THE KING AND QUEEN OF HEARTS - Raymond Knister Poems


Poems » raymond knister » the king and queen of hearts


[Title-page image]

[The Queen of Hearts]
[She made some Tarts]
[All on a Summers day]
[The Knave of Hearts]
[He stole those Tarts]
[And took them quite away]

[The King of Hearts]
[Call'd for those Tarts]
[And beat the Knave full sore]
[The Knave of Hearts]
[Brought back those Tarts]
[And vow'd he'd steal no more]

          [* * * * * * * * *]

        High on a Throne of state is seen
        She whom all Hearts own for their Queen.
        Three Pages are in waiting by;
        He with the umbrella is her Spy,
        To spy out rogueries in the dark,
        And smell a rat as you shall mark.

        The Queen here by the King's commands,
        Who does not like Cook's dirty hands,
        Makes the court pastry all herself.
        Pambo the knave that roguish elf,
        Watches each sugarly sweet ingredient,
        And slily thinks of an expedient.

        Now first of May does summer bring,
        How bright and fine is every thing!
        After their dam the chickens run,
        The green leaves glitter in the sun,
        While youths and maids in merry dance
        Round rustic may poles do advance

        When Kings and Queens ariding go,
        Great Lords ride with them for a show
        With grooms & courtiers, a great store;
        Some ride behind, & some before.
        Pambo the first of these does pass,
        And for more state rides on an Ass.

        Thieves! Thieves! holla, you knavish Jack,
        Cannot the good Queen turn her back,
        But you must be so nimble hasty
        To come and steal away her pastry
        You think you're safe, there's one sees all,
        And understands, though he's but small

        How like a thievish Jack he looks!
        I wish for my part all the cooks
        Would come and baste him with a ladle
        As long as ever they were able
        To keep his fingers ends from itching
        After sweet things in the Queen's kitchen

        Behold the King of Hearts how gruff
        The monarch stands, how square, how bluff!
        When our eighth Harry rul'd this land,
        Just like this King did Harry stand;
        And just so amorous, sweet, and willing,
        As this Queen stands stood Anna Bullen.

        The meat removed, and dinner done,
        The knives are wip'd and cheese put on
        The King aloud for Tarts does bawl,
        Tarts, tarts, resound through all the Hall
        Pambo with tears denies the Fact,
        But Mungo saw him in the act.

        Behold the due reward of sin,
        See what a plight rogue Pambo's in.
        The King lays on his blows so stout,
        The Tarts for fear come tumbling out
        O King! be merciful as just,
        You'll beat poor Pambo into dust

        How like he looks to a dog that begs
        In abject sort upon two legs!
        Good Mr Knave, give me my due,
        I like a tart as well as you,
        But I would starve on good roast Beef,
        Ere I would look so like a thief.

        The Knave brings back the tarts he stole.
        The Queen swears, that is not the whole.
        What should poor Pambo do? hard prest
        Owns he has eaten up the rest.
        The King takes back as lawful debt,
        Not all, but all that he can get.

        Lo! Pambo prostrate on the floor
        Vows he will be a thief no more.
        O King your heart no longer harden,
        You've got the tarts, give him his pardon.
        The best time to forgive a sinner
        Is always after a good dinner.

        "How say you, Sir? tis all a joke --
        Great King's love tarts like other folk!"
        If for a truth you'll not receive it,
        Pray, view the picture, and believe it.
        Sly Pambo too has got a share,
        And eats it snug behind the chair.

        Their Majesties so well have fed,
        The tarts have got up in their head,
        Or may be 'twas the wine!" hush, gipsey!
        Great Kings & Queens indeed get tipsey!
        Now, Pambo, is the time for you:
        Beat little Tell-Tale black & blue.