Journal Volume 7 2013

The Wicklow excursion (continued/1)


Well: we thought, on arriving at Newtown-Mount-Kennedy,

‘T was proper to shew the poor horses some lenity;

So there for awhile we reluctantly waited;

Then impatient stroll’d on while the animals baited.

But the long dusty road not so much we admired;

Soon the light Sylph of Calpe complain’d she was tired,

And sinking down gave the pedestrian fit o’er,

And lay like a daisy cut down by the mower.

Her example prevailing beside her we sank,

Like so many buttercups dotting the bank;

Till the carriages roused us, our idle limbs troubling,

Like the Black-cart collecting the Vagrants in Dublin.

But our ardor return’d when again we began

Nature’s haunts to explore at the Pass of Dunran.

On the left a rough wall of high rocks you behold,

Clad with heather and broom, rich with purple and gold;

On the right a tall hill with a curtain of wood,

And between them a road, winding—just as it should.


In this charming retreat it was almost a sin,

To think of our dinner at Newrybridge-Inn.

But the keen mountain air, with its flutter unsteady,

Would sing nothing else but “Your Dinner is ready!”

So to Newry we went; but alas! but alas!

The schemes of poor mortals are fragile as glass!

To the Inn we drove up, and the Landlord tript out,

“No Room, plase your Honors!“and wheel’d right.about.

For rooms we had written, for rooms and for dinner;

But the first in the race of the cup is the winner:

Activity taught by a recent defection,

Colonel Wh*te here at least had secured his Election.

So onward to Wicklow we heavily went,

Too hungry be sure to be very content.

But when we got there, we made light of our care,

And drove to the Green-tree that branches so fair.

To the Green-tree we drove—but alas! but alas!

Fate seem’d to have doom’d us to dine upon grass;

Like Nebuchadonnezzar, Babylon’s King,

Who grazed seven years like a four-footed thing.

“No Room, plase your Honors! “ the landlady said,

With a very self-satisfied toss of the head.

“No Room!” cried Mamma, “Why, thou infamous Tree,

“Be the curse of the Fig that was barren on Thee!

“May thy veins than turf-ashes be speedily dryer,

“And the axe lay thee low to be food for the fire!

“For unblest was the hand that first taught thee to climb;

“And the day of thy birth was a stain upon time!

“Smug Clerks, and Attornies, with pens in their ear,

“In alleys and lanes can get plentiful cheer;

“Dull drudges, that scarcely know clover from oats,

“Thrust mutton and beef down their ravenous throats:

“But we, Lovers of Nature, are likely to die,

“Unrelieved by a pitiful blackberry pie!”

To exertion inspired by her eloquent tongue,

Away, right and left, then the Gentlemen sprung.

The Major was here; his Lieutenant was there;

The others went puzzling they didn’t know where;

No end now appear’d to their hunts and their courses;

Mamma was all fidgets at keeping the horses;

The people look’d out of their windows and giggled;

Mamma, quite provoked, said she’d ne’er be inveigled

Again to expose coach and horses to ravages,

Stared at and starved by impertinent savages.


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