Charles Godfrey Leland

(15 August 1824 - 20 March 1903 / Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

Breitmann As An Uhlan. Ii. Brietmann In A Balloon. - Poem by Charles Godfrey Leland

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WHO vas efer hear soosh voonders,
Holy breest or virshin nonn?
As pefelled de Coptain Breitmann,
Vhen he hoont an air-ballon.
Der Bizzy und der Dizzy,
Mit lothairingen und Lothair,
Vas nodings to dis Deutscher,
Who vent kitin troo de air.

Id was in yar Nofember,
In eighdeen sefendee,
Der Breitmann vent a prowlin,
By monden light vent he.
In fillages deserted
He hear de Uhu moan;
For you alvays hear der Uhu
Vhere der Uhu-lan ish gone.

Alone allonsed der Uhlan,
Boot nodings could he find
Safe whitey clouds a drivin
In moonshine fore de wind.
Boot ash he see dese cloudins
He bemark dat von vas round,
Und inshtead of goin oopwarts
It kep risin towards de ground.

'Oh, vot ish dis a gomin?
Some planet, py de Lord!
Too boor to life in heafen,
Coom down on eart to poard;
Und pelow it schwing tree engels-
Two he-vons mit a wench.
Boot, mein Gott! vot sort of engels
Can dose pe, dalkin Fraentsch!

'I hafe read in Eckhartshausen
Dat oop in heafen - py tam!
De engels dalk in Sherman,
Und sing Mardin Luther's psalm.
O nein - es sind kein engeln
Vot sail so smoofly on,
Das sind verfluchte Franzosen
In einem luft-ballon!'

Hei! how der Breitman streak it
Ven vonce he kess de trut'!
He spurred id like de wild fire
Of hope in early yout'.
Troo de weingarts like der teufel
Vhen he shase a lawyer's soul;
Down der moundain mit his lanze
Und his wafin banderol.

Down de moundain, o'er de valley,
Troo de village he ish gone;
Dog-barks die out pehind him,
Oders bark ash he come on.
Liddle heedet he deir bellin,
Liddle mind der Hahnen crow;
Liddle hear der Bauern yellin,
Clotter, clodder, on he go.

'Oh, vot ish hoontin foxen,
Und vot ish yager pliss,
Und vot ish shasin bison
On de blains, to soosh ash dis?
I hafe dinked dat roonin rebels
Vas de best of eartly fun;
Boot id isn't half so sholly
Ash to go a luft-ballon.'

Und ash id shdill vent onwart,
Shdill onwarts mit der wind,
Der coom a real madness
To catch id, o'er his mind.
Und had'st dou seen him vylin,
Dat wild onfuriate brick,
Dou'st hafe schworn dat Coptain Breitmann
Was pecome balloonatic.

In fain dey trow deir sand-bags,
In fain all dings let fall,
De ballon shdill kep a sinkin,
Und id vouldn't rise at all.
Yet de wild wind trife id onwarts,
Onwarts shdill der Breitmann go,
Dill he cotch id py a rope-ent
Vot vas hangin town pelow.

Boot vhen it risen oopwarts,
Ash he cling to id, of corse,
Mit de lefter hand he holtet
To de pridle of his horse.
Der horse valk on his hind-legs:
Too schwer to rise vas he;
Mein Gott! vot fix for Breitmann
Of de Uhlan cavallrie!

So he go for seferal stunden
Petween himmel und eart pelow,
Boot der teufel und die engels
Couldn't make der Hans let go.
Dill all at vonce an idee
Coom from his loocky shtar-
He led co his horse's pridle
Und glimb oop indo de car.

Und vot you dinks he foundet
Vhen in dat air-ballon?
A nople Englisch vicomte,
Milord de Robinson;
Und mit him vas a laity,
Mit whom he'd rooned afay,
Whom he indroduce to Breitmann
Ash die Jungfer Salome.

Und der dritte was a barson,
Whom Milord, mit prudent view,
Hat took als secretaire,
Likevise for pallast doo.
Dey should hafe bitched him ofer
Vhen de gas was out, dey say;
Boot de dame vould not 'low it:-
She'd an arriere pensee.

Sait Milord: 'Afar we've wandered,
We are completely brown;
And I'll give a thousand shiners
If you'll take me to a town
Where no one will molest us
Till we find our way to Lon--'
Here der Breitmann ent de sentence
Ash he gry out, shortly, 'done.'

'And as for this fair lady
To whom I would be bound,'
Sait Milord, 'we'll have a wedding
Before we reach the ground.
To escape her father's anger
We fled to live in peace,
But she's relatives in London,
And they have - the police.'

O vas not dis a voonders
To make de Captain shdare?-
A tausend pounds in bocket
Und a veddin in de air?
He gafe avay de laity,
Und als sie wieder kam
Zur festen Erde wieder,
Ward sie Robinson Madame.

'O go mit me,' said Breitmann,
'O go in mein Quartier!
Don't mind dem gommon soldiers,
For I'm an officier.'
He guide dem troo de coontry
Till dey reach de ocean strand;
Now dey sit und pless Hans Breitmann,
In de far-off English land.

Dis ish Breitmann's last adfenture
How troo Himmel air flew he:
Und it's dime, oh nople reader!
For a dime to part from dee.
Dou may'st dake it all in earnest
Or pelieve id's only fon;
Boot dere's woonder dings has hoppent
Fery oft in Luft-ballon.


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Poem Submitted: Thursday, October 14, 2010



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