The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 3 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 755 pages of information about The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 3.
  Man or boy that works or plays
  In the fields or the highways
  May, without offence or hurt,
  From the soil contract a dirt,
  Which the next clear spring or river
  Washes out and out for ever—­
  But to cherish stains impure,
  Soil deliberate to endure,
  On the skin to fix a stain
  Till it works into the grain,
  Argues a degenerate mind,
  Sordid, slothful, ill inclin’d,
  Wanting in that self-respect
  Which does virtue best protect.

    All-endearing Cleanliness,
  Virtue next to Godliness,
  Easiest, cheapest, needful’st duty,
  To the body health and beauty,
  Who that’s human would refuse it,
  When a little water does it?


  My parents sleep both in one grave;
    My only friend’s a brother. 
  The dearest things upon the earth
    We are to one another.

  A fine stout boy I knew him once,
    With active form and limb;
  Whene’er he leap’d, or jump’d, or ran,
    O I was proud of him!

  He leap’d too far, he got a hurt,
    He now does limping go.—­
  When I think on his active days,
    My heart is full of woe.

  He leans on me, when we to school
    Do every morning walk;
  I cheer him on his weary way,
    He loves to hear my talk: 

  The theme of which is mostly this,
    What things he once could do. 
  He listens pleas’d—­then sadly says,
    “Sister, I lean on you.”

  Then I reply, “Indeed you’re not
    Scarce any weight at all.—­
  And let us now still younger years
    To memory recall.

  “Led by your little elder hand,
    I learn’d to walk alone;
  Careful you us’d to be of me,
    My little brother John.

  “How often, when my young feet tir’d,
    You’ve carried me a mile!—­
  And still together we can sit,
    And rest a little while.

  “For our kind master never minds,
    If we’re the very last;
  He bids us never tire ourselves
    With walking on too fast.”


  Joy to Philip, he this day
  Has his long coats cast away,
  And (the childish season gone)
  Puts the manly breeches on. 
  Officer on gay parade,
  Red-coat in his first cockade,
  Bridegroom in his wedding trim,
  Birthday beau surpassing him,
  Never did with conscious gait
  Strut about in half the state,
  Or the pride (yet free from sin)
  Of my little MANIKIN: 
  Never was there pride, or bliss,
  Half so rational as his. 
  Sashes, frocks, to those that need ’em—­
  Philip’s limbs have got their freedom—­
  He can run, or he can ride,
  And do twenty things beside,
  Which his petticoats forbad: 
  Is he not a happy lad? 
  Now he’s under other banners,

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The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 3 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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