Reuben Bright

Original Text: 
Collected Poems, with an introduction by John Drinkwater (London: Cecil Palmer, 1922): 92. PS 3535 O25A17 1922 Robarts Library.
1Because he was a butcher and thereby
2Did earn an honest living (and did right),
3I would not have you think that Reuben Bright
4Was any more a brute than you or I;
5For when they told him that his wife must die,
6He stared at them, and shook with grief and fright,
7And cried like a great baby half that night,
8And made the women cry to see him cry.
9And after she was dead, and he had paid
11He packed a lot of things that she had made
12Most mournfully away in an old chest
13Of hers, and put some chopped-up cedar boughs
14In with them, and tore down the slaughter-house.


10] sexton: church bell ringer and grave digger. Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
Publication Notes: 
The Children of the Night (1890-97), p. 60.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 1998.