Ye Two Wishes by Howard Pyle

An Angel went a walking out one day, as I’ve heard said,
And, coming to a faggot-maker, begged a crust of bread
The faggot-maker gave a crust and something rather queer
To wash it down withall, from out a bottle that stood near.
The Angel finished eating; but before he left, said he,
“Thou shalt have two wishes granted, for that thou hast given me.
One wish for that good drinkable, another for the bread.”
The he left the faggot-maker all amazed at what he’d said.

“I wonder,” says the faggot-maker, after he had gone,
“I wonder if there’s any truth in that same little song!”
So, turning this thing over in his mind, he cast around,
‘Till he saw the empty bottle where it lay upon the ground.
“I wish,” said he, just as a test, “if what he said is so,
Into that empty bottle, now, that I may straightway go”
No sooner said that done; for,–Whisk! into the flask he fell,
Where he found himself as tightly packed as chicken in the shell.
In vain he kicked and twisted, and in vain he howled with pain;
For, in spite of all his efforts, he could not get out again.
So, seeing how the matter stood, he had to wish once more.
When, out he slipped, as easily as he’d gone in before.

If we had two wishes, granted by an Angel thus,
We would not throw away the good so kindly given us.
For first we’d ask for wisdom, which, when we had in store,
I’m very doubtful if we’d care to ask for anymore.

Howard Pyle

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