Extract from A Rhyming Revelry

&quotThe second source is A Rhyming Revelry a slim book of nonsense rhymes written by a once-celebrated cellist. He was, for a time, a favourite at Mr Wines’ revels. One rhyme concerns eleven pilgrims who travelled from a cold and windy waste. It enumerates each of the reasons the pilgrims were unwelcome in their homeland.&quot

If you are an exile, come down.
If you are an exile, a pilgrim, a runt,
If you brought discord to feast, council and hunt,
If whispering glass told you stories and chants,
If your candle stays lit and your knife’s never blunt,
Come to the Neath.

If you have been broken, come down.
If you have been broken, devoured and drowned,
If you’ve strangled truth just to hear its last sound,
If rags grace your head that was formerly crowned,
If you yearn to be known, to be loved, to be found,
Come to the Neath.

If you are a liar, come down.
If you are a liar, a knave with false face,
If treachery urges you to give it chase,
If you are a light-bringer fallen from grace,
If you can recall how we came to this place,
Come to the Neath.

If you are a dreamer, come down.
If you are a dreamer, a hoarder, a thief,
If you know the answers to salt, hate and grief,
If you’ve been cast out, come and turn a new leaf,
For we all have wings and we all have shells,
We all know the devil and buzzings of Hell,
And here in the dark is where all shall be well.
Come to the Neath.

Eleven lonely pilgrims on the road again;
One hunted during council-time and then there were Ten.

Ten lonely pilgrims, their fortunes in decline;
One listened to glass-whispers and then there were Nine.

Nine lonely pilgrims who used to be so great;
One fell from king to beggar and then there were Eight.

Eight lonely pilgrims soaring through the heavens;
One brought light to lower links and then there were Seven.

Seven lonely pilgrims up to their old tricks;
One dwelled too much on idle dreams and then there were Six.

Six lonely pilgrims playing with their knives;
One also played with candles and then there were Five.

Five lonely pilgrims fleeing Judgments’ Law;
One proved to be too runty and then there were Four.

Four lonely pilgrims settling by the zee;
Treachery was pursued by one and then there were Three.

Three lonely pilgrims out of things to do;
A hoard collapsed on one and then there were Two.

Two lonely pilgrims sitting in the sun;
False testimony did one in and then there was One.

One lonely pilgrim left all alone;
He went and strangled Truth and then there were None.
edited by Passionario on 3/30/2017