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So stooping down, as needs he must

Who cannot sit upright, He grasp'd the mane with both his hands,

And eke with all his might.

His horse, who never in that sort

Had handled been before,

What thing upon his back had got

Did wonder more and more.

Away went Gilpin, neck or nought;

Away went hat and wig!

He little dreamt, when he set out,

Of running such a rig!

The wind did blow, the cloak did fly,

Like streamer long and gay,
Till, loop and button failing both,

At last it flew away.

Then might all people well discern

The bottles he had slung;
A bottle swinging at each side,

As hath been said or sung.

The dogs did bark, the children scream’d,

Up flew the windows all;
And ev'ry soul cried out-Well done!

As loud as he could bawl.

Away went Gilpin—who but he?

His fame soon spread around
He carries weight! he rides a race!

'Tis for a thousand pound!

And still, as fast as he drew near,

'Twas wonderful to view

How in a trice the turnpike-men

Their gates wide open threw.

II.

2 C

And now, as he went bowing down

His reeking head full low,

The bottles twain behind his back

Were shatter'd at a blow.

Down ran the wine into the road,

Most piteous to be seen,

Which made his horse's flanks to smoke

As they had basted been.

But still he seem'd to carry weight,

With leathern girdle brac'd; For all might see the bottle-necks

Still dangling at his waist.

Thus all through merry Islington

These gambols he did play,

And till he came unto the Wash

Of Edmonton so gay.

And there he threw the wash about

On both sides of the

way,

Just like unto a trundling mop,

Or a wild goose at play.

At Edmonton his loving wife

From the balcony spied
Her tender husband, wond'ring much

To see how he did ride.

Stop, stop, John Gilpin!-Here's the house

They all at once did cry;
The dinner waits, and we are tir'd:

Said Gilpin-So am I!

But yet his horse was not a whit

Inclin’d to tarry there;
For why?-his owner had a house

Full ten miles off, at Ware.

So like an arrow swift he flew,

Shot by an archer strong;
So did he fly-which brings me to

The middle of my song.

Away went Gilpin, out of breath,

And sore against his will, Till at his friend the calender's

His horse at last stood still.

The calender, amaz’d to see

His neighbour in such trim,
Laid down his pipe, flew to the gate,

And thus accosted him:

What news? what news? your tidings tell;

Tell me you must and shall-
Say why bare-headed you are come,

Or why you come at all.

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