A Racing Rubaiyat by Max A.

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Wake! for the Horse, which slumbered for an hour,
Resumes with blossomng Spring his ancient power:
   Come where the Ringman sings his Vesper Song,
And pour within his Bag your Golden Dower.

Before the moaning for the Guineas died,
I heard a Whisper on the Lawn, that cried,
   "What matter one Boil-over? Who can tell
What wondrous Winnings we may yet divide?"

Hoofs pound along the Strip of Herbage green:
Your Moke leads up the Straight, and all's serene;
   Then some Outsider Pips him on the Post,
And leaves you mourning for the Might-have-been.

Nothing is sadder when the Day is done,
No gloomier Phantom in the Springtime Sun,
   No Memory more haunting, no worse Blow
Than this -- the Tenner which you nearly won.

The Tip which you received with Winks and Nods,
Thinking yourself the Darling of the Gods,
   Fails dismally at Starting, and you weep,
"Oh, what a Fool was I to Lay the Odds!"

In truth, I think there never seemed so Dead
A Cert as Collarit when outward led;
   But vain is Punting when the Favourite tries
To run the race Tail first instead of Head.

Now, with no Good Gold Money left to spare,
In Garments of Repentance shall we fare
   To sit with Judkins in some holy Seat,
Where Bets are never made? Not yet, I Swear!

Though quickly from our grasp the Good Gilt flies,
Some day we know the Tipster will be wise;
   Caulfield is not yet over by a heap;
And Flemington will live when Caulfield dies.

A Booky's Ticket underneath the Bough,
A Race, a Roar, a Number Up, a Row
   Of Voices yelling -- "Pay the Winner" -- ah,
Then Flemington were Paradise enow!

So, though Torn Tickets to the Dust descend,
Mocking the Tip of some misguided Friend,
   The Punter's Problem still we face, and hope
To find some sweet Solution ere the end.

First published
in Melbourne Punch, 18 October 1906

Author reference site: Austlit

See also.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on October 18, 2012 7:01 AM.

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