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any counsel to make in Ireland, That is due to the absence there of the thousand guinea brief. The earnings, however, of the bulk of the practising barristers in each country is much about the same. The ordinary junior's ordinary fee is nearly equal, although the lowest fee in England is a guinea, while half-guinea fees are not unknown in Ireland. It is to be feared that in both countries smaller fees than those permissible by the custom of the profession are surreptitiously taken by shady counsel from shady clients; though this practice is far less common in either country than it once was. The Old Bailey Bar was the chief offender in England: there is a story of a member of it being summoned before the mess for taking half

a sovereign with a deck brief, who successfully defended himself by proving that he took every penny the prisoner possessed. If a retort made by Chief Baron O'Grady contains any truth, fees much smaller than half a sovereign were in his time occasionally taken at Green Street, which is the Dublin Old Bailey. A barrister practising there was, in an emergency arising through the unexpected absence of the Crown Counsel, briefed for the Crown; and he was so proud of the honour that he kept on repeating on every possible occasion, "In this case, my lord, I appear for the Crown,' At last the Chief Baron grew tired of this. "I know, I know," he said impatiently. "You usually appear for the half-crown, don't you?"

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THE SILVER CROOK.

BY ALFRED NOYES.

I was mistuk, once, for the Poape of Reame.
The drawled fantastic words came floating down
Behind me, five long years ago, when last

I left the old shepherd, Bramble, by his fold.
Bramble was fond, you'll judge, of his own tales,
And cast a gorgeous fly for the unwary:

But I was late, and could not listen then,
Despite his eager leer.

Yet, many a night,

And many a league from home, out of a dream
Of white chalk coasts, and roofs of Horsham stone,
Coloured like russet apples, there would come
Music of sheep-bells, basing of black-nosed lambs,
Barking of two wise dogs, crushed scents of thyme,
A silver orook, bright as the morning star
Above the naked downs. Then-Bramble's voice,
I was mistuk, once, for the Poape of Roame,
Would almost wake me, wondering what he meant.
Now, five years later, while the larks went up
Over the dew-ponds in a wild-winged glory,
And all the Sussex downs, from weald to sea,
Were patched like one wide crazy quilt, in squares
Of yellow and orimson, clover and mustard-flower,
Edged with white chalk, I found him once again.
He leaned upon his crook, unbudged by war,
Unchanged, and leering eagerly as of old.

How should I paint old Bramble-the shrewd face, Brown as the wrinkled loam, the bright brown eyes, The patriarchal beard, the moleskin cap,

The boots that looked like tree-stumps, the loose cloak Tanned by all weathers,-every inch of him

A growth of Sussex soil. His back was bent

Like wind-blown hawthorn, turning from the sea,
With roots that strike the deeper.

Well content

With all his world, and boastful as a child,
In splendid innocence of the worldling's way,
Whose murderous ego skulks behind a hedge
Of modest privet,-no, I cannot paint him,
Better to let him talk, and paint himself.
"Marnin'," he said; and swept away five years.
With absolute dominion over time,

Waiving all prelude, he picked up the thread
We dropped that day, and cast his bait again :-
I was mistuk, once, for the Poape of Roame.—

"Tell me," I said. "Explain. I've dreamed of it."-
"I rackon you doan't believe it. Drunken Dick,
'Ull tell you 'tis as true's I'm stannin' here.

It happened along of this old silver crook,

I call it silver 'cos it shines so far.

My wife can see it over at Ovingdean

When I'm on Telscombe Tye. They doan't mek crooks
Like this in Sussex now. They've lost the way

To shape 'em. That's what they French papists knowed
Over at Arundel. They tried to buy

My crook, to carry in church. But I woan't sell 'en.
I've heerd there's magio in a orook like this,-

White magic. Well, I rackon it did save Dick

More ways than one, that night, from the old Black Ram.
I've med a song about it.

There was once
A Lunnon poet, down here for his health,
Asked me to sing it to 'un, an' I did.
It med him laff, too. 'Sing it again,' he says,
'But go slow, this time.' 'No, I woan't,' I says
(I knowed what he was trying). 'No,' I says,
'I woan't go slow. You'll ketch 'un if I do.'
You see, he meks a tedious mort of money
From these here ballad books, an' I wer'n't goin'
To let these Lunnon chuckle-heads suck my brains.
I med it to thet ancient tune you liked,
The Brown Girl. 'Member it?"

Bramble cleared his throat,
Spat at a bee, leaned forward on his crook,
Fixed his brown eyes upon a distant spire,
Solemnly swelled his lungs, once, twice, and thrice;
Then, like an old brown thrush, began to sing:-

"The Devil turns round when he hears the sound
Of bells in a Sussex foald.

One crack, I rackon, from this good orook
Would make old Scratch leave hoald.
They can't shape crooks to-day like mine,
For the liddle folk helped 'em then.
I've heard some say as they've see'd 'en shine
From Ditchling to Fairlight Glen.

I loaned 'em a loanst o' my crook one day
To carry in Arundel.

They'd buy 'en to show in their church, they say;
But goald woan't mek me sell.

I never should find a orook so slick,
So silver in the sun;

And, if you talk to Drunken Dick,
He'll tell you what it's done.

You'll find him spannelling round the Plough;
And, Lord! when Dick was young,

He'd drink enough to draown a cow,

And roughen a tiger's tongue.

He'd drink Black Ram till his noäse turned blue,

And the liddle black mice turned white.

You ask 'en what my crook can do,
An' what he see'd that night.

He says, as through the fern he ran
('Twas Pharisees' fern, say I),
A wild potatur, as big as a man,
Arose and winked its eye.

He says it took his arm that night,
And waggled its big brown head,
Then sang: This world will never go right
Till Drunken Dick be dead.

He shook it off and, rambling round,
Among the goalden gorse,

He heers a kin' of sneering sound
Pro-ciddin' from a horse,

Which reared upright, then said out loud
(While Dick said, 'I'll be danged!')
'His parients will be tedious proud

When Drunken Dick is hanged.'

I rackon 'twould take a barrel of ale,
Betwix' my dinner and tea,

To mek me see the very nex' thing
That Drunken Dick did see;

For first he thought 'twas elephants walked
Behind him on the Tye,

And then he saw fower ricks of straw

That heaved against the sky.

He saw 'em lift. He saw 'em shift.
He saw gurt beards arise.

He saw 'em slowly lumbering down
A hunderd times his size;

And, as he ran, he heer'd 'em say,
Whenever his head he turned,

'This warld will never be bright and gay
Till Drunken Dick be burned.'

And then as Dick escaped again

And squirmed the churchyard through, The cock that crowns the weather-vane Cried, 'How d'ye doodle doo?'—

'Why, how d'ye doodle doo?' says Dick, 'I know why you go round.'

'There'll be no luck,' that rooster shruck, 'Till Drunken Dick be drowned!'

And then, as Diok dodged round they barns,
And med for the white chalk coast,

He meets Himself, with the two black horns,
And eyes 'twud mek you roast.

'Walcome! walcome!' old Blackamoor oried,
"Tis muttonless day in hell,

So I think I'll have your kidneys, fried,
And a bit of your liver as well.'

Then Dick he loosed a tarr'ble shout,
And the Devil stopped dead to look;
And the sheep-bells rang, and the moon came out,
And it shone on my silver crook.

'I rackon,' says Dick, if you're oald Nick,
You'd batter be scramblin' home;

For those be the ringers of Arundel,
And that is the Poape of Roame."

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