My sketch were faulty, with entire omission
Of our great crowning glory, Exhibition.
Though scarce could you expect one of my age
All that was spoke in public on the stage
To recollect, yet Shylock's knife, Lochiel,
And Young Pretenders haunt the memory still;
And one named Norval of his Grampians vaunting,
And grinding organs — nor the monkey wanting.
One beau worth having I remember well;
Shall I confess?--the bow of William Tell.
Nor is it soon forgot how once a quarter
Sore trembled every mother's son and daughter.
The vain, the timid, all felt perturbation
Upon the morning of Examination.
For there would come that day strange visitors,
Part conscript fathers, part inquisitors,
Not men susceptible of mirth or pity,
Not friends and ministers — but the Committee.
How truly awful was the warning hum,
And the announcement, “Here they are, they come!”
The boys look bold and saucy, and each girl
Gives the last finish to her favorite curl.
They enter and bestow on either hand
A glance meant to be dignified and bland.
Now are our lessons weighed in the just steelyard--
And oft found wanting too-of Mr. Hilliard;
Now are the copies of each urchin wayward
'Neath the clear, searching eyes of Mr. Hayward.
There was a class that Whelpley's Compend used,
Whose talk historic our small brains confused.
Egyptian, Grecian, Roman facts we knew,
And Carthaginian; and we mixed them, too,
Like Seidlitz-powder papers, white and blue,
To the Committee then poured out the essence,
Which made a very pretty effervescence.
One of this class it was my hap to be.
To say the world's seven wonders came to me,
That I was not the eighth, 'twas plain to see.
Well I remember faltering on my tongue,
The hanging gardens of old Babel hung.
Failure was imminent. Just then I heard
Soft whispered in my ear, the important word.
No classmate breathed it, but more kind than just
'T was gentle Whipple raised me from the dust;
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