All Sorts and Conditions

The great McGonagall, whose fame is chiefly confined to Scotland, has issued an “Address to the Moon,” in which he strikes the lyre to the following among other effects:-

Beautiful moon! with thy silvery light,
Thou cheers the poacher in the night,
Thou lets him see to set his snares,
For to catch the rabbits and hares.

Yorkshire Evening Post, 15th April 1897

McGonagall, the bard of bards, though dead to Dundee, yet speaketh, albeit it is from the serene heights of “Modern Athens.” Those who fancied that the Poet had taken the refusal of the Laureateship so much to heart that he had thrown aside his lyre were, wrong. He is still to the fore. There is reason to believe that he is at present busily engaged preparing his greatest effort, which is to deal with the celebration of the Queen’s record reign, but pending the appearance of this piece he has furnished his patrons with an “Address to the Moon.” Needless to say, the “poem” is far beyond criticism. Here are a few verses:—

Beautiful moon! with thy silvery light,
Thou cheers the fox in the night,
For thou lets him see to steal the grey goose away,
Out of the farm yard from a stack of hay.

Beautiful moon! with thy silvery light,
Thou cheers the poacher in the night,
Thou lets him see to set his snares,
For to catch the rabbits and hares.

Beautiful moon! with thy silvery light,
Thou cheers the lovers in the night,
As they walk through the shady groves alone,
Making love to each other before they go home.

The joys of the husbandman are sung in the following beautiful stanza:—

Beautiful moon! with thy silvery light,
Thou cheers the farmer in the night,
As he views by thy beautiful light
His fine crops in the night.

And then the Poet’s heart of song bursts out in a pean of glorious climaxical chorus and poetic peroration—

Therefore let His creatures praise Him day and night
For giving to them such beautiful moonlight,
For without its light we would feel sad,
Whereas by its light we feel most glad.

Dundee Courier, 14th April 1897

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