Chief Allfudge’s
to the
New York Police,
in verse.
an Uptown Democrat

 [by John Mildrum, printed by J. Craft, NY, 1859.]

YE CHOSEN guardians of New York,
   Bred ’mongst rural shades,
Innured to cutting wood and hay
   And handling hoes and spades,
And bolting luscious pork and beans­—
   Corn, squash and loaves of rye,
With appetites as sharp and keen.
   As grunters in the stye.

I am “Great Allfudge,” you must know—
   A most courageous man
As e’er cracked nuts or human skulls,
   Since this great world began!
I am “Great Allfudge” you well know,
   Appointed by the State
To purge New York of filth and crime—
   All nuisances abate.                     

With half an eye I can detect
   A rogue at the first sight;
And look through all his black designs
   As stars look through the night!
I am your head if not your tail—
   If I command, you must
Face death itself by night or day,
   Unflinchingly, I trust.

I am beloved by all my friends—
   A terror to my foes;
To evil doers I am hell
   Where’er I poke my nose;
They fly before my eagle glance
   Like chaff before the wind,
Or birds before a thunderstorm
   And never look behind.

Though green you were on the first day­—
   The star and uniform
You blazoned, yet you looked like men
   Whom nothing could alarm.
And to this hour you’ve acted well
   And nobly played your game,
Though croaking scribblers meanly strive
   To tarnish your fair fame.

One writes that you are fast asleep
   When burglars are around;
A second that when wanted most
   You are but seldom found;
A third, that first-class rogues and thieves
   Unconfined you let run,
While small offenders you entrap
   And boldly pounce upon.

Some of these charges may be true­—
   You may have now and then
Committed errors of the head
   As have the best of men.
So for your future guidance, I
   Have spent some leisure time
In sketching out a few plain rules
   In everlasting rhyme.

Read with attention and due care,
   And inwardly digest:
The golden precepts I’ve laid down
   You’ll find they are the best
That e’er were spun by mortal brain,
   In prose or verse sublime,
Since Adam toyed with blooming Eve,
   In Eden’s flow’ry clime.

On duty never fail to be—
   Well rigged from head to toe,
Encase your rustic blackthorn hands
   In gloves as white as snow.
A portly man I love to see,
   A thin one I despise;
E’en though he be as hard as flint,
   I go for weight and size.

Ye lath formations, take the hint,
   Stuff well from head to foot,
With saw-dust, shavings and the like,
   Clean straw will even suit.
E’en though you never floor your man,
   Appear as if you could—
Knock twenty down, and eat them too,
   As if they were your food.

Always appear as if you were
   A doing much, and more
Than ever you intend to do,
   Or mortal did before;
Sheer humbug is the order now,
   In city and in state,
In church, in law, and politics,
   Its influence is great.

It is the weapon daily used
   Within the City Hall,
By shysters, sharks, and aldermen,
   Yea, officeholders all.
By it, our taxes are increased,
   Beyond all precedent.
’Till Atlas like, beneath whose weight
   Our sturdy backs are bent.

By it false worship rears its fanes
   On many a fancy site,
And runs their pointed spires up
   To an ungodly height.
By humbug paper banks abound
   In all their false array,
With boasting bullhead presidents,
   Drunk, stubborn, old and gray.

By humbug money is obtained
   On many a worthless note,
Endorsed by many a mean humbug,
   Who not a dime has got,
By humbugs we are piled and purged,
   And sent to our long rest,
And clownish humbugs rudely pound
   The sods upon our breast.

Humbug and paint, cologne and grease,
   Spring petticoats and brass;
False teeth, false hair, some patience, and—
   And a six foot looking-glass,
Make ladies, ’reft of youth and charms,
   Cold, hidebound, cramped and stale,
By gaslight look as fresh and fair
   As boquets made for sale.

It buildeth up or knocketh down
   Man in a single day;
Createth foes and maketh friends,
   It worketh every way.
Humbug was ne’er so rife as now,
   Since this great world began;
Man’s glory is to chisel, and—
   Humbug his fellow man.

On corners never loafing stand:
   Keep moving all the while:
Nor quit the pave, to take a “horn,”
   By others called a “smile.”
You must not run, nor walk too fast,
   Nor must you fall asleep;
Shut up your mouths, but wide awake
   Your optics you must keep.

You must not whistle as you go,
   Nor e’er attempt to sing,
Nor dare to scratch an itchy head,
   It is a vulgar thing.
[You] must not spew tobacco juice,
   In oceans at your feet,
As dirty, ill-bred fellows do,
   In parlor, church, and street.


Appearances must be kept up,
   Especially by day;
And Bennet’s print will sound your praise,
   Good citizens will say,
“What splendid men are our police,
   What discipline they show;
Majestic, calm, and cool they march,
   Like soldiers, to and fro.”

“Not Rome, in all her wealth and power,
   When she the world controlled,
Was blessed with such a noble squad,
   Their worth cannot be told.
Nor London, at the present day,
   With its gigantic band,
Well organized, and true as steel,
   And in appearance grand.

“A noble change! Our city’s safe,
   Throw open ev’ry door;
Locks are but trash, made to be picked,
   They are of use no more.
With mighty Allfudge and his host,
   New York will be too hot,
For rogues and thieves, they now must find
   A more congenial spot.

“Hurrah! for Allfudge, and hurrah!
   For Allfudge and his men;
Bluff Georgy Matsell and his squad,
   May we ne’er see again.”
   Thus will they shout and sing our praise,
And we’ll receive our pay,
   For doing little good or harm,
Along from day to day.

But should you take it in your heads,
   As other fools have done,
To send to Sing Sing all the thieves,
   Our occupation’s gone.
Our predecessors found it out,
   When it was rather late,
That too officious they have been—
   Take warning from their fate.

Beneath Fernando’s iron sway,
   And Georgy’s watchful eye,
Efficient were the old police,
   Few people will deny.
Crime shrunk to nothing in our midst;
   Folks, when the day was o’er,
Could on their couches, without fear,
   Sleep, snuffle, snort and snore.

But, quicker than a lawyer can
   Pocket his dirty fees;
Or alderman, a dainty bribe,
   Or judges, if you please;
Or hungry politicians turn,
   After election’s past,
(And they’re in pow’r,) against their friends,
   Who were true to the last.

Or saucy Branch was hurried from
   His “Alligator’s” jaws,
And placed in limbo for a spell,
   You all well know the cause.
A lady figured in the case—
   A bouncing, bright-eyed dame;
And two or three officials, whom
   Twere libel here to name.

Or the electric lightning’s flash,
   Which hearty greetings bore,
Both east and west, ’tween Erin’s Isle
   And bleak Newfoundland’s shore.
Their heads received the guillotine,
   And here, my boys are we,
Snug in their breeches, paid and fed
   By this community.

So, take things easy, one and all,
   And, as I said before,
Appearances must be kept up—
   You need do little more.
Do little, and as sure as fate,
   You’ll smoothly glide along;
Do much, and all the vulgar crowd
   Will shout you’re doing wrong.

Let crime from its ten thousand roots,
   In all its vigor grow,
And bloom and blossom in our midst,
   In sunshine and in snow.
Let stores be plundered ev’ry night,
   Of all their costly ware,
And drunken libertines be robbed,
   As homeward they repair.

Rather than bring your worthy heads
   In contact with a ball—
A dang’rous thing to tamper with,
   E’en though it may be small.
One makes an ugly sort of hole,
   In either heart or brain;
’Tis apt to send a man to where
   He’ll ne’er return again.

Look always out for number one—
   It is the safest plan;
The point of danger never face,
   Aye, shun it, if you can.
’Twere better crime should amplify,
   Than by a rowdy’s knife,
Or burglar’s pistol, one of you
   Should lose your precious life.

On the defensive play your game,
   Like Fabius of yore,
Who foiled the chief that dyed the plains
   Of Italy with gore.
Or Wellington, who, nine long hours,
   At bloody Waterloo,
Stood like a rock on ocean’s shore,
   And many thousands slew.

WHEN rowdies battle in the street,
   And boiler-bursting blows
Are dealt, and skulls are cracked and crushed,
   And blood in torrents flows.
And smoking brains are scattered round,
   And hide and whiskers fly,
Like hay tossed by a whirlwind
   From earth, God knows how high!

And citizens unable are
   To quell the dreadful fray,
And shout “Police,” approach them not,
   Make “tracks” an other way.
Let rowdies each other fall—
   They are the city’s bane—
Vile desperadoes, who deserve
   By thousands to be slain.

WHEN wife and husband come to blows,
   And you are summoned in,
To make peace ’tween the happy pair,
   Be careful of your skin.
’Tis ten to one that they will turn
   Upon you unawares,
And pound your carcass into dust,
   Or pitch you down the stairs.

Upon a time, some years ago,
   I nearly lost my life,
From pulling a big tinker’s nose,
   When “welting” his own wife.
They turned upon me, right and left,
   I ran, and they, with stones,
Pursued and pelted me for miles,
   And sorely bruised my bones.

A rough and tumble, a good “mill,”
   A chair and table fight,
Between an ill-assorted pair,
   Is their supreme delight.
Outsiders ne’er should interfere,
   To spoil their harmless fun;
It mostly ends in an embrace,
   A kiss, when all is done.

THE law declares that grog shall not
   Be sold to mortal man
On Sunday, and that we must shut
   Up rum holes, ev’ry one.
You may as well attempt to cross
   The ocean in a pail,
Or to Donati’s comet leap,
   And bring away its tail.

Or satisfy a judgment with
   An oyster stew or fry—
That best that “Downing” can prepare,
   Man’s mouth to gratify;
Or stop a woman’s wagging tongue,
   When jealousy’s the cause,
Or pleading for a new silk dress,
   Or false teeth for her jaws.

Indeed, it never can be done;
   I’d rather undertake
To seal up hell’s volcanic jaws,
   And all its fires slake,
And tread upon the devil’s corns,
   Until he wince and roar,
And shake his darned old shaggy tail,
   As he ne’er did before.

Than make the bold but vain attempt,
   While splendid liquor stores,
On corners stand, and entered are,
   By front, rear, and side doors.
So let the Irish rotgut drink;
   The Dutch their lager bier;
And Scotchmen drain “John Barleycorn,”
   Each day throughout the year.

And when off duty, you may all
   Drink till you’re deaf and blind,
As oft I’ve done, and will again,
   When’er I feel inclined.
Beware of him, and trust him not,
   Who, when the social glass
’Mong jolly fellows circles round,
   Untasted lets it pass.

He’s dang’rous, and will steal your purse,
   Watch, prayerbook, or coat;
Seduce your wife from virtue’s path,
   And even cut your throat.
AGAINST the swarm of “Peter Funks,”
   Who make round fortunes by
Palming brass “tickers” on “greenhorns,”
   At prices rather high.

A WAR is waged by Mayor Dan,
   And he demands our aid,
To send them “going, going, gone,”
   A season on parade,
To Sing Sing, or straight down to hell,
   ’Neath “Plum Gut’s” noted sound,
Through which the fair Rebecca dashed,
   Instead of sailing round—

And gained the race, but lost the prize,
   That she had easily won,
Until that slight mishap occurred
   The race was all her own.
But should they act upon the square,
   And each a new gold watch
Present in an offended way,
   With seals and chain to match.

The circumstances of their case,
   Of course, ’twill mitigate,
And make us wink at their success,
   And half our zeal abate.
Gold is the mainspring of our lives,
   The lever ever new,
Which moves us on from hour to hour,
   And makes us false or true.

The bold Fernando tried in vain,
   As Dan hath lately done,
To burst all gambling hells in town,
   But failed to burst up one.
If lock all gamblers in the Tombs,
   How long would they remain?
In half an hour they would be free,
   And at their work again.

The why and wherefore do not ask,
   Cash rules our courts and jails;
Upon the bench its pow’r is felt,
   In shape of bribes and bails.
Cash is the world’s magic screw,
   Without it, ships of war
And armies would as harmless be
   As smoke from my cigar.

Or firecrackers on the Fourth,
   Those fancy little toys
Lit by the patriotic hands
   Of romping girls and boys.
Oh cash! the evil thou has done
   Since this great world was made,
Outweighs the benefits conferred
   On man, commerce, and trade.

Thou ever actest as a spell
   Upon the human kind,
To darkest deeds thou stimulates
   The changing human mind.
Beneath thy baneful influence,
   Pure virtue falls a wreck,
On which man’s bursting passions feast
   And cloy without a check.

For thee, Oh! flimsy paper bills,
   Or weightier trash, called gold,
Religion, but not that of God,
   In church and chapel’s sold.
Without thee, preachers would be few,
   Men would be left to run
Down headlong to the awful gulf,
   They’re now enjoined to shun.

For thee the vilest knaves in town
   Fill offices of trust,
Whose ignorance and love of gain
   Fill good men with disgust.
Look how they crowd the Custom House,
   And throng the City Hall,
Disgraceful measures “putting through,”
[ ] For stealings large or small.

Yet, after all, I must confess,
   Though evils thee attend,
Without thee earth would be a blank,
   The world soon at an end.
When in the pockets of our pants,
   Thou sendeth pleasing thrills
Through all our complicated forms,
   Our hearts with rapture fills.

So let the gambling dens alone,
   Their patrons come and go,
Until the devil plays them dice,
   In his sung crib below—
Where brokers, lawyers, knaves and priests,
   And all who profit by
Poor man’s misfortunes on this earth
   Are welcomed when they die.

BOLD LESLIE, with his able pen,
   Last season havoc made,
’Mongst rotten cows, and all engaged
   In swill milk’s filthy trade.
Their steaming liquid let them sell,
   To all who chose to buy;
If people patronize such stuff,
   It’s nought to you or I.

But should their swill-fed carcasses,
   As they drive o’er the street,
Stink to excess and sicken all
   Good citizens they meet;
Conduct them to the Hudson’s marge,
   And drop them gently in,
Detain them there until each scrapes
   And scrubs his dirty skin.

And if perchance it doth occur
   They fail to reach the brink,
From cramps or any other cause,
   And to the bottom sink,
The public will not mourn their loss,
   As they’ll be plenty still
To pump from tailless ulcered cows,
   Oceans of noxious swill.

To poison babies and old maids—
   The last are rather rare
To find within our city’s bounds,
   Or any other where;—
The first are in abundance seen,
   Increasing day and night,
Like fruit, they tumble to the earth,
   Plump, rosy-cheeked, and bright.

A SWARM of loafers lounge upon
   The Astor stoop each day,
And those of other fine hotels,
   Which flourish on Broadway;
With seedy clothes upon their backs,
   Purchased at secondhand,
Picking their half-starved, idle teeth,
   Many an hour they stand—

To make poor simple folks believe
   That they have dined within,
Though there a morsel they’ve not smelt,
   Simply for lack of “tin.”
The gilded entrances to all
   Those bow’rs of fashion stink
Of smoke from their Dutch-made segars,
   Hair lotion, and strong drink.

Disperse these idlers, make them fly
   To their own element,
Low boardinghouses, where for weeks
   They have not paid a cent.
If shake them up, no cash you’ll find,
   But from their pants will drop
Pawn tickets, tattered and defaced,
   From “Simpson’s” three-ball shop.

IN OUR good city and suburbs,
   A dodge is being played,
Which throws all others, old or new,
   Forever in the shade.
Its illustration lies in this—
   Sharp promises to pay
To Blunderguts a thousand down,
   Upon a certain day.

Notes are false capital afloat,
   Delusions of the pen,
Kites made to fly around the streets,
   A curse to honest men.
Sharp reasons thus, “and now,” says he,
   “I’ll let this joker slide;
I can’t afford to pay it, no,
   Nor any debt beside.”

But to keep up an honest name,
   Although at heart a thief,
He swears his domicile’s been robbed,
   His soul’s o’erwhelmed with grief,
He spins a woeful tale indeed—
   How, when asleep in bed,
A pile of city bills was stolen,
   From underneath his head.

His round of cold roast beef devoured,
   His prime regalias gone,
His brandy, too, (oh, how unkind,)
   The rascals left him none.
Look out for sharpers such as these,
   And by a buttonhole,
Suspend them till they grunt their last,
   From a lamppost or a pole.

A CROWD of anxious looking men,
   Six days of seven meet,
Right opposite the Custom House,
   In Nassau’s narrow street;
Where they drop from, and what they are,
   I’d give a hat to know.
Zounds! they’re the hardest looking lot,
   That ever met below.

Perhaps, poor devils, they’ve escaped
   From realms beyond the bourne,
Where poets tell us millions go,
   But few or none return.
The same mouths, noses, heads and hats,
   From month to month we see;
The same low mutter and small talk
   We hear continually.

Upon the same old greasy books,
   (God knows when they were bought,)
With pencils that are worn to stumps
   They certain figures jot.
To “Irish Tom’s” eternal shades,
   Some ten feet under ground,
They now and then will make a rush,
   To take what’s called “a round.”

For sound, hard-swearing, you may then
   Prepare yourselves to hear,
Or see a free and easy fight,
   A tustle not severe.
They seldom break more than a glass,
   Or an ambitious nose.
They thrust and pull, but rarely come
   To what is termed, hard blows.

’Tis over, and they take a “smile,”
   Which “Tom[”] hands round with care,
Another and another, till
   Their senses leave them there.
’Twould be a sin to spoil their sport,
   Which ends as it begun;
But when they block the narrow pave,
   Say, gentlemen, move on.

FAST MEN are plentiful as bugs
   That revel ’tween the sheets
Of filthy beds in summer months,
   In narrow lanes and streets.
Like telegraphs and crinoline
   They’re things of modern date;
Made up of whiskers, rings and chains,
   Cloth, leather, and pomate.

Poised lightly upon spindle legs,
   Flash toggery they display,
And brassy features, which imply
   That counterfeits are they.
Saloons, theaters they frequent;
   The names and pedigree
Of all the sock and buskin stars
   They know like A B C.

They’re fancy men as well as fast—
   With all the belles they meet
They are in love, as they’re in debt
   For all they wear and eat.
Upon the borrow they are sound,
   But rotten on the pay,
As unsuccessful candidates
   After election day.

From lodging house to lodging house
   They’re always on the run;
Free lunches how they patronize,
   They know them ev’ry one.
By washerwomen they’re pursued
   For change that’s ever due,
For getting up their dirty rags
   As stiff as tin or glue.

On Sundays they are never seen
   Within the House of God;
Upon that day fast-hired nags
   They trot upon the road.
Sermons from Scripture they pronounce
   As dry as chips of wood;
Top dull and irksome for their ears,
   Too cooling for their blood.

Grog shops, upon the high-bridge rout,
   Are churches they attend;
“Drink hearty boys” are sermons which
   Their feelings ne’er offend,
When e’er you see one, two, or more
   From out their wagons thrown
Into a ditch, and groaning lie
   With many a broken bone.

Move them as careful as you were
   Lifting a globe of glass,
And place them in the first dung cart
   Or swill box that may pass.
Convey them safely to the tombs,
   Six months confinement there
Will mend their morals and their bones
   Much better than elsewhere.

LAST YEAR a most tremendous fuss
   Against the Sunday Press
Was raised by some presumptuous fools,
   Who deem it wickedness—
In boys, upon the Sabbath morn,
   To sell their printed wares,
While hard old sinners are engaged
   In offering up their pray’rs.

Church bells may ring, and cars may run,
   And drunken rowdies fight,
Bulldogs may bark, and Jews retail
   Old “clo’s” from morn till night.
Our Beechers, Cheevers, Hawks and Springs,
   In gilded pulpits, may
Thunder stale sermons in our ears—
   Wink, spread themselves and pray.

Poor newsboys must be rendered mute,
   That they may grunt or yell—
Damnation to their fellow-men,
   Strong, hissing hot from hell.
Yes, these poor urchins must be gagged,
   Those pharisees to please;
Who sell their sermons as the dutch
   Sell lager, bread and cheese.

Woe to the public servant who,
   By tongue, pen, or decree,
Attempts to curb the mighty press,
   The beacon of the free.
Which false religion cannot crush
   Nor despots overthrow;
The hope of Earth’s down-trodden sons,
   Oppression’s sternest foe.

Let those old fogies tend their flocks,
   From sin keep them secure;
And keep their own keen noses out
   Of aught that is impure.
Let honest newsboys earn their bread,
   They cannot live on air;
More than can oily plump divines
   On sermons, faith and prayer.

WHEN fair dames you assist to cross
   An avenue, street or lane,
Be sure to press their lily hands,
   ’T will make them come again.
When mud is ankle deep, you may
   Pick them up in your arms
And place them on the other side,
   In all their blushing charms.

An undergarment sometimes will
   Drop from them in the street,
Which you must hand them gracefully
   As you march o’er your beat.
In Broadway in an afternoon,
   When beauty skips along
In all its varied shapes and forms,
   In fashion’s giddy throng.

Let not the rose of a fair cheek,
   Nor glance of a bright eye,
Wherein a thousand dainty wiles
   In secret ambush lie,
Draw you enraptured down the street
   A dozen blocks or more
Beyond the limits you’re assigned
   To patrol o’er and o’er.

’Tis hard their batteries to withstand,
   But you must do your best
To keep cool, ’till the golden sun
   Descends in the far west.
Night is the proper time for love,
   Love is a wondrous thing,
What havoc it makes without hearts
   When life is in its spring.

O, women! with your artful wiles,
   Youth, beauty, flesh and blood,
How many men have you made slaves—
   What number since the flood.
How many sighing swains have you
   Laid prostrate at your feet,
To kiss your slippers and declare
   On oath that they were sweet.

Since charming Helen left her lord
   To share illicit joy,
And bring a ten year’s bloody war
   And ruin upon Troy.
You’ve made more conquests since that time
   Than all the warriors great,
Who’ve deluged earth with human blood
   Down to the present date.

Thousands of hearts you’ve melted down,
   (Some of them as cold as clay;)
And sent kings reeling from their thrones—
   Love-stricken monarchs they;
And even now your witching smiles
   Bring men upon their knees
Ready to worship at your shrine,
   And do what e’er you please.

Success to lovely womankind—
   Real women, but not those
Who are whitewashed up to the chin,
   And painted up to the nose.
Not things made up of paste and silk,
   And bulky crinoline;
Disgusting all except themselves,
   Although they look so fine.

Without real [women], (bless their hearts)
   To soothe us day and night,
To cheer us in disponding hours,
   And make our labors light;
To share our momentary joys;
   To tend us in distress,
This earth would be a barren waste—
   A dreary wilderness.

WHEN upon duty undernight,
   In private street and square,
Into the areas take a peep,  
   Thieves may be lurking there;
But if instead you chance to find
   A cook or kitchen maid,
At once lay siege to her warm heart—
   Roast beef, and pie “home made.”

Strong ox-tail “soup,” or “fricassee,”
   Hare killed by gun or hound;
Or oysters fresh, the soul of love­—
   Their equal can’t be found.
The master key that opes her heart,
   Unlocks the larder door,
And other snug recesses, which
   At will yon may explore.

Though Biddy’s lips may be as red
   As mellow cherries are,
And sweet as mint or apple sauce,
   Or syrup in the jar;
The flavor of her juicy kiss
   You’ll best appreciate,
When after eating you feel good
   Or what is called “first rate.”

If you play well the game of love
   ’Mong kitchen maids and cooks,
You’ll soon have paunches large and round,
   Which will improve your looks.
The thinnest “Peeler” in the squad,
   If he be young and fresh,
In lieu of being stuffed with straw,
   He’ll be blown out with flesh.

By night, the kitchens skulk around,
   The larders of the great,
When there you can keep prowling thieves
   From stealing silver plate.
The streets are cold and comfortless
   When rude northeasters blow;
The kitchen range is snug and warm,
   When they are clad with snow.

[But] guard against temptation all,
   Be honest for the sake—
Of those, who shielding you have placed
   Their character at stake.
Be careful and let nothing stick
   To you but solid fare,
Though gold and silver meet your eye,
   Beware young man, beware.

IN UPTOWN wards whole blocks are built
   (With truth I may say miles)
Of houses fronted with brown stone,
   In diverse shapes and styles;
For sale, of course, on terms to suit
   The snob or millionaire;
A small amount of ready cash,
   Pay just what you can spare.

Blessed with a stock of impudence,
   A collar frowning high,
A moustache, eyeglass and a cane
   A mansion you may buy—
For thirty thousand, cheap at that,
   (A bargain I opine)
A thousand down and then your bond,
   And mortgage twenty-nine.

Methinks I see some fogy smile,
   And hear the vet’ran swear
By G—d its mortgaged to the hilt,
   ’Tis more than it can bear!
Why so, good sir, the house is large,
   And strong enough to mock
December storms, see how its flanked
   By others on the block.

Hundreds buy houses in this way,
   They’re known to all around
As the most snobbish, vain upstarts
   That in our city’s found.
They boast the property is theirs,
   Although they’ve scarcely paid
Enough to deafen it before
   The parlor floor was laid.

Her lady snobbish is surprised,
   When first her housemaid shows
Her how a water closet acts,
   How the pan ebbs and flows.
Concerning bells and speaking tubes,
   Bathtub and kitchen range,
She knows as much as pigs know how
   To “operate on change.”

To pay interest and taxes, they
   Go hungry all the year,
Their servants are like walking ghosts,
   Ill fed, ill paid I fear.
They frown the butcher from the door
   When his four weeks’ account
Runs up to dollars six or eight,
   And damn the large amount.

Their appetites being always keen,
   A nuisance they can smell,
(E’en whether it exists or not)
   Five miles from where they dwell.
To their long-winded, bosh complaints
   Attention never pay;
Small nuisances are wholesome things,
   E’en on the hottest day.

This picture may seem over-drawn,
   And colored rather high—
The dream of a bewildered brain,
   Or an infamous lie.
’Tis true to life, and clearly shows
   How starving snobbery dares
To ape by empty, outward pomp—
   Our wealthy millionaires.

A SCALY, unwashed, shirtless mob,
   Of speculators run—
Up things called houses, trash they are;
   Abortions every one.
Quacks, tailors, shoemakers, and all
   Who cannot pudding earn,
Abandon pestle, goose, and last,
   And into builders turn.

Without a dollar of their own,
   Some hundreds you may see;
Each rushing up with all his might,
   A block, or two, or three.
A “building loan” ’s the magic word,
   Give them a building loan;
They’ll grab your lots at any price,
   To operate upon.

Location’s nothing, in a swamp
   Or, on the highest rock—
Upon this island they’ll throw up
   In three months, a whole block,
Which, by that time, perhaps before,
   Each mud and pale brick wall,
E’en though well braced with joists and beams,
   Will looks as if ’twould fall.

But should they stand though bulged and bent,
   From base course to the roof,
When occupied; soon the hot air
   Will put them to the proof.
Then mark the timber how it shrinks!
   The panels leave the doors!
The ornamented mouldings crack,
   Behold the yawning floors.

Hark! how the window sashes curse,
   Each breath of passing air
Though scarcely strong enough, to stir
   The leaf of lily fair.
And now the plumber’s work, begins
   To show some slight defects;
The Croton, from a hundred leaks,
   Pours down its cold respects.

On costly carpets, and soft beds,
   Ceiling and sofas too,
From attic to the cellar floor,
   All things it passes through.
The four inch soil pipe is dam’d up,
   Connections not been made
With sewer, (if any in the street,)
   A drain pipe’s not been laid.

The gas escapes, the flues are choked,
   The kitchen fire wont burn;
The very keys rebel, and wont
   Rim lock nor mortice turn.
God’s! what a wreck; the cistern bursts
   Its sides of three pound lead;
Air, fire and water! here’s a house
   Far worse than any shed.

All who have rented or have bought
   Shell houses built of late,
Have witnessed either less or more,
   Of what I here relate.
Arrest the speculative horde;
   Each, in his mortar heap,
Bury; nor mind their sighs or groans,
   There let the rascals sleep!

WHEN solemn midnight’s mantle’s thrown
   Over our streets and squares,
And weary labor is at rest,
   Sleeping away its cares.
And sickness on its wretched couch,
   Is tossing to and fro,
And praying for the day’s return,
   Or death at every throe.

The votaries of brutal lust,
   Are at their revels then,
In private hell, and flash saloon,
   And filthy lager den.
In those, wine sparkles in the glass,
   And fire in the eye.
Voluptuous music feasts the ear,
   The hours like moments fly!

Half-naked strumpets hobble round,
   And ply their victims with
Foul kisses from their tarnished lips,
   And rank polluted breath.
Round flies the wine, down comes the cash,
   On, on the revel goes,
More wine, more poison, dash it round
   Like water, see it flows.

Oh Man! if thou could’st see thyself
   Drunk in the lewd embrace,
Of harlots, as thou then art seen,
   Thou ’dst blush to show thy face,
In sober moments, or e’en dare
   To lay thy sullied hand
On virtue, pure as summer rose,
   Or in its presence stand.

’Tis not alone for reckless youths,
   Those sinks of vice abound;
Within their portals married dads,
   And grey grand dads are found;
Thousands who make the world believe,
   They live unspotted lives,
By each Lord’s day attending church,
   With children and pure wives.

Are the chief patrons who support,
   Those sources of disease,
Black turbid lakes of pestilence,
   Earth’s leprous, fetid seas;
Think not ye virtuous of the land,
   That when the god of day,
Illume’s the earth with his bright eye,
   As he flies on his way.

That those eternal hells are closed,
   Ashamed of heav’ns light;
Not they, indeed they’re open all,
   They know not day from night.
Numbers who pass their nights at home,
   By day neglect their stores:
And other occupations too,
   And spend their time with w———s.

In those whene’er a victim is
   Relieved of purse or watch,
And on you for assistance calls
   The fair, frail thief to catch;
Gird a strong rope around his neck,
   And whip him through the town;
With his loss stamped upon his back,
   From sunrise to sundown.

By thunder!  that will serve him right,
   And all who patronize,
Those plague spots which the law dont reach,
   Because it never tires.
Within our legislative halls,
   Some members strove in vain,
Of late, the traffic to extend,
   And will no doubt again.

WHEN drunken men or women you
   Find rolling in the street,
And fighting, as they’re wont to do,
   With tongues, teeth, hands and feet,
By pump or hydrant lay them out,
   And let the water flow
Upon them till they’re sobered down,
   Before you let them go.

FROM day to day, a hungry swarm
   Of lazy loafers crawl,
Around the Park, and block the ways
   That lead into the Hall.
From morn to night they idle there—
   Indeed from year to year—
The same time-killing hangers on
   Eternally appear.

The chains are worn out with their weight,
   The posts are tumbling o’er;
Their presence blasts the very trees
   So that they’ll bloom no more!
The grass lies withered on the earth:
   Yes, poisoned by the slush
Of well-known filth which in huge balls
   Between their teeth they crush

They’re wire-pullers, you must know,
   Rich “placers” they find there;
When bogus contracts yield their ore,
   They grab the lion’s share.
Rapacious suckers! drive them hence,
   First moral suasion try;
But if that fail, the magic of—
   Your clubs will make them fly.

To “Private Watchmen” be awake;
   They sneak around at night,
A making love to bouncing crooks,
   And gulping many a bite
Of food which you’re entitled to;
   And many a kiss they snatch,
When you’re not up close to their heels,
   Their roguish moves to watch.

These private prowlers I detest,
   Abhor the scurvy lot;
Like ghosts beneath the midnight moon,
   From house to house they trot;
Who, at the sight of burglar, would,
   Fast as a burglar run,
(Pursued by you, with club in hand,)
   Your company to shun.

By some means you must shut their jaws,
   Or all the broken meat
Which you were wont to gormandize
   The hungry hounds will eat.
By some means you must wipe them out,
   Or hungry you must go,
While they are gorged up to the eyes,
   With pockets cramm’d also.

Stick to the precepts I’ve laid down,
   As closely as you can;
And you’ll receive the well-earned praise,
   Of each right-thinking man.
In spite of Old Police appeals,
   Decisions and such stuff,
For many a day you’ll sport the star;
   I think I’ve said enough.