The Kentish WONDER:

BEING A true Relation how a poor distressed Widow, in the Wild of Kent, was by the Providence of the Almighty, miraculously preserved in her Necessity, so that she and seven small Children lived seven Weeks upon a burnt six-penny Loaf of Bread, and yet it never decreased; to the great Wonder of all that hear it, and the Praise of the Almighty, who never forsakes them who put their trust in him.

To the Tune of, Aim not too high.
YOu faithful Christians whereso'er you be,
Trust still in God and you shall surely see,
In faithful service he doth take delight,
And you shall never be forsaken quite.
And you that do desire the truth to hear,
Mind well my ditty, and to me give ear,
A woeful story I'll to you relate,
Of a poor Widow's sad and dismal fate:
Her Husband dead, she in great want did fall,
And little had to keep herself withal;
Seven Babes, poor Soul, she had to keep beside,
And knew not how she should for them provide.
She diligently labour'd night and day,
Her Charge to keep, and some small depts to pay;
And oftentimes for bread her goods did pawn,
Till at the last, poor Creature, all was gone.
Her Children dear to her did cry for bread,
Who nothing had to put into her head;
And as her Children for relief did cry,
She sent up prayers unto the God on high:
O God, quoth she, most righteous, good and just,
Regard my cry, that in thee put my trust,
Look down on me with a most gracious eye,
That now with want am ready for to die.
Thou to Elias gratious wer't indeed,
And in his want sent ravens him to feed;
Take pitty then upon my Children small,
And send me food to feed them there withal.
We in the scriptures oftentimes do read,
How with five loaves thou didst five thousand feed,
And when of hunger they were quite bereft,
Of scraps and fragments were twelve baskets left.
I know, quoth she, thy power is still the same,
And still will call upon thy mighty name,
In hopes that thou at last will prove my Friend,
And so, poor Soul, she did her prayers end.
Oh Mother dear, her Children then did say,
Give us some bread, we have had none to day;
I am half starv'd says one, and I said t'other,
Thus did they cry unto their careful Mother.
She hearing this, unto her Children said,
At night, my Babes, you shall be fill'd with bread;
And with these words she did her Babes content,
So she, poor Wretch, unto the market went.
Her very coat she from her back did sell
For five poor shillings, as is known full well;
But mark how this poor Soul was strangely crost,
Her purse was cut, and all her mony lost.
Which being mist, she cry'd and made great moan,
And to the Passengers she made it known,
Who little minded her so fill'd with grief,
And nothing would allow to her relief.
Vnto her Husband's Brother then she went,
And her condition there did much lament,
Desiring him to trust her, and did say,
That she would pay him the next market-day.
Of this her expectation she did fail,
For prayers nor tears with him would then prevail,
He said that he had but small store of grain,
Which would not serve till corn did come again.
This dogged answer cut her to the heart,
And mournfully from him she did depart,
The thoughs of her poor Babes did pier [...] he [...] soul,
And her condition she did much condole
These pretty Babes did keep a might [...] [...]
Which of them all should have most b [...]
But she fell shore of butter, bread an [...] [...]
And none could get their hungers to [...]
But mar [...] how Providence did still pr [...]
And by meer Chance her wants they [...]
A Baker's Boy, as homeward she re [...]
Gave her a loaf which was a little b [...]
And joyfully she did the same receive,
The Baker's Boy she many thanks di [...] [...]
And homewards then she went imme [...]
Who did rejoyce their Mother for to [...]
She kist them all, and with a chearf [...]
Did bid her Children for to read there [...]
And when, my Children dear, you ha [...] [...]
Most lovingly we will to supper go.
Some apples then she laid unto the fir [...]
Which she, poor Soul, long time had [...]
Of which they from she biggest to the [...]
With their dear Mother then did ma [...] [...]
Your Souls, they then instead of ale [...]
Were all contented with some water [...]
And were rejoyced at this feast so great
For they before had little for to eat.
Behold how God these thankful Souls
When they had supp'd the loaf was ne'r [...]
For seven weeks space upon this loaf [...]
And yet perceiv'd no lessening of their [...]
And e're the Cut-purse had her mony [...]
This thieving Rogue did break his ne [...]
Her Husband's Brother that refus'd to [...]
Was punished by heavenly power most [...]
For, in one night, as several People say
His corn was by the floods all wash'd aw [...]
And Gentlemen that did this Wonder se [...]
Reliev'd this Window's wants most plen [...]
Goods People all do now behold and see,
Who trust in God they shall relieved be,
Tho' they but little have to live upon
He'll send them more when their [...]

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