Treasure Island

John Trumbull

(24 April 1750 – 11 May 1831 / Watertown, Connecticut)

The Country Clown


Bred in distant woods, the clown
Brings all his country airs to town;
The odd address, with awkward grace,
That bows with half-averted face;
The half-heard compliments, whose note
Is swallow'd in the trembling throat;
The stiffen'd gait, the drawling tone,
By which his native place is known;
The blush, that looks by vast degrees,
Too much like modesty to please;
The proud displays of awkward dress,
That all the country fop express:
The suit right gay, though much belated,
Whose fashion's superannuated;
The watch, depending far in state,
Whose iron chain might form a grate;
The silver buckle, dread to view,
O'ershadowing all the clumsy shoe;
The white-gloved hand, that tries to peep
From ruffle, full five inches deep;
With fifty odd affairs beside,
The foppishness of country pride.
Poor Dick! though first thy airs provoke
The obstreperous laugh and scornful joke
Doom'd all the ridicule to stand,
While each gay dunce shall lend a hand;
Yet let not scorn dismay thy hope
To shine a witling and a fop.
Blest impudence the prize shall gain,
And bid thee sigh no more in vain.
Thy varied dress shall quickly show
At once the spendthrift and the beau.
With pert address and noisy tongue,
That scorns the fear of prating wrong
'Mongst listening coxcombs shalt thou shine,
And every voice shall echo thine.

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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