Tour Abroad of Wilfrid the Great

Original Text: 
Poems of A. MacGregor Rose (Gordon), ed. Robert Dey (London: John Heywood, no date): 137-42. British Library
By Jean Baptiste Trudeau.
3She sen' for men from all de worl' --
4   And from her colonie.
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5But mos' of all, she sen' dis word
6   To dis Canadian shore,
8   I will be glad no more."
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9Den Wilfrid not hard-hearted, he
11An' say, "Ma reine, you mus' not fret,
12   For little t'ing lak' dat.
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13"To Londres, on de day in June
14   You mention, I will come,
15And show you w'at is lak' de French-
16   Canadian gentilhomme."
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17So Wildred sailed across de sea,
18   An' Queen Victoria met,
19An' w'en she's see him, ah! she is
20   Jus' tickle half to deat'!
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21An' w'en he's kneel, as etiquette
22   Demand, for be correc',
23She tak' a sword into her han'
24   An' hit him on de neck.
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25An' w'en she do, she smile on him,
26   An' dese de words she say:
27"Rise up, my true Canadian Knight --
28   Sir Wilfrid Laurier!
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29"An' on dose grand Imperial plans
30   Which I have now in view,
31For guidance, counsel, an' advice
32   I'll always look to you."
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33Den Wilfrid kiss de Royal han',
34   An' back off on de door,
35An' bow as only Frenchman can,
36   An' smile an' bow some more.
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37Nex' day, it was a glorious sight,
38   At half-pas' twelve o'clock,
39To see Sir Wilfrid ride in state,
43Were w'at you call "not in it," for
44   Sir Wilfrid was de boss.
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45Oui, certainement, excep' de Queen
46   Herself dat glorious day,
47De greates' man on Angleterre
48   Was Wilfrid Laurier.
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VISITS PARIS.
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49Sir Wilfrid cross de Channel den,
51An' mak' fine speeches two or three
52   In de city of Paree.
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53An' shak' de han', an' drink de vin
55An' show him what de kin' of man
56   Dis contrie represen'.
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57An' w'en Dir Wilfrid's voice dey hear,
58   An' his fine shape dey see,
59De men of France was hall surprise,
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61Den Monsieur Faure he rise an say,
62   "Sir Wilfrid Laurier,
63In de Legion d'Honneur you are
64   Un grand officier."
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65An' to Sir Wilfrid, front dem hall,
66   He mak' some fine address,
67An' den ribbon wit' de star
68   He pin upon his breas'.
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69En bref, our Wilfrid capture France,
70   He's capture Anglan', too;
71I t'ink he will annex dem both
72   To Canada -- don' you?
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SIR WILFRID'S RETURN.
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73Sir Wilfrid, tired of Jubilee
75He says, "Dese contrie dey ees not
76   Lak' my own Canada.
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77"I wan' my own dear lan' for see
79An' hear again de French he spik
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81Den to the Queen an' Monsieur Faure
82   Hees "au revoirs" he say,
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85"An' I mus go an help toujours,
88   De safe in Ottawa.
92   From play some crooked trique."
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93So, on de "Labrador" he sail,
94   On Canada he come,
95We hall be glad his face to see,
96   An' he ees glad be home.
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97An' hall de Angleesh, Ireesh, Franch
98   'Roun hees triomphan' car,
99Say, "Bienvenu! Come, spok to us
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101Sir Wilfrid tole us dat he drink
104   Us on de Champ de Mars.
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105Den hall de peup' dey mak' big cheer,
106   De cannon dey mak' shoot,
107We hall be on one grand hoorau,
108   De steamboats on a toot.
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109So we hall sing, "God bless de Queen!
110   An' Monsieur Faure, alway!
111Because dey treat all same lak' prince,
112   Our Wilfrid Laurier."

Notes

1] Jean Baptiste Trudeau: Rose's pseudonym, a historical allusion to the French-Canadian of the same name who founded a school in St. Louis and explored the Upper Missouri River in 1793. (It does not seem likely that Rose means the French-Canadian who was a member of the Donner Party in 1845.)
Queen Victoria, Queen of England, who reigned from 1837 to 1901. Back to Line
2] Jubilee: Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee. June 20-22, 1897. Back to Line
7] Sir Wilfrid Laurier (1841-1919), French-Canadian leader of the national Liberal party from 1887 until his death, and Prime Minister of Canada, 1896-1911. Back to Line
10] He lifted (doffed) his hat. Back to Line
40] chapeau de coque: turned-up (`cocked') hat, sometimes called a "cock-up." Back to Line
41] Lords Solsby, Roberts, and Cecil Rhodes: Rhodes (1853-1902) was Prime Minister of Cape Colony in 1890 but resigned in 1896 in disgrace. He established the Rhodes Scholarships later. The other two are unidentified. Back to Line
42] Chamberlain: Joseph Chamberlain, British Colonial Secretary. Back to Line
50] La Patrie: as one might say, "the old country." Back to Line
54] Félix Faure, President of the Third Republic of France (1895-1899). Back to Line
60] hall epris: "all smitten, charmed." Back to Line
74] eclat: pomp. Back to Line
78] the great St. Lawrence river. Back to Line
80] "My good-fellow the [French-Canadian] habitant." Back to Line
83] ole Kebec: old Quebec City. Back to Line
84] Montreal. Back to Line
86] John Campbell Gordon, 1st marquess of Aberdeen and Temair, Governor General of Canada from 1893 to 1898. Back to Line
87] boodler: caboodle, crowd. Back to Line
89] Sir Olivair: perhaps Frank Oliver, elected to Parliament in 1896, a loyal Liberal.
Sir Deek: not identified. Back to Line
90] Tarte: Joseph-Israël Tarte (1848-1907), Minister of Public Works in the 1896 Laurier government. Back to Line
91] Sir Tuppair: Sir Charles Tupper (1821-1915), Conservative Prime Minister in 1896-97 and leader of the Opposition until 1901. Back to Line
100] Champ-de-Mars, a great public square in Montreal that borders on the old fortifications. Back to Line
102] Dose vins: those wines (French). Back to Line
103] Windsor Castle, one of the palaces of the British monarchs. Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
1897
Publication Notes: 
Montreal Herald July 12, 1897.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 2001
Rhyme: