William Topaz McGonagall |
This Statue, I must confess, is magnificent to see,
And I hope will long be appreciated by the people of Dundee;
It has been beautifully made by Sir John Steell,
And I hope the pangs of hunger he will never feel.
This statue is most elegant in its design,
And I hope will defy all weathers for a very long time;
And I hope strangers from afar with admiration will stare
On this beautiful statue of thee, Immortal Bard of Ayr.
Fellow-citizens, this Statue seems most beautiful to the eye,
Which would cause Kings and Queens for such a one to sigh,
And make them feel envious while passing by
In fear of not getting such a beautiful Statue after they die.
William Topaz McGonagall |
A heroic story I will unfold,
Concerning Jenny Carrister, a heroine bold,
Who lived in Australia, at a gold mine called Lucknow,
And Jenny was beloved by the the miners, somehow.
Jenny was the only daughter of the old lady who owned the mine-
And Jenny would come of an evening, like a gleam of sunshine,
And by the presence of her bright face and cheery voice,
She made the hearts of the unlucky diggers rejoice.
There was no pride about her, and day after day,
She walked with her young brother, who was always gay,
A beautiful boy he was, about thirteen years old,
And Jenny and her brother by the miners were greatly extolled.
Old Mrs Carrister was every inch a lady in her way,
Because she never pressed any of the miners that weren't able to pay
For the liberty of working the gold-field,
Which was thirty pounds per week for whatever it might yield.
It was in the early part of the year 1871,
That Jack Allingford, a miner, hit on a plan,
That in the mine, with powder, he'd loosen the granite-bound face,
So he selected, as he thought, a most suitable place.
And when all his arrangements had been made,
He was lowered down by a miner that felt a little afraid,
But most fortunately Jenny Carrister came up at the time,
Just as Jack Allingford was lowered into the mine.
Then she asked the man at the windlass if he'd had any luck,
But he picked up a piece of candle and then a match he struck;
Then Jenny asked the miner, What is that for?
And he replied to blast the mine, which I fear and abhor.
Then with a piece of rope he lowered the candle and matches into the mine,
While brave Jenny watched the action all the time;
And as the man continued to turn round the windlass handle,
Jenny asked him, Isn't it dangerous to lower the matches and candle?
Then the man replied, I hope there's no danger, Jenny, my lass,
But whatsoever God has ordained will come to pass;
And just as he said so the windlass handle swung round,
And struck him on the forehead, and he fell to the ground.
And when Jenny saw the blood streaming from the fallen man's head,
She rushed to the mouth of the shaft without any dread,
And Jenny called loudly, but received no reply,
So to her brother standing near by she heaved a deep sigh.
Telling him to run for assistance, while she swung herself on to the hand-rope,
Resolved to save Jack Allingford's life as she earnestly did hope;
And as she proceeded down the shaft at a quick pace,
The brave heroine knew that death was staring her in the face.
And the rope was burning her hands as she descended,
But she thought if she saved Jack her task would be ended;
And when she reached the bottom of the mine she did not hesitate,
But bounding towards Jack Allingford, who was lying seemingly inanimate.
And as she approached his body the hissing fuse burst upon her ears,
But still the noble girl no danger fears;
While the hissing of the fuse was like an engine grinding upon her brain,
Still she resolved to save Jack while life in her body did remain.
She noticed a small jet of smoke issuing from a hole near his head,
And if he'd lain a few seconds longer there he'd been killed dead,
But God had sent an angel to his rescue,
For seizing him by the arms his body to the air shaft she drew.
It was a supernatural effort, but she succeeded at last,
And Jenny thanked God when the danger was past,
But at the same instant the silence was broke
By a loud explosion, which soon filled the mine with smoke.
But, oh, God be thanked! the greatest danger was past,
But when Jenny saw Jack Allingford, she stood aghast,
Because the blood was issuing from his nest and ears,
And as Jenny viewed his wounds she shed many tears.
But heroic Jenny was not one of the fainting sort,
For immediately to the mouth of the mine she did resort,
And she called loudly for help, the noble lass,
And her cry was answered by voices above at the windlass.
So there were plenty to volunteer their services below,
And the rope was attached to the windlass, and down they did go,
And Jack Allingford and Jenny were raised to the top,
While Jenny, noble soul, with exhaustion was like to drop.
And when the miners saw her safe above there was a burst of applause,
Because she had rescued Jack Allingford from death's jaws;
So all ye that read or hear this story, I have but to say,
That Jenny Carrister was the noblest heroine I've ever heard of in my day.
William Topaz McGonagall |
In an immense wood in the south of Kent,
There lived a band of robbers which caused the people discontent;
And the place they infested was called the Weald,
Where they robbed wayside travellers and left them dead on the field.
Their leader was called Grif, of the Bloody Hand,
And so well skilled in sword practice there's few could him withstand;
And sometimes they robbed villages when nothing else could be gained,
In the year of 1336, when King Edward the III. reigned.
The dress the robbers wore was deep coloured black,
And in courage and evil deeds they didn't lack;
And Grif. Of the Bloody Hand, called them his devils,
Because they were ever ready to perform all kinds of ills.
'Twas towards the close of a very stormy day,
A stranger walked through the wood in search of Grif, without dismay;
And as the daylight faded he quickened his pace and ran,
Never suspecting that in his rear he was followed by a man.
And as the man to the stranger drew near,
He demanded in a gruff voice, what seek you here;
And when the stranger saw him he trembled with fear,
Because upon his head he wore a steel helmet, and in his hand he bore a spear.
What seek you here repeated the dark habited man,
Come, sir, speak out, and answer me if you can;
Are you then one of the devils demanded the stranger faintly,
That I am said the man, now what matters that to thee.
Then repeated the stranger, sir, you have put me to a stand,
But if I guess aright, you are Grif, of the Bloody Hand;
That I am replied Grif, and to confess it I'm not afraid,
Oh! Well then I require your service and you'll be well paid.
But first I must know thy name, I, that's the point,
Then you shall have the help of my band conjoint;
Before any of my men on your mission goes,
Well then replied the stranger call me Martin Dubois.
Well sir, come tell me what you want as quick as you can,
Well then replied Dubois do you know one Halbert Evesham
That dwells in the little village of Brenchley,
Who has a foster child called Violet Evesham of rare beauty.
And you seek my aid to carry her off,
Ha! Ha! A love affair, nay do not think I scoff;
For you shall enjoy her sir before this time to-morrow,
If that will satisfy you, or help to drown your sorrow.
And now sir what is your terms with me,
Before I carry off Violet Evesham from the village of Brenchley;
Well Grif, one thousand marks shall be the pay,
'Tis agreed then cried Grif, and you shall enjoy her without delay.
Then the bargains struck, uttered Grif, how many men will you require,
Come sir, speak, you can have all of my band if you desire;
Oh, thanks sir, replied Dubois, I consider four men will do,
That's to say sir, if the four men's courage be true.
And to-morrow sir send the men to Brenchley without delay,
And remember one thousand marks will be the pay;
And the plan I propose is to carry her to the wood,
And I will be there to receive her, the plan is good.
And on the next morning Grif, of the bloody Hand,
Told off four of his best men and gave them strict command;
To carry off Violet Evesham from the village of Brenchley,
And to go about it fearlessly and to make no delay.
And when ye have captured her carry her to the wood,
Now remember men I wish my injunctions to be understood;
All right, captain, we'll do as we've been told,
And carry her off all right for the sake of the gold.
So on the next morning before the villagers were out of bed,
The four robbers marched into the village of Brenchley without any dread;
And boldly entered Violet Evesham's house and carried her, away,
While loudly the beautiful girl shrieked in dismay.
But when her old father missed her through the village he ran,
And roused the villagers to a man;
And a great number of them gathered, and Wat Tyler at their head,
And all armed to the teeth, and towards the wood they quickly sped.
And once within the wood Wat Tyler cried, where is Violet Evesham,
Then Grif, of the Bloody Hand cried, what ails the man;
My dear sir I assure you that Violet Evesham is not here.
Therefore good people I advise ye to retire from here.
No! I'll not back cried Wat Tyler, until I rescue Violet Evesham,
Therefore liar, and devil, defend thyself if you can;
Ay replied Grif, that I will thou braggart loon,
And with my sword you silly boy prepare to meet thy doom.
Then they rained their blows on each other as thick as hail,
Until at last Grif's strength began to fail;
Then Wat leaped upon him and threw him to the ground,
Then his men fled into the wood that were standing around.
Then the villagers shouted hurrah for Wat Tyler and victory,
And to search for Violet Evesham they willingly did agree;
And they searched the wood and found her at the foot of a tree,
And when she was taken home the villagers danced with glee.
And 'tis said Wat Tyler married Violet Evesham,
And there was great rejoicing among the villagers at the marriage so grand;
And Wat Tyler captured Dubois, and bound him to a tree,
And left him there struggling hard to gain his liberty.
William Topaz McGonagall |
Greenland's icy mountains are fascinating and grand,
And wondrously created by the Almighty's command;
And the works of the Almighty there's few can understand:
Who knows but it might be a part of Fairyland?
Because there are churches of ice, and houses glittering like glass,
And for scenic grandeur there's nothing can it surpass,
Besides there's monuments and spires, also ruins,
Which serve for a safe retreat from the wild bruins.
And there's icy crags and precipices, also beautiful waterfalls,
And as the stranger gazes thereon, his heart it appals
With a mixture of wonder, fear, and delight,
Till at last he exclaims, Oh! what a wonderful sight!
The icy mountains they're higher than a brig's topmast,
And the stranger in amazement stands aghast
As he beholds the water flowing off the melted ice
Adown the mountain sides, that he cries out, Oh! how nice!
Such sights as these are truly magnificent to be seen,
Only that the mountain tops are white instead of green,
And rents and caverns in them, the same as on a rugged mountain side,
And suitable places, in my opinion, for mermaids to reside.
Sometimes these icy mountains suddenly topple o'er
With a wild and rumbling hollow-starting roar;
And new peaks and cliffs rise up out of the sea,
While great cataracts of uplifted brine pour down furiously.
And those that can witness such an awful sight
Can only gaze thereon in solemn silence and delight,
And the most Godfearless man that hath this region trod
Would be forced to recognise the power and majesty of God.
Oh! how awful and grand it must be on a sunshiny day
To see one of these icy mountains in pieces give way!
While, crack after crack, it falls with a mighty crash
Flat upon the sea with a fearful splash.
And in the breaking up of these mountains they roar like thunder,
Which causes the stranger no doubt to wonder;
Also the Esquimaux of Greenland betimes will stand
And gaze on the wondrous work of the Almighty so grand.
When these icy mountains are falling, the report is like big guns,
And the glittering brilliancy of them causes mock-suns,
And around them there's connected a beautiful ring of light,
And as the stranger looks thereon, it fills his heart with delight.
Oh! think on the danger of seafaring men
If any of these mighty mountains where falling on them;
Alas! they would be killed ere the hand of man could them save
And, poor creatures, very likely find a watery grave!
'Tis most beautiful to see and hear the whales whistling and blowing,
And the sailors in their small boats quickly after them rowing,
While the whales keep lashing the water all their might
With their mighty tails, left and right.
In winter there's no sunlight there night or day,
Which, no doubt, will cause the time to pass tediously away,
And cause the Esquimaux to long for the light of day,
So as they will get basking themselves in the sun's bright array.
In summer there is perpetual sunlight,
Which fill the Esquimaux's hearts with delight;
And is seen every day and night in the blue sky,
Which makes the scenery appear most beautiful to the eye.
During summer and winter there the land is covered with snow,
Which sometimes must fill the Esquimaux' hearts with woe
As they traverse fields of ice, ten or fifteen feet thick,
And with cold, no doubt, their hearts will be touched to the quick.
And let those that read or hear this feel thankful to God
That the icy fields of Greenland they have never trod;
Especially while seated around the fireside on a cold winter night,
Let them think of the cold and hardships Greenland sailors have to fight.
William Topaz McGonagall |
Near the village of Udorf, on the banks of the Rhine,
There lived a miller and his family, once on a time;
And there yet stands the mill in a state of decay,
And concerning the miller and his family, attend to my lay.
The miller and his family went to Church one Sunday morn,
Leaving behind their darling child, the youngest born,
In charge of brave Hanchen, the servant maid,
A kind-hearted girl and not the least afraid.
As Hanchen was engaged preparing dinner for the family
She chanced to turn round, and there she did see
Heinrich Bottler, her lover, and she sincerely loved him,
Then she instantly got him something to eat and bade him begin.
And in the midst of her business she sat down beside him,
While he did justice to the meat and thought it no sin,
But while he was eating he let fall his knife,
Then he commanded Hanchen to pick it up or else he'd take her life.
Then as she stooped down to pick up the knife,
The villain caught her by the throat, and swore he'd take her life,
Then he drew a dagger from under his coat,
Crying, tell me where your master's money is, or I'll cut your throat.
And still he threatened to kill her with the dagger in his hand,
If the poor girl didn't comply with his demand,
While in his choking grasp her breath was fleeting faster and faster,
Therefore she had no other choice but to die or betray her master.
Then she cried, mercy, for Heaven's sake let go thy hold.
And I'll tell thee where my master keeps his gold;
Then he let go his hold without delay,
And she unto him thus boldly did say.
Here, take this axe and use it, while I run upstairs,
To gather all my money, besides all my wares,
Because I'm resolved to fly along with you,
When you've robbed my master of his gold and bid France adieu.
Then deceived by her plan he allowed her to leave the room,
Telling her to make haste and come back very soon,
Then to her master's bedroom she led the way,
And showed him the coffer where her master's money lay
Then Heinrich with the axe broke the coffer very soon,
While Hanchen instead of going upstairs to her room,
Bolted all the doors upon him without dismay,
While Heinrich was busy preparing to carry her master's money away.
Then she rushed to the mill to give the alarm,
Resolved to protect her master's money, while she could wield an arm;
And the only being in sight was her master's boy of five years old,
Then she cried, run! run! and tell father there's a robber taking his gold.
Then the boy did as she bid him without any doubt,
And set off, running on the road she pointed out;
But at this moment, a shrill whistle made her stand aghast,
When she heard Heinrich, crying, catch that child that's running so fast.
But still the boy ran on with might and main,
Until a ruffian sprang up from the bed of a natural drain;
And snatching the boy in his arms, and hastening towards the mill,
While brave Hanchen was afraid the boy would he kill.
Then the villain came rushing with the boy towards the mill,
Crying, open the door, or the child I'll kill;
But she cried, never will I open the door to thee,
No! I will put my trust in God, and He'll save the child and me.
Then the ruffian set down the child, for a moment to look about,
Crying, open the door, or I'll fire the mill without doubt;
And while searching for combustibles, he discovered an inlet to the mill,
Saying, my pretty maid, once I get in, it's you I will kill.
Then he tied the hands and feet of the poor child,
Which caused it to scream with fear, very wild;
Then he stole back to the aperture to effect an entrance,
And when Hanchen saw him, she said now is my chance.
So the ruffian got safely in the great drum wheel,
Then Hanchen set on the engine, which made the ruffian reel;
And as he was whirled about, he screamed aloud,
And when Hanchen saw him like a rat in a trap, she felt very proud.
At length the master arrived and his family,
And when she heard his kindly voice her heart was full of glee,
Then she opened the mill door and let him in,
While her eyes with tears of joy were full to the brim.
Then the master set off the engine without delay,
And the ruffian was dragged forth while he shook with dismay,
And Heinrich and he were bound together under a strong escort,
And conveyed to Bonn Prison where villains resort.
So thus ends the story of Hanchen, a heroine brave,
That tried hard her master's gold to save,
And for her bravery she got married to the miller's eldest son,
And Hanchen on her marriage night cried Heaven's will be done.
William Topaz McGonagall |
Jack Honest was only eight years of age when his father died,
And by the death of his father, Mrs Honest was sorely tried;
And Jack was his father's only joy and pride,
And for honesty Jack couldn't be equalled in the country-side.
So a short time before Jack's father died,
'Twas loud and bitterly for Jack he cried,
And bade him sit down by his bedside,
And then told him to be honest whatever did betide.
John, he said, looking him earnestly in the face,
Never let your actions your name disgrace,
Remember, my dear boy, and do what's right,
And God will bless you by day and night.
Then Mr Honest bade his son farewell, and breathed his last,
While the hot tears from Jack's eyes fell thick and fast;
And the poor child did loudly sob and moan,
When he knew his father had left him and his mother alone.
So, as time wore on, Jack grew to be a fine boy,
And was to his mother a help and joy;
And, one evening, she said, Jack, you are my only prop,
I must tell you, dear, I'm thinking about opening a shop.
Oh! that's a capital thought, mother, cried Jack,
And to take care of the shop I won't be slack;
Then his mother said, Jackey, we will try this plan,
And look to God for his blessing, and do all we can.
So the widow opened the shop and succeeded very well,
But in a few months fresh troubles her befell--
Alas! poor Mrs Honest was of fever taken ill,
But Jack attended his mother with a kindly will.
But, for fear of catching the fever, her customers kept away,
And once more there wasn't enough money the rent to pay;
And in her difficulties Mrs Honest could form no plan to get out,
But God would help her, she had no doubt.
So, one afternoon, Mrs Honest sent Jack away
To a person that owed her some money, and told him not to stay,
But when he got there the person had fled,
And to return home without the money he was in dread.
So he saw a gentleman in a carriage driving along at a rapid rate,
And Jack ran forward to his mansion and opened the lodge-gate,
Then the gentleman opened his purse and gave him, as he thought, a shilling
For opening the lodge-gate so cleverly and so willing.
Then Jack stooped to lift up the coin, when lo and behold!
He found to his surprise it was a piece of gold!
And Jack cried oh! joyful, this will make up for my mother's loss,
Then he ran home speedily, knowing his mother wouldn't be cross.
And when he got home he told his mother of his ill success,
And his adventure with the gentleman, then she felt deep distress;
And when Jack showed her the sovereign, the gentleman gave him,
She cried, We mustn't keep that money, it would be a sin.
Dear mother, I thought so, there must be some mistake,
But in the morning, to Squire Brooksby, the sovereign I'll take;
So, when morning came, he went to Squire Brooksby's Hall,
And at the front door for the Squire he loudly did call.
Then the hall door was opened by a footman, dressed in rich livery,
And Jack told him he wished Mr Brooksby to see;
Then to deliver Jack's message the footman withdrew,
And when the footman returned he said, Master will see you.
Then Jack was conducted into a rich furnished room,
And to Mr Brooksby he told his errand very soon,
While his honest heart, with fear, didn't quake,
Saying, Mr Brooksby, you gave me a sovereign yesterday in a mistake.
Why, surely I have seen you before, said Mr Brooksby;
Yes, Sir, replied Jack Honest, bowing very politely;
Then what is your name, my honest lad? Asked Mr Brooksby;
John Honest, sir, replied Jack, right fearlessly.
The, my brave lad, you are Honest by name, and honest by nature,
Which, really, you appear to be in every feature,
But, I am afraid, such boys as you are very few,
But, I dare say, your mother has taught you.
Then Jack laid the sovereign down on the table before Mr Brooksby;
But Mr Brooksby said, No! my lad, I freely give it to thee;
Then Jack said, Oh, sir, I'm obliged to you I'm sure,
Because, sir, this money will help my mother, for she is poor.
Mrs Brooksby came to see Mrs Honest in a few days,
And for Jack's honesty she was loud in praise;
And she took Jack into her service, and paid him liberally,
And she gave Mrs Honest a house, for life, rent free.
Now, I must leave Jack Honest and his mother in fresh found glory,
Hoping my readers will feel interested in this story,
And try always to imitate the hero-- Jack Honest--
And I'm sure they will find it the safest and the best!
William Topaz McGonagall |
Smiths Buildings No. 19
Sept the 6th. 1877.
Most August! Empress of India, and of great Britain the Queen,
I most humbly beg your pardon, hoping you will not think it mean
That a poor poet that lives in Dundee,
Would be so presumptous to write unto Thee
Most lovely Empress of India, and Englands generous Queen,
I send you an Address, I have written on Scotlands Bard,
Hoping that you will accept it, and not be with me to hard,
Nor fly into a rage, but be as Kind and Condescending
As to give me your Patronage
Beautiful Empress, of India, and Englands Gracious Queen,
I send you a Shakespearian Address written by me.
And I think if your Majesty reads it, right pleased you will be.
And my heart it will leap with joy, if it is patronized by Thee.
Most Mighty Empress, of India, and Englands beloved Queen,
Most Handsome to be Seen.
I wish you every Success.
And that heaven may you bless.
For your Kindness to the poor while they are in distress.
I hope the Lord will protect you while living
And hereafter when your Majesty is ... dead.
I hope the Lord above will place an eternal Crown! upon your Head.
I am your Gracious Majesty ever faithful to Thee,
William McGonagall, The Poor Poet,
That lives in Dundee.
William Topaz McGonagall |
Bonnie Mary, the Maid o' the Tay,
Come! Let's go, and have a holiday
In Newport, on the braes o' the silvery Tay,
'Twill help to drive dull care away.
The scenery there is most enchanting to be seen,
Especially the fine mansions with their shrubbery green;
And the trees and ivy are beautiful to view
Growing in front of each stately home in the avenue.
There the little birds and beautiful butterflies
Are soaring heavenwards almost to the skies,
And the busy bees are to be seen on the wing,
As from flower to flower they hummingly sing,
As they gather honey all the day,
From flowery gardens of Newport on the braes o' the Tay.
And as we view the gardens our hearts will feel gay
After being pent up in the workshop all the day.
Then there's a beautiful spot near an old mill,
Suitable for an artist to paint of great skill,
And the trees are arched o'erhead, lovely to be seen,
Which screens ye from the sunshine's glittering sheen.
Therefore, holiday makers, I'd have ye resort
To Newport on the braes o' the Tay for sport,
And inhale the pure air with its sweet perfume,
Emanating from the flowery gardens of Newport and the yellow broom.
And when bright Sol sinks in the West
You'll return home at night quite refreshed,
And dream in your beds of your rambles during the day
Along the bonnie braes o' the silvery Tay.
William Topaz McGonagall |
Alas! the people's hearts are now full of sorrow
For the deceased Professor Blackie, of Edinboro';
Because he was a Christian man, affable and kind,
And his equal in charitable actions would be hard to find
'Twas in the year of 1895, March the 2nd, he died at 10 o'clock.
Which to his dear wife, and his adopted son, was a great shock;
And before he died he bade farewell to his adopted son and wife.
Which, no doubt, they will remember during life.
Professor Blackie celebrated his golden wedding three years ago,
When he was made the recipient of respect from high and low.
He leaves a widow, but, fortunately, no family,
Which will cause Mrs. Blackie to feel less unhappy.
Professor Blackie will be greatly missed in Edinboro;
Especially those that met him daily will feel great sorrow,
When they think of his never-failing plaid and hazel rung,
For, although he was an old man, he considered he was young.
He had a very striking face, and silvery locks like a seer,
And in the hearts of the Scottish people he was loved most dear;
And many a heart will mourn for him, but all in vain,
Because he never can return to them again.
He was a very kind-hearted man, and in no way vain,
And I'm afraid we ne'er shall look upon his like again;
And to hear him tell Scotch stories, the time did quickly pass,
And for singing Scotch songs few could him surpass.
But I hope e is in heaven, singing with saints above,
Around God's throne, where all is peace and love;
There, where God's children daily doth meet
To sing praises to God, enchanting and sweet.
He had visited almost every part of Europe in his time,
And, like Lord Byron, he loved the Grecian clime;
Nor did he neglect his own dear country,
And few men knew it more thoroughly than he.
On foot he tramped o'er most of bonnie Scotland,
And in his seventies he climbed the highest hills most grand.
Few men in his day could be compared to him,
Because he wasn't hard on fallen creatures when they did sin.
Oh, dearly beloved Professor Blackie, I must conclude my muse,
And to write in praise of thee my pen does not refuse;
Because you were a very Christian man, be it told,
Worthy of a monument, and your name written thereon in letters of gold.
William Topaz McGonagall |
Ye mountains and glens of fair Scotland I'm with ye once again,
During my absence from ye my heart was like to break in twain;
Oh! How I longed to see you and the old folks at home,
And with my lovely Jeannie once more in the green woods to roam.
Now since I've returned safe home again
I will try and be content
With my lovely Jeannie at home,
And forget my banishment.
My Jeannie and me will get married,
And I will be to her a good man,
And we'll live happy together,
And do the best we can.
I hope my Jeannie and me
Will always happy be,
And never feel discontent;
And at night at the fireside
I'll relate to her the trials of my banishment.
But now I will never leave my Jeannie again
Until the day I die;
And before the vital spark has fled
I will bid ye all good-bye.