O for a pleasant book to cheat the sway
Of winter – where rich mirth with hearty laugh
Listens and rubs his legs on corner seat,
For fields are mire and sludge – and badly off
Are those who on their pudgy paths delay.
There striding shepherd seeking driest way,
Fearing night’s wetshod feet and hacking cough
That keeps him waken till the peep of day,
Goes shouldering onward and with ready hook
Progs off to ford the sloughs that nearly meet
Across the lands- croodling and thin to view
His loath dog follows – stops and quakes and looks
For better roads – till whistled to pursue,
Then on with frequent jumps he hirkles through.
My wish for the coming year: May we all hirkle through.