A Celebration of Women Writers

"The Man and His Horse" by Anne Kingsmill Finch, Countess of Winchilsea (1661 - 1720)
From Winchilsea, Anne (Kingsmill) Finch, Countess of. Miscellany Poems, on Several Occasions, London: printed for J[ohn] B[arber] and sold by Benj. Tooke at the Middle-Temple-Gate, William Taylor in Pater-Noster-Row, and James Round, in Exchange-Alley, Cornhil, 1713. p. 257-259.

Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom

The MAN and his HORSE.

Within a Meadow, on the way,
A sordid Churl resolv'd to stay,
    And give his Horse a Bite;
Purloining so his Neighbours Hay,
That at the Inn he might not pay
    For Forage all the Night.

[Page 258]

With Heart's content th' unloaded Steed
Began to neigh, and frisk, and feed;
    For nothing more he car'd,
Since none of all his Master's breed
E'er found such Pasture, at their need,
    Or half so well had far'd.

When, in the turning of a Hand,
Out comes the Owner of the Land,
    And do's the Trespass eye;
Which puts poor Bayard to a Stand,
For now his Master do's command
    Him to return and fly.

But Hunger quick'ning up his Wit,
And Grass being sweeter than the Bit,
    He to the Clown reply'd;
Shall I for you this Dinner quit,
Who to my Back hard Burdens fit,
    And to the Death wou'd ride?

[Page 259]

No; shou'd I as a Stray be found,
And seiz'd upon forbidden Ground,
    I'll on this Spot stand still;
For tho' new Riders shou'd abound,
(Or did Mankind this Field surround)
    They cou'd but use me ill.

Urge no Man to despair; lest in the Fit
He with some Counterblow thy Head may hit.

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Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom