Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

The Pigeons’ Parliament; a Poem of the Year 1845. In Four Cantos, With Notes. To which is added, Thoughts on the Wairarapa and other Stanzas

Canto IV

page 54“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 54.

Canto IV.

Thus, Fantail ceased; but no applause
Him greeted as was due. The canse
Of which I soon descerned. On high
The watch gave signal;—“I espy
Great distance off, and this way bound,
Some one in haste!”—So, at the sound,
In one direction, all eyes turned,
While every throbbing bosom burn’d
With anxious inquiry,—as when,
From the mast head of merchantmen,
In far horizon’s seen, “a sail,”
Then ev’ry aid, where visions fail,
In shape of glasses in full tale
Are used, with signals high, to know
Whether such may be friend or foe.
Thus ev’ry nerve they strain’d, and oft
Each other asked in whispers soft,
Who such might be?—while those in fear
The worst surmised;—yet some with cheer
Would hope the best, yea even try,
To comfort those inclined to sigh
Suspicious of their fates. Again,
The watch exclaimed, “good news!”—“Amen!”
Resounded through the throng, with sighs,
As fear swelled hearts, releaved, replies
In gratulating joy.—“He bears
The badge of peace!—Now let all cares
Be far expell’d!—See now he nears!’—
“Him, welcome with your loudest cheers,
Into your midst”! was the command
Of President with count’nance bland
Beaming with joy!—a great ado
Was made, when all with loud carroo
Made welcome Courier from abroad,
Now just arrived.
page 55“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 55. “Bear up thy load!

Oh might pine, now made to creak
With such a stir; should’st thou get weak,
And so break down, alas my cot
And all would be to ruins brought;
And pain me with distracted mind,
A helpless wretch!—Where could I find
Another shelter! when before
A neighbour, unprovoked, his door
Against me shut, nay, even denied
The privilege of a walless shed
And in no use,—(though thanks to God
My farther, neighbours did feel glad,
To shew me pity, when my home
In ruins lay, then forced to roam
’Mid cold and wet;) now, midnight past,
And long ere morning comes, to cast
A better light o’er things, than now,
When clouds begin t’eclipse the brow
Of yonder moon; I hope ere long
(For patience will wear out,) that throng
Will be dispersed. Ah! now, how cold
The breezes blow! And must I hold
Out longer watch, and at my post,
Stand shivering? besides, have lost
My midnight rest?—so fain to serve
My curious passions to observe
The doing, of this meeting!—Well!
Where such may end, tis hard to tell.—
But can I venture to my bed?
Who knows, before I lay my head
Upon its pillow, some mishap
Might overtake without escape;
Without assistance to befriend;—
So, thus, to see how matters end,
I must keep watch.”
Lo! Courier stands,

And audience craves;—Herald demands
Attention due,—for all were fill’d
page 56“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 56. With joy, and private converse held
Each neighb’ring pair together so;—
Much like mixed multitudes below,
When each o’erjoyed at some event,
Of happy import, and intent
For public good; while full of glee
Applause is spoke in language free,
When mingled tougues make noise, instead
Of making understood what’s said!—
Their voices, thus, seemed strange confusion
Till Herald brought them to conclusion,
And Courier thus began.—
My Sire!

With due dispatch, all thy desire,
I have accomplished; and have made
Discoveries great; of which, ’tis said,
They’ll much alleviate our distress,
So as t’ increase our happiness.
As truth’s unseemly in the dark,
But, brought to light, then all can mark
Its worth, when call’d each cause to serve;
So, thus, I cannot but observe,
As known, our general law is love,
Which we to either daily prove;
Which law has never been deranged,
Because it never can be changed!—
But such, is not the case with man,
Who oft must alter his best plan,
Sometimes for good, but oft for worse
Just as the accident occurs;
For fancy oft will lead him here,
And next expedient drives him there;
But even there, he finds no rest,
And feels much puzzled for the best.
Perfection in him sure is wonder,
If great he makes the greatest blunder,
If through pretence he fain would screen,
His weaker parts,—ah! then, they’re seen
More glaring to the vulgar eye,
So greedy, secret things, to spy;
page 57“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 57. And most unwilling to atone
For any foible, but their own!
(Malicious wretches! ’tis disgrace
In any join’d to human race).—
To see pretensions run so high,
’Tis quite amusing:—You’ll descry
It chiefly in the upish orders,
Who fainly wish t’ extend the borders
Of all the spheres, in which they move;—
Nay, even mount the car of Jove,
To drive it with incautious ire,
Until they’ve got the world on fire!
Aye, one would think them wond’rous wise,
And would all happiness devise,
From what they would pretend to do,
In such chalked courses they’d pursue;
Yet after all; ’twould prove pretence,
And quite out shame all common sense!—
Be far, such doings, from our legions
Of unsophisticated pigeons!—
How oft the ruled would rulers rule,
And fainly would all laws befool,
For what’s to-day, they’d change to-morrow,
Though e’en the change must to their sorrow
Need more reform,—’Tis thus we scan
So small sagacity in man.
’Tis thus our aborigines see,
How their new neighbours disagree,
Like those of a divided house,
To either’s wish ungenerous;
While such examples, as a curse
They’d deem, and so would make things worse,
And try advantages to take,
Of such discords for plunder’s sake.
So out of which, a war has risen,
Which would the peaceful quite bedizen,
And much affect our race, that we
Live all day long in jeopardy.

But, Sire, through all this waste of laws,
It is not mine to trace the cause
page 58“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 58. Of the excitement of such wars,
Nor yet on this abuse of powers,
In declamation to persist,
We’re satisfied they do exist
To great extent. Let us shew forth
How those from ’tother side the earth
Have hither come; and who they are
As I have heard.—Still I declare
(For justice must be done ’tis true)
In that country there’s not a few,
Who well deserve the name of “good,”
Who ever deprecate aught rude
In word or deed, to us, or ours,
And peace protect with all their powers.

But there are others who dissuade
From public weal, as retrogade,
So full of bounce and high pretence,
Demanding public confidence,—
As they forsooth were all in all,
And every bliss would sure befall
Their train—whereas, meanwhile they try
To involve all others in the lie
They’d blazzon forth as very truth.
Though self deceived, they’d work the faith
Of all their dupes. So there was one
Some would declare the moon upon
His pate had struck;—while some would shew,
More than the others wished to know,
That in him sound philanthropy,
With all considerate charity,
Was parent of each thought or deed
He would perform;—yet all agreed
He had ambition for a name
Transmittant on the breath of fame
To all time coming!—How his soul
Burned ardently without controul
At being called a “nation’s founder”
And look’d on as another wonder
By future generations!—Now,
Too full of impulse to allow
page 59“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 59. A secondary thought to give
His plans due balance. Bold ’t achieve
His half formed purpose he proposes
To this and ’tother well mixed doses
Of the great benefits arising
From his new schemes of colonizing
This our country. Self interest rose
Applauding all he could propose

Uniting in one company,
Men of all shades of politicks,
Much like a mass of crocked sticks

Together bound; yet who would shy
And all their honours spurn for pelf,
If aught occurred to injure self:
Though gulled, yet eager to a man
They gulp the half digested plan.
As fish would the well-baited hooks
Of wily anglers by their brooks;
Yet all rejoicing in the end,
To reap a glorious dividend.
As lunatics will oft proclaim
Their rights o’er what they have no claim,
So they began to trade, and sell (1)
This land before they could it call
Their own, or even know, much less,
If even a foot they could possess.
But, trusting to the toss of chance,
Or an overruling Providence;
In hastening their united aims,
In childish traffic, for the claims
Of native territorial right;—
But such it was, view’d in the light
Of Nature’s law,—so ’s to dispose,
Not theirs! Their influence work’d on those
Who, smit by their contagion, chose
To be their dupes. But still how mix’d
The motives each would show; so fix’d
On the projectors’ glowing schemes,
Exciting the most golden dreams,
That e’er could pleasure fanatics,
page 60“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 60. Or fools beguiled by feigning tricks
Of gambling thimbleriggers.—This
Beheld possessions vast, the base
Of mighty incomes, for a trifle
Before him dance! enough to stifle
The most voracious shark. Meanwhile (2)
O’er the fair prospect, some would smile
At being fit to portion off,
A rising family, with enough
To make them claim a lord’s estate;—
Thus, many did congratulate
Their fancied luck as real!—While that,
For family prodigals, most pat,
Beheld a place of exile, where,
Though free, yet banish’d with some share
Of love paternal, they might send
A spoil’d son, hoping there he’d mend
His manners; so would purchase claim
To some small state, where he might aim,
Through self-reliance, to retrace
His conduct and escape disgrace;
Which might revert to their own shame
While sicken’d at his evil fame!

And others anxious to retrieve
Some loss of fortune, or revive
A family name brought to the dust
Of poverty, as doom’d to rust
In cold neglect, and be forgot;
So, in this country, they their lot
Would cast, urged by the pleasing hope,
That Providence may give full scope
To their endeavours, and may bless
Their pursuits, and bestow success.

But some, affecting great dissent
Toward th ’existing Government,
Who, foil’d in some ambitious aim,
’Gainst its corruptions would declaim;
And restless spirits prove, nor cease
T’ endanger much the public peace,
page 61“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 61. If they could but be heard; although,
They would give out, much good would grow
From their endeavours, were they follow’d;—
So, oft, when John Bull loudly bellow’d,
With goring threats, or oft the ground
He paw’d with ire, and blackly frown’d,
Or with resentment swung his tail;—
How would their bouncing courage quail!
Though secretly they’d grumble, as
They were disgusted with the laws,
They’d dare presume to mend. But now
A glorious chance occurs! They vow,
To bid farewell to all that’s dear!
Self-martyr’d! to their fond career
Of fancied patriotic strife,
For liberty, more dear than life!
Though not enslaved, but ’neath command
To keep the peace! Such, too, this land
Must share, as if their country would
Their absence mourn and so intrude
Upon our liberties; with hope
Ambitious, here, to have full scope
For self-advancement; fully bent
On feign’d republic government;—
But check’d their joys, as time most fain
Declares, their motives have been vain!

But some, indeed, of other aims
Disinterested, as their names
Are oft suppress’d, while rich in deeds
Philanthropic, in sowing seeds
Of future benefits! to bless
The poor deserving,—aid distress,
As faithful stewards—could descry
Another opening, whereby
Some good might thence result;—would join—
And ’mid the various motives shine
Conspicuous, though in secret guise;
Much good still anxious to devise,—
Apart from seeking praise!—secure
An outlet for the lab’ring poor,
page 62“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 62. By purchasing of claims, whose lands
May be resold, upon demands,
In parts, on terms accessible
And prove a boon admissible
By the industrious,—thus, relieving
From want some families, and achieving
Some little good to trade, that all
Might reap a livelihood, and tell
Upon their future destinies
For good;—while gratitude replies
Aloud in active industry;—
Thus thanking such philanthropy!—
Of this, how few, compared to those
Which would the other tribes compose,
But chiefly they of sharking fame,
Whose av’rice has no other aim
Than serving self,—nay would efface
Humanity, dispite disgrace!

Whatever motive each would claim,
To act the magnet of each aim,
Yet much was bought, and much was sold,
Transforming all these lands to gold,
Either in visions of the buyers,
Or in the coffers of stock cries,
Nor did the game here stop, but fix’d
To give each purchase value, next
The humbler public must be roused,
As they, their cause, had much espoused,
And on their labours, value just
Had placed, to raise them from the dust;
As, when inhabitants increase,
Tis said, a nation’s in good case;
So, thus, if possible, their dreams,
To realize, and give their schemes
A prosp’rous issue; and beguile
O’er to their ends the sons of toil,—
Great placard sheets, they post about,
Large letter’d, as with thund’ring shout
They would proclaim,—that deaf might hear,
Or blind might see, both far and near.—
page 63“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 63. Free Passage to New Zealand’s isle!
Are offer’d to the sons of toil!
Of various trades—good men, apply!—
High wages named, as by the bye,
T’ attract the attention of the unwary,
Like baited snares that wont miscarry
To serve the end desired, so thus,
Those placards soon raise great discuss
In minds of those who them beheld,
And o’er them pondered, as if seal’d
By magic to the spot; while all,
Felt something pressing, as to call
For their decision, on a point
Of great import.—This, much acquaint
With sad misfortunes, in his trade,
Here sees a door, wide open made,
For his escape, and so decides
T’ improve the priv’lige as betides
Necessity!—yet fain he thinks,
Though thus his creditors he jinks,
An honest purpose in his breast,
Should he by providence be blessed, (3)
Will make return with fortune bright,
And set all seeming wrongs to right,

Those unemployed, yet cannot want,
Their living fain to earn, discant
In their own thoughts,—What good is home?
If we can’t live; we’ll rather roam
To other climes, and take our chance,
Since, now, a smiling providence
Points out the way.—Free passages,
Rank seldom mongst the usages
Of our grandees, save for the rogue;—
While honest folks are not in vogue
For such great favours, to escape
Starvation here, far less have hope
To rise above our poverty,
Even with all our industry
When well employed. Nor can we bear
The thoughts of workhouse pittance spare
page 64“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 64. To be our lot; with families torn
From our embrace, and cast forlorn
Beneath some ruthless guardian’s power,—
Oh no! such things we can’t endure,
Whatever fortune may betide,
We’ll rather cross the oceans wide.

The amorious swain, rejoices too
To see his hopes complete in view;
He long had striven hard to gain,
By well earned savings, what he fain
Would think sufficient, to ensure
A future welfare, and procure
The happiness of her, he loves,
Destined his own. He much approves
Of such an offer, and has heard
That married couples are preferr’d
To single men; he next confers
In haste with dearest, who prefers
His sweet proposals, to delay,
Which hastens the long-looked for day,
Of happy union; quite assured,
(Whatever hardship be endured,
In foreign lands,) of his fond love,
And, of her willingness to prove
His sole companion; and take share
In sorrows, with her soothing care:
Yet hoping Providence will smile
Upon their loves, and bless their toil.

Some maid, now got beyond the bloom
Of youth, and ceasing to presume
On hope of changing single life,
For bliss of being called a wife,—
As clouds the sunshine oft o’ercast,
And gay scenes look a dreary waste,—
So damp’d in spirits at the thought
Of former offers sunk to nought,
By some unlucky whim, when she
Might have enjoy’d a marriage free.
Determined now to leave her home,
Though feigning a desire to roam,
page 65“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 65. The world to see; yet, underhand,
This hope still lurks,—she may command
Some worthy offer, or at least

Escape the jeers of former lovers,
As on her loneliness they feast

Derisive wit. Thus she discovers
Some motives good t’ enforce decision,
And give “farewell” more weighty reason;
Thus bolst’ring up her fallen pride,
In foreign lands her woes to hide.

But why enumerate instances,—
As those placards served all fancies;
For all determined to leave sorrow,
And bid good-bye with cares to-morrow.
The prodigal, held under scorn
Parental, feels such can’t be borne,
Thus finds escape. And ’prentice boys
Of every trade, quickly descries
Escape from bonds. Though none could tell,
For certain, how things might befall,
Yet all would bode on happiness,
As seeing ’scape from some distress;
So glad to leave their native land,
To meet new sorrows on this strand,
Though unforeseen, ’gainst all desire,—
As, from the pan into the fire,
They made a leap of desperation;
Yet no way alt’ring their condition,
For good supposed. Thus many left
Their comfortable homes, bereft
Of means for due support—as they
Too easily became the prey
Of theoretic schemers, who
Held grand inducements up to view:
Such as—at small amount t ’obtain
(A glorious bait!) a good domain,—
A madman’s risk!—with hopes full high
Of reaching independency.
Alas! vain dreams!—their all at stake;—
To their true state now full awake,
page 66“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 66. And too late to retrieve their steps!
Their lands! where are they? All their hopes
Are blasted, and themselves are sunk
To hopeless ruin. Deep they’ve drunk
Of mis’ry’s cup. The lab’rour came— (5)
But where was the employer? “Shame!”
May well be stamp’d upon the face
Of the whole farce, as common-place
Deception quite! Our forests dense
Appall’d much childish courage; hence
Arose much doubt, if means here spent
Would make returns, as competent
To future benefits. Alas!
What indicisions now!—the cause
Of much complaint, as cowardice
Bespoke inaction as most wise.
How many kept aloof, that might
Have added strength of purpose, fit
T’ insure success. But, loving ease
And fancied gains, those absentees
Thus hateful prove. Those, come alone,
Without a brave example shown,
Would mourn their choice. Hard times prevail’d,
While adverse Governors assail’d,
To check republic spirits, and
All pow’rs take under their command
As they had rebels been, and rose
Against their Queen’s establish’d laws;
While vauntingly they show’d address,
Full less to govern than t’ oppress. (6)
Now things took more an awkward course,
Unthought of, as from bad to worse,
Instead of bettering, as they might
Had schemes from first been order’d right.
But such it is. Let the result, (7)
Of all bad management the fault,
Now find its place. When through the air
We pass, and, looking down with care
Upon the bushman’s lot, you must
Have made observe, how to the dust
page 67“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 67. He is bow’d down with painful toil,
And struggling with hard fate the while;
The sad reverse of many a hope
Enjoy’d, as he his mind gave scope
To dreams of bliss, which made him roam,
And leave the enjoyments of sweet home.
Such thoughts embitter much his cup,
While he with hardships now must cope,
Or sink undone. (8) And see his roads!
Through which, pack-beast like, he his loads
Must bear, so deep with mire, where scarce
His Excellency would trust his horse;
Still such must be endured! Again,
I’ve seen the lordling, with disdain,
Refuse to pay his workman’s hire
When duly won. Alas! my sire,
The lab’rour, wrong’d on ev’ry hand,
No power has he at his command
T’obtain redress. With frugal care,
Enforced, I’ve known him glad to fare
On meanest substitutes, the while (9)
Out-wrong’d his due rewards for toil.

How much of enterprise we’ve seen (10)
In fruitless labour lost; I ween
With hope of doing good in view,
Yet baulk’d in what they would pursue,
Either from want of means to gain
The end, or crush’d with foul disdain!
Thus each unfinish’d work would cry,
The people’s fill’d with lunacy!
And all their efforts but a case
No better than a wild goose chase!
How little comfort is enjoy’d,
While none know how to be employ’d
To earn his scanty crust of bread.
And those of any means have dread
To venture such, though useful gains
Awaits investure for his pains
Of raising good employment; but
Blind to his own as well as that
page 68“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 68. Of others’ good, would rather blast
His means by waste, than risk to cast
His bread on waters, which might turn
Him fourfold plenty, richly borne
Unto his bosom! Nay, I’ve seen
The man of candour, once I ween
In all his deeds exemplary,
But, borne down by adversity,
As tried beyond endurance, made
Heart-broken, so’s to retrograde
With darken’d mind, cast in the shade
Of infidelity, forget
The wise examples once he set
To others, and himself become
The sad discomfort of his home.
Such sad results must give you pain;—
And see! the soil doth yet remain
Without possessor, save some spot
Found here and there, where cotters squat
With self-permission. Insecure
Their tenures!—which cannot insure
To them improvements meet; for why?
The landlord’s absent! Industry
Is spiritless and low; nor cares
T’ extend his labours more than dares
To serve his present wants, in fear
Lest base ejectment might be near,
When forced, improvements made the while,
To leave—(unthank’d for ample toil!)—
To some sharp lordling of the soil;
So that, all round, there’s little less
Than the old cheerless wilderness!

Could brawny Industry its due
But meet, far other things we’d view;
The forest soon would be subdued,
And autumn yield its stores of food;
Nor would we reason have to mourn
O’er all those sorrows we have borne.
For in this land there’s room for all,
Native or foreign, great or small,
page 69“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 69. And man employ’d would grow more wise,
Nor longer care to mar our joys.

But, no! The lordling will declare,
He scorns to yield the smallest share
To the industrious, though his lands
Lie idle, groaning out demands
For useful culture and removal
Of lumb’ring forests, to the approval
Of smiling Heaven, who’d deign to bless
Each useful effort with success.

But, where the promises held forth
T’ induce the emigrant? Where’s the worth
Of those pretensions, blaz’ning high,
To gain their dupes? Oh! how I sigh
O’er such considerations—deep
In foul intrigue; oft made to weep
O’er all the painful sorrows borne
By the deceived! betray’d!!—who mourn,
Now roused from all their golden dreams
To blasted hopes. Despair now seems
Triumphant on once smiling faces,
While grief absorbs the lively graces
By youth and beauty own’d; each eye,
With strange suspicion mark’d, awry
Is turn’d from the once favour’d friend,
Lest the cognisant look should lend
Assistance to some small request,
Too much to grant, though’t might give rest
From vexing cares. Nay, ev’n in trade—
Where oft allowances are made
In gen’ral business when its state
Is prosperous—but now, of late,
Declining confidence exists
In bank-concerns, (11) whose chief persists
To stick to stingy int’rest’s laws,
As, in discount, he makes a pause
Akin to—No!—How many a heart,
From changes unforeseen, now smart!
And ardent burns for homes they left,
So much of comfort now bereft;
page 70“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 70. Content, if they could cross the waves,
To lie down in their fathers’ graves!

Yes, such, my sire, are those sad times
’Mid which we live; which badly chimes
With our well-wishes and our feelings
To’ard those, the victims of such dealings,
Which breed much misery. Were these lands
Possess’d by those of horny hands,—
The bones and sinews, strength and health,
The source of true colonial wealth,—
Most happily rejoice might we,
And shout a glorious jubilee!
How giant Industry must lie
Thus shackled!—who could well defy,
If free, all want, and have o’er earth
The horn of plenty pour’d with mirth.

’Tis true, there were who great things tried
With ample means, but unallied
With knowledge, prudence, and goodwill;—
But, purse-proud, haughty, want of skill,
They plumed themselves in their own eyes
As knowing all things, wondrous wise;
With lofty airs and answers rough,
And look—as they’d look ten miles off!—
As men to them should humbly bow,
Their servile serfs. No wonder how
Such small success they met—nay, fail’d
In what they aim’d at; which entail’d
No small amount of loss; which case
Enforced them to a debtor’s race,
’Neath midnight cover, to elude
Law vultures in pursuit, for good.
But others, of far other aims,
But full of self, and had no claims
To public spirit, in the lists
Of pioneering colonists.
Though gladly they’d accept the title,
To them it is not due; so little
Did they care for the public good;—
But, swell’d by rank extortion rude,
page 71“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 71. And judging from the times depress’d
They could no longer here exist,
And sway’d by faithlessness intense, (12)
In an overruling Providence
They’ve pack’d their baggage, and have gone;
Well served themselves, they leave alone
The rest to sink or swim! How like
The base-born wretch or coward tyke,
Who skulks the field to those who’d try
To battle out adversity.

How worthy those who stand unmov’d,
Prepared for worst!—as ’t all behoved,—
With those good feelings, which pervade
Society now for either’s aid;—
For, when the lords feel insecure
They gladly herd with humbler poor,
Though once to either disinclined;
For common good they’re now combined
To grapple with the adversar’
Should he approach, as fain he’d dare;
Though still aloof, with full intent
To make yet on them wild descent,
With all his trains of want and war,
All peace and pleasures to debar.

’Tis thus, the many take up arms
To aid their ruler in alarms—
(Though much alarm’d themselves, no doubt,
By what of late had come about)—
More for the means of gaining bread
Than the regards they o’er him shed;
So thus, each novice having found
Some time to sport, and a spare round
Of ammunition, fain would try
His art of shooting; but for why?
He little knows; though, for an aim,
Seeks us for want of better game!

But, Sire, in all we would advance
We trace the hand of Providence.
As man of sound intelligence
Can good discern ’mid evil; hence,
page 72“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 72. Amid those turmoils we infer
That something better is in store,
Which will in all good time occur;—
So, let us wait without demur,
And in the enjoyment of sweet hope,
Assist each drooping spirit up;
For, as with man, ’tis in our favour,
That Heaven will bless a bold endeavour!

In all those colonizing schemes,
Exciting the most wayward dreams,
See Providence at work to send
The active labourer to this strand,
To aid disseminating truth
On native eld and rising youth;
With civilisation in the train
As consequents; and so restrain
Such ancient customs which oppose
Humanity’s most sacred laws.
And see, as circumstances prove,
How it did Providence behove,
Through colonising schemes, to send
Timely protection to this land,
’Neath British banners and mild sway,
Instead of being the Eagle’s prey.
And see, had not the wars begun,
Things for the worse had still gone on,
Till, who knows where the end might be
Of growing, hard adversity!

But oft it haps, ’mid earthly things,
Much good from seeming evil springs;
Though, so engross’d with presents, we
Can ill perceive how such can be;
Yet rest assured, that time anon,
Will have this broad-day truth made known!
For he who sits at helm of law,
With all his satellites, that draw
From him their virtues, forms, and graces,
Must soon to others give their places;
To which effect commands have been
Now issued by Great Britain’s Queen.
page 73“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 73. Him she appoints to govern right (13)
Has a compound of blue and white—
Which mixture, I’m inform’d, is “Grey;”
Of which I’ve heard some wisdoms say—
That blue denotes much enterprise
And hardy valour, which defies
All oppositions to the cause
Espoused, according to the laws
Of majesty; while that of white
Denotes much prudence—for the right,
Great caution; which will char’cterise
His actions, though they may give rise
To spite, in those that fain would rule,
’Cause they can’t use him as their tool!
But, as the sun has got his spots,
So, doubtless, he may have his faults,
To serve for goblins, much to carp at,
Or tunes for bearded boys to harp at;
Or his will be an extra case
That don’t belong to human race!
But yet, withal, I understand
He’ll be the hardy workman’s friend;
To many prove the rise to wealth, (14)
And much restore the public health,
Now sunk so low!—and give command
That roads be made throughout the land,
And such improvements make, that we
Ne’erdream’d this land should ever see.
He will the many wrongs redress,
And all these troubles soon repress;
When man in peace shall till the soil, (15)
Nor longer care our joys to spoil;
When sage and savage will agree
To live in peace and harmony.

But how such knowledge I have gain’d
’Tis due that such should be explain’d.”—

With this, the President arose,
As sign the speaker now must close;
Who therefore took his seat amid
Great acclamations, long and loud,
page 74“Pigeons’ Parliament”: Page 74. With clapping wings, and much hurrah!
“God save the Queen!—We’ll welcome Grey!”
Encore! the President proclaim’d;
Encore! the multitude exclaim’d.
Carroo! carroo! carroo! hurrah!!!
“God bless the Queen! and send us Grey!!!”
Sway’d by their joys, my former fears
I quite forgot, and join’d their cheers;
My cap I toss’d, with—“hip! hurrah!!!
God save the Queen!—I’ll welcome Grey!!!”

Thus, all partook unbounded joy
With grateful hearts, without alloy,
Till Preses beckon’d silence. He
Exclaim’d,—“I thank you for this free
Discussion, and your presence here!
But, as the time has now drawn near
That we from either must disperse,
One counsel I would fain rehearse:—
Let us maintain the laws of peace!
And pray that troubles soon may cease!”
With this he bow’d, and then withdrew
With loving mate; when loud, carroo
Of high acclaim was raised; then all,
With noisy flight, cooing farewell,
Betook to wing, as when they came;
And chanticleer would now proclaim
Th’ approaching morn with clarion voice,
Roused by the pigeons’ winging noise,
As forth they flew to seek, most meet
For them, the safest far retreat,
While I, at their dispersion glad,
Bade them adieu, and went to bed.

end of the poem.