In the city and suburbs there have been 71 cases of housebreaking in seven days and 26 hold-ups since September 4. Meantime the Government is still perfecting its "Consorting with Criminals" Bill, aimed at the suppression of crime.
If a footpad comes upon you in a quiet street at dark,
And prods a large revolver in your back,
Oh, don't decide, in sudden gloom, that life's a nark,
Or toy with pessimistic thought and black;
But stick your hands high in the air as, with felonious act,
He strips you of your cash; keep very still,
And ponder on the beautiful and more consoling fact,
That the Government's considering a Bill.
If you reach your home on evening to discover cupboards bare,
And every secret place turned inside out,
And all the rooms denuded of their treasures rich and rare,
Don't hit the roof, and throw your weight about,
And babble of a crime-wave. Keep your temper; try to smile,
And lay this soothing unction to your soul:
The nation's mighty intellects are building plans the while,
That, in time's gracious fullness will be whole.
For some shall be the sacrifice as some shall grab the loot;
But evil in the end shall not prevail.
So when a hoodlum jumps on you and then "puts in the boot,"
Think (while you may) this sort of thing must fail.
We must be philosophic. Panic serves no thoughtful folk.
What's property compared with perfect laws?
So, if you stop a bullet, try to ponder as you croak,
You've been martyred in a good and noble cause.
First published in The Herald, 10 November 1931