Ballads and Songs
BALLADS AND SONGS, BY EDWARD CAPERN, RURAL POSTMAN OF BIDEFORD, DEVON. PREFACE. IT is not without some misgivings that the Author sends forth this second volume to the public. He knows that much of the favour with which his first Poems were received, was due to a kindly sense of the difficulties under which they had been composed and he is well aware that, in the present instance, he has less of that favour to expect that his work will be judged purely on its own merits, and that it is not the Postman, but the Poet, whom critics will now review. Had he merely consulted his own wishes, this volume would not have appeared so soon. He had conceived the idea of writing, and, indeed, had already commenced, a larger and more ambitious poem. Many of his friends, however, were pressing in their demands for another volume of Lyrics. The time which he could devote to poetical composition was, from the nature of his daily occupation, necessarily very limited and he has now only to hope that those who have encouraged him to write, will not he disappointed with what he has written. In the following pages will he found many rustic songs. The Author is desirous that these should he judged as songs, originally written to be sung rather than to he read. Their style is homely, for their subjects are so. He has endeavoured to illustrate that singing element which still lingers in the northern district of his native county and amply has he been rewarded for his labour of love. Written generally to simple melodies of his own, he has had the delight of hearing them sung, hi many a cottage, by some of those village maidens whose charms he has endeavoured to celebrate. A Devonshire man, and proud of his birth in that beautiful county, he has found most of his subjects in the district where he resides. He has stood by the stone near which tradition states that Hubba fell he has seen the window from which Kitty Lile of Clovelly held out her signal he has talked to the old Stone-breaker at his work. Whether his poems deal with sorrow or joy, they have ever been written under the influence of sincere emotion. He has sought that no word of his should tend to foment class jealousies and, whilst singing of the sorrows and the trials of the poor, he has never forgotten how many men there are who, prosperous themselves, sympathise with such sorrows as much as he. Lastly, he has a pleasant task to perform before he takes leave of his readers. He has to thank critics, both for their kindness and their candour friends scattered over many parts of the world for generous sympathy and kind appreciation. Specially, he has to thank one dear friend the friend who introduced his first volume to the public, and whose friendship is all the more valued by the writer that, whilst it has known no diminution of activity and sincerity from the hour when it was first bestowed upon him, that hour was one when his heart was sad, his prospects dark, and his name almost unknown. BlDEFORD, Nov. ISth, 1858. EDWARD CAPERN. NOTICE. EIGHT pages, which formed the additions to the previous reprint of POEMS, are now printed in this volume of BALLADS and SONGS, and the volume of Poems restored to its original size. This became necessary, as many purchasers of the first edition expressed a complete copy of the whole. a wish to have CONTENTS. PAGE INTRODUCTORY ... ... ... ... ... 1 MY FAIRY FRTENDS ... ... ... ... 2 THE GHOST OF THE DANE ... ... ... 3 JANUS AND HIS DAUGHTERS ... ... ... 11 GOD IN NATURE ... ... ... ... 19 THE FIRST OFMAY ... .....
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