This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
As some pert scribbler, doubtless vain of knowing Somewhat of digging, ploughing, harrowing, hoeing, Has deemed it proper in this way t'impart His wond'rous knowledge in the farming art; I, too, would humbly offer to thy view Of good advice a homely scrap or two; Let then the following precepts, short and plain, Though clad in rustic garb, attention gain.
If meddling witches should thy churn infest, To drive them from it, what device is best, Fain would I tell, but fear to tell amiss, For e'en the knowing disagree in thin-To luckier hours the business some adjourn, And some put - sly - a dollar in the churn. When night extends her sable curtains round, Constructing cheeses be thy maidens found, At morn's first blushes let the work be stayed. For cheese should always in the dark be made; So files no knowledge of th' affair will gain, But the fair fabric firm for years remain.
On no pretence permit or corn or hay To take the gardener from his charge away - Tool weeds will mark his absence with delight, Spread their long columns with resistless might, In countless throngs obnoxious fill the place, And crush the eatable and floral race.
By long experience, rotten eggs are found ear twice as long in hatching as the sound ; Hence those to whom the worth of time is known, Let their hens hover o'er the good alone; To know their state the wise hare various ways - Some, patient, bold them to the solar blaze; Some, east and west attentive list'ning shake 'em, And some, more cautions, think it best to break 'em. When infant ducklings first delighted stray To the loved stream, and cleave the liquid way, Observe their wanderings with a watchful eye, For varied dangers there in ambush lie; The tortoise finds them most delicious food, And pikes, voracious, soon will thin the brood; And oft, when homeward bends the waddling train, To spread their plumage to the sun again, Prone on their backs they fall, and there must lie, To sleep forever, if no help is nigh.
But oh ! permit no cruel hand to lave The new-born turkey in the chilling wave,
Nor, heedless of his pity-pleading note,
Thrust nauseous pepper down his burning throat;
Forbear to tempt him corn or cheese to eat,
Let eggs and onions form his savory treat:
When winged with wind, impetuous showers descend,
The shivering urchin from the storm defend;
So shall he soon rove distant meadows over,
When louring clouds obscure the solar ray, And eastern breezes chill the drizzling day, For washing house bid every hand prepare - And let them not the wholesome deluge spare: Of chairs and tables clear the wondering rooms, And call the tribes of buckets and of brooms; To some far corner, undisturbed and dry. From mops and water bid thy husband fly: Then o'er the floors let rushing waves extend. Roll through the entry, and the stairs ascend. So will in time the air within, no doubt, Almost as pleasant prove, as that without.
But my best maxims trivial must appear
To one who has such able counsel near;
Th' accomplished housewife's various arts, full well
The much loved mistress of ****** can tell.