Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, IN THE COACH, by THOMAS EDWARD BROWN

Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

IN THE COACH, by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: Yes, comin' home from the north sea fishin'.
Last Line: "jus' a lil dunkey."
Alternate Author Name(s): Brown, T. E.
Subject(s): Wit & Humor; Buses; Yarns

No. I. -- JUS' THE SHY

YES, comin' home from the North Sea fishin' we were, past John o' Grotes,
Past the Pentlands and Cape Wrath theer, twenty boats
There'd be of us, and eight men and boys to every one, and how many are you making that?
A hunderd-and-sixty, says you -- You're smart though, what?
And sure enough it is -- aw this ciphrin' and figgurin' and recknin', aw grand! grand!
Well, when we hauled to the southward, the wind turned a foul, you'll understand;
So we made for a bay though, the lot of us: ter'ble narra it was to get in --
That bay -- but spreadin' out astonishin',
And the room you navar seen -- acres! acres! So swings to an anchor for all
As aisy as aisy, and plenty to spare, just that we could call
The time o' day and that: it's comfible, you know, like yandhar, and mayve a matthar
Of ten fathom -- good houldin', fuss-rate ridin', couldn' be batthar.
And at the top of the bay there was a castle, ter'ble though,
Aw, bless ye, ter'ble uncommon, and the gardens theer all in a row,
And all above one another; and some guns that was took from the Rooshians, and a tower, and a flag
goin' a-haulin' --
I don't know the burgee, but as broad as a good tarpaulin;
And over the door, cut to a dot, aw, open your eyes the widest you can!
Over the door, if you plaze, over the door, what next? God bless us! the three legs of Man!
That was the thing. My gough! the wondher we had;
And this and that; but at last Billy Fargher said
It muss ha' been some of these ould Earls or Dukes, or their daughters, or their nieces, or their
(Of coorse, there'd be dozens)
That got married on yandhar lek --
At laste you'd expeck
There'd be some workin' in and out; and blood is blood,
That's aisy understood;
And navar ashamed of the ould flag, not her; but heisin' it to the wind, and carvin' it on the
stone, like defyin',
Lek as bould as a lion.
Now there was a ter'ble great lady livin' in this Castle, mind!
Aye, a lady, bless ye! and no mistake, grand, no doubt, but kind.
And she come to see us, aye, and she said she was once on the Islan',
And the people was that good to her, and that civil, and that smilin',
And that plazzant, she said, that she couldn' forget it, she said,
No, she said; and it wasn' no use, she said,
They were nice people, she said, the nice you couldn' tell;
That's what she said, and she liked them well.
And she wouldn't take no res' of us but we muss promise then and theer
To have dinner with her, aye! dinner, think of that now! a hunderd-and-sixty of us -- what? aw,
I'll sweer.
Dinner though; so promised sure enough; and the day come,
And there wasn' a sowl of us went, not a sowl, by gum!
No! and the pipers blawin',
And the curks drawin',
And the preparation they'd be havin', so I'm toul',
And there wasn' a sowl, no, not a sowl.
And what for was that? What for? Just the shy, the shy,
That's the what for, and that's the why,
And that's the way with the Manx; aw, it is though, aw, they are, they are,
Mos' despard shy; aw, it's a pity for all, but star'
They will, and wink and nudge and poke and bother,
And spit theer and laugh, and look like axin' one another --
"Are you goin', and you?" and takin' rises, and all to that,
Till you can't tell is it your granny's cat
Or what is it that's doin' on you, but you feel jus' a reg'lar fool,
And all the time bitendin' to be as cool as cool.
Aw dear! it's a pity! a pity! aw, a rum lot!
But, whether or not,
The great lady was agate of us again,
'Deed for sure she was, and she seen the men
Was shy of the dinner; but it's lek she thought
It was on account of not knowin' how to behave theerselves the way they ought
With theer knives and theer plates and the lek; so axed them to tay --
Aw, she muss ha' been a kind lady anyway!
And we promised faithful, and the day come, and she sent and she sent,
And there wasn' a one of us went.
The shy, did ye say? Sartinly, nothin' but the shy,
That's the way we are; aye,
Treminjus though. I was raelly sorry for her, I was, I tell ye,
And all the throuble that was at her theer, fit for a melya,
And the disappointed -- what? and, altogather, my chiarn!
These Manx chaps isn' fit, no they ar'n' --
Ter'ble boghs!
Well the wind veered round, and we all sailed for the southward,
Excep' two boats. Now, d'ye think she'd ha' bothered
About such dunkies? Well, that's jus' what she did,
Perseverin', aye! and considherin', and waitin'. 'Turn your quid!"
Says Juan Jem, lek futhee, lek no hurry! you know
Lek aisy all! lek keep her so!
Lek wait and see! Patient, is it? But anyway the strong
The kindness was in her -- that's it, and the long-
Suff'rin' lek, and navar not no capers of takin' offince.
My gouth! it's many a time I've thought of it since.
What did she do but down to these chaps that was lavin' behind --
Sixteen of them, aye -- and axed them theer as kind as kind --
To tay? most sartin; what else? and I tell ye they took heart and went,
And enjoyed theerselves to the full the same's it might be you or any other gent.
But the res'? you're wond'rin'. Chut!
Jus' the shy, and nothin' but
The shy. Aw, no use a' talkin',
The shy it's shawkin'.
No raison, says you: not a bit.
Amazin', says you. Well, that's all you'll get,
That is the raison, and the for and the why --
Jus' the shy!

No. II. -- YES, MA'AM! NO, MA'AM!

Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am;
We called him Joe, ma'am;
Eighteen --
My name's Cregeen --
Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am;
Had to go, ma'am
Faver? aye;
Young to die;
Eighteen for spring.
(Chorus of sympathisers) "Poor thing! poor thing!"

Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am;
I'm rather low, ma'am --
Bombay --
Not at say.
Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am;
Just so, ma'am,
Clane groun',
And the Pazon in his gown;
No stone, just marks.
(Chorus as before) "She's thinkin' of these sharks."

Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am,
Not like home, ma'am --
The clothes he died in
The corp was plied in.
Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am;
But just to sew, ma'am,
Something sof',
Plazed enough,
But couldn' be --
(Chorus as before) "My chree! my chree!"

Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am,
We were callin' him Joe, ma'am --
His chiss come,
Not like to some;
Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am,
Come by Crow, ma'am,
From Liverpool:
And, of a rule,
Not amiss.
(Chorus as before) "She's got his chiss! she's got his chiss!"

Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am,
These feerns will grow, ma'am,
So I'm tould.
But I'm makin' very bould.
Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am --
Rather slow, ma'am,
Is this coach;
But I hope I don't encroach --
In my head the pain's.
(Chorus as before) "In her heart she manes."

Yes, ma'am, no, ma'am.


Conjergal rights! conjergal rights!
I don't care for the jink of her and I don't care for the jaw of her,
But I'll have the law of her.
Conjergal rights! yis, yis, I know what I'm sayin'
Fuss-rate, Misthress Corkhill, fuss-rate, Misther Cain,
And all the people in the coach -- is there a man or a woman of the lot of ye --
Well now, that's what I wudn' have thought of ye,
I wudn' raelly -- No, I haven' got a little sup,
Not me -- is there one of ye that wudn' stand up
For conjergal rights?
No, ma'am, tight's
Not the word, not a drop since yesterday. But lizzen, good people, lizzen!
I'll have her in the coorts, I'll have her in prison --
It's the most scandalous thing you ever -- What! this woman and her daughter --
It's clane murder, it's abslit manslaughter,
Aye, and I wudn' trus' but beggamy, that's what it is -- Married yesterday mornin'
In Kirk Breddhan Church, and not the smallest taste of warnin',
Takes her to her house in Castletown,
And jus' for I axed a quashtin -- and I'll be boun'
It's a quashtin any one of you wud have axed -- picks a quarrel, makes a row,
The two of them, aye, the two of them -- bow-wow!
Hammer and tungs! sends for a pleeceman, puts me to the door --
But I'll owe her! I'll owe her!
Aisy, Mr. Cretney? No, I'll not be aisy;
It's enough to make a body crazy,
That's what it is, and the supper on the table,
And the hoss in the stable.
And I said nothin', nor I done nothin'. Aw, if there's law in the land,
Law or justice, I'll have it, d'ye understand?
Do ye see the thing? My grayshurs! married is married,
Isn' it? what? and me that carried
The woman's box. And that isn' all; what raison? what sense?
Think of the expense! think of the expense!
Don't ye know? God bless me! The certif'cake, that's hafe-a-crown,
And the licence, that's five shillin', money down, money down!
And not a farlin' off for cash, these Pazons, not a farlin';
And said she was my darlin'
And all to that, guy heng! it's thrue! it's thrue!
And look at me now! boo-hoo-oo-oo!
Yis, cryin' I am, and no wondher --
You don't see me it's that dark in the coach. By the livin' thundher
I'm kilt mos'ly, that's what I am, almos' kilt
With throuble and disthress and all. A jilt,
You say, a jilt? But married, married, married, d'ye hear?
Married, Misthress Creer,
Married afore twelve at Kirk Breddhan,
Married, a reg'lar proper weddin'
And no mistake,
And this woman . . . O my gough! don't spake of her! don't spake!
It's me that's spakin'? Yis, and I will! I will!
Who's to spake if I amn'? But still --
It's lek you don't see, the coach is so dark, and no light from these houses,
But feel of this new coat, and the pair of new trousis,
Bought o' puppose, o' puppose! what else?
Bran new; and the shirt and the frells,
And the cuffs and the collar, every d-------- thing
As bran and as new as a gull's wing --
And all to plaze her, and to look accordin'
To the occasion, and to do her credit, and ho'rdin'
The teens of months. And O, if I'd only borrowed them from a neighbour!
That's the thing, but bought them, bought them! and even so they might ha' been chaber,
Yis, they might, at another shop. But you don' see the way I'm goin',
No, no, you don' --
But I'd lek you to -- the tears! I'm jus' slushin' the sthraw
With the tears, makin' the coach all damp for the people -- yis, I know I am, but I'll have the
law, I'll have the law.
Just a quashtin about a bit of proppity,
The house, in fac', the very house we come into, d'ye see?
The house, her house! Of coorse! of coorse! But goodness grayshurs!
Who doesn' know the law about a thing like that? the iggorant! the ordashurs!
If ever there was a thing on God's earth
That was mine, it was yandhar house! But it isn't worth
Talkin' -- no! There's people that'll go against anything. But what! no suttlement goin' a-makin',
Nor nothin', jus' everything goin' a-takin'
Undher the common law of matrimony theer --
At my massy! at my massy! With your lave, Mr. Tear,
At my massy, sir. You'll 'scuse me.
But you know the law. Married -- my chree! my chree!
What iss "married," if that isn'? it's as plain as a dus'bin --
Your own dear lovin' husbin'
As kind as kind!
See the beauty of it! And "all that's thine is mine,"
Isn' it sayin' that in the Bible?
And surely the woman is li'ble
As well as the man; and to "love, honour, and obey,"
Isn' that what they say?
But it's my heart, that's it! my poor broken heart! aw dear! aw dear!
And my feelin's! my feelin's! and that son of mine girnin' from ear to ear,
And his lip, and his imprince, and his disrespeck,
And the waste and the neglec' --
O, it's awful! it's awful! O, the wounds that there's no healin's!
O, my feelin's! my feelin's!
But I'll see aburt, I will, I'll see aburt --
The dirt!
The wife of my bosom! Don't be mockin'!
I heard a woman laughing: its shockin'
That a woman'd laugh at the lek of such doin's, yis, it is,
Downright wickedness --
A woman that I could name --
Fie for shame! fie for shame!
But I'll have law. Look here! Is James Gell a lawyer? You'll hardly uphould me
He isn', will ye? James Gell -- the Attorney-Gineral: well, that's the man that tould me.
Did I spake to him about it? was I axin' him afore
I was anything to her?
Sartinly! my gough! was I goin' to run my neck into a noose,
And navar no 'pinion nor . . . I'm not such a goose
As yandhar ither, I've gorrit in writin', yis, I have,
I've gorrit here -- aw, you'll get lave! you'll get lave!
Not aisy to read, but God bless me! where's my specs? But lar't! lar't!
It's my feelin's: O, my heart! my heart!
My poor heart! my poor heart! boo-hoo-oo-oo! Aye, and you'd think there'd be
Some semperthy,
Some . . . Crow, open this door and let me out! there's no regard with ye
For a man's . . . I'll not ride another yard with ye . . .
Theer then! theer! No, I'll have none of your good-nights . . .
Conjergal rights! conjergal rights!


A. Yes, yes, I'll be seein' him, seein' Billy
This very night -- aw, I'm almost silly
With the thought. Yes, Mrs. Quayle, just a year away,
And he's comin' home this very day.
Billy! Billy! aw, the foolish I am!
And you'll 'scuse me, ladies, won't ye now? AW, I'll be as qui't as a lamb,
Yes, I will: and it isn' right
To be carryin' on like this afore people, but aw, the delight!
O! I wonder how he'll be lookin'; he's that handsome and gud,
Aw yes, aw dear! I wud, I wud,
I wud fly, I wud die! O the darling! O! it's shockin',
And I can't keep qui't, no, I can't, no, I can't, and it's no use o' talkin'.
But I'll try, Mrs. Quayle, you know me; yes, I'll try, I'll do my best,
O! I will though, and only proper lek. But how'l he be drest?
O Billy, Billy! will he have his white ducks? ho, ho!
It's me that 'd make them like the driven snow;
But these Liverpool washerwomen -- chut! the nasty things! aw, I'll be bail
No notion whatever, no, they haven'; what did ye say, Mrs. Quayle?
Not to be expectin' too much and I'll not be disappointed? and I'd batthar --
What, Mrs. Quayle, batthar what, what? what? I've got the latthar!
He's comin'! he's comin'! "On the spree," did ye say?
Like the way
With such, Mrs. Quayle? With such!
Mrs. Quayle! Mrs. Quayle! Who then? whuch?
This coach is chokin' me, give me air --
No, no! it isn' fair,
Navar! no, navar! navar!
No, no! you're clavar,
You've seen a dale,
Mrs. Quayle,
A dale, no doubt, but that you'll navar see,
For I love Billy, and Billy loves me!
Is that plain? don't you know that? It cudn'! it cudn'!
But ye come upon me that sudden.
No, no! that's not Billy, nor natur', nor nothin'; that's foolishness --
But I can't rest --
This coach is close -- the hot I am and the coul'!
(Chorus of conscious women) "Poor sowl! poor sowl!"

B. Now then, now then, what do you say now?
Here he is, and I think you'll allow,
Eh, Mrs. Quayle, you'll allow, I think,
Not the smallest sign of drink.
And I ast your pardon humble I do --
I'm forgettin' myself. But is it you?
Is it you? is it you? Whisper then,
The millish ven!
Close, Billy, close --
God knows
I love you, Billy, and you love me,
Don't you, Billy? my chree! my chree!
Aw, just to hear --
Chut! I'm foolish, but O, the dear!
The -- Steady, did ye say? yis, Billy, yis!
Steady it is.
Now, Mrs. Quayle, is he drunk or sober?
Poor ould Billy! And last October
He sailed, poor chap! And it's me that's drunk --
With joy you mane? And have you got your trunk --
What am I talkin'? your chiss -- dear me! and didn' I see't
Comin' along the street --
Of coorse, and mended --
You tould me. O! isn' all this beautiful? isn't it splendid?
Closer, Billy, closer then!
Crid shen?
Nothin', but . . . lizzen, Billy, whisp'rin's free
I love Billy, and he loves me . . .
Do you, Billy? as God's above,
Do you love
Me, Billy? The word, Billy, as soft as soft --
What am I thinkin' of?
Aw, ye said it, ye said it. And now I'll trouble ye
Is he drunk or sober, this young man, W.
Sayle, by name? Aw, you'll 'scuse me, won't ye?
Aw I didn' mane to 'front ye,
Aw nothin' of the surt! Only, ye see, the glad
I am it's fit to drive me mad.
And I'm rather young . . . at laste, not that oul',
You'll 'scuse me, won't ye . . .
(Chorus of conscious women) "Poor sowl! poor sowl!"


What's the gud of these Pazons? They're the most despard rubbage go'n',
Reg'lar humbugs they are. Show me a Pazon, show me a drone!
Livin' on the fat of the land, livin' on the people's money
The same's the drones is livin' on the beeses honey.
Aw bless ye! the use of them? not the smallest taste in the world, no!
Grindin' down the honest workin' man, just so;
Suckin' the blood of the poor and needy,
And as greedy's greedy.
See the tithes, see the fees, see the glebes and all;
What's the call
For the lek? and their wives go'n' a takin' for ladies, and their childhar go'n' sendin' to College
Like the fuss of the land. Aw, it bates all knowledge
The uprisement of the lek! And fingerin' with their piannas,
Them that shud be singin' their hosannahs
To the King of glory constant. Clap them in the pulfit theer,
What can they do! Aw, come down the steer! come down the steer,
And don't be disgracin' yourself that way! That's what I've been thinkin' many a time --
And let a praecher take his turn, a local, aye, just try'm!
Aw, give your people a chance to get salvation.
"Blow ye the trumpet in Zion!" That's the style, and the prespiration
Pourin' out all over his body! See the wrestlin',
And the poor Pazon with his collec' and his pestlin'
And his gosp'lin'. Gospel! Let it sound abroad,
The rael gospel of God!
Aw then the happy I am!
Give us the Lamb! give us the Lamb!
But he can't, I tell ye, he can't --
What's that young man sayin' theer -- rant?
Rant indeed, is that what he's learnin'
At Oxfoot College, to revile the spirit that's burnin'
In the hearts of the faithful? Aye, and let it burn, let it blaze!
But here's the Pazon, if ye plaze,
Cocked up with his little twinkle of a farlin' rush,
And'll hauk and blush,
And his snips and his snaps
And his scrips and his scraps,
And endin' up with the Lord's Prayer quite sudden
Lek the ould woman's sauce to give a notion of a puddin', . . .
Aye, puddin', and drabbin' with their swishups and dishups
Of the stale ould broth of the law! If all the hands of all the bishops
Was goin' crookin' over his head, he wudn' be a praecher,
Not him, nor a taecher.
You can't be married without a Pazon? Can't I though?
Can't I, Masther Crow?
Give me the chance: I'm a married man with a fam'ly comin',
But if it plazed the Lord to take Mrs. Creer, d'ye think there's a woman
'd refuse to go with me before the High Bailiff down
At Castletown,
And ger' a slick of matrimony put upon us?
Yes, honest thallure: but holy, "holy matrimony," they're say'n' --
Holy your grandmother! -- At laste, I mane,
And astin' your pardon, Mrs. Clague!
But the idikkilis people is about the lek o' yandhar -- Aisy with your leg,
Masthar Callow; thank ye! that'll do --
Yis, Mrs. Clague, and crizzenin's and funarls too --
Shuperstition, just shuperstition, the whole kit,
Most horrid, just popery, clane popery, that's it --
Aye, popery and schamin' and a lie and a delusion and snares
To get money out of the people, which is the Lord's and not theirs!
Money, money every turn,
Money, money -- pay or burn!
And where does it come from? I said it before, and I say it again,
Out of the sweat of the workin' man,
Aw these priests! these priests! these priests --
Down with them, I say. The brute beasts
Has more sense till us, that's willin' to pay blackmail
To a set of rascals, to a pack of ---- Good evenin', Pazon Gale!
Good evenin', sir, good evenin'! Step up, sir! Make room,
Make room for our respected Vicar -- And may I persume
To ax how is Mrs. Gale, sir, and the family?
Does this weather agree --
Rather damp, I dessay! And the Governor's got knighted?
I'm delighted to see you, sir, delighted, delighted!


(On the road)
"Good gracious! what in the world is this?" -- "A lil cauf, ma'am."
"Why, you don't mean to say . . .?" -- "I'll take it by the scruff, ma'am;
We'll just lave it at the door.
It's belongin' to Mr. Moore."
"And to think the abominable brute
Was sucking at my boot!
Mr. Crow! Mr. Crow!
I'd have you to know . . ."
"Jus' a lil cauf, ma'am,
Jus' a lil cauf."
(Arrival at Ramsey)
"Mercy on us! what next?" -- "A lil dunkey, ma'am."
"A little what? Good heavens!" -- "Aw, ye needn' be funky, ma'am;
I'll get him out as qui't . . .
Good people, bring a light!"
"But a solitary female in the dark . . .
With half the beasts in Noah's ark.
Mr. Crow! Mr. Crow!
I'd have you to know . . ."
"Jus' a lil dunkey, ma'am,
Jus' a lil dunkey."

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