Poem: Carnival Time by C.J. Dennis

The present Melbourne Cup Carnival promises to be, from many points of view, one of the most successful. Clubs and hotels are taxed to the limit for accommodation, and everywhere men speak confidently of returning prosperity.

Now is the season of Carnival.
   Who's for the sunlit course?
Who's for the beat of galloping feet
   And the day and the way of the horse?
Who joins the dance, tho' Lady Chance
   Pleasure or pain may yield,
Who comes to the call of Carnival?
   "Seven to four the field!"

This is the week of the Carnival
   And the sign of a brighter dawn In men's affairs.
Who sheds old cares
   Where gay frocks fleck the lawn?
Who would forget old days of fret?
   Who comes to the call of mirth
And the conquering steeds? ... They're off! Who leads?
   And the hoof beats spurn the earth.

Then, Hi! for the height of Carnival,
   Gayer than all gone past:
And the nameless fears of the deadening years
   Forsake men's minds at last.
Bright jackets flash beneath the sun
   As the roar of the crowd begins,
And lifts and swells at a great home run:
   "Who leads? Who lasts? Who wins?"

Ho! for the call of Carnival!
   Way for the Sport of
Kings! And men, grown sane, turn once again
   To all that high hope brings.
Who's for the Carnival? Who grows gay
   Where galloping Fortune speeds
Around the turn to gallop our way
   With the galloping, galloping steeds?

First published in The Herald, 6 November 1933
[Today is Melbourne Cup Day.]

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on November 4, 2008 1:39 PM.

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