Miser and the prodigal, a moral tale/The Drunkard's Soliloquy

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Miser and the prodigal, a moral tale  (1830) 
The Drunkard's Soliloquy

THE DRUNKARD'S SOLILOQUY,

IN IMITATION OF HAMLET'S.

To drink, or not to drink? that is the question—
Whether 'tis better still to rove about
From inn to inn, mad with the fumes of whisky,
Or make a vow against the use of spirits,
And save our health and money? Grow sober—
wealthy.
No more:—and by this change to say we end
The head-ache, heat-burn, and a thousand ills,
That drunkards suffer: 'tis a situation
Devoutly to be wish'd.— To eat-to drink—
To drink? perehanee get drunk! Ay, there's the road:
When met in town with all our boon companions,
Must give us pause.—There is the reason
That makes good-natur'd men drink all their days;
For who would bear the ills of cold and want,
The spurns of vintner's, when his money's gone,
The duns of creditors, the beadle's chaee,
The fears of jail, and all the rude insults
Which wretched drunkards from the rabble take,
When he himself might live at ease and comfort
In his own dwelling? Who would whisky swill,
And groan and spew about an alehouse door,
But that the dread of conquering rooted habit
(That unsubdued tyrant, from whose grasp
Few people e'er escape) puzzles the will,
And bids us rather call the other gill,
Than grope the way home to our cheerless dwellings.
Thus eraving thirst makes drinkers of us still,
And many a well-form'd scheme and resolution
Is broken up 'mid riot and intemperance,
And foolish men, who once had pith and money,
With this regard, refuse to be reclaim'd,
And live in abjeet poverty.


FINIS.


This work was published before January 1, 1926, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.