Some sombre evening, when I sit

And feed in solitude at home,

Perchance an ultra-bilious fit

Paints all the world an orange chrome.

When Fear and Care and grim Despair

Flock round me in a ghostly crowd,

One charm dispels them all in air,--

I blow my after-dinner cloud.

'Tis melancholy to devour

The gentle chop in loneliness.<
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I look on six--my prandial hour--

With dread not easy to express.

And yet for every penance done,

Due compensation seems allow'd.

My penance o'er, its price is won,--

I blow my after-dinner cloud.

My clay is _not_ a Henry Clay,--

I like it better on the whole;

And when I fill it, I can say,

I drown my sorrows in the bowl.

For most I love my lowly pipe

When weary, sad, and leaden-brow'd;

At such a time behold me ripe

To blow my after-dinner cloud.

As gracefully the smoke ascends

In columns from the weed beneath,

My friendly wizard, Fancy, lends

A vivid shape to every wreath.

Strange memories of life or death

Up from the cradle to the shroud,

Come forth as, with enchanter's breath,

I blow my after-dinner cloud.

What wonder if it stills my care

To quit the present for the past,

And summon back the things that were,

Which only thus in vapor last?

What wonder if I envy not

The rich, the giddy, and the proud,

Contented in this quiet spot

To blow my after-dinner cloud?