Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE PROCTORSVILLE AND WINDSOR, VERMONT, STAGE, by DANIEL LEAVENS CADY



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THE PROCTORSVILLE AND WINDSOR, VERMONT, STAGE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: When I was 'round the wide-eyed age
Last Line: You bet, he glorified that stage.
Subject(s): Country Life; Vermont


WHEN I was 'round the wide-eyed age,
And everything I saw a treat,
Joe Stickney used to drive the stage
From Proctorsville to Windsor Street;
Some stage, you bet, some driver, too,
He weighed, as near as I could guage,
About the same as either nag
That helped to haul his wondrous stage.

A real Rhode Island thorough-brace—
You bet, with driver's seat up high,
And underneath a kind of place
To chuck the mail and keep it dry;
The whole concern was painted up
Like some Maine weekly's Christmas page—
I've seen Napoleon's coach, but say,
It couldn't touch Joe Stickney's stage.

And Golly! how she rolled and pitched—
It made Nell Moody's feathers flop—
But when the nags was both unhitched
The neap stood up without a prop;
The big square rack stuck on behind
Would hold the Baptist parsonage,
And there was curtins at the doors—
You bet, it was a classy stage.

And say—the brake—we boys would point
That out to every kid galoot,
You know it had a "floating joint"
And went by either hand or foot;
And way on top a brass rail fence
Run 'round and made a baggage cage
For tony Massachusetts grips—
You bet, it was a dandy stage.

Oh! I forgot—I'm getting off—
Nell Moody was a country queen
That lived out near the watering trough
Jest where you turn for Woodstock Green;
She liked Joe's horses, so she said,
And called one "Mike" and 'tother "Mage"—
Ed Gardner guessed she rode with Joe
To kinder "elevate the stage."

When city boarder days begun,
You bet, 'twas velvet times for Joe;
He liked to see an ample run
Of summer shad from "down below;"
You'd s'pose all Boston knew his name,
And Joe for weeks was quite the rage—
'Twas "Mr. Stickney, How's your health?"
And "Mr. Stickney, How's your stage?"

No stop was made along his rout
Where Joe would snake the mail bag in,
He'd simply dump the dumb thing out
And grin a sort of Felchville grin;
But he'd go in himself, you bet,
And if the cheese in sight was sage,
He'd eat about a half a pound
And say, "Jest charge it 'ginst the stage."

Sometimes the teacher'd let us leave
Our seats as Joe's bright car drew nigh;
"Great Eastern," that's the name, I b'lieve,
The teacher used to call it by;
The strongest memory, though, that clings
Around that wondrous equipage,
Is seeing Hank White on in front—
You bet, he glorified that stage.





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