The Kia ora coo-ee : the magazine for the ANZACS in the Middle East, 1918
Owing to the scarcity of horseflesh, a number of donkeys has been taken on the animal strength of Regiments, for the use of batmen. Army order Z.I.Z I., etc., etc.
Oh, pray little donkey, speak not of your woes;
Keep silent awhile till the day's at its dose, and then, if you needs must abolish delight.
Bray loudly and long through the suffering night.
What misguided man brought you into this war
To constantly plead for your ration of straw?
That noise you mistake for a heavenly call
Is gradually winning the hate of us all.
Oh, once a fat Gyppo made money with you—
Out to the Pyramids, back to the Zoo.
You carried gay loads to the Wazza, and back,
And staggered' neath tibbin when business was slack.
But now there is seldom a load to be borne;
You carry no tibbin, but eat it with corn;
And sometimes a batman—your master of course—
Goesoutfor a ride—but he borrows a horse!
So, please little donkey, be silent to-day;
Sing only at night—they may send you away
If only you'll shatter the Officers' sleep,
And when you have vanished, I swear I shall weep.
Donkey, Oh donkey, I love you I do—
But I'd rather a Gyppo was master of you.
So don't be an ass and absorb my delight.
Sleep, sleep through the day and bray only at night.