Monday, November 14, 2011

The Flying Pieman


'Twas the close of a heavy drinking bout on port and sherry (Cape)
From public, half-seas over, we had just made our escape;
Our infant in its cradle was peacefully asleep,
And merrily we rolled along the street of Church Hill steep.

At length Bill Tompkins gave a shout of terror and fear,
As though he just had gazed upon some stern policeman near;
We looked all down the pavement, cried Tompkins, “well, I'm blowed,
See where the Flying Pieman comes bounding o'er the road.”

He comes! The Flying Pieman comes! And terrible his pace,
He scuds along the flinty path as though he ran a race;
The cards and placards in his hat all pasted on awry,
Are circulated quickly, as the Pieman dashes by.

He scudded on too speedily to mark his rapid flight,
In fear and consternation then we staggered off, half tight;
Quoth Tompkins, “When we travel home, I fear there'll be a breeze,
Our better-halves will put an end to these delightful sprees.”

Then mark the Flying Pieman comes, for comical his doom,
He scuds about from morn till night, queer costumes doth assume;
Around the town he beats about, forever, night and day,
And boys admiring shout, “There goes the Flying Pieman, hip! hooray!”

With thanks to Warren Fahey.

The Flying Pieman (William Francis King) and his bizarre feats of pedestrianism deserve greater attention.

These lyrics from  Colonial Society Magazine - Feb. 1865

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