I am a little finch with wings of gold,
I dwell within a cage upon the wall.
I cannot fly within my narrow fold,—
I eat, and drink, and sing, and that is all.
My good old master talks to me sometimes,
But if he knows my speech I cannot tell.
He is so large he cannot sing nor fly,
But he and I are both named Bouverel.
I think perhaps he really wants to sing,
Because the busy hammer that he wields
Goes clinking light as merry bells that ring
When morris-dancers frolic in the fields,
And this is what the music seems to tell
To me, the finch, the feathered Bouverel.
Masters, what do ye lack?
Hammer your heart in't, and strike with a knack!
Biff, batico, bing!
Platter, cup, candelstick, necklace or ring!
Spare not your labor, lads, make the gold sing,—
And some day perhaps ye may work for the King!"