A mile-long panto dragon ploddin'
'opeless all the day,
Stuffed out with kits, 'n' spiked with rifles,
steamin' in its sweat,
A-heavin' down the misty road, club-footed
through the clay,
By waggons bogged 'n' buckin' guns,
the wildest welter yet,
Like 'arf creation's tenants shiftin' early
in the wet.
We're marchin' out, we dunno where, to meet
we dunno who;
But here we lights eventual, 'n' sighs 'n'
slips the kit,
'N', 'struth, the first to take us on is Mickie
A copper of the Port he was, when 'istory
Sez I : “We're sent to face the foe, 'n', selp
me, this is It.”
A shine John. Hop is Mollynoo. A mix-up
with the push
Is all his joy. One evenin' when his
baton's flyin' free
I takes a baby brick, 'n' drives it hard agin
'N' Privit Mick is scattered out fer all the
world to see,
But not afore indelible he's put his mark on
I got the signs Masonic all inlaid along me
Where Molly, P.C., swiped me in them
'appy, careless days.
He's sargin' now, a vet'ran; I'm a newchum
and a mug,
'N' when he sorter fixes me there's some-
thin' in his gaze
That's pensive like. “Move on!” sez he.
“Keep movin' there!” he says.
If after this I dreams of scraps promiscuous
The mills in Butcher's Alley when the
watch is on the wine,
Those nights he raided Wylie's shed to break
the two-up school,
I takes a screw at Molly. With a grin that
He's toyin' with a scar of old I reckernise
'N' so I'm layin' for it, 'n' I'm wonderin' how
We're signed on with the Germans, 'n' there
ain't a vacant date;
But sure it's comin' to me, 'n' it's comin' 'ard
Me lurk is patient waitin', but I'm trim-
min' while I wait
A brick to jab or swing with, in a willin'
Oh, judge me wonder! There's a scrim that
follers on a raid.
I'm roughin' it all-in with Hans. He sock
me such a bat
I slides on somethin' narsty, 'n' me little grave
But Molly butts my Hun, 'n' leaves no face
beneath his hat,
'N', “'Scuse me, Mister Herr,” sez he, “I have a lien on that!”
He helps me under cover, 'n' he 'ands me
(I've got a lick or two that leaves me feelin'
“Lor love yeh, ole John Hop,” sez I, “yiv
buried me in debt.”
“Don't minton ut at all,” he sez, 'n' eyes
'N' back there in the trench I sits, 'n' trims
'Tis all this how a month or more; then
Mollynoo sez he:
“Come aisy, Jumm, yeh loafer, little hell 'n'
all to view.
A job most illegant is on, cut out fer you 'n'
The damnedest, dirtiest fighter on the
Continent is you,
Bar one, yeh gougin' thafe, 'n' that is
I take, with knife 'n' pistol, arf a brick to line
We creeps a thousan' yards or so to jigger
up a gun
Which seven Huns is workin' on the Irish like
We gets across them, me 'n' him. I pots
the extra one;
Mick chokes his third in comfort, 'n',
be'old, the thing is done!
He stands above me, rakin' sweat from off his
“Me dipper's leakin', Mick,” sez I; “me
leg is bit in two.”
Sez he: “Bleed there in comfort, I'm for
bringin' help, ye scut.”
He's back in twenty minutes, with a dillied
“Three'll carry in the gun,” sez he, “the
rest will carry you.”
I dunno how he got 'em, but he made them
They lugged the gun before him, 'n' he
yarded them like geese.
Then Mickie s'lutes the Major. “They're in
custody,” sez he,
“Fer conduc' calculated to provoke a breach
A-tearin' iv me uniform, 'n' 'saultin' the
Then down he dumped. His wounds would
make a 'arf a column list.
When hack to front I chucks me bricks 'n'
smiles the best I can.
He grins at me: “Yer right,” sez he, “Hold
out yer bla'-guard fist,
I couldn't fight yeh, blarst yeh, if yeh dinted
in me pan.
This messin' round wid Germans makes a
chicken iv a man.”
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