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Aaron Stark

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 Withal a meagre man was Aaron Stark, --
Cursed and unkempt, shrewd, shrivelled, and morose.
A miser was he, with a miser's nose, And eyes like little dollars in the dark.
His thin, pinched mouth was nothing but a mark; And when he spoke there came like sullen blows Through scattered fangs a few snarled words and close, As if a cur were chary of its bark.
Glad for the murmur of his hard renown, Year after year he shambled through the town, -- A loveless exile moving with a staff; And oftentimes there crept into his ears A sound of alien pity, touched with tears, -- And then (and only then) did Aaron laugh.

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