The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 2
Lambton Kay, Willin'ton, February 1st, 1880
February 1st, 1880.
I'm tould that yer readhers has been wondhrin what's become o' me, at all, at all, bekays I haven't rote since the saige o' Timaru. Well, the fact o' the matther is that I have become an althered man durin' the last few weeks, so I have. I think I tould ye before that Molly is subject to fits av new-ralgia, an' so I was advised to take her to the Hot Springs for a thrip. Well, as me political collaiges are out av offis jist for the prisent, I tuk time be the four-lock an' wint on a northern tower wid Molly. Whin we raiched Auckland I sint the wife o' me bussum up to Waiwera, in company wid her second cousin, be the mother's side, Biddy McKeown av the North Shore, an' I remained mesilf in the northern methro-polis (the methro-polis has nothin whatsomever to do wid the common polis that takes people in charge). Well, avick machree, the first Sunday I spint in Auckland, I was injooced be a frind to attind one o' Pasthor Shinikee's lectures, an' afther hearin' the iloquint ivangilist tundherin' forth aginst the ignorance an' shuperstishun av us poor benighted Papists, I began to realise what a blind haythin I was to be sure. I was so much sthruck be the Pasthor's rimarks that I sint up me card the followin' day, wid a rayquist for a private intherview, which was granted at onced. Whin I inthered the room where his rivirence was saited, I raycaived a most cordial reciption (for, faix, there wasn't a dhrop on the table but ginger-wine an' raspberry-vinegar), an' the Pasthor shook me warmly be the fist, so he did. "Be me sowl I'm proud to see ye. Paddy, allanah," ses the Pasthor, "for I've often heerd o' ye in Araerikay," ses he. (I may here remark ong-pass-ong, that the Pasthor spaiks wid a sthrong Frinch axsint, and that he's not the same green Pasthor that the Pope's Bulls Rome over.) "I'm tould that yer anxious to be convarted." ses the Pasthor. "The divil a thruer word yer rivirince iver spoke in yer life," ses I, "but what's the figger," ses I. "What the jcoce d'ye mane be the figger," ses his rivirence. "Arrah, don't pritind to be so ignorant, yer rivirince." ses I. "Sure I mane the injoocemints, for I'm beginnin' to get tired av polyticks," ses I. "Och, Paddy, mavrone," ses he, "I'm aiger to save yer itarnil sowl, so I am," ses his rivirince; "them's the injoocemints," ses he, "for be me conshinse yer nothin' more nor less than a pagan idolathor, so you are," ses his rivirince. "D ye tell me so," ses I. Be-gog, it's thrue for me," ses he. "Och, luk at that now," ses I. "Arrah, Paddy, ma bouchil," ses his rivirince, "av ye'd only see the lovely lot o' convarts I've got in Amerikay, be jabers it 'ud do yer eyes good," ses he. "An' are they rale live Priests," ses I. "Musha, faix, thin, they are," ses he. "It's sthrange yer rivirince," ses I, "that ye wouldn't carry one o' yer convarts about wid ye," ses I, for sure he'd be a big dhraw to the show," ses I. "Be the hokey, Paddy," ses his rivirince, "ye' ve hit the right nail on the head, it would' be a grate dhraw, but, asthore machree, I was afraid the climate would spile their complexions, besides, I don't want to incourage me convarts to Roam" ses he, "for sure they've had enough of that already," ses his rivirince, as he laughed at his own pun." Now, Misther Murphy, lavin' jokin' aside, I want to make a bargin wid ye," ses he. "An' what may that be yer rivirince," ses I. "Well, Paddy, allanah, I want an Irish convart from Popery to thravel round wid me, so that I may exhibit him to me hearers, an' you're the very man to shuit me," says his rivirince. "Some o' them waik-knee'd Protestants does be axin me about the fruits av me misshun in Austhraly, an' they think it's sthrange that afther savin' 25,000 in Canady, I haven't hooked a single sowl in these parts." ses his rivirince. "An' av I might make so bould as to ax, I'd like to know the tarms," ses I. "Arrah, lave that to me," ses his rivirince, "an' ye'll have no rayson to complain," ses he. "But tell me one thing." ses I, "will I be allowed to ait mate on the Fridays? "ses I. "Is it ait mate ye mane?" ses his rivirince, "be the hokey ye can have page 70 lashins an' lavins," ses he. "Faix, I'd like ye to see me convarts in Amerikay," ses he. "Before they lift the imbrace o' the 'scarlet lady,' they wor as thin as lamp-posts, an' now, be jabers, they can hardly walk, they're so fat," ses he. "Me convarts go to mess instead o' to mass," ses he, "an' signs on it they've grown in the ways o' graise," ses his rivirince. Well, to make a long story short, I come to terms wid the Pasthor, an' I'm to jine him on bis tower in a month's time, afther I've settled Molly and the childher in the care av a frind o' mine, who has a bit o' ground at the Hutt, which is only a few miles from here. I know that Sir George an' Mac will be in a frightful way whin thay hears that I'm going to lave New Zayland, but whin one's itarnal welfare is at stake, polytical affairs an' frindships must be sacrificed, so they must. As I look on me convarsion as the great turnin' pint o' me life, I thought it right to commimorate the ivint be a short pome on the subject:——