Works in the Bulletin 1915

"Gentle brother, answer truly,
   Tell what you be.
But, I pray, tax not unduly
   Your sagacitee.
Is your brand u-ni-fi-cation -
Is't, or is your appellation
Something mild and shorter still?
Answer truly, Brother Bill."

Gentle brother answered truly, Though in language hot - For his temper was unruly: "Don't talk blinded rot! Blow u-ni-fi-blanky-cation! If you want me name an' station My true moniker is Bill, An' I work at Johnson's mill."
"Gentle brother, wax not ireful. I'm not out for jokes. Yea, and conseuqnces direful Smite bad-temepered blokes. I've no doubt, all day perspiring, You graft hard. I'm not inquiring Who you are or what you do, But what are you? Answer true."
Brother Bill stood wildly staring, Anger in his eye; And, beligerently glaring, Thus he made reply: "Up at Johnson's mill I'm working, And I ain't a bloke for shirking. If you want me answer true, I'm a better man that you!"
"Gentle brother, of your senses You seem quite bereft. Just consider how immense is...." Here's Bill's dirty left Took the catechist right squarely, And Bill forthwith bounced him fairly, Punched till he was out of breath. Bill despised a shibboleth.
Note ye how each platform spouter, Playing at "the game," Strives to label ev'ry doubter With a foolish name. With sly tricks and ruses clever They are keenly seeking ever To affix a party brand To all voters in the land.
List, ye party politicians, Talking near and far, We don't want vague propositions As to what you are. For the shibboleths of party Rightly earn the curses hearty Of all honest men and true. Let is hear of what you DO.

"C. J. Dennis"
The Bulletin, 29 May 1915, p18

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2003-05