Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Michael Bonham; or, The Fall of Bexar. A Tale of Texas >> Part III — Scene III >> Page 17

image of pageExplore Inside

Page 17

Drama | John R. Thompson | 1852
Transcription Michael Bonham : or, the Fall of Bexar. 17

Your baffled heart and hope, as low from hope, As hell can be from heaven.
Olivia. You affright me ! Give me this fearful secret ; speak your tidings, Lest in my terror I conceive them worse
Than human wo can make them.
Maria. Love not this man !
Olivia. Amador !
Maria. Oh, feeble heart
Caught at a glance, snared by the passing vision, Without a hope to cling to. To the chamber—Oh, cousin—wherefore,
Olivia. Mock me not thus, Maria. Oh ! my heart, One moment,—now—speak out and do not trifle; You do not sport with me,—you cannot, cousin.
Maria. Look on me. dear Olivia—do mine eyes Lighten with merry thoughts—upon my cheek, See'st thou the laughing spirit of mischief there—Eager in malice, or thoughtlessness to revel, In the sweet misery of a sister's heart.
Olivia. Oh, no ! I will not doubt thee. 'Tis in earnest;
Those eyes now fill with tears—those words now falter : Come with me to my chamber. There !
[Exit Olivia.
Maria, [following.] Ay, cousin—And there I'll cozen thee with such a tale, Shall make thy head to ache, thy heart to ail.
[Exit Maria.


A Wild and Mountainous region. The Texian army in movement. Groups pass over the stage, partisan ,fitshion, and in picturesque costume. Enter Spar-row, Davies and other Texians in the foreground.

Sparrow. Though a man of some bulk, I am yet a than of movement. I have no passion for a quiet life. I'm for action, whether the object for assault be foe or food, soldier or supper. I have a large territory to endanger, as .well as to supply ; but that makes me no more cautious than if I were a Calvin Edson. Let the battle come when it pleases. The sooner the better. This city of San Antonia de Bexar, they tell me, is a sort of little Mexico, where the gold may be had for the gathering.
Davis. You are too old a bird, Sparrow, to be seasoned by that salt. For my part I never yet found more gold in one place than another, and I think with the preacher, that gold is the root of all evil.
Sparrow. Indeed! I would I had many such roots to set out in my garden. The cotton crop might go hang for me, and the Liverpool market along with it. The preachers, too,—but let them say what they will, I never vet found one of them who found his salary clogged with too many such roots. They were never too numerous for his religion.
Davis. This is rather dull talk, Sparrow, just as we are about to have cracked crowns and broken noses. Can't we change the music in some manner, and hurry for some-thing.
Sparrow. Ay ! You may. 'We will hurry ! Here goes! Hurra for nothing ! Will that suit ? Change the music, to be sure; but do you see the singer in my visage ! Do I sing small like a woman. That's not my vocation, Davis. Look about you as the boys come by and get a singer ; but the Anglo-Norman breed is better at shouting than singing. Of our three hundred now, not ten of us can turn a ballad, but not one of us that can't ,care a Mexican's soul out of his breeches by one hallo !
Davis. Here's the very man, Joe Kennedy, from Alabama. He sings famously, and makes his own songs as he goes.
Sparrow. Such a fellow has his uses, even as a singer. I can understand him. Let him make us something now to warm the fellows for a brush.
Enter Kennedy and Texians.
Davis. In season, Joe. A song to shorten the journey. We have been talking here about that root of' all evils, gold ; which we are to gather here in this little Mexico, San Antonio, until, somehow, we've got the doleful. Give us something fine and fiery.
Kennedy. I heard you! Get your ears ready and your hands. If I am to sing, I must he clapped, mark you, just as they clap your theatre fellows who sing well, as all theatre fellows would sing, were they
Davis. What ?
Kennedy. Joe Kennedy.
Sparrow. Put your spirit into your song, my lad, and blaze away.
Kennedy, [sings.]


My banner to the breeze,
And my bowie at my side
My barque upon the seas,
And the single star my guide ; I shall lay the oyster bare,
To pluck forth its precious fruit, And these evils that ye fear,
I will gather at the root.
And the evils, &c. Ibis.


We are soldiers of the north,
And we know like men to fight ; We have gone to battle forth.
With old England in her might; We have spirits born to dare,
We can smite and we can shoot,, And the evils that ye fear,
We will gather from the root, And the evils, &c. [bis,


Do you speak of coming hours,
When to battle we must go;
We are ready, by the powers,
To awaken any foe ;
We shall teach them that the bold, Still inherit all the fruits,
And their moustaches and gold, We shall pluck up by the roots. And their moustaches, &c, [bis.

Sparrow. Good I say. Three cheers fin- amateur Kennedy. He has done the thing famously. Such a song as that would give a fellow an appetite for any thing, eating or fighting. It meets our case exactly. Kennedy, your hands. I shall think well of you forever after, and whenever an extra delicacy offers—a sleek tongue of a young buffalo bull,—you shall be in fe
slice. A good chorus that. [Sings.

" And their moustaches and gold, We shall pluck up by the roots."
My fingers feel as if they were at it already. [Sing .