Article #151 - Dead Donkey



                        for the Pocopson Literary Journal

            A Spiritual Linguist


            Along the left hand margin of a Veterinary Register down at Rodwhites Tavern will be found written in very legible characters the obituary notice of a curiously developed specimen of

the donkey family, the late property of Josephus Dodger Esqr followed by a couplet at the

instance of this gentleman, who is therein represented as inconsolable under the loss of this remarkable beast.

            One very tempestuous afternoon in March following the date of this decease Joseph Dodger Esquire resident of Stampers Court while sitting cross-legged before a dinner table in the act of helping himself to some eatables thereon, was supprised [sic] to find the legs of this piece of furniture in a very palsied condition, insomuch as to cause him to gather up what victuals remained, to wipe the glasses of his spectacles, and to examine into the wherefore of its trembling.

            It is related on the authority of some wise men living near the premises of the venerable Josephus: that, on the morning preceeding [sic] this circumstance, about 11 of the clock he had been engaged in the perusal of a work advocating the efficiency of table legs as a medium of communication between disembodied spirits and living men; and also that he had partaken rather freely of sage tea, and bone-set juice, both of which are set forth in the aforesaid work as stimulating to the perceptive powers inacquiring the table leg language.

            Joseph is a dapper little man with a prodigious breadth of nose, and a tendency to salmon color in the whites of his eyes. He has very thick hard cheeks, and his teeth are like rows of old corn. When he laughs, he lifts up one shoulder in a very curious manner and seems to be funny only on one side, the other half of him remaining perfectly sober.

            Josephus Dodger is not an addle-pated individual. His ancestry boast of their acquirements in literature and the occult sciences. And his immediate forefathers claim distinction for the investigation of astrological facts. It is said that his grandsire Doctor Felix Dodger was the

propounder of the great Second Sight question, in furtherance of which idea he is reported to have argued away his life.

            The household of Josephus cherish the opinion that much reading of works appertaining to the table leg lingo has somewhat turned his brain, which fact taken in conjunction with the neighbourly evidence given above goes to show that however much he was supprised [sic] at the odd motion of the Dinner Table he was not wholly unprepared for it.

            As he fumbled about peering at the Table through his spectacles and fingering the leaves of the book containing the knowledge of signs, tokens and premonitory symptoms in a

feverish imbecile manner, his good housekeeper Johanna thinking her masters repast was over came into the room and was much astonished at finding the board already cleared, and the old gentleman down on his knees looking very wildly under the table.

            Being a woman of great trepidation of spirit her first thought was to run and call in the

neighbours, but perceiving the book in his hand and remembering the frequent dosings he had

taken of Sage tea, and bone-set through the forenoon she closed the door and asked him what was the matter.

            “Madame Joanna” do you see these four upright peices [sic] of wood,” Said Josephus

pointing with his finger, “Commonly called legs, but demonstrated in the third volume of  “Spiritual peltings” as celestial tongues, and in the fifth volume, page one thousand six hundred and four refer[r]ed to as the indexes of a dumb goblin world; these celestial tongues--these indexes have been speaking to my transitory ear. Madam Joanna I have been put in rapport with the true Horse Heaven. My beloved ass Gabriel has brayed to me, in a language not to be misunderstood. Madam Joanna You will do me the favour to call in my good friend Doctor Bugwee, previously

explaining to him that I am lying prostrate in a syllabic state of communication with the left nostril of Gabriel’s spirit burried [sic] in the accoustical [sic] arrangement of my transitory ear. Tell the Doctor I no longer live but in the lethargic condition everywhere spoken of. I cling to earth with Sage tea. While the bone-set juice enables me to grasp the divine revalation [sic].”

            It is believed through all Christendom that the family of Bugwee are the most whineing [sic], snarling, whimsical family extant. Without much fortune, very little learning, and no claims whatever to good breeding they manage to float like froth on waves into almost any kind of

conspicuous society. Doctor John Bugwee the elder lives in a glass house east of Turlington Square, a circumstance that prevents him from throwing stones, but does not hinder him from casting mire at people who have not the assurance to look him in the eye, and [??quail] him.

            On being summoned by Madam Joanna to repair to the house of Josephus he affected much supprise[sic] and haste. Sometime in the course of the afternoon he called round and discovered the Scientific Mr. Dodger busy translating the orthography of the Tables [of?] Evolutions.

            Having the Doctor to sit upon his right he ran on about Gabriels wanderings in that

unseen country from which no Donkey ever returned. He had entered into a lengthy disquisition on Gabriels opinion of Spiritual oats and cabbage stalks when he was inter[r]upted by a prolonged “bah” from the incredulous physician. “There” he cried leaping to his feet and striking Josephus and the table a simultaneous and rather nervous blow “is the most decided rap you will get if you persevere in waiting for a twelvemonth, and my word for it” he added pausing in the doorway, “The privilege you enjoy is an exclusive one. If the spirit of your donkey converses with you it is only because your ears are attuned to his voice; if you understand him the connection is established -- the asses of this world need no longer be inconsolable!”

            Some wag has written in an equally legible hand over against the Donkeys obituary down at Rodwhites, Died 27th inst Josephus Dodger Esqr, obit 79--of Sage Tea!