Peter and Paul
"As I was saying," the Other Professor resumed, "if you'll just think over any Poem, that contains the
- 'Peter is poor,' said noble Paul,
- 'And I have always been his friend:
- And, though my means to give are small,
- At least I can afford to lend.
- How few, in this cold age of greed,
- Do good, except on selfish grounds!
- But I can feel for Peter's need,
- And I WILL LEND HIM FIFTY POUNDS!'
- How great was Peter's joy to find
- His friend in such a genial vein!
- How cheerfully the bond he signed,
- To pay the money back again!
- 'We ca'n't,' said Paul, 'be too precise:
- 'Tis best to fix the very day:
- So, by a learned friend's advice,
- I've made it Noon, the Fourth of May.'
- But this is April! Peter said.
- 'The First of April, as I think.
- Five little weeks will soon be fled:
- One scarcely will have time to wink!
- Give me a year to speculate--
- To buy and sell--to drive a trade--'
- Said Paul 'I cannot change the date.
- On May the Fourth it must be paid.'
- 'Well, well!' said Peter, with a sigh.
- 'Hand me the cash, and I will go.
- I'll form a Joint-Stock Company,
- And turn an honest pound or so.'
- 'I'm grieved,' said Paul, 'to seem unkind:
- The money shalt of course be lent:
- But, for a week or two, I find
- It will not be convenient.'
- So, week by week, poor Peter came
- And turned in heaviness away;
- For still the answer was the same,
- 'I cannot manage it to-day.'
- And now the April showers were dry--
- The five short weeks were nearly spent--
- Yet still he got the old reply,
- 'It is not quite convenient!'
- The Fourth arrived, and punctual Paul
- Came, with his legal friend, at noon.
- 'I thought it best,' said he, 'to call:
- One cannot settle things too soon.'
- Poor Peter shuddered in despair:
- His flowing locks he wildly tore:
- And very soon his yellow hair
- Was lying all about the floor.
- The legal friend was standing by,
- With sudden pity half unmanned:
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