Works in the Herald 1935

The recent disturbances in Greece have had mild repercussions in Australia, where Royalist and Republican amongst local Greek residents have their differences of opinion.

Nikki the Greek at the corner shop,
   He stands to "open da oyst;"
And the sweat of his brow falls drop by drop;
   For that lowering brow is moist --
Moist from the heat and that inner fire
   That mounts with is rising gorge,
As he mutters his threats and a vengeance dire
   On the dapper young waiter, George.

Eager and handsome and ebon-eyed,
   George cheers for the rebels of Greece;
But Nikki, he cheers to the Royalist side:
   He is old, and he craves for peace.
"Two-a doz.!" cries George.  "Do customer wait!
   (Old stick-a-do-mud you are!)"
But Nikki, he smothers his smouldering hate
   As he mutters, "You wait, by gar!"

Down by the tables to left and right
   Goes George in his strong young pride;
And Nikki explains to his friends at night,
   In the club, how his hands are tied:
"Ah, I like-a to stoush dat young galoot
   When he come-a to serve da fish!
But a smack-a da face wit da barra-da-coot
   And I lose-a my good posish!"

There's a feud at the shop where the meals are sold
   'Mid the odor of uncooked fish;
But there's nobody knows, for a man grows old
   And must "keep-a da good posish!"
So Nikki the Greek toils early and late
   At his sink in the oyster bar.
"Two doze da oyst!  Da customer wait!"
   "Young jack-a-da-nape!  By gar!"  

Herald, 7 March 1935, p6

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2003