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To a Roadside Flower
John Hartley


Tha bonny little pooasy! aw'm inclined
To tak thee wi' me:
But yet aw think if tha could spaik thi mind,
Tha'd ne'er forgie me;
For i' mi jacket button-hoil tha'd quickly dee,
An life is short enuff, booath for mi-sen an thee.

Here, if aw leeav thee bi th' rooadside to flourish,
Whear scoors may pass thee;
Some heart 'at has few other joys to cherish
May stop an bless thee:
Then bloom, mi little pooasy! Tha'rt a beauty!
Sent here to bless: Smile on - tha does thi duty.

Aw wodn't rob another of a joy
Sich as tha's gien me;
For aw felt varry sad, mi little doy
Until aw'd seen thee.
An may each passin, careworn, lowly brother,
Feel cheered like me, an leeav thee for another.

This poem is in the public domain.

John Hartley (1839 1915 or 1917) was an English writer, born in Yorkshire to parents who owned a tea shop. Initially, he worked in the textile industry, but started writing poetry in his twenties and quickly built a reputation as a gifted writer and orator. He published numerous books of poetry and prose, usually written in Yorkshire dialect and frequently focused on the poverty and hardships of that region. In his thirties, John moved to Canada and, eventually, to America. Ultimately, he ended up in Philadelphia, working as a textile designer to augment his writing income. He returned to England in 1894, where he remained until his death.

Post New Comment:
Joan Luther:
A fun ditty to read aloud but Im wondering about the challenge to type it with spell checker Thank you for the joy to read it!
Posted 05/31/2022 04:40 PM
Shall I attempt to translate?
Posted 05/31/2022 09:34 AM
Sweet poem. Fun to try to read out loud, especially with my Southern accent!!
Posted 05/31/2022 08:54 AM
I would love to hear this poem recited in dialect! Such fun.
Posted 05/31/2022 08:31 AM
Larry Schug:
So many poems, so little time. Thank you again, Jayne for uncovering these words. This one is,indeed,a beauty.
Posted 05/31/2022 07:42 AM

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