David Rands has kindly shared with readers of the Victorian Web his site about the life and works of W. B. Rands, the prolific writer of children's literature and originator of The Boy's Own Paper. Readers may wish to consult this site for more information about this little-known figure who had an immense influence upon Victorian children. [GPL]
Where does Lilliput Palace stand?
Right in the middle of Lilliput-land!
There the Queen eats bread and honey,
There the King counts up his money!
Oh, the Glorious Revolution!
Oh, the Provisional Constitution!
Now that the Children, clever, bold folks,
Have turned the tables upon the Old Folks!
Easily the thing was done,
For the Children were more than two to one;
Brave as lions, quick as foxes,
With hoards of wealth in their money-boxes!
They seized the toys, they patrolled the streets,
They drove the policeman off his beat,
They built barricades, they stationed sentries -
You must give the word when you come to the entries!
They dressed themselves in the Riflemen's clothes,
They had peashooters, they had arrows and bows,
So as to put resistance down -
Order reigns in Lilliput town!
They made the baker bake hot rolls,
They made the wharfinger send in coals,
They made the butcher kill the calf,
They cut the telegraph-wires in half.
They went to the chemist's, and with their feet,
They kicked the physic all down the street;
They went to the school-room and tore the books,
They munched the puffs at the pastry-cook's.
They sucked the jam, they lost the spoons,
They sent up several fire-balloons,
They let off crackers, they burnt a guy,
They piled a bonfire ever so high.
They offered a prize for the laziest boy,
And one for the most Magnificent toy,
They split or burnt the canes off-hand,
They made new laws in Lilliput-land.
Never do today what you can
Put off till tomorrow, one of them ran;
Late to bed and late to rise,
Was another law which they did devise.
They passed a law to have always plenty
Of beautiful things: we shall mention twenty:
A magic lantern for all to see,
Rabbits to keep, and a Christmas-tree.
A boat, a house that went on wheels,
An organ to grind, and sherry at meals,
Drums and wheelbarrows, Roman candles,
Whips with whistles let into the handles,
A real live giant, a roc to fly,
A goat to tease, a copper to sky,
A garret of apples, a box of paints,
A saw and a hammer, and no complaints.
Nail up the door, slide down the stairs,
Saw off the legs of the parlour-chairs -
That was the way in Lilliput-land,
The Children having the upper hand.
They made the Old Folks come to school,
All in pinafores - that was the rule -
They made them learn all sorts of things
That nobody liked. They had catechisings;
They kept them in, they sent them down
In class, in school, in Lilliput-town.
O but they gave them tit-for-tat!
Thick bread-and-butter, and all that;
Stick-jaw pudding that tires your chin
With marmalade spread ever so thin!
They governed the clock in Lilliput-land,
They altered the hour or the minute-hand,
They made the day fast, they made the day slow,
Just as they wished the time to go.
They never waited for King or for cat:
They never wiped their shoes on the mat:
Their joy was great; their joy was greater;
They rode in the baby's perambulator!
There was a Levee in Lilliput-town,
At Pinafore Palace. Smith and Brown,
Jones and Robinson had to attend -
All to whom they cards did send.
Every one rode in a cab to the door;
Everyone came in a pinafore;
Lady and Gentleman, rat-tat-tat,
Loud knock, proud lock, opera hat!
The place was covered with silver and gold,
The place was as full as it ever could hold;
The ladies kissed her Majesty's hand;
Such was the custom in Lilliput-land.
His Majesty knighted eight or ten,
Perhaps a score, of the gentlemen,
Some of them short and some of them tall —
"Arise, Sir What's-a-name What-do-you-call!"
Nuts and nutmeg (that's in the negus);
The bill of fare would perhaps fatigue us;
Forty-five fiddlers to play the fiddle:
Right foot, left foot, down the middle.
Conjuring tricks with the poker and tongs,
Riddles and Forfeits, singing of songs;
One fat man, too fat by far,
Tried "Twinkle, twinkle little star!"
His voice was gruff, his pinafore tight,
His wife said "Mind, dear, sing it right"
But he forgot and said "Fa-la-la!"
The Queen of Lilliput's own papa!
She frowned, and ordered him up to bed;
He said he was sorry; she shook her head:
His clean shirt-front with his tears was stained -
But discipline had to be maintained.
The Constitution! The Law! The Crown!
Order reigns in Lilliput-town!
The Queen is Jill and the King is John;
I trust the Government will get on.
I noticed, being a man of rhymes,
An advertisement in the Lilliput Times:-
"PINAFORE PALACE. This is to state
That the Court is in want of a Laureate
"Nothing menial required,
Poets, willing to be hired,
May send in specimens, at once,
Care of the Chamberlain, DOUBLEDUNCE"
Said I to myself, here's a chance for me,
The Lilliput Laureate for to be!
And these are the specimens I sent in
To Pinafore Palace. Shall I win?
PUBLIC NOTICE:- This to state,
That these are the specimens left at the gate
Of Pinafore Palace, exact to date,
In the hands of the Porter, Curlypate,
Who sits in his plush, on a chair of state,
By the gentleman who is a candidate
for the office of LILLIPUT LAUREATE.