The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift/Volume 8/Robin and Harry
ROBIN AND HARRY.
ROBIN to beggars with a curse,
Throws the last shilling in his purse;
And, when the coachman comes for pay,
The rogue must call another day.
Grave Harry, when the poor are pressing,
Gives them a penny, and God's blessing;
But, always careful of the main,
With twopence left, walks home in rain.
Robin from noon to night will prate,
Run out in tongue, as in estate:
And, ere a twelvemonth and a day,
Will not have one new thing to say.
Much talking is not Harry's vice:
He need not tell a story twice:
And, if he always be so thrifty,
His fund may last to five and fifty.
It so fell out, that cautious Harry,
As soldiers use, for love must marry,
And, with his dame, the ocean cross'd;
(All for Love, or the World well Lost!)
Repairs a cabin gone to ruin,
Just big enough to shelter two in;
And in his house, if any body come,
Will make them welcome to his modicum.
Where Goody Julia milks the cows,
And boils potatoes for her spouse;
Or darns his hose, or mends his breeches,
While Harry's fencing up his ditches.
Robin, who ne'er his mind could fix
To live without a coach and six,
To patch his broken fortunes, found
A mistress worth five thousand pound;
Swears he could get her in an hour,
If gaffer Harry would endow her;
And sell, to pacify his wrath,
A birth-right for a mess of broth.
Young Harry, as all Europe knows,
Was long the quintessence of beaux;
But, when espous'd, he ran the fate
That must attend the married state;
From gold brocade and shining armour,
Was metamorphos'd to a farmer;
His grazier's coat with dirt besmear'd;
Nor twice a week will shave his beard.
Old Robin, all his youth a sloven,
At fifty-two, when he grew loving,
Clad in a coat of paduasoy,
A flaxen wig, and waistcoat gay,
Powder'd from shoulder down to flank,
In courtly style addresses Frank;
Twice ten years older than his wife,
Is doom'd to be a beau for life;
Supplying those defects by dress,
Which I must leave the world to guess.
- Sons of Dr. Lesley. Harry was a colonel in the Spanish service.