The Great and the Little
GOOD BOYS and GIRLS
In England, Scotland, and Ireland.
A tall and slender shape I bear,
Nor lady's skin's more white or fair:
My life is short, and doth decay
So soon it seldom lasts a day.
If in the evening brought to light,
I make my exit in the night;
Yet to mankind I'm useful ever,
And many hidden things discover;
Which makes all those who round me tend,
Oft with a sigh lament my end.
In courts or cottages we may be found;
Our skirts with fringe of various dyes are bound;
And as we were by providence design'd,
A guard from harm t' a fav'rite applejoin'd.
We ne'er rove long, nor far asunder stray,
But meet and part a thousand times a day:
When dark, like loving couples, we unite,
And cuddle close together every night.
No twins could e'er with us compare,
So like in shape and size;
Our bodies are like ermin fair
As black as jet our eyes:
But tho' so like in ev'ry feature,
We rival brothers be;
Yet so obdurate is our nature,
We often disagree.
Sometimes we play the friendly part,
And sometimes act the foe;
Now transient happiness impart,
Then cause a future woe:
Thousands by us have curs'd their fate,
Plung'd in the gulph of sin;
Happy the youth who shuns the bait,
And dreads the fatal gin.