Verse > William Wordsworth > Complete Poetical Works


      THERE'S George Fisher, Charles Fleming, and Reginald Shore,
      Three rosy-cheeked school-boys, the highest not more
      Than the height of a counsellor's bag;
      To the top of GREAT HOW did it please them to climb:
      And there they built up, without mortar or lime,
      A Man on the peak of the crag.

      They built him of stones gathered up as they lay:
      They built him and christened him all in one day,
      An urchin both vigorous and hale;
      And so without scruple they called him Ralph Jones.             10
      Now Ralph is renowned for the length of his bones;
      The Magog of Legberthwaite dale.

      Just half a week after, the wind sallied forth,
      And, in anger or merriment, out of the north,
      Coming on with a terrible pother,
      From the peak of the crag blew the giant away.
      And what did these school-boys?--The very next day
      They went and they built up another.

      --Some little I've seen of blind boisterous works
      By Christian disturbers more savage than Turks,                 20
      Spirits busy to do and undo:
      At remembrance whereof my blood sometimes will flag;
      Then, light-hearted Boys, to the top of the crag!
      And I'll build up giant with you.



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