“A New Song of New Similes” - John GayMy passion is as mustard strong;
I sit all sober sad;
Drunk as a piper all day long,
Or like a March-hare mad.
Round as a hoop the bumpers flow;
I drink, yet can’t forget her;
For though as drunk as David’s sow
I love her still the better.
Pert as a pear-monger I’d be,
If Molly were but kind;
Cool as a cucumber could see
The rest of womankind.
Like a stuck pig I gaping stare,
And eye her o’er and o’er;
Lean as a rake, with sighs and care,
Sleek as a mouse before.
Plump as a partridge was I known,
And soft as silk my skin;
My cheeks as fat as butter grown,
But as a goat now thin!
I melancholy as a cat,
Am kept awake to weep;
But she, insensible of that,
Sound as a top can sleep.
Hard is her heart as flint or stone,
She laughs to see me pale;
And merry as a grig is grown,
And brisk as bottled ale.
The god of Love at her approach
Is busy as a bee;
Hearts sound as any bell or roach,
Are smit and sigh like me.
Ah me! as thick as hops or hail
The fine men crowd about her;
But soon as dead as a door-nail
Shall I be, if without her.
Straight as my leg her shape appears,
O were we join’d together!
My heart would be scot-free from cares
And lighter than a feather.
As fine as five-pence is her mien,
No drum was ever tighter;
Her glance is as the razor keen,
And not the sun is brighter.
As soft as pap her kisses are,
Methinks I taste them yet;
Brown as a berry is her hair,
Her eyes as black as jet.
As smooth as glass, as white as curds
Her pretty hand invites;
Sharp as her needle are her words,
Her wit like pepper bites.
Brisk as a body-louse she trips,
Clean as a penny drest;
Sweet as a rose her breath and lips,
Round as the globe her breast.
Full as an egg was I with glee,
And happy as a king:
Good Lord! how all men envied me!
She loved like any thing.
But false as hell, she, like the wind,
Chang’d, as her sex must do;
Though seeming as the turtle kind,
And like the gospel true.
If I and Molly could agree,
Let who would take Peru!
Great as an Emperor should I be,
And richer than a Jew.
Till you grow tender as a chick,
I’m dull as any post;
Let us like burs together stick,
And warm as any toast.
You’ll know me truer than a die,
And wish me better sped;
Flat as a flounder when I lie,
And as a herring dead.
Sure as a gun she’ll drop a tear
And sigh, perhaps, and wish,
When I am rotten as a pear,
And mute as any fish.