Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, JOB THE WHITE, by THOMAS EDWARD BROWN



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JOB THE WHITE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Women, wutches! No, I'm not
Last Line: "and they're for ever ""with the lord."
Alternate Author Name(s): Brown, T. E.
Subject(s): Isle Of Man


WOMEN, wutches! No, I'm not,
I'll contradick ye like a shot --
Me that's havin' the greatest respec'
For what they're callin' the waeker sec';
Me that's special devoted, devoted --
That's the word -- lek mostly noted
For the civil to women! But the thing is clear,
This wutch, this Banks, that was raisin' here
Lek a native you'd be say'n' of the Islan',
No doubt, but, bless ye! goin' a spilin'
In English sarvice, like a warp in the wud,
More English till Manx. For the Manx is gud;
But when the Manx is strainin' urrov them,
What is there left? I don't know the wharrov them,
But bad, bad, bad. For a rael Manx woman
Is useful and contented uncommon.
Useful -- you're likin' a purty face?
So am I. But about a place
It's useful you're wantin', clainin' the house,
Mindin' the childher, milkin' the cows --
Cows! There's women, I'll be bail,
Aye, plenty, that don't know a teat from a tail --
Things like yandhar, reared in towns,
And allis dressed in their Sunday gowns,
And can't bile a priddha, and can't make a puddin',
And know'n' nothin' excep' what they shudn' --
Aw, drat the lot! these English swells,
Women they're not, nor nither gels,
But stuck-up Madams, and their airs and their cranks --
Women! women! give me the Manx!
Lek wives, d'ye see! And what are they for
But wives? That's it. And looks? By gor,
Is it beauty you're afther? What's to hindhar
The beauty, eh? To sit at a windhar
All day they're hardly wanted -- what?
Nor comb a puppy nor nuss a cat,
And a coach-and-pair, and buck up to ride in it;
No, but to work, and to take a pride in it --
To work, and needn' be a fright.
There's hapes o' them lovely as the light --
Manx gels, the beautifullest things
That lives, I tell ye; women with wings
That'll lift them over the muck and the mire,
And lift you, too, if so be you require,
Only give them a chance, take care of the lek --
"Take care!" says Harry Injebrek.
Be good, be kind, go halves at laste;
She's spliced to you, don't be a baste;
Enjoy the giff, and thank the Giver,
And she'll be beautiful for ever.

Aye, aye! I know, there's odds, there's odds,
Poor things! they're made like paes in pods.
Aye, the one father and the one mother,
And goes away; and some bit of a bother,
Or wuss, and there they'll driff and driff
Like the sweepin's of a besom, and shiff
This way, that way -- Liverpool,
Manchester -- my God! the cru'l!
Despard! despard! And they walk and they walk,
And us chaps likin' the tang o' the talk,
Lek used, lek longin' -- for the Manx is sweet,
And to hear them chitt'rin' on the sthreet
Is plasant, aye. But done, done, done,
The pick of a grep! Ah, Simmy, my son,
Remember, remember! But no, then, no!
Too young, I dessay -- just so, just so --
Too young, too young -- you're right, my men,
Too young is Simmy -- aisy then!

But this wutch I was tellin', whatavar it was
That made her a wutch -- well, of course, the boss
Is the Divil himself, and the Divil was hers
Sure enough, and drilled with spurs
Of hell-fire; and she hadn' no shame,
And up to every divil's game,
And had a way to 'tract ye though,
'Deed she had -- As oul' as a crow,
Oul' as oul'; and well spoken enough
When she liked, ye know; and, as for the stuff,
Only now and again, at Fairs,
Melyas (grippin' you on the stairs),
And the lek o' yandhar. But, when she gorrit,
Aw, she stuck to it most horrit,
And as red as blazes, and thinner and thinner,
And fit for th' frecken the biggest sinner
Goin'. And the hobblers at Hollantide
Would clear out of her road; and dressed like a bride --
My gough! the bonnet and the ribbons
Hangin' all about like gibbons,
And the rings on her fingers, and the mouth that was full
Of dirt and damnation like a haythen bull;
But a handsome mouth, but apt to bite --
And that was the mother of Job the White.

Now there's people that fine in their inside
That the light's shinin' through their bodies as wide
As wide, like a lanthrin jus', like a globe
They've got for the gas; and that might ha' been Job --
Not a speck -- God's lanthrins I tell ye they are,
But still, for all, they're middlin' rar'.
And the clothes that was arrim was white -- a frock
Would ye be callin' it, or a smock? --
Like the driven snow, not go'n' a wearin'
At the Manx, but jus' the mother airin'
Her English ways; but stuck to it though,
This chap -- aw, jus' like the driven snow.
And the moleskin throusis, and how a party
Can manage the lek, and the work that clarty --
Well it's more till me. Aw, whatavar's do'n an it,
Allis as white as the bress of a gannet,
And nath'ral takin' to white clothes,
And keepin' them white. But goodness knows
How at all. Is it God that rigs them
Out from the first, when He takes and digs them
From the mould of His clay? We've gorr an account
Of Christ a changing on the Mount --
Peter saw it, and John, and the colour
Was that white, you'll mind, that navar no fuller
Could whiten the lek. But allis the same,
That's it, like milk, like what's-its-name --
But, howsomedavar, it's God, I suppose,
It's God that does it! And, when He's chose
A lamb to be a sacrifice,
He'll have it that whol'some and that nice,
And He tells the wind, and He tells the rain,
And the dew and the dust, and not a stain,
And the earth below, and heaven above,
For He loves them with a puffeck love.

I've seen this Job with the sheep afore
He tuk to the mine, and I'd have swore
It was angels he was herdin', aye,
And him a archangel fresh from the sky --
White, aw white. And, the dark as pitch,
You'd see him far off, and the shine and the switch
Of the glory about him -- Glory! I shudn'?
Nonsense! Everything he stud in,
What else wud it be? and through and through ye,
And singin' "Glory! Hallelujah!"
I'm see'n' him now, I am! I am!
And "Hallelujah to the Lamb!"
Yiss, I loved him, that's the way,
And lovin' is lovin' any day.

And the care he tuk of this mother, not spaekin'
A word, but follerin', follerin', saekin'
Like Jesus, I've watched him through the Fair,
Follerin', follerin', follerin' there,
The eye navar off her, follerin',
And her a muck of dirt and sin,
And ragged and boosely, and aw, the look!
The pitiful! No, navar spoke;
But where she went he went, and bound to houl' her,
And navar a hand, but a power to conthroul her;
And people dividin' to let them pass;
So that's the way, ye see, it was,
And her mouth lek churnin' with the foam,
And navar leff till he gorrer home.

Poor Job! and the handsome, spick and span,
The very model of a man --
Tall and straight, and every limb --
But silent, silent, that was him,
Silent, I tell ye. The interleck --
Well, you know, you'd hardly expec' --
Poor Job! And the gels 'd be starin' hard,
Aw, plenty of them! but he wouldn' regard,
But on and on, and rather slow,
And not the lek in Laxdale, no --
Eyin' him there, and thinkin', ye see,
The splendid sweetheart Job would be;
But not for them -- God's sweetheart; God's!
Aisy? Well, aisy, but what's the odds?
There's some that's chose to be His own --
So lave it alone! lave it alone!

I wush you'd ha' seen the Pazon wis him --
But some of ye has -- The Catechism?
Aw, not for Job, aw, bless your sowl!
Not the smallest notion, hot or cowl',
Couldn', I tell ye. Love, men, love,
That was the Pazon: tryin' to shove
The Catechism in Job? He'd take
His hand, and he'd grip it, and a lil shake,
And a prayer to hisself, and aw, the wise!
And blessin' him with his sweet ould eyes.

And it's lek the Pazon knew who he had,
God's angel hidin' in the lad;
He couldn' miss it, navar fail,
He was a godly man was Pazon Gale,
And humble, and, lek enough, abashed
Before this Job, that was visible washed
With the water of the new birth.
Catechism! No water of earth
Done yandhar: far from care and strife,
It had its springs in the well of life.
Praechin'? No, nor the Pazon 'ither,
Navar no praechin' to Job. But, whither
You calls it praechin' or calls it pray'n',
I'll stick to that, Masthar Hanary Cain.

So Job was jinin' the miners though,
And a child's sort of billet, jus' only to go
And light the fires at the mouth of the shaf'
In the mornin': kilns is the name they have.
Up at six on weekdays, but startin'
At midnight a-Sunday; and bits o' cartin'
And that, and make himself useful about.
And well he done the work, no doubt,
Lek passin' capital inspaction,
And givin' the best of satisfaction;
And liked at everybody -- men
And boys, and gangers. Now and then
Even Captains would be noticin'
The studdy he was, and the nate as a pin.
And for all he was navar cussin' nor swearin',
Nor a mossil o' dirty talk was hearin'
Urrov of his mouth, and wouldn' go sit
In the public-house, and smook and spit,
And chow, and navar no truck with the gels,
Lek sooreyin', nor anything else,
This Job was a ter'ble fav'rite, yes,
"A civilised chap," they said he was --
Lek maenin' civil. And by gough they were right.
It's only the once he had a fight,
And that was with Tommy Cowla, that called
His mother all the whores, but mauled
At Job, that knocked him down three times,
And axed him had he enough (Bob Grimes
Was backin' him). "Have ye got enough?"
Says Job; aw, civilised, but tough.
But hardly know'n' what was he doin',
Jus' lek he'd had a round with the moon,
Or somethin'. And Cowla screeched and tore,
But Cowla didn' want no more.
And I was at say for a three months' run,
And so I didn' behould the fun,
But I've h'ard them tellin'.

So the mother fell
In the "Dragon's Den," and jus' as well,
And Job that found her all the same;
But I've tould ye afore about that game;
And I tould ye how Job was settled to live
With Jack Pentreath and Nessy, and give
Half of his wages for his mate,
Them's the conditions, I beg ter state;
And done it honourable -- aye,
That was the chap, aw, navar say die!

Now I'll tell ye a thing about Job and his ways,
And mind you'll remember, for it'll come in its place.
They're talkin' of diff'rin' pessins' religions,
Well, I tell ye, Job's was pigeons --
Lek lovely little idols he had,
Idols, mosely. Aw, bedad,
Lek worshippin', lek fancy birds,
Lek petses -- no, that's not the words --
Lek holy things from heaven they'd be,
A-puppose to keep him company,
And coo, and coo; and allis white,
Aw, sartinly. Yes, yes, there might
Happen a blue-rock, now and then,
But white though, white, aw, it's white that was in,
Lek nath'ral -- what? lek takin' to'm
For the white he was. I mind a pome,
At Tommy Big-eyes, agate o' yandhar,
Very sweet and very tandhar --
But aisy all! They'd come with a rush,
They'd come with a look, they'd come with a wush,
And divin' there in Job's bussum,
That'd sthroogh them as gentle as gentle, and nuss-um
Most beautiful, and peck and probe,
A-kissin' him -- aw, bless this Job!

Nice, I tell ye. But Tommy Cowla
Had a spite again' Job since the time I toul' ya,
And watched his chance, and gorr a shot o' them --
And fired, and mosely kilt the lot o' them --
The dirt! And a big oul' scatt'rin' gun,
Aye, and boasted what he'd done.
But Kirree Bullkyerna, Harry's wife,
Licked him within an inch of his life:
Aw, it's her could do it pretty fairish --
The strongest woman in all the parish --
And "Isn' he dead? Then more's the pirrie,
He ought to be." Aw, that was Kirree.
And the chaps delighted, I tell ye though,
And "Ha-ha-ha!" and "Ho-ho-ho!"

One Sunday night, at twelve o'clock,
Poor Job was up and off with the cock,
To light the kilns, and his tay in a can,
And a little Cornish pick in his han',
And rather unwillin', Nessy said,
And low in his mind, like a surt of a dread,
Lek somethin' bound to happen, and waitin'
A bit at the door, and hesitatin',
And wantin' company. And Jack, with his jokeses,
And "What's doin' on ye, Job?" and coaxes,
And off alone, and over the hills,
But I tell ye he navar seen them kilns.
For when Jack was half-way up to the mine,
Jus' when the day bruck, he found him ly'n'
Dead on the road; and all lek mixed
With dust and blood, and straight betwixt
His eyes a smash, that . . . Come then, come!
Dhrop it! dhrop it! . . . And the skim and the scum . .
But . . . O, my God! And a hatchet there
Close alongside, and the bits of hair
And . . . No then, no! . . . the red and the white . . .
But Job was murdered in the night.
And "Tommy Cowla!" that was the shout,
Tommy Cowla! and the jeel and the rout
Agate o' this Tommy, and 'd tore him in pieces
If it hadn' been for a lot o' poleeses
That was sent from Douglas, and stoned and sodded,
But stuck to their man, and tuk and quodded
Middlin' slippy, and a-boord o' the Tram,
And the whole of Laxdale was one big Damn!

Now aisy! This Cowla -- Tommy I mane --
Had a cousin workin' on Ballacain,
A farm that's jus' a little bit south,
And nearly abreast of the mine's mouth.
And this cousin ye see, was callin' Bill,
Cowla, of course, of Cowla's mill.
A silenter chap ye navar seen,
Silent, sullen -- for the king or the queen,
Not a word from Cowla. Proud?
Well, I can't say; but jus' like a cloud,
Goin', goin' -- and I navar heard,
For nobody knew and nobody cared
What was in him. Lek fire 'll sleep
Unknownst in your houl', and creep and creep
Till it's smellin' the margazine, and catches,
And busses, and up to heaven in matches!
There's cargoes liable that plan,
But the liablest is the heart of a man.
Not all, no, no! there's hapes that hesn'
A grain o' powder from stem to mezzin,
Soul or body, wood or wire,
Nor fire, nor nothin' to light a fire.
But 'Illiam Cowla, you could see that in him,
Smouldhrin' fire; and well to batten him
In time. Even so, you're in a quandary,
But, tuk on the sudden, danger's very!

Well, you know, at the Ballacain
There was a daughter they were callin' Jane.
Pretty she was, and a sweetheart arrar
That was comin' urrov the Ballavarrar,
Kirk Conachan way; and, ye see, these two
Had a bit of sooreyin' to do,
And done it gran', and often togathar
Till the stroke of twelve, and then the father,
Or lek enough the mother, would give
A little cough, and make beli'v'
They were thinkin' it time for him to go,
But, bless your sowls! of coorse you know,
And starts, and takes a partin' kess,
The long, the long . . . . But navertheless --
Aw dear, aw dear! What foolishness!
Aw, foolish enough. But all the time
This 'Illiam was burnin' like the lime
On the slack -- not a wink, not a word, not a look:
Burnin', burnin', and the Divil's crook
Twisted in his innards there.
Jallous! jallous! Aw, beware
Of yandhar, my men -- the cat that rags
Your heart to scraps, and tears and drags,
And makes you a livin' hell. Let be!
But beware, beware of jallousy!

Not a word, no, no! One night he tuk
A lanthrin, and waited in the muck
Of the yard, till the Ballavarrar come out,
And held it up to see, no doubt,
Was he handsome -- held it up in his face
Quite close, and star's, and growls, at laste
So I've h'ard at this young spark,
Growls, and grunts, and away in the dark.
But the Sunday I was tellin' you there,
He was at the chapel, and seen the pair,
And followed them, and as slow as slow,
And often stoppin' and claspin' though,
And kissin', and every kiss a drive
Straight in his heart, aw man alive!
And the Divil fiddlin' at the latch
Of his throat, and had to dodge and watch
His distance, aye! and hould his breath,
Lek a shadda follerin', lek a shadda of death.

And he got the axe, and tuk the lane
Such times he thought the sooreyin'
'D be over at them, and a bit -- he was plannin' --
Away from the house. So there he was stannin'.
But I tell ye though, this Ballavarrar
Went out on the back, and as straight as an arrar
Up the mountain, bein' navar used
Of the lek at all, but jus' he choosed
This once -- this once! And so, no wondhar,
Of coorse Bill Cowla done a blundhar.
Blundhar! says you? Good sakes! don't worrit
Got for to be, and that's aburrit.
Stannin', stannin'. And Job come on,
And he struck him on the forehead, one!
And struck and struck-----
He knew it was Job the very first blaw,
But he couldn' stop, he said, and the raw
Of the flesh, he said, and the brains all flyin',
And "Oh!" he said, "to see him lyin',"
And "The white," he said, "the white that come
All urrov him lek glory, and dumb,
Dumb," he said, "like a sacrifice,
Like offered up, like Christ, like Christ!
The Lamb of God, the chosen Prince,
And me to be off'rin' him up for the sins,
Oh yes! I thought, for the sins of the world;
And my head was a-fire, and the whole of me whirled
In a jeel of damnation," aw, he toul' the Jury
And the Judge, -- "damnation," he said, "and fury,"
And "struck and struck"-----
That's what he toul' them. Ye see, he confessed.
Aw, free enough; and Tommy dismessed.
A week this Tommy was in prison;
But the cousin, bless ye! was all lek frizzin'
In the fires of Hell with the miserable
And the bad he felt, and wasn' able
To ate nor drink till he'd made up his mind,
And had it out though, "'fessed and signed,"
And all, and surely a dale batthar,
And nothin' more about the matthar
Excep' to be hung. How else would it be?
Hangin'? D-----them, sartinly!
Pardonin'? Murderers? What do they want?
God can afford it, but man can't.
What next? It's not what man proposes --
Cha jeanoo dunverys, spoke at Moses
And wrote at God in the Tables there.
The Ten Commandments. Well, it's queer
The rubbidge some people is talkin' still --
It's reg'lar disagreeable.
But the man is penitent? That's the thing,
And though of course he has to swing,
Still if it's a godly sorra he's hevin',
We know his sins is all forgiven,
For the Lord'll be glad of any pretance,
And the Pazon there to give him a chance --
So that's your size.

So the chap was hung,
And the dhrippin' with tears; and, I tell ye, we sung
"O God, our help in Ages past,"
The very next day, and this Tommy, like brass,
In the front of the Choir. For, ye see, the hangin'
Was Saturday High Market, and jangin'
And jingin' enough, and good raison there wud be,
And to set the 'sample and all it shud be --
O God our help, and very nice
And sollum lek; but the Pazon's vice --
Aw dear, aw dear! what was it resamblin'?
I don't know . . . but . . . thramblin', thramblin'.

So the chap was hung.
But first of all
This Job had a ter'ble funeral,
Ter'ble in the world howavar!
Bless ye! the miners done it clavar.
And the Clerk, and the Manager, and the Inspacthors,
And the Chairman of the Board of Diracthors!
And the Psalm was rose at the door, but hushed
Immadient, for the people scushed
Lek under their breath, ye know, and shoo'd;
But three pigeons, the last that was left of the brood,
Lit on the coffin, and coo'd and coo'd
Most sorrowful, and "No man molest them!"
Says the Pazon, and strooghed the birds, and blest them.

And 'Illiam! poor 'Illiam! They're both of them white
In Heaven, both. Aw, the lovely light!
He knows his Job, they're togathar now,
And the where and the when, and the why and the how,
Is all forgot at them, I expeck,
And their arms around each other's neck,
And lookin' and lookin', and wonderin',
The fond they are. And sin, oh sin!
And death is gone, and reconciled.
O Holy Jesus, meek and mild!
You've made them one in sweet accord,
And they're for ever "with the Lord."





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