Highways and Byways in Sussex - online book

An illustrated appreciation, of the most interesting districts in Sussex.

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MR. BLUNT'S BALLAD
THE OLD SQUIRE.
I like the hunting of the hare
Belter than that of the fox ; I like the joyous morning air,
And the crowing of the cocks.
I like the calm of the early fields,
The ducks asleep by the lake, The quiet hour which Nature yields Before mankind is awake.
I like the pheasants and feeding things
Of the unsuspicious morn ; I like the flap of the wood-pigeon's wings
As she rises from the corn.
I like the blackbird's shriek, and his rush
From the turnips as I pass by, And the partridge hiding her head in a bush,
For her young ones cannot fly.
I like these things, and I like to ride
When all the world is in bed, To the top of the hill where the sky grows wide,
And where the sun grows red.
The beagles at my horse heels trot,
In silence after me ; There's Ruby, Roger, Diamond, Dot,
Old Slut and Margery,
A score of names well used, and dear,
The names my childhood knew ; The horn, with which I rouse their cheer,
Is the horn my father blew.
I like the hunting of the hare
Better than that of the fox ; The new world still is all less fair
Than the old world it mocks.
I covet not a wider range
Than these dear manors give ; I take my pleasures without change,
And as I lived I live.
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