Cricket is a Serious Thing by "Dido" (Edward Dyson)

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The Argus reports cricket matches at far greater length and with a gravity it never quite attains in dealing with any other matter on earth.

In politics there's room for jest;
   With frequent gibes are speeches met,
And measures which are of the best
   Are themes for caustic humor yet.
   E'en though the pulpiteer we fret
With sundry quiddities we fling,
   We pray you never to forget
That cricket is a serious thing.

The crowd assembles at a Test,
   And Hobbs at length is fairly set,
Though Gregory rocks 'em in with zest;
   The barrackers may fume and fret
   When Parkin has contrived to get
Five men of ours - we feel the sting,
  And give expression to regret,
For cricket is a serious thing.

They have the lead; we would arrest
   A sort of rot.  No epithet
Is proper, though they've got our best
   For next to nothing, and your bet
   Is good as lost.  Don't sit and sweat;
Due reverence to the problem bring.
   We have a pile of runs to net -
Ah, cricket is a serious thing.

We have to meet a heavy debt,
   And Howell makes the leather swing;
Australia's pride is sore beset -
   Yea, cricket is a serious thing!

First published in The Bulletin, 27 January 1921

Author: Edward Dyson (1865-1931)  was born near Ballarat, Victoria into a family that would also produce the artist Ambrose Dyson, and the writer and artist Will Dyson. Dyson was a very prolific poetry and short story writer, utilising his early life in the Victorian goldfields and on the road with his father to great effect.  Struck down by a bout of encephalitis after the 1919 influenza pandemic he went into decline and died in 1931.

Author reference sites: Austlit, Australian Dictionary of Biography, Australian Poetry Library

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on January 27, 2011 8:18 AM.

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