Текст оригинала на английском языке
The Cross Roads
There was an old man breaking stones To mend the turnpike way, He sat him down beside a brook And out his bread and cheese he took, For now it was mid-day. He lent his back against a post, His feet the brook ran by; And there were water-cresses growing, And pleasant was the water's flowing For he was hot and dry. A soldier with his knapsack on Came travelling o'er the down, The sun was strong and he was tired, And of the old man he enquired How far to Bristol town. Half an hour's walk for a young man By lanes and fields and stiles. But you the foot-path do not know, And if along the road you go Why then 'tis three good miles. The soldier took his knapsack off For he was hot and dry; And out his bread and cheese he took And he sat down beside the brook To dine in company. Old friend! in faith, the soldier says I envy you almost; My shoulders have been sorely prest And I should like to sit and rest, My back against that post. In such a sweltering day as this A knapsack is the devil! And if on t'other side I sat It would not only spoil our chat But make me seem uncivil. The old man laugh'd and moved. I wish It were a great-arm'd chair! But this may help a man at need; And yet it was a cursed deed That ever brought it there. There's a poor girl lies buried here Beneath this very place. The earth upon her corpse is prest This stake is driven into her breast And a stone is on her face. The soldier had but just lent back And now he half rose up. There's sure no harm in dining here, My friend? and yet to be sincere I should not like to sup. God rest her! she is still enough Who sleeps beneath our feet! The old man cried. No harm I trow She ever did herself, tho' now She lies where four roads meet. I have past by about that hour When men are not most brave, It did not make my heart to fail, And I have heard the nightingale Sing sweetly on her grave. I have past by about that hour When Ghosts their freedom have, But there was nothing here to fright, And I have seen the glow-worm's light Shine on the poor girl's grave. There's one who like a Christian lies Beneath the church-tree's shade; I'd rather go a long mile round Than pass at evening thro' the ground Wherein that man is laid. There's one that in the church-yard lies For whom the bell did toll; He lies in consecrated ground, But for all the wealth in Bristol town I would not be with his soul! Did'st see a house below the hill That the winds and the rains destroy? 'Twas then a farm where he did dwell, And I remember it full well When I was a growing boy. And she was a poor parish girl That came up from the west, From service hard she ran away And at that house in evil day Was taken in to rest. The man he was a wicked man And an evil life he led; Rage made his cheek grow deadly white And his grey eyes were large and light, And in anger they grew red. The man was bad, the mother worse, Bad fruit of a bad stem, 'Twould make your hair to stand-on-end If I should tell to you my friend The things that were told of them! Did'st see an out-house standing by? The walls alone remain; It was a stable then, but now Its mossy roof has fallen through All rotted by the rain. The poor girl she had serv'd with them Some half-a-year, or more, When she was found hung up one day Stiff as a corpse and cold as clay Behind that stable door! It is a very lonesome place, No hut or house is near; Should one meet a murderer there alone 'Twere vain to scream, and the dying groan Would never reach mortal ear. And there were strange reports about That the coroner never guest. So he decreed that she should lie Where four roads meet in infamy, With a stake drove in her breast. Upon a board they carried her To the place where four roads met, And I was one among the throng That hither followed them along, I shall never the sight forget! They carried her upon a board In the cloaths in which she died; I saw the cap blow off her head, Her face was of a dark dark red Her eyes were starting wide: I think they could not have been closed So widely did they strain. I never saw so dreadful a sight, And it often made me wake at night, For I saw her face again. They laid her here where four roads meet. Beneath this very place, The earth upon her corpse was prest, This post is driven into her breast, And a stone is on her face.
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