Life?s Weather Gauge
I?m for Tim Tiller?s golden maxim,
Who studies life in every stage;
He?ll tell you plainly if you ax him,
Content?s this life?s best Weather Gauge;
I own Tom has but little learning,
Such as your flats pick up at school;
Yet is he cunning and discerning,
And though no conjuror, Tom?s no fool.
A Tar, cried Tom, ?s to a peace a stranger;
?Fore fortune?s tempest cuts and drives,
No single moment free from danger,
And so does every man that lives;
In toil and peril he his part takes,
Stands fire, and hurricane, and shot;
He has his qualms, his head aches, heartaches,
And where?s the lubber that has not?
The gold he gets does good to others,
Though he at random lets it fly;
For, as mankind are all his brothers,
He keeps it in the family;
Hair breadth escapes each hour he weathers;
No moment he can call his own,
And thus are men put to their teathers,
Up from the cottage to the throne.
The thing is this, in every station
We?re born for pleasure and for trouble;
And, if you strike to each vexation,
Good Hope?s true Cape you?ll never double;
But take the good and evil cheerly,
And sum up creditor and debtor,
If in this world they use you queerly,
Be honest, and you?ll find a better.