Sunday, October 7, 2012

The ballad of Bonnie Good.

Jonnie Comet
August 2000

from Pamela; or: Virtue Reclaimed


When I was just a bonny lass
A-dandled on my mother’s knee,
She wept and gave these words to me:
‘Your papa’s gone, gone by the war.’

Alone, forlorn, she brought a son                                                               5
His father’s likeness, fine & free;
But one day wept and said to me,
‘Your brother’s gone, gone by the war.’

Thence married me to cobbler Good,
Who took his duty, o’er the sea                                                               10
Till sergeant knocked and said to me,
‘Your husband’s gone, gone by the war.’

Thus father, brother, husband gone;
My son a man, their mirror be;
Came he unto me, reverently:                                                                    15
‘Mamá, I must go for the war!’

I held my heart, stood firm, and cried:
  ‘No child of mine, thy father’s pride;
  Thy uncle’s, grandpa’s dream beside,
  Thy mother’s only hope and joy,                                                             20
  So bold a man, so young a boy,
  Shall will thy mother’s fears annoy;
  Thus take no musket, pistol, blade,
  In futile hope or fusillade:
  No more, no more, the proud cockade:                                                    25
  I’ll see no more mine gone by war.’



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