William Blake

The Little Vagabond

Poem by William Blake

Dear Mother, dear Mother, the Church is cold,
But the Ale-house is healthy & pleasant & warm;
Besides I can tell where I am use'd well,
Such usage in heaven will never do well.

   But if at the Church they would give us some Ale. 
And a pleasant fire, our souls to regale; 
We'd sing and we'd pray, all the live-long day; 
Nor ever once wish from the Church to stray, 

   Then the Parson might preach & drink & sing. 
And we'd be as happy as birds in the spring: 
And modest dame Lurch, who is always at Church,
Would not have bandy children nor fasting nor birch.

   And God like a father rejoicing to see, 
His children as pleasant and happy as he: 
Would have no more quarrel with the Devil or the Barrel 
But kiss him & give him both drink and apparel.