Thomas Parnell

(1679 - 1718 / Ireland)

Ye Wives Who Scold & Fishes Sell - Poem by Thomas Parnell

Ye Wives who scold fishes sell,
Or sing sell your fruit,
I want a wondrous thing to tell,
Then (if you can) be mute.
From some of You one Homer came,
Who wrote a ballad first,
For He knew neither Parents name
Nor livd where he was nurst
His verse in length exceeds us all
So when a crowd he drew,
Like you he got him to a stall,
spoke as long as you.
Some tatterd Mermaid gave him birth
Who crys her oyster wares
Or Else some ragged nymph of earth
Who sings her Mellow pears
If 'twas the nymph of fruit was prest,
Apollo was ye Lover:
With tunefull cry he filld her breast,
got a singing Rover.
A Man, tho blind, yet usd to ply
Where 'ere he heard of Chear;
His dog it seems preserved an eye,
Its Master livd by ear.
Or if Apollo chancd to Love
The Mermaid near ye sea,
Whose shriller voice he taught to move
With buy my oysters pray.
Her shriller voice when raised to Ire
Woud thunder on ye crew,
So from ye Mother ye Sire
Old Homers Iliad grew.
then (as big with child she stood)
The place she sold her fishes
Might in his fancy form a floud
To rage in all th' Odysses.


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Poem Submitted: Saturday, April 17, 2010



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