The Jolly Beggars : See the Smoking Bowl Before us
written in 1785
See the smoking bowl before us, Mark our jovial, ragged ring! Round and round take up the Chorus, And in raptures let us sing A fig for those by law protected! Liberty's a glorious feast! Courts for Cowards were erected, Churches built to please the Priest. What is title, what is treasure, What is reputation's care? If we lead a life of pleasure, 'Tis no matter how or where. With the ready trick and fable Round we wander all the day; And at night, in barn or stable, Hug our doxies on the hay. Does the train-attended carriage Thro' the country lighter rove? Does the sober bed of marriage Witness brighter scenes of love? Life is all a variorum, We regard not how it goes; Let them cant about decorum, Who have character to lose. Here's to budgets, bags and wallets! Here's to all the wandering train! Here's our ragged brats and callets! One and all cry out, Amen! A fig for those by law protected, Liberty's a glorious feast! Courts for Cowards were erected, Churches built to please the Priest.