Anne Whitney



The Grave-Digger

by Anne Whitney

As pleasant a man as you would see,
Native or foreign, to vouch I dare;
His laugh was hoarse but full of glee,
Indifferent when or where.

But most in graves the old man kept
His singular jubilee;
He roared at what most others wept;
His life was a funeral glee.

He had no rival in his trade:
He knew, one after another,
All the village would need his axe and spade,
And troubled himself no further.

His love and duty were never at strife --
His charity looked to all;
He seemed to think his lease on life
Long as death held carnival.

He reasoned, Well, 'tis nature's creed
And man's chief want -- is burial.

The friend of the world in its sorest need,
Could the world then spare him well?


Copyright 1859
346 & 348 Broadway
D. Appleton & Company
New York