Nile and Camperdown.
His coat it was a soldier coat,
Of red with yellow faced,
All downward from the waist;
And quite in sailor taste !
He put the rummer to his lips,
And drank a jolly draught;
And ever as he quaffed,
Seemed pitching fore and aft!
The ship seemed pitching fore and aft,
As in a heavy squall;
It gave a lurch and down he went,
Head-foremost in his fall!
He never rose at all!
But down he went, right down at once,
Like any stone he dived,
Of senses all deprived !
To see where he arrived !
And all that he could see was green,
Sea-green on every hand !
And all he felt was sand !
Could neither sit nor stand !
And lo! above his head there bent
A strange and staring lass!
The other held a glass ;
If ever mermaid was !
Her fish-like mouth was opened wide,
Her eyes were blue and pale, Her dress was of the ocean green,
When ruffled by a gale;