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Spats



When young I was a Socialist
Despite my tender years;
No blessed chance I ever missed
To slam the profiteers.
Yet though a fanatic I was,
And cursed aristocrats,
The Party chucked me out because
I sported Spats.

Aye, though on soap boxes I stood,
And spouted in the parks,
They grizzled that my foot-wear would
Be disavowed my Marx.
It's buttons of a pearly sheen
Bourgois they deemed and thus
They told me; 'You must choose between
Your spats and us.'

Alas! I loved my gaitered feet
Of smoothly fitting fawn;
They were so snappy and so neat,
A gift from Uncle John
Who had a fortune in the Bank
That one day might be mine:
'Give up my spats!' said I, 'I thank
You--but resign.'

Today when red or pink I see
In stripy pants of state,
I think of how they lost in me
A demon of debate.
I muse as leaders strut about
In frock-coats and high hats . . .
The bloody party chucked me out
Because of Spats.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Robert William Service

Robert William Service was a poet and writer sometimes referred to as the Bard of the Yukon He is best-known for his writings on the Canadian North including the poems The Shooting of Dan McGrew The Law of the Yukon and The Cremation of Sam McGee His writing was so expressive that his readers took him for a hard-bitten old Klondike prospector not the later-arriving bank clerk he actually was Robert William Service was born 16 January 1874 in Preston England but also lived in Scotland before emigrating to Canada in 1894 Service went to the Yukon Territory in 1904 as a bank clerk and became famous for his poems about this region which are mostly in his first two books of poetry He wrote quite a bit of prose as well and worked as a reporter for some time but those writings are not nearly as well known as his poems He travelled around the world quite a bit and narrowly escaped from France at the beginning of the Second World War during which time he lived in Hollywood California He died 11 September 1958 in France Incidentally he played himself in a movie called The Spoilers starring John Wayne and Marlene Dietrich more…

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    "Spats" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 2 Dec. 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/32450/spats>.

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