In depth of dark and evil night, fear and death doth stalk
And all around chilling sounds as children whisper talk
They make the ring of roses: They all fall down in death
The blackest plague now visits town with vile putrid breath.
In stagnant holes poor do crouch to wait the march of dawn
With nothing left to pay for food, nothing left to pawn
Contrary Marys garden grown; choked to death with weeds
She now waits for certain death; all rotten are her seeds.
Death took little boy-blue; in times past he blew the horn
No cows out in the field still, or sheep out in the corn
Where then is the little boy? Where is the maid Bo-Peep?
In scorched field all now lay, that guarded once the sheep?
In corner of rancid room, a small and broken stool
The little girl that once sat there, never went to school
For hunger pains became too much, she ate spider black
She died of bitter poison: A corpse upon a sack.
The only vile and bloated thing is just the evil rat
As from decaying bodies dead, grows it ever fat
Then a distant sound is heard, of piper and his flute
Accompanied by drummers, and jesters playing lute.
Infested rats follow them to deep and greedy sea
Thousands of these creatures die, before we sit for tea
To Piper honour they bestow; Band is given brass**
Life returns to normal; now greener grows the grass.