I ground-bait my way as I go,
And dip in at each watery dimple;

But however I wish

To inveigle the fish,
To my gentle they will not play simple !

Though my float goes so swimmingly on,
My bad luck never seems to diminish;

It would seem that the Bream
Must be scarce in the stream,
And the Chub, tho' it's chubby, be thinnish!

Not a Trout there can be in the place,
Not a Grayling or Rud worth the mention,

And although at my hook

With attention I look,
I can ne'er see my hook with a Tench on!

At a brandling once Gudgeon would gape,
But they seem upon different terms now;

Have they taken advice

Of the “ Council of Nice," And rejected their “ Diet of Worms," now?

In vain my live minnow I spin,
Not a Pike seems to think it worth snatching ;

For the gut I have brought,

I had better have bought A good rope that was used to Jack-ketching!

Not a nibble has ruffled my cork,
It is vain in this river to search then;

I may wait till it's night,

Without any bite, And at roost-time have never a Perch then!

No Roach can I meet with — no Bleak,
Save what in the air is so sharp now;

Not a Dace have I got,

And I fear it is not “ Carpe diem," a day for the Carp now!

Oh! there is not a one pound prize
To be got in this fresh water-lottery !

What then can I deem

Of so fishless a stream But that 'tis — like St. Mary's — Ottery !

For an Eel I have learned how to try,
By a method of Walton's own showing,

But a fisherman feels

Little prospect of Eels,
In a path that 's devoted to towing !

I have tried all the water for miles,
Till I'm weary of dipping and casting,

And hungry and faint,

Let the Fancy just paint
What it is, without Fish, to be Fasting !

And the rain drizzles down very fast,
While my dinner-time sounds from a far bell,

So, wet to the skin,

I'll e'en back to my Inn,
Where at least I am sure of a Bar-bell!



PURE water it plays a good part in
The swabbing the decks and all that —
And it finds its own level for sartin-
For it sartinly drinks very flat:-
For my part a drop of the creatur
I never could think was a fault,
For if Tars should swig water by natur,
The sea would have never been salt !-
Then off with it into a jorum
And make it strong, sharpish, or sweet,
For if I've any sense of decorum
It never was meant to be neat !-

One day when I was but half sober,—
Half measures I always disdain -
I walked into a shop that sold Soda,
And axed for some Water Champagne :-

Well, the lubber he drew and he drew, boys,
Till I'd shipped my six bottles or more,
And blow off my last limb but it's true, boys
Why, I warn't half so drunk as afore! -
Then off with it into a jorum,
And make it strong, sharpish, or sweet,
For if I've any sense of decorum,
It never was meant to be neat.



“ Twiddle'em, Twaddle'em, Twenty-one."
O woe! O woeful, woeful, woeful day!
Most lamentable day! most woeful day!
That ever, ever, I did yet behold!
O day! O day! O day! O hateful day!
Never was seen so black a day as this!
O woeful day! O woeful day!

Musician. Faith, we may put up our pipes and be gone.
Nurse. Honest good fellows, ah! put up, put up!
For well you know this is a pitiful case.


TO-DAY it is my natal day,
Three 'prenticeships have passed away,
A part in work, a part in play,

Since I was bound to life!
This first of May I come of age,

A man, I enter on the stage
Where human passions fret and rage,

To mingle in the strife.

It ought to be a happy date,
My friends, they all congratulate
That I am come to “ Man's Estate,"

To some, a grand event ;
But ah! to me descent allots
No acres, no paternal spots
In Beds, Bucks, Herts, Wilts, Essex, Notts,

Hants, Oxon, Berks, or Kent.

From John o'Groat's to Land's End search,
I have not one rod, pole, or perch,
To pay my rent, or tithe to church,

That I can call my own.
Not common-right for goose or ass ;
Then what is Man's Estate? Alas !
Six feet by two of mould and grass

When I am dust and bone.

Reserve the feast ! The board forsake !
Ne'er tap the wine — don't cut the cake,
No toasts or foolish speeches make,

At which my reason spurns.
Before this happy term you praise,
And prate about returns and days,
Just o'er my vacant rent-roll gaze,

And sum up my returns.

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