Works in the Herald 1935

Entomologists are complaining that they get little co-operation from farmers in fighting the grasshopper plague; and the State Government fears that further expenditure might be a waste of money.

La Cigale, you must be fed,
   Since the world owes you a living!
Nature, with her table spread,
   Now no niggard in her giving,
Here invites you to the feast,
Since her bounty has increased,
So tuck in, with bird and beast,
                     La Cigale.

La Cigale, a plague, a pest,
   Men, in bitterness, have named you;
And, for dining of the best,
   Most unreasonably blamed you –-
Men, who in one bounteous year,
Stricken by a nameless fear,
Starved when pleritude was here,
                     La Cigale. 

La Cigale, unlike wise man,
   You are dull and unforeseeing;
No stern economic plan
   Rules the order of your being,
Save the law that moves your feet
When earth’s larder is replete,
Saying, “here is plenty; eat,
                     La Cigale.”

La Cigale, men count you gay,
   Flighty and uneconomic;
Creature of a summer day,
   Tragic sometimes, ever comic;
Yet, where Nature’s gifts be spent,
Muddled man nor Government,
Helpless and improvident,
Stays your desperate intent,
                     La Cigale.

Herald, 10 January 1935, p6

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2003