Steam! Steam!! Steam!!!

[Note 416.1]



Upon my life, I do declare Sirs
Each hour brings something fresh and rare Sirs,
Inventions strange, bright genius gleaming
The rage just now is all for steaming.
Some years ago 'twas thought a great power,
Even to travel one mile in an hour;
But now who'd think it, vehicles plenty,
Without horses too, make nought of twenty.

Chorus: Sing hey! Sing Ho! 'tis just like dreaming
                  Such is the wond'rous power of steaming.

Folks can now, 'tis made quite light on,
Whisk thro' the road to visit Brighton; [Note 416.2]
'Stead of nine hours they used to take fast,
By steam arrive in time for breakfast.
For now there cannot be such crosses¹,
As losing time for changing horses,
Now all the baiting¹ a coach will require,
Is a shovel of coals and a poke at the fire,

The race of horses will soon be wholly dead,
And each livery stable will become a coal shed,
Post boys¹ will have to doff their beavers¹
For a large slouch'd hat and turn coal heavers¹.
Innkeepers too will be out of humour,
When they hear of the well known rumour,
Which say, instead of Ale and Porter,
They'll only want a supply of water.

I make no doubt, there will be soon, sir,
A rail road made to visit the moon, sir,
And call upon great Jove¹ and Mars¹ too,
And pay our respects to the twinkling stars too
But greater things may yet alarm ye,
It is in war to raise an army,
to fight by steam and give no quarter,
But instead of powder to use hot water.

But what will seem most strange to the nation
Will be the steam Administration¹;
For long were ministers in hot water
No doubt preparing in their quarter
For what is thought more rational yet, Sirs
By steam to discharge the National Debt¹, Sirs
But I fear they'll never make the last-tell,
Tho' they drain the Thames and burn Newcastle

By steam they intend to build such houses,
That husbands oft may please their spouses
By jaunting out, 'tho quicker good-lack, Sirs
Like a snail that carries his houses on his back, Sirs
Prosers and poets will confess the use in it,
As by steam they'll write a volume a minute,
And vocalists too in your ears will be dinging,
As a proof, haven't I thro' steam been singing,