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Rhymes with Rose

The Austen Family was known to be witty and loved the opportunity to engage in word play. Here are the results from various family members when challenged to write a poem that “Rhymed with Rose”.

Mrs. Austen

This morning I ‘woke from a quiet repose,

I first rubb’d my eyes & I next blew my nose.

With my Stockings & Shoes I then cover’d my toes

And proceeded to put on the rest of my Cloathes.

This was finish’d in less than an hour I suppose;

I emply’d myself next in repairing my hose

‘Twas a work of necessity, not what I chose;

Of my sock I’d much rather have knit twenty Rows.–

My work being done, I looked through the windows

And with pleasure beheld all the Bucks & the Does,

The Cows & the Bullocks, the Wethers & Ewes.–

To the Lib’ry each mourn, all the Family goes,

So I went with the rest, though I felt rather froze.

My flesh is much warmer, my blood freer flows

When I work in the garden with rakes & with hoes.

And now I beleive I must come to a close,

For I find I grow stupid e’en while I compose;

If I write any longer my verse will be prose.

Miss Cassandra Austen

Love, they say is like a Rose;

I’m sure tis like the wind that blows,

For not a human creature knows

How it comes or where it goes.

It is the cause of many woes,

It swells the eyes & reds the nose,

And very often changes those

Who once were friends to bitter foes.

But let us now the scene transpose

And think no more of tears & throes.

Why may we not as well suppose

A smiling face the Urchin shows?

And when with joy: the Bosom glows,

And when the heart has full repose,

‘Tis Mutual Love the gift bestows.–

Mrs Elizabeth Austen

(wife of Edward Austen Knight)

Never before did I quarrel with a Rose

Till now that I am told some lines to compose,

Of which I shall have little idea Go knows!–

But since that the Task is assign’d me by those

To whom Love, Affection & Gratitude owes

A ready compliance, I feign would dispose

And call befriend me the Muse who bestows

The gift of Peotry both on Friends & Foes.–

My warmest acknowledgements are due to those

Who watched near my Ebd & soothed me to repose

Who pitied my sufferings & shared my woes,

And by their sympathy relieved my sorrows.

May I as long as the Blood in my veins flows

Feel the warmth of Love which now in my heart glows,

And may I sink into a refreshing Doze

When I lie my head on my welcome pillows.

Jane Austen

Happy the lab’rer in his Sunday clothes!

In light-drab coat, smart waistcoat, well-darn’d hose,

And hat upon his head, to church he goes;

As oft, with conscious pride, he downward throws

A glance upon the ample cabbage rose

That, stuck in button-hole, regales his nose,

He envies not the gayest London beaux.

In church he takes his seat among the rows,

Pays to the place the reverence he owes,

Likes best the prayers whose meaning least he knows,

Lists to the sermon in a softening doze,

And rouses joyous at the welcome close.

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