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Black-letter Broadside Ballads Of The years 1595-1639

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A BATTLE OF BIRDS
9 ANd filling thus the Azure skie
with these their troupes vp mounted hie, They seem'd more thick, then moats ith Sunne, a dreadfull battle there begun:
and in their kind more strongly fought, then can immagen'd be by thought.
10   Thousands of thousands, on a heape,
vpon the others backes did leape, With all their forced strengths and might, to put their Bird-like foes to flight: and as it were in battle ray, long time they kept them, thus in play.
11    To fight this battle in the ayre,
their bills and beakes their weapons were, Which they performed in such a sort,
as makes me doubtfull to report: that silly Birds should thus arise, and fight so fircely in the skyes.
12   But so it was and strange withall,1
that Birds should thus at discord fall, And neuer cease, till they had slaine,
thousands, starke dead vpon the plaine: where people tooke them vp in feare, a thing most strange to see and heare.
13   With broken wings, some fell to ground,
and some poore silly Birds were found, With eyes pickt out, struck downe halfe dead,
and some no braines left in their head; but battered forth, and kil'd outright, most strangly in this ayery fight.
1 Text has a period.
*S3
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III