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(Perhaps the pump and trough would do,
It painted a judicious blue ?)
The woodland I've attended to;

(He meant three pines stuck up askew, Two dead ones and a live one.)

“ A pocket-full of rocks 'twould take To build a house of free-stone,

But then it is not hard to make
What now a-days is the stone;

The cunning painter in a trice
Your house's outside petrifies,

And people think it very gneiss
Without inquiring deeper;

My money never shall be thrown

Away on such a deal of stone, When stone of deal is cheaper.

And so the greenest of antiques

Was reared for Knott to dwell in ;
The architect worked hard for wecks
In venting all his private peaks
Upon the roof, whose crop of leaks

Had satisfied Fluellen ;
Whatever any body had
Out of the common, good or bad,

Knott had it all worked well in,
A donjon-keep, where clothes might dry,
A porter's lodge that was a sty,
A campanile slim and high,

Too small to hang a bell in;
All up and down and here and there,
With Lord-knows-whats of round and square
Stuck on at random every where, -
It was a house to make one stare,

All corners and all gables ;
Like dogs let loose "pon a bear,
Ten emulous styles staboyed with care,
The whole among them seemed to tear
And all the oddities to spare

Were set upon the stables.

Knott was delighted with a pile

Approved by fashion's leaders;
(Only he made the builder smile,
By asking, every little while ;
Why that was called the Twodoor style,

Which certainly had three doors ?)
Yet better for this luckless man
If he had put a downwright ban

Upon the thing in limine ;
For, though to quit affairs his plan,
Ere many days, poor Knott began
Perforce accepting draughts, that ran

All ways-except up chimney;
The house, though painted stone to mock,
With nice white lines round every block,

Some trepidation stood in,
When tempests (with petrific shock,
So to speak) made it really rock,

Though not a whit less wooden ;
And painted stone, howe'er well done,
Will not take in the prodigal sun
Whose beams are never quite at one

With our terrestrial lumber;
So the wood shrank around the knots,
And gaped in disconcerting spots,
And there were lots of dots and rots

And crannies without number,
Wherethrough, as you may well presume,
The wind, like water through a flume,

Came rushing in ecstatic, Leaving, in all three floors, no room

That was not a rheumatic; And, what with points and squares and rounds

Grown shaky on their poises,
The house at nights was full of pounds,
Thumps, bumps, creaks, scratchings, raps-till

-“ Zounds!”
Cried Knott, “this goes beyond all bounds,
I do not deal in tougues and sounds,
Nor have I let my house and grounds

To a family of Noyeses !
But, though Knott's house was full of airs,

He had but one-a daughter ;
And, as he owned much stocks and shares,
Many who wished to render theirs
Such vain, unsatisfying cares,
And needed wives to sew their tears,

In matrimony sought her;
They vowed her gold they wanted not,

Their faith would never falter,
They longed to tie this single Knott

In the Hymenæal halter;
So daily at the door they rang,

Cards for the belle delivering,
Or in the choir at her they sang,
Achieving such a rapturous twang

As set her nerves a shivering.

Now Knott had quite made up his mind

That Colonel Jones should have her;
No beauty he, but oft we find
Sweet kernels 'neath a roughish rind,
So hoped his Jenny'd be resigned

And make no more palaver;
Glanced at the fact that love was blind,
That girls were ratherish inclined

To pet their little crosses,
Then nosologically defined
The rate at which the system pined
In those unfortunates who dined
Upon that metaphoric kind

Of dish-their own proboscis.

But she, with many tears and moans,

Besought him not to mock her, Said 'twas too much for flesh and bones To marry mortgages and loans, That fathers' hearts were stocks and stones And that she'd go, when Mrs. Jones,

To Davy Jones's locker; Then gave her head a little toss That said as plain as ever was,

If men are always at a loss

Mere womankind to bridle-
To try the thing on woman cross,

Were fifty times as idle ;
For she a strict resolve had made

And registered in private,
That either she would die a maid,
Or else be Mrs. Doctor Slade,

If woman could contrive it;
And, though the wedding-day was set,

Jenny was more so, rather,
Declaring, in a pretty pet,
That, howsoe'er they spread their net,
She would out-Jennyral them yet,

The colonel and her father.

Just at this time the Public's eyes

Were keenly on the watch, a stir
Beginning slowly to arise
About those questions and replies,
Those raps that unwrapped mysterics

So rapidly at Rochester,
And Knott, already nervous grown
By lying much awake alone,
And listening, sometimes to a moan,

And sometimes to a clatter,
Whene'er the wind at night would rouse
The gingerbread-work on his house,
Or when some hasty.tempered mouse,
Behind the plastering, made a towse

About a family matter, Began to wonder if his wife, A paralytic half her life,

Which made it morc surprising, Might not to rule him from her urn, Have taken a peripatetic turn

For want of exorcising.

This thought, once nestled in his head,
Ere long contagious grew, and spread
Infecting all his mind with dread
Until at last he lay in bed

And heard his wife, with well-known tread,
Entering the kitchen through the shed,

(Or was't his fancy, mocking?)
Opening the pantry, cutting bread,
And then (she'd been some ten years dead

Closets and drawers unlocking;
Or, in his room (his breath grew thick)
He heard the long-familiar click
Of slender needles flying quick,

As if she knit a stocking;
For whom ?-he prayed that years might flit

With pains rheumatic shooting,
Before those ghostly things she knit
Upon his unfleshed sole might fit,
He did not fancy it a bit,

To stand upon that footing;
At other times, his frightened hairs

Above the bedclothes trusting,
He heard her, full of household cares
(No dream entrapped in supper's snares,
The foal of horrible nightmares,
But broad awake, as he declares),
Go bustling up and down the stairs,
Or setting back last evening's chairs,

Or with the poker thrusting
The raked-up sea-coal's hardened crust-
And—what! impossible! it must!
He knew she had returned to dust,
And yet could scarce his senses trust,
Tearing her as she poked and fussed

About the parlour, dusting !
Night after night he strove to sleep

And take his ease in spite of it;
But still his flesh would chill and creep,
And, though two night-lamps he might keep,

He could not so make light of it.
At last, quite desperate, he goes
And tells his neighbours all his woes,

Which did but their amount enhance ;
They made such mockery of his fears
That soon his days were of all jeers,

His nights of the rueful countenance

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