The Kiplings and India: A Collection of Writings from British India, 1870-1900

Jane Smith (Rudyard Kipling/Alice MacDonald Fleming, 1884)


[Published in Quartette, Lahore 1884] 

I journeyed, on a winter's day, 
       Across the lonely wold;
No bird did sing upon the spray,
       And it was very cold.  

I had a coach with horses four, 
      Three white (though one was black)
And on they went the common o'er,
       Nor swiftness did they lack.  

A little girl ran by the side, 
       And she was pinched and thin:
"Oh please sir! do give me a ride, 
      "I'm fetching mother's gin."  

"Enter my coach, sweet chid," said I;
       "For you shall ride with me,
"And I will get you your supply
       "of mother's  eau-de-vie."  

The publican was stern and cold, 
      And said: "Her mother's score
"Is write, as you shall soon behold.
      "Behold the bar-room door!"

I blotted out the score with tears,
       And paid the money down,
And took the maid of thirteen years
       Back to her mother's town; 

And though the past with surges wild
       Fond memories may sever, 
The vision of that happy child
       Will leave my spirit never.  


This page has paths: