Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, MINDEN HOUSE, by WILLIAM BARNES



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MINDEN HOUSE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Twer when the vo'k wer out to hawl
Last Line: There's now noo mwore a fanny deäne.
Subject(s): Farm Life; Housekeeping; Love; Marriage; Agriculture; Farmers; Weddings; Husbands; Wives


'Twer when the vo'k wer out to hawl
A vield o' haÿ a daÿ in June,
An' when the zun begun to vall
Toward the west in afternoon,
Woone only wer a-left behind
To bide indoors, at hwome, an' mind
The house, an' answer vo'k avore
The geäte or door,—young Fanny Deäne.

The aïr 'ithin the geärden wall
Wer deadly still, unless the bee
Did hummy by, or in the hall
The clock did ring a-hettèn dree,
An' there, wi' busy hands, inside
The iron ceäsement, open'd wide,
Did zit an' pull wi' nimble twitch
Her tiny stitch, young Fanny Deäne.

As there she zot she heärd two blows
A-knock'd upon the rumblè door,
An' laid azide her work, an' rose,
An' walk'd out feäir, athirt the vloor;
An' there, a-holdèn in his hand
His bridled meäre, a youth did stand,
An' mildly twold his neäme and pleäce
Avore the feäce o' Fanny Deäne.

He twold her that he had on hand
Zome business on his father's zide,
But what she didden understand;
An' zoo she ax'd en if he'd ride
Out where her father mid be vound,
Bezide the plow, in Cowslip Ground;
An' there he went, but left his mind
Back there behind, wi' Fanny Deäne.

Ah' oh! his hwomeward road wer gaÿ
In aïr a-blowèn, whiff by whiff,
While sheenèn water-weäves did plaÿ
An' boughs did swaÿ above the cliff;
Vor Time had now a-show'd en dim
The jaÿ it had in store vor him;
An' when he went thik road ageän
His errand then wer Fanny Deäne.

How strangely things be brought about
By Providence, noo tongue can tell.
She minded house, when vo'k wer out,
An' zoo mus' bid the house farewell;
The bees mid hum, the clock mid call
The lwonesome hours 'ithin the hall,
But in behind the woaken door,
There's now noo mwore a Fanny Deäne.





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