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The Tale of the Young Black Chap

There came a-walking past the door
A coal-pitch-raven-black young Moor.
The sun it smote him on his smeller,
And so he hoisted his umbrella.
Now came young Ludwig running by,
A-waving, he, his flag on high.
And Kaspar flew to join the band,
His toothsome pretzel in his hand.
While in his wake skips William free,
With hair neat-combed and hoop, you see.
The three they Iaugh and scoff and wink,
And mock at that poor Missing Link,
Because his skin is black as ink.

Forth stepped the mighty Nicholas, –
Who hates rude ways and slang and sass,
And brought his ink-stand too, alas!
Says he, "You children list' to me –
Pray let the little stranger be;
He cannot help his sooty hue,
Bleach out at will, be white like you."
But still these urchins, lacking grace,
Did scoff and laugh right in his face,
And laughed yet heartier than before
At that poor pitch-black piteous Moor.

Then Nich'las he did rave and rage –
As per the picture on that page –
And grabbed those urchins trembling there,
By arm and crop and coat and hair!
Grabb'd William first and Ludwig next,
And Kaspar third (as per the text),
And quicker than the three could wink
He soused them in the turbid ink!
Soused them down with holy spite,
Soused them down with grim delight,
Soused them down clean out of sight!

You see them here, all black as sin –
Much blacker than that Niggerkin –
The Moor a-marching in the light,
The Ink-Blots following dark as night.
Now if they had but hid their glee,
They'd still be white and fair to see.

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