Works in the Herald 1922

Federal Ministers seem to be complaining that Mr Watt will not declare his hand. They appear to want to know what suit he is going to make it. Mr Hughes may think he has a grand-slam in no chumps; but if Mr Watt holds a safe four clubs - Well, politics are very like a game of bridge, anyhow, and what would you do?

Do you know this mysterious, serious Watt --
Who sits at the game with the cards in his sleeve;
   Watching and waiting
   While we're calculating
The tricks and the honors?  It's hard to believe
That any man use to a gamble political
COULD be so slow.  And we're apt to get critical.

Why this annoying and cloying restraint?
Can't he declare when he counts up his hand?
   Some say he's mutable; others inscrutable,
   Counting a slam, either little or grand.
Still, he should recognise players are waiting there
While he is holding his cards, hesitating there.

Even disasterful, masterful Hughes
Pauses to think as he looks o'er his cards.
   "Can he be 'cute?" he says.
   "Or just a mute?" he says.
(Oh, don't this rhyming come hard on the bards?)
Still, if the "aces" are all held by Billy, then
Watt won't declare.  But the question is" Will 'e then?

E'en analytical, critical Bruce
Dares to declare he has more than his "doots" --
   Though he's a Treasurer
   And a shrewd measurer
Of all the chances of various "soots" ...
So the game stands.  And there's no declaration, sirs.
All's in the Game.  But the STAKE is the nation, sirs!

The Mooch of Life
Herald, 26 May 1922, p6

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2002-06