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202 EOBIN HOOD AND THE BEGGAR.
" The shaking of my pocks, I fear,
Hath blown into your eyne ; But I have a good pike-staff here
Can ripe them out full clean."
The young men answer'd never a word, 215
They were dumb as a stane ; In the thick wood the beggar fled,
E'er they riped their eyne.
And syne the night became so late,
To seek him was in vain: 220
But judge ye, if they looked blate, When they came home again.
Good Robin spear'd how they had sped ;
They answer'd him, " Full ill:" " That cannot be," good Robin says, • 225
" Ye have been at the mill.
" The mill it is a meatrif place, They may lick what they please ;
Most like ye have been at that art,
Who would look to your cloaths." 230
They hang'd their heads, they droped down,
A word they could not speak : Robin said, " Because I fell a-swoon,
I think you'll do the like.