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The Diary of a Goose Girl

Chapter 3
July 8th.
Thornycroft is by way of being a small poultry farm.
In reaching it from Barbury Green, you take the first left-hand road, go till you drop, and
there you are.
It reminds me of my "grandmother's farm at Older." Did you know the song when you
were a child? -
My grandmother had a very fine farm
'Way down in the fields of Older.
With a cluck-cluck here,
And a cluck-cluck there,
Here and there a cluck-cluck,
Cluck-cluck here and there,
Down in the fields at Older.
It goes on for ever by the simple subterfuge of changing a few words in each verse.
My grandmother had a very fine farm
'Way down in the fields of Older.
With a quack-quack here,
And a quack-quack there,
Here and there a quack-quack,
Quack-quack here and there,
Down in the fields at Older.
This is followed by the gobble-gobble, moo-moo, baa-baa, etc., as long as the laureate's
imagination and the infant's breath hold good. The tune is pretty, and I do not know, or
did not, when I was young, a more fascinating lyric.
Thornycroft House must have belonged to a country gentleman once upon a time, or to
more than one; men who built on a bit here and there once in a hundred years, until
finally we have this charmingly irregular and dilapidated whole. You go up three steps
into Mrs. Heaven's room, down two into mine, while Phoebe's is up in a sort of turret
with long, narrow lattices opening into the creepers. There are crooked little stair-cases,
passages that branch off into other passages and lead nowhere in particular; I can't think
of a better house in which to play hide and seek on a wet day. In front, what was once,
doubtless, a green, is cut up into greens; to wit, a vegetable garden, where the onions,
turnips, and potatoes grow cosily up to the very door-sill; the utilitarian aspect of it all
 
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