The Man of the Hills


The man of the hills is a remarkable fellow ;

His whiskers are white and his molars are yellow ;

But his old violin has a tone rich and mellow,

And I would follow wherever he goes.


The drop on his nose is as bright as a jewel,

And his face is aflame with spiritous fuel,

But life to old Jabez has been middling cruel,

And I feel pity for all his woes.


He’s never alone for the children and fairies

Cluster around in the lanes and the gareys ;

The horses stand still, there’s no work in the dairies,

And everyone listens and everyone knows.


But Jabez is gone and his fiddle is broken,

And in a small churchyard some last words were spoken,

And nothing remains for a sign or a token

Of Jabez the fiddler, the stirrer of toes.


Except in the night when the breezes are teasing

The tops of the trees, then I hear Jabez wheezing

As if in another place someone he’s pleasing,

And little white angels are dancing in rows.


Mona’s Herald     15.10.63