Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Collected Poems

Boarding House

page 127

Boarding House

Five beds in the big back room.
Handy at the crack of doom.
Five beds creaking all in key,
chord of F, the black note's me.

Butcher-boy and baker call,
down the passage hear them bawl.
Madam's face comes up the yard,
large as life and twice as hard.

Steak and kidney's good for us.
Eat it up, don't make a fuss.
Pound of steak and half a kidney.
Madam plans to go to Sydney.

Greasy stew means easy swallow.
Prunes and parboiled rice to follow.
All the custard tart is gone.
Yolk of egg is always on.

Daughter Doreen's wearing silk.
A fly has fallen in the milk.
Must be that young grocer chap.
Gentlemen, a hearty clap.

Mrs Jones has gone to bed,
speaks of noises in the head.
Pray she has the grace to die.
Shut the door and let her lie.

Redhead Maggie's getting hitched.
Just in time, and nearly ditched.
Soon the soup will look much duller,
lacking just that touch of colour.

Bow and arrows in the hall
decorate the sagging wall.
Sent by Madam's Uncle Norm.
Cannibals enjoyed his form.

Blowflies on the window-pane
buzz and watch the summer rain.
page 128 Hand me down the book of laughs,
Madam's family photographs.

Madam's gone to see the races,
all the kids have dirty faces.
Grant her a three-figure winner,
lamb and peas will come to dinner.

Castaways upon a raft,
chaos lapping fore and aft,
Tom, Dick, Harry, Eve and Adam,
Maggie and the kids and Madam.