Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE BITER BIT, by HORACE SMITH

Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

Rhyming Dictionary Search
THE BITER BIT, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Jack dobson, honest son of tillage
Last Line: "must expect rubbers!"
Alternate Author Name(s): Smith, Horatio
Subject(s): Drinks & Drinking; Time; Wine

JACK DOBSON, honest son of tillage,
The Toby Philpot of his village,
Laugh'd and grew fat, Time's gorgon visage braving;
To hear him cackle at a hoax,
Or new edition of old jokes,
You'd think a Roman Capitol was saving.
Not Boniface, when at a mug
Of ale he gave a hearty tug,
Was fuller of his subject-matter;
And Dobson had a better plea
For boasting of its pedigree;
For his was brewed at home, and he
Was infinitely fatter.
One cask he had better and stronger
Than all the rest brewed at a christening;
To pass it set his eyes a glistening;
In short he couldn't tarry longer,
But seizing spiggot and a faucet,
He tapp'd it -- quaffed a luscious posset --
Then, like a hospitable fellow,
Sent for his friends to make them mellow. --

Among them he invited one
Called Tibbs, a simple-minded wight,
Whom waggish Dobson took delight
To make the subject of his fun:
For Nature such few brains had put
In neighbour Tibbs's occiput,
That all the rustic wags and wits
Found him a most convenient butt
For their good hits;
Though sometimes, as both great and small aver,
He gave them Roland for their Oliver.

The guests all met, and dinner spread,
Dobson first tipped the wink, then said,
"Well, now, my lads, we'll all draw lots,
To settle which of us shall go
Into the cellerage below,
To fill the pots."
So saying, he adroitly wriggled
The shortest into Tibbs's paw,
Whereat the others hugely giggled,
And Tibbs, obedient to the law,
Went down, the beverage to draw.
Now, Farmer Dobson, wicked wag!
Over the cellar door had slung
A water-bowl, so slily hung,
That whoso gave the door a drag,
Was sure to shower down at once
A quart of liquid on his sconce.

Our host and all his brother wits,
Soon as they heard their victim's tramp,
Who looked half-drowned, burst into fits,
Which in fresh peals of laughter flamed,
When Tibbs in drawling tone, exclaimed:
"Isn't your cellar rather damp?"

Grace being said, quick havoc followed;
Many good things were said and swallowed; --
Joking, laughing, stuffing, and quaffing,
For a full hour they pushed about
The cans, and when there came a pause,
From mere exhaustion of their jaws,
Tibbs with his nasal twang drawled out --
"Suppose we now draw lots again,
Which of us shall go down to put
The spiggot back into the butt."
"Why, zounds!" the farmer roared amain --
"The spiggot back! come, come, you're funning,
You haven't left the liquor running?"

"I did as I was ordered, Jack,"
Quoth Tibbs; -- "and if it was intentioned
That I should put the spiggot back,
'Tis a great pity 'twasn't mentioned: --
You've lost a cask of precious stuff,
But I, for one, have drunk enough."
"Ass! numskull! fool!" the farmer cried --
"What can one get, confound your souls!
By asking such half-witted lubbers?" --
"This lesson, neighbour," Tibbs replied --
"That those who choose to play at bowls
Must expect rubbers!"

Other Poems of Interest...

Home: PoetryExplorer.net