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To this did Johnny answer make,
Both with his head, and with his hand,
And proudly shook the bridle too,
And then ! his words were not a few,
Which Betty well could understand.
And now that Johnny is just going,
Though Betty's in a mighty flurry,
She gently pats the Pony's side,
On which her Idiot Boy must ride,
And seems no longer in a hurry.
But when the Pony moved his legs,
Oh! then for the poor Idiot Boy!
For joy he cannot hold the bridle,
For joy his head and heels are idle,
He's idle all for very joy.
And while the Pony moves his legs,
In Johnny's left hand you may see
The green bough 's motionless and dead :
The Moon that shines above his head
Is not more still and mute than he.
His heart it was so full of glee,
That till full fifty yards were gone,
He quite forgot his holly whip
And all his skill in horsemanship,
Oh! happy, happy, happy John.
And Betty's standing at the door,
And Betty's face with joy o'erflows,
Proud of herself, and proud of him,
She sees him in his travelling trim
How quietly her Johnny goes.
The silence of her Idiot Boy,
What hopes it sends to Betty's heart!
He's at the Guide-post—he turns right,
She watches till he's out of sight,
And Betty will not then depart.
Burr, burr—now Johnny's lips they burr,
As loud as any mill, or near it,
Meek as a lamb the Pony moves,
And Johnny makes the noise he loves,
And Betty listens, glad to hear it.
Away she hies to Susan Gale:
And Johnny's in a merry tune,
The Owlets hoot, the Owlets curr,
And Johnny's lips they burr, burr, burr,
And on he goes beneath the Moon,
His Steed and He right well agree,
For of this Pony there's a rumour,
That should he lose his eyes and ears,
And should he live a thousand years,
He never will be out of humour.
But then he is a Horse that thinks !
And when he thinks his
is slack; Now, though he knows poor Johnny well, Yet for his life he cannot tell What he has got upon his back.
So through the moonlight lanes they go,
And far into the moonlight dale,
And by the church, and o'er the down,
To bring a Doctor from the town,
To comfort poor old Susan Gale.
And Betty, now at Susan's side,
Is in the middle of her story,
What comfort Johnny soon will bring,
With many a most diverting thing,
Of Johnny's wit and Johnny's glory.
And Betty's still at Susan's side :
By this time she's not quite so flurried :
Demure with porringer and plate
She sits, as if in Susan's fate
Her life and soul were buried.
But Betty, poor good Woman! she,
You plainly in her face may read it,
Could lend out of that moment's store
Five years of happiness or more
To any that might need it.