Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, JOHN THOMPSON'S DAUGHTER, by PHOEBE CARY



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JOHN THOMPSON'S DAUGHTER, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: A fellow near kentucky's clime
Last Line: And he was left there minus.
Subject(s): Elopements; Money


A FELLOW near Kentucky's clime
Cries, "Boatman, do not tarry,
And I'll give thee a silver dime
To row us o'er the ferry."

"Now, who would cross the Ohio,
This dark and stormy water?"
"O, I am this young lady's beau,
And she, John Thompson's daughter.

"We've fled before her father's spite
With great precipitation;
And should he find us here to-night,
I'd lose my reputation.

"They've missed the girl and purse beside,
His horsemen hard have pressed me;
And who will cheer my bonny bride,
If yet they shall arrest me?"

Out spoke the boatman then in time,
"You shall not fail, don't fear it;
I'll go, not for your silver dime,
But for your manly spirit.

"And by my word, the bonny bird
In danger shall not tarry;
For though a storm is coming on,
I'll row you o'er the ferry."

By this the wind more fiercely rose,
The boat was at the landing;
And with the drenching rain their clothes
Grew wet where they were standing.

But still, as wilder rose the wind,
And as the night grew drearer;
Just back a piece came the police,
Their tramping sounded nearer.

"Oh, haste thee, haste!" the lady cries,
"It's anything but funny;
I'll leave the light of loving eyes,
But not my father's money!"

And still they hurried in the face
Of wind and rain unsparing;
John Thompson reached the landing place --
His wrath was turned to swearing.

For by the lightning's angry flash,
His child he did discover;
One lovely hand held all the cash,
And one was round her lover!

"Come back, come back!" he cried in woe,
Across the stormy water;
"But leave the purse, and you may go,
My daughter, oh, my daughter!"

'Twas vain; they reached the other shore
(Such doom the Fates assign us);
The gold he piled went with his child,
And he was left there minus.





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