William Wordsworth

Andrew Jones

I HATE that Andrew Jones; he'll breed His children up to waste and pillage. I wish the press-gang or the drum With its tantara sound would come, And sweep him from the village! I said not this, because he loves Through the long day to swear and tipple; But for the poor dear sake of one To whom a foul deed he had done, A friendless man, a travelling cripple! For this poor crawling helpless wretch, Some horseman who was passing by, A penny on the ground had thrown; But the poor cripple was alone And could not stoop-no help was nigh. Inch-thick the dust lay on the ground For it had long been droughty weather; So with his staff the cripple wrought Among the dust till he had brought The half-pennies together. It chanced that Andrew passed that way Just at the time; and there he found The cripple in the mid-day heat Standing alone, and at his feet He saw the penny on the ground. He stopped and took the penny up: And when the cripple nearer drew, Quoth Andrew, "Under half-a-crown, What a man finds is all his own, And so, my Friend, good-day to you." And 'hence' I said, that Andrew's boys Will all be trained to waste and pillage; And wished the press-gang, or the drum With its tantara sound, would come And sweep him from the village.

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