Nonfiction > Lionel Strachey, et al., eds. > The World’s Wit and Humor > American
The World’s Wit and Humor: An Encyclopedia in 15 Volumes.  1906.
Vols. I–V: American
A Settin’ Hen
By Holman Francis Day (1865–1935)
From “Pine Tree Ballads”

WHEN a hen is bound to set,
Seems as though ’tain’t etiket
Dowsin’ her in water till
She’s connected with a chill.
Seems as though ’twas skursely right        5
Givin’ her a dreadful fright,
Tyin’ rags around her tail,
Poundin’ on an old tin pail,
Chasin’ her around the yard.
Seems as though ’twas kind of hard        10
Bein’ kicked and slammed and shooed
’Cause she wants to raise a brood.
I sh’d say it’s gettin’ gay
Jest ’cause natur’ wants its way.
While ago my neighbor, Penn,        15
Started bustin’ up a hen;
Went to yank her off the nest;
Hen, though, made a peck, and jest
Grabbed his thumb-nail good and stout,
Almost yanked the darn thing out.        20
Penn he twitched away and then,
Tried again to grab that hen.
But, by ginger! she had spunk,
’Cause she took and nipped a hunk
Big’s a bean right out his palm,        25
Swallered it, and cool and calm
H’isted up and yelled “Cah-dah—”
Sounded like she said “Hoo-rah!”
Wal, sir, when that hen done that,
Penn he bowed, took off his hat,        30
Spunk jest suits him, you can bet:
“Set,” says he, “gol darn ye, SET!”

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