Righteous Anger

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THE lanky hank of a she in the inn over there 
Nearly killed me for asking the loan of a glass of beer: 
May the devil grip the whey-faced slut by the hair, 
And beat bad manners out of her skin for a year. 

That parboiled imp, with the hardest jaw you will see 
On virtue’s path, and a voice that would rasp the dead, 
Came roaring and raging the minute she looked on me, 
And threw me out of the house on the back of my head! 

If I asked her master he’d give me a cask a day; 
But she, with the beer at hand, not a gill would arrange! 
May she marry a ghost and bear him a kitten, and may 
The High King of Glory permit her to get the mange. 

© James Brunton Stephens