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Christmas with William Barnes — Keepen Up O’Christmas

An’ zoo you didden come athirt,
To have zome fun last night: how wer’t?
Vor we’d a-worked wi’ all our might
To scour the iron things up bright,
An’ brush’d an’ scrubb’d the house all drough;
An’ brought in vor a brand, a plock
O’ wood so big’s an uppen-stock
An’ hung a bough o’ misseltoo,
An’ ax’d a merry friend or two,
To keepen up o’Christmas.

An’ there wer wold an’ young; an’ Bill,
Soon after dark, stalk’d up vrom mill.
An’ when he wer a-comin near,
He whissled loud vor me to hear;
Then roun’ my head my frock I roll’d,
An’ stood on orcha’d like a post,
To meake en think I wer a ghost.
But he wer up to’t, an did scwold
To vind me stannen in the cwold,
A-keepen up o’ Christmas.

We play’d at Forfeits, an’ we spun
The trencher roun’, an’ meade such fun!
An’ had a geame o’ dree-ceard loo,
An’ then begun to hunt the shoe.
An’ all the wold vo’k zitten near,
A-chatten roun’ the vier pleace,
Did smile in woone another’s feace,
An’ sheake right hands wi’ hearty cheer.
An’ let their left hands spill their beer,
A-keepen up o’ Christmas.

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