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For works with similar titles, see The Little Vagabond.
Notebook 45a - The little Vagabond
Notebook 45b - The little Vagabond

The little [A pretty del.] Vagabond [1]

Dear mother, Dear Mother, the church is cold
But the alehouse is healthy & pleasant & warm;
Besides I can tell where I am us'd well.
[Such usage in heaven makes all go to hell. del.]
The poor parsons with wind like a blown bladder swell.[2]

But if at the Church they would give us some Ale,
And a pleasant fire our souls to regale,
We'd sing and we'd pray all the livelong day,
Nor ever once wish from the Church to stray.

Then the parson might preach, & drink, & sing,
And we'd be as happy as birds in the spring;
And Modest Dame Lurch, who is always at Church,
Would not have bandy children, nor fasting, nor birch.

And God, like a father, [that joys for del.] rejoicing to see
His children as pleasant & happy as he,
Would have no more quarrel with the devil or the Barrel,
[But shake hands & kiss him & there'd be no more hell. del.]
But kiss him & give him both [food del.] drink & apparel.


  1. "Blake Complete Writings", ed. Geoffrey Keynes, pub. OUP 1966/85, p. 179-180.
  2. In the final version: "Such usage in heaven will never do well".

This work was published before January 1, 1924, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.