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This poem is often wrongly thought to be by Robert W Service. It is published here to the memory of Hugh Antoine D'Arcy, its rightful father.
An Evening with the Bard of the Yukon, July 18 th 2003 at 20.30pm in the Town-Hall of Lancieux, Brittany.
All Entries 1997 - 2002
All Entries 2002
Odds and Ends, Other Items Of Interest About Robert


Published by Susan on 07/29/2003 (3298 reads)
Along the Seine with empty belly...

Along the Seine with empty belly
I wandered in the sunny morn;
My legs were wobbly as jelly,
I wished that I had ne'er been born.
Of hop, alas! I hadn't any,
And I was weak from want of food;
When one has not a bloody penny,
Why, even suicide seems good.

I stumbled, seeking not to show it;
The quay was lined with bins of books,
But though I once had been a poet,
I gave them bleak and bitter looks.
The shrinking in a faded cover,
Reminding me from musty shelf
Of days when I was life's gay lover,
I saw - a book I wrote myself.

The dealer watched me with suspicion;
My boots were cracked, my coat was old.
Oh sure it was a first edition,
For not a copy had I sold.
I opened to its dedication:
"To my adorable Odette."
Then . . . then I stared with consternation:
The pages were unsevered yet.

Yet she inspired its finest numbers . . .
And then a memory awoke
From half a century of slumbers -
A note, a mille did I not poke
Within it . . . There! Who would believe it?
As crisp and clean it was today,
And so I hastened to retrieve it,
Put back the book and walk away.

They say bread cast upon the waters
Returneth after many days.
Odette was one of Joy's fair daughters,
Yet sadly fickle in her ways.
Now I've wherewith for bread and butter,
And yet somehow my spirit grieves,
As paying garret rent I mutter:
"The trollop didn't cut the leaves."

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