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POEM OF THE DAY

THE LAY OF THE LOVER'S FRIEND

|Air|--"The days we went a-gipsying."

I would all womankind were dead,
    Or banished o'er the sea;
For they have been a bitter plague
    These last six weeks to me:
It is not that I'm touched myself,
    For that I do not fear;
No female face hath shown me grace
    For many a bygone year.
        But 'tis the most infernal bore,
            Of all the bores I know,
        To have a friend who's lost his heart
            A short time ago.

Whene'er we steam it to Blackwall,
    Or down to Greenwich run,
To quaff the pleasant cider cup,
    And feed on fish and fun;
Or climb the slopes of Richmond Hill,
    To catch a breath of air:
Then, for my sins, he straight begins
    To rave about his fair.
        Oh, 'tis the most tremendous bore,
            Of all the bores I know,
        To have a friend who's lost his heart
            A short time ago.

In vain you pour into his ear
    Your own confiding grief;
In vain you claim his sympathy,
    In vain you ask relief;
In vain you try to rouse him by
    Joke, repartee, or quiz;
His sole reply's a burning sigh,
    And "What a mind it is!"
        O Lord! it is the greatest bore,
            Of all the bores I know,
        To have a friend who's lost his heart
            A short time ago.

I've heard her thoroughly described
    A hundred times, I'm sure;
And all the while I've tried to smile,
    And patiently endure;
He waxes strong upon his pangs,
    And potters o'er his grog;
And still I say, in a playful way--
    "Why you're a lucky dog!"
        But oh! it is the heaviest bore,
            Of all the bores I know,
        To have a friend who's lost his heart
            A short time ago.

I really wish he'd do like me
    When I was young and strong;
I formed a passion every week,
    But never kept it long.
But he has not the sportive mood
    That always rescued me,
And so I would all women could
    Be banished o'er the sea.
        For 'tis the most egregious bore,
            Of all the bores I know,
        To have a friend who's lost his heart
            A short time ago.

                                         William E. Aytoun.

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