The Haunted Hour eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 165 pages of information about The Haunted Hour.

“With madder and with turmeric,
    He made his next attack;
But neither he nor all his drugs
    Could stop my dying black. 
At last I got so sick of life,
    And sick of being dosed,
One Monday morning I gave up
    My physic and the ghost!

“Oh, Phoebe dear, what pain it was
    To sever every tie! 
You know black beetles feel as much
    As giants when they die. 
And if there is a bridal bed,
    Or bride of little worth,
It’s lying in a bed of mould,
    Along with Mother Earth.

“Alas!  Some happy, happy day,
    In church I hoped to stand,
And like a muff of sable skin
    Receive your lily hand. 
But sternly with that piebald match,
    My fate untimely clashes;
For now, like Pompey-double-i,
    I’m sleeping in my ashes!

“And now farewell! a last farewell! 
    I’m wanted down below,
And have but time enough to add
    One word before I go—­
In mourning crepe and bombazine
    Ne’er spend your precious pelf;
Don’t go in black for me—­for I
    Can do it for myself.

“Henceforth within my grave I rest,
    But Death, who there inherits,
Allowed my spirit leave to come,
    You seemed so near your spirits: 
But do not sigh, and do not cry,
    By grief too much engrossed,
Nor for a ghost of color turn
    The color of a ghost!

“Again, farewell, my Phoebe dear! 
    Once more a last adieu! 
For I must make myself as scarce
    As swans of sable hue.” 
From black to gray, from gray to nought
    The shape began to fade—­
And like an egg, though not so white,
    The ghost was newly laid!”


A Very Serious Ballad

In Middle Row, some years ago,
    There lived one Mr. Brown;
And many folks considered him
    The stoutest man in town.

But Brown and stout will both wear out—­
    One Friday he died hard,
And left a widow’d wife to mourn
    At twenty pence a yard.

Now widow B. in two short months
    Thought mourning quite a tax;
And wished, like Mr. Wilberforce,
    To manumit her blacks.

With Mr. Street she soon was sweet;
    The thing came thus about: 
She asked him in at home, and then
    At church, he asked her out!

Assurance such as this the man
    In ashes could not stand;
So like a Phoenix he rose up
    Against the Hand in Hand!

One dreary night the angry sprite
    Appeared before her view;
It came a little after one,
    But she was after two!

“Oh, Mrs. B., O Mrs. B.,
    Are these your sorrow’s deeds,
Already getting up a flame
    To burn your widows’ weeds?

“It’s not so long since I have left
    For aye the mortal scene;
My memory—­like Rogers’s—­
    Should still be bound in green!

Project Gutenberg
The Haunted Hour from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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