Works in the Herald 1937
What's wrong to-day about our town? 
   A change has come upon the place.
There's not a scowl, there's not a frown; 
And townsmen hasten up and down, 
   A beaming smile on every face. 
Myself, when I arose this morn, 
Felt, somehow, like a man reborn. 
   Now, in the street, these good folk here 
   Seem half insane. It's very queer. 

The milkman when be came at dawn,   
   Came singing, singing merrily, 
And danced across my dew-wet lawn 
With jingling milkcans, like a fawn 
   Out of some careless Arcady. 
And now as I go down the street 
Blithe folk go by on dancing feet
   Who normally seem rather sad. 
   What's happened? Has the town gone mad? 

That dreary draper, Mr. Bane,   
   Grins by his door like some bald Pan, 
The butcher cleaves a beast in twain 
And carols forth a glad refrain. 
   Good Lord! What's happened to the man? 
The town's dressmaker, prim Miss Mix, 
Seems full of coy, coquettish tricks 
   And down the street, with swing ing hips, 
   Like some new-wakened Naiad trips.

The old roadmender cracks a joke 
   And waves his hammer like a wand. 
What spell has come on all these folk?  
Even the snob, who used to croak 
   With pessimism, over-fond 
Of grumbling sourly all day long, 
Now hums a little scrap of song; 
   And, seated by his sunlit bench, 
   Winks slyly at a passing wench. 

Pretty, the sunlight on that wall 
   Dappled with the shade of budding trees.     
See how the sparkling light-beams fall.   
Seeming alive? But that's not all. 
   Why all these sudden ecstasies 
That seem to fill the town with joy? 
Matron and maid and man and boy 
   Put off their gloom, forsake the frown .... 
   What's that? A stranger come to town? 

I see her! What a gorgeous girl! 
   A goddess formed to wonder at; 
Fresh check a-bloom; gold hair a-curl; 
   I wish I knew a girl like that. 
Know her already? I think not . . . 
Your pardon lady, I forgot   
   Fancy forgetting such a thing! 
   Pray, welcome to our town, Miss Spring.

Herald, 26 August 1937
The Courier-Mail, 25 September 1937, p24
Random Verse edited by Margaret Herron, 1952

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2010-11