Ballade of Capital

The Earth is full of mud and meat,
And malt and salt and sand and spice,
And ships and shells and sugar-beet,
And bread at the Imperial price,
And glass and brass and rum and rice,
And oak and talc and turtle-fat,
And fire and snow and sea and ice,
And lots of little things like that.

And all these things we meet —
Are capital: and should suffice
(You say) to do us quite a treat —
As if you and I have each a slice —
… But one whose clothes could scarce entice
Held recently a ragged hat
In which you put the best advice
And lots of little things like that.

I own the scheme is very neat,
I do not think it very nice
That we should own the blooming street
With all the people poor as mice.
I have old views: that loaded dice
Are “wrong”, and even Tit-for-tat
“Heathen”, that virtue is not vice
And lots of little things like that.

Envoi

Prince, Pharoah trounced them in a trice,
The poor that groaned at him: whereat
God sent him flies and frogs and lice
And lots of little things like that.

— (c.1911)

Published in: on July 25, 2012 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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