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Northern Farmer
by Lord Alfred Tennyson

English poet and dramatist, generally considered to be the chief representative of the Victorian age in poetry. Tennyson's major works include his Poems. Chiefly Lyrical (1830); his two volume work, again entitled Poems, of 1842 which includes, alongside rewritten earlier works, the dramatic monologue 'Ulysses', 'Morte d'Arthur' and 'Sir Galahad' - his first pieces dealing with Arthurian legend, 'Locksley Hall' and 'Break, Break, Break'; the novella Princess: a Medly (1847) and his In Memorium A.H.H. (1850), a tribute to his deceased friend Arthur Hallam.

Other major works, this time from Tennyson's second period of creative out put after being made poet laureate, include Ode on the Death of the Duke of Wellington (1852), The Charge of the Light Brigade (1854) and Maud (1855), what Tennyson referred to as his "monodrama".

He also wrote, in later years, a number of works centred on Arthurian legends, including The Idylls of the King (1859), The Holy Grail and Other Poems (1870) and Gareth and Lynette (1872), as well as some poetic dramas: Queen Mary (1875), Harold (1877), Becket (1884) and, his only prose work, The Promise of May (produced at the Globe Theatre in November 1882). Other important works are Despair (1881), Locksley Hall Sixty Years After (1886), Demeter and Other Poems (1889) and his famous Crossing the Bar (1889). At Alfred's request, his poem "Crossing the Bar," an epitaph of sorts, is always printed last in any collection of his works (our thanks to visitor Cynthia R. for reminding Passions of this oversight).

Enoch Arden &c.
Northern Farmer
by Lord Alfred Tennyson


Wheer 'asta bean saw long and mea liggin' 'ere
Noorse? thoort nowt o' a noorse: whoy, doctor's abean
     an' agoan:
Says that I moant 'a naw moor yaale: but I beant a
Git ma my yaale, fur I beant a-gooin' to break my


Doctors, they knaws nowt, for a says what's nawways
Naw soort o' koind o' use to saay the things that
     a do.
I've 'ed my point o' yaale ivry noight sin' I bean
An' I've 'ed my quart ivry market-noight for foorty


Parson's a bean loikewoise, an' a sittin' ere o' my
`The amoighty's a taakin o' you to 'issen, my friend,'
     'a said,
An' a towd ma my sins, an's toithe were due, an' I gied
     it in hond;
I done my duty by un, as I 'a done by the


Larn'd a ma' bea. I reckons I 'annot sa mooch to
But a cost oop, thot a did, 'boot Bessy Marris's
Thof a knaws I hallus voated wi' Squoire an' choorch
     an staate,
An' i' the woost o' toimes I wur niver agin the


An' I hallus comed to 's choorch afoor moy Sally wur
An' 'eerd un a bummin' awaay loike a buzzard-clock*
     ower my yead,
An' I niver knaw'd whot a mean'd but I thowt a 'ad
     summut to saay,
An I thowt a said whot a owt to 'a said an' I comed


Bessy Marris's barn! tha knaws she laaid it to
Mowt 'a bean, mayhap, for she wur a bad un,
'Siver, I kep un, I kep un, my lass, tha mun under-
I done my duty by un as I 'a done by the


But Parson a comes an' a goos, an' a says it easy an'
`The amoighty's a taakin o' you to 'issen, my friend,'
     says 'ea.
I weant saay men be loiars, thof summun said it in
But a reads wonn sarmin a weeak, an' I 'a stubb'd
     Thornaby waaste.


D'ya moind the waaste, my lass? naw, naw, tha was
     not born then;
Theer wur a boggle in it, I often 'eerd un
Moast loike a butter-bump,* for I 'eerd un aboot an
But I stubb'd un oop wi' the lot, an' raaved an
     rembled un oot.


Keaper's it wur; fo' they fun un theer a laaid on 'is
Doon i' the woild 'enemies* afoor I comed to the
Noaks or Thimbleby--toner 'ed shot un as dead as
     a naail.
Noaks wur 'ang'd for it oop at 'soize--but git ma
     my yaale.


Dubbut looak at the waaste: theer warn't not fead
     for a cow:
Nowt at all but bracken an' fuzz, an' looak at it
Warn't worth nowt a haacre, an' now theer's lots o'
Fourscore yows upon it an' some on it doon in


Nobbut a bit on it's left, an' I mean'd to 'a stubb'd
     it at fall,
Done it ta-year I mean'd, an' runn'd plow thruff it
     an' all,
If godamoighty an' parson 'ud nobbut let ma
Mea, wi' haate oonderd haacre o' Squoire's an' lond
     o' my oan.


Do godamoighty knaw what a's doing a-taakin' o'
I beant wonn as saws 'ere a bean an' yonder a
An' Squoire 'ull be sa mad an' all--a' dear a'
And I 'a monaged for Squoire come Michaelmas
     thirty year.


A mowt 'a taaken Joanes, as 'ant a 'aapoth o'
Or a mowt a' taaken Robins--a niver mended a
But godamoighty a moost taake mea an' taake ma
Wi 'auf the cows to cauve an' Thornaby holms to


Looak 'ow quoloty smoiles when they sees ma a
     passin' by,
Says to thessen naw doot `what a mon a be
For they knaws what I bean to Squoire sin fust a
     comed to the 'All;
I done my duty by Squoire an' I done my duty
     by all.


Squoire's in Lunnon, an' summun I reckons 'ull 'a to
For who's to howd the lond ater mea thot muddles
     ma quoit;
Sartin-sewer I bea, thot a weant niver give it to
Noither a moant to Robins--a niver rembles the


But summun 'ull come ater mea mayhap wi' 'is kittle
     o' steam
Huzzin' an' maazin' the blessed fealds wi' the Divil's
     oan team.
Gin I mun doy I mun doy, an' loife they says is
But gin I mun doy I mun doy, for I couldn abear to
     see it.


What atta stannin' theer for, an' doesn bring ma the
Doctor's a 'tottler, lass, an a's hallus i' the owd
I weant break rules for Doctor, a knaws naw moor
     nor a floy;
Git ma my yaale, I tell tha, an' gin I mun doy I
     mun doy.

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