A Wreck by C.J. Dennis

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'Is clothes wus 'angin' off 'im, an' 'is feet wus through 'is boots;
'Is trousis wanted washin', but 'e 'ad no change o' soots;
I met 'im awn the never, the other side o' Quawn,
An' travelled with 'im fer a week, but now, thank Gawd, he's gawn,

An' 'e's bin a bloomin' undergraduate,
            (So 'e says.)
But I wouldn't like to own 'im fer a mate.
            (Spare me days!)
   With 'is Oxford an' 'is 'Arrer, 'e's a badun to the marrer,
This Gawd-forgotten undergraduate.

Ther' ain't no doubt about it, 'e's bin eddicated well;
An' once upon a time 'e might 'ave bin a sorter swell;
But of all the bloomin' cadgers an' the beer sharks that I've met,
I've never seen the feller that wus equal to 'im yet.

For 'e'd steal the bit o' tucker in yer bag,
            (So 'e would!)
An' 'e'd sneak the bloomin' quart pot off yer swag,
            (If 'e could.)
   With 'is Latin an' 'is Greek, 'e's a thievin' crawlin' sneak;
'E's a scholard; but 'e ain't got room to brag.

'E used to be a barrister at 'Ome, that's wot 'e sed;
An' there's some that might believe 'im, 'cos 'e 'ad a clever 'ead.
If 'e gets a chaunce to take ye down, you bet yer life 'e will;
Fer 'e's known around the country be the name of "Crooked Bill."

An' 'e gits a bit o' money frum 'is friends,
            (Once a year.)
An' while 'e 'as a striver then 'e spends 
            (All in beer.)
   But all 'is bloomin' wealf 'e spends upon 'imself,
An' never thinks o' treatin' of 'is friends.

First published in The Critic, 6 May 1899

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on May 6, 2013 7:21 AM.

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