Digital Tradition Mirror

The Prodigal's Resolution

The Prodigal's Resolution

I am a lusty lively Lad,
Now come to One and Twenty,
My Father left me all he had,
Both gold and Silver plenty;
Now he's in grave, I will be brave,
The Ladies shall adore me;
I'll court and kiss, what hurt's in this,
My dad did so before me.

My Father was a thrifty Sir,
Till Soul and Body sundred,
Some say he was an Usurer,
For thirty in the Hundred;
He scrapt and scratcht, she pincht and patcht,
That in her Body bore me;
But I'll let fly, good cause why,
My Father was born before me.

So I get wealth, what care I if
My Grandsir were a Sawyer,
My Father proved to be a chief,
And subtile, Learned Lawyer:
By Cook's Reports and Tricks in Courts,
He did with Treasure store me,
That I may say, Heavens bless the Day,
My Father was born before me.

So many Blades now rant in Silk,
And put on Scarlet Clothing,
At first did spring from Butter-milk,
Their Ancestors worth nothing;
Old Adam and our Grandam Eve,
by digging and by Spinning,
Did all to Kings and Princes give
Their radical Beginning.

Our aged Counsellors would have
Us live by Rule and Reason
`Cause they are marching to their Grave,
And Pleasure's out of Season;
I'll learn to dance the Mode of Francs
That Ladies may adore me;
My thrifty Dad no Pleasure had,
Tho' he was born before me.

I'll to the Court, where Venus' Sport
Doth revel it in Plenty,
I'll deal with all, both great and small,
From twelve to five and twenty;
In Play-houses I'll spend my Days,
For they're hung round with Plackets,
Ladies make room, behold I come,
Have at your knocking Jackets.

Anon. from D'Urfey's Wit and Mirth: or Pills to Purge Melancholy 1719-1720.
 Tune `Jamaica' also in The Dancing Master 1670.

Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!

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