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old woman, will you go a-shearing?
Speak a little louder, for I'm very hard of hearing."


Of all old women hard of hearing,
The deafest, sure, was Dame Eleanor Spearing !

On her head, it is true,

Two flaps there grew, That served for a pair of gold rings to go through, But for any purpose of ears in a parley, They heard no more than ears of barley.

No hint was needed from D. E. F.

You saw in her face that the woman

was deaf :


From her twisted mouth to her eyes so peery,

feature ask'd a query ;

A look that said in a silent

way, " Who ? and What? and How ? and Eh?

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I'd give my ears to know what you say !”
And well she might! for each auricular
Was deaf as a post—and that post in particular
That stands at the corner of Dyott Street now,

And never hears a word of a row !

Ears that might serve her now and then
As extempore racks for an idle

pen ;
Or to hang with hoops from jewellers' shops
With coral, ruby, or garnet drops ;
Or, provided the owner so inclined,
Ears to stick a blister behind ;
But as for hearing wisdom, or wit,
Falsehood, or folly, or tell-tale-tit,
Or politics, whether of Fox or Pitt,
Sermon, lecture, or musical bit,
Harp, piano, fiddle, or kit,
They might as well, for any such wish,
Have been butter'd, done brown, and laid in a dish!

She was deaf as a post,—as said before-
And as deaf as twenty similes more,
Including the adder, that deafest of snakes,
Which never hears the coil it makes.

She was deaf as a house—which modern tricks
Of language would call as deaf as bricks-

For her all human kind were dumb,
Her drum, indeed, was so muffled a drum,

That none could get a sound to come,
Unless the Devil who had Two Sticks!

She was deaf as a stone—say one of the stones
Demosthenes sucked to improve his tones ;
And surely deafness no further could reach
Than to be in his mouth without hearing his speech !

She was deaf as a nut—for nuts, no doubt,
Are deaf to the grub that's hollowing out-
As deaf, alas ! .as the dead and forgotten-
(Gray has noticed the waste of breath,
In addressing the “ dull, cold ear of death ”),
Or the Felon's ear that was stuff’d with Cotton-

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