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Title: A Hunting Alphabet - The ABC of Drag Hunting
Author: Newton, Grace Clarke
Language: English
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         Grace Clarke Newton

  |                              |
  |           WORKS BY           |
  |     GRACE CLARKE NEWTON      |
  |                              |
  |                              |
  |       A BOOK OF RHYME        |
  |                              |
  |       POEMS IN PASSING       |
  |         First Series         |
  |                              |
  |       POEMS IN PASSING       |
  |      A Second Gleaning       |
  |       (In preparation)       |
  |                              |
  |      A HUNTING ALPHABET      |
  |         Illustrated          |
  |                              |

               A B C
            DRAG HUNTING




Copyright, 1917
E. P. Dutton & Company

Redfield-Kendrick-Odell Co., Inc.
New York

The illustrations are from some paintings by
Richard Newton, Jr.

[Illustration: Mrs. E. T. Cockcroft--and "Danger"]


  A is Ambition which leads you to buy
  A qualified hunter, the picture of pride,
  Of whom it is said, "He takes off in his stride."
  This means he jumps you off with hounds in full cry.


  B is the Beauty who's learning to "go,"
  Who comes to the Club on the morn of the Meet,
  And says to the Master, "Now if you'll be sweet
  And let me ride near you, I'll finish I know!"

[Illustration: Benjamin Nicoll, Esq.--Essex Hunt (on Cocktail)]


  C is the Casualty frequently met
  When a Ditch next a creeper-clad fence lies concealed;
  Also the Comments of most of the field,
  "For the man who lays drags with a butterfly net!"


  D is the overworked letter so Dear
  To the heart of the Sportsman who's riding a skate,
  Who thinks there is no one to open the gate
  And fails to observe that the Vicar stands near.

[Illustration: John R. Townsend, Esq., M. F. H.--Orange Co. Hunt
(on Greek Dollar)]


  E is your Epitaph, writ by a wag,
  Which reached you by post on your first hunting morn;
  "Hic jacet! He hoped to be pride of the Quorn
  But died of sheer fright ere he rode in one drag."


  F is the Fence "made of stout posts and rails
  Five feet"! You "_sailed_ over it riding the grey";
  But do not dine out on it often, I pray,
  For at each repetition the interest pales.

[Illustration: J. E. Davis, Esq., M. F. H.--Meadowbrook Hunt]


  G is the Gathering Gloom of Her Grace,
  The Great One, invited to open our Ball,
  When she heard that the Master had had a bad fall
  And the Honorable Whip is to fill in his place.


  H is the Horn of the Huntsman that sounds
  Rather wheezy and thin to irreverent ears;
  But Ah! 'tis a music melodic, which cheers
  The Hearts of the nailers who follow Hounds.


  I is the Impulse by which you are curst;
  To prove you have courage when fox hounds are "Cast,"
  "I'll jam in my spurs and be after them fast,"
  It seems that the Master prefers to go first.

[Illustration: Drawn Blank]


  J is the Jackrabbit, running so free,
  And the Jar to the Master who sees that his pack
  Have tacitly told him they cannot come back
  'Til the last of their fat furry friend they can see.


  K is the Kennels where foxhounds are kept,
  A visit to these is a part of the Game;
  'Tis a wise M. F. H. knows each couple by name,
  But when _they_ know _him_ they say strong men have wept.


  L is for "Larking" to try out a colt;
  How lightly he leaps from the paddock or pen,
  But, once on his back it's a question of when
  He will lie down or roll on you, buck, jump or bolt.

[Illustration: A Few of the Right Sort]


  M is the Merriment seen on each face,
  At the rumor some hunting man offers to sell
  "The _pick_ of the stable, because he can't tell
  If he's going abroad for a season to race."


  N is the Nag, "Nervy Nat," who was lent
  For your use by a friend when your own horse broke down,
  And the News, that was sent to your dear ones in Town,
  "Some bones have been broken and some are just bent."


  O is the Opportune Offer you made
  To carry a flask in case of a spill;
  Then you learn that it's equally good for a chill
  And most of the field of a chill are afraid.

[Illustration: A Hunting Morn]


  P is for "Pink," to its pomp we aspire
  When riding in "mufti"; but how do we feel
  When bound for the Meet, quite the modern John Peel,
  If village boys shout, "Oh, I say, where's the fire?"


  Q is the Quagmire where you get stuck
  And the Quizzical Questions of those on the bank,
  Who, as they help you to rescue your horse on a plank,
  "Were you hunting a fox or just chasing a duck?"


  R is The Road that the faint-hearted choose
  When the line crosses country where going is risky:
  And the Rot that they talk, as they sip their Scotch Whiskey.
  To prove it's not they, but their mounts that refuse.

[Illustration: Major W. Austin Wadsworth, M. F. H.--Geneseo Hounds]


  S is the Scent, none too pleasant to those
  Who ride not to hounds; but at swift hunting pace,
  When the Right Sort detect it, how madly they race;
  They find it more sweet than the breath of a rose.


  T is for Thousands, the cost of our fun,
  Also for the Thrusters and they are not few
  Who send in a "ten" when the season is through
  It pays for the timber they broke in one run.


  U is for Us when united we fight
  That the skirt called "divided" be worn by the Fair;
  If you've seen a dear girl with her boots in the air
  As she lands in a furrow, you'll say I am right.

[Illustration: The Grey Hunt Team--Suffolk Hounds]


  V is the Viewpoint of those who are vexed,
  By the Master's great promptness when they ride up late;
  "Confounded old Martinet, couldn't he wait?
  Cast hounds by alarm clock, that's what he'll do next."


  W stands for the Week-end so wet
  We spent with our friend of a neighboring hunt,
  You could keep up with hounds if you went in a "punt"
  But I need not tell you how far we _did_ get.


  X is for Crossroads and sign posts galore;
  You shout the Bumpkin who's raking his hay,
  "Which way went the pack?" and his "Well, I can't say;
  Ain't seen any peddlers!" is rather a bore.

[Illustration: Oakleigh Thorne Esq., M. F. H.--Millbrook Harriers]


  Y stands for You who have stood for these rhymes,
  Who discern amid chaff shining kernels of truth;
  So the spirit of chivalry, valor and youth
  Are found in the pleasures and sports of our times.


  Z is for Zero--our surplus, my dear,
  When, after good sport with all damages paid,
  We sit by the fire and say, "I'm afraid
  There'll be no more runs till the Spring of the year."

And here ends this volume of A HUNTING ALPHABET, by Grace Clarke Newton,
of which 262 copies only have been printed by Redfield-Kendrick-Odell
Co., Inc., New York, and the type distributed, in this year of our Lord
one thousand nine hundred and seventeen.

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