[Page 215]


1 WHO presses on my knee this kindly pat,
2 And with a merry archness in my face
3 Looks up? a youngling of my own liel race:
4 Comest thou to woo my notice, little Matt?
5 I think thou dost, and thou shalt have it too,
6 For, whatsoe'er thou dost or dost not do,
7 Thou hast upon my heart a potent claim,
8 Matthew Baillie is thy name;
9 And worn by thee, O never may
10 The light transmitted fade away!
11 The virtues of thy grandsire's manly breast,
12 May they within thy bosom ever rest!
13 Far be from thee, dear child, even in thy play,
14 A crooked cunning trick or selfish way,
15 All greedy grasping, or of cake or toy!
16 Thou must be generous, kind and true, my boy.
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17 And if, in after days, thou needs must fight
18 With angry school-mates, wrestle for the right.
19 Whate'er the poor or wealthy do, thou must
20 Frank and straight-forward be, faithful and just.
21 No seeking favour with fair glozing words!
22 No dangling after little patron lords!
23 In thee, or man or boy, still let us see
24 Traces of him whose name now honours thee.
25 He passed, through life with conscience for his guide,
26 Nor hesitated, winked, or turned aside.
27 He lived in courts, all courtly failings near,
28 And knew not feigning, flattery, or fear.
29 Be thou a Matthew then from right unswerving,
30 And of thy name deserving.
31 Ah, little man! thy roguish eye
32 When those thou lovest are standing by,
33 Thy scowling brow and stormy voice,
34 When thwarted of thy will or choice,
35 Shew thou wilt have no easy play
36 Old aunty's precepts to obey.
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37 Aye! and wee Willie too is near,
38 His gladsome, cooing voice, I hear;
39 And there he comes in all his charms,
40 Set perching in his nurse's arms.
41 In his sweet face beam smiles of love
42 That o'er cheeks, chin, and forehead move;
43 Fat dimpled arms, and shoulders bare,
44 The same emotion seem to share;
45 Yea, could we see thee all, we should discover
46 Thou art one living smile all over.
47 Thy small foot too, tinged like the rose,
48 With all its spread and stirring toes,
49 Its tiny heel and ankle stout,
50 From muslin coaties peeping out
51 What part of thee can we behold
52 That is not worth a mine of gold?
53 Thy open mouth that offers kisses
54 So winningly, and seldom misses
55 A kind return, full twenty-fold,
56 From stern or gentle, young or old;
57 Come sweet temptation! near more near,
58 And let me feel its pressure dear!
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59 Thou little, loving harmless baby,
60 Ah! what progressive changes may be;
61 When, with thy youth and manhood, future years
62 Have dealt, and on thy countenance appears
63 The marked expression of thy inward worth,
64 By joy, and grief, and love, and generous ire drawn forth!
65 Could we even now thy future fortunes know,
66 Thy character and thy endowments! No;
67 Why look through onward time to see
68 What thou, dear baby, then mayest be?
69 I will not from the present part,
70 Loving so dearly what thou art.
71 Matthew and William, brothers twain,
72 God's blessing on your heads remain!
73 Soft pretty signs and tokens tell
74 That now ye love each other well,
75 And nature's self and parents kind
76 Will round your hearts this blessing bind.
77 In sacred words to each dear brother,
78 A grand-aunt's say concludes, "love one another."


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Title (in Source Edition): TWO BROTHERS.
Genres: address

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Baillie, Joanna, 1762-1851. Fugitive Verses. By Joanna Baillie, author of “Dramas on the Passions,“ etc. London: Edward Moxon, Dover Street. MDCCCXL., 1840, pp. 215-218.  (Page images digitized from a copy in the Bodleian Library [40.17].)

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Typography, spelling, capitalization, and punctuation have been cautiously modernized. The source of the text is given and all significant editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. This ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 4.0.0.

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