Hope deferred. . . .   

The man was old and ragged and grey
And he stood on the Pier on a winter's day.
His form was bent, his eye was dim
And thus he spoke when thy questioned him:
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"Long years ago - I cannot tell
How many - it perchance befell
That here I came with reel and rod
To find this pier and catch a  cod.

"I was young and Hope ran high
I listened to many an Angler's lie.
And the most outrageous of all the lot
Was that cod were caught in this blighted spot.

"Years rolled by, and here I stuck,
Hoped against hope for a slice of luck,
But never a codling came to stay
'Twas Tiddlers, Tiddlers all the way.

"Home was forgotten, food a farce,
My favorite mare was left at grass,
My dog, a nailer with a rabbit or game,
Pined for a master who never came."

"Cod was the master and man was the slave.
Casting his line on the crest of the wave,
Waiting and hoping at every tide
Till hope grew fainter - and wavered - and died!!
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"A broken man I homeward sped,
My friends, my dog and my mare were dead,
My gun was rusted a bright bright red.
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"Now all of you, come hark to me
There's naught but Tiddlers in the sea
And ere with Cod you attempt to cope,
Think of me - symbol of Blasted Hope!"