1787
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

The Recruit's Farewel. A Song.

Walker's Hibernian Magazine (January 1787) 47.

C. M.


A pastoral ballad in four double-quatrain stanzas, signed "C. M." The recruit bids his Ruby to be constaint in his absence: "Tho' absent, I'll think of my Fair; | Remember your Love, when he's gone; | I hope, you will prove now sincere, | Else — alas! — I'm wretched — undone." The poet was a regular contributor to the Hibernian Magazine.



The drum beats to arms — I obey—
Hark? — I hear the loud ear-piercing fife—
Be constant, my Ruby, I pray,
I'll ever be faithful my Life;
Through battle, and famine, I'll roam,
Regardless of danger, and pain,
If you my dear damsel at home,
Will offer up prayers for thy Swain.

In the dark shady grove as you stray,
Forget not the sweet-singing dove,
Who cooes by his partner all day,
A constant, dear, emblem of love;
Tho' absent, I'll think of my Fair;
Remember your Love, when he's gone;
I hope, you will prove now sincere,
Else — alas! — I'm wretched — undone.

Whilst safe in the faith of my dear,
All hazards I'll joyfully brave,
Encourag'd by her I shan't fear,
The loud storms, or blustering wave;
With swift, pleasing hopes then I'll flee,
My fears, and my doubts are no more,
My fond heart I treasure with thee,
Then don't my short absence deplore.

Protect the sweet bower I made,
Where oft' I convers'd with my lass,
And under a jessamine wreath,
The minutes did then swiftly pass;
Those past scenes of pleasure and bliss,
I hope I shall shortly renew,
I'll then take a fond parting kiss,
Adieu; my dear Ruby, adieu.

[p. 47]