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An Appeal to End Appeals

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis 1876 (Auburn) – 1938 (Melbourne)

Sir, - I try to do my duty as a patriotic man
With sane views about the science of gastronomy;
And I'd ask the promulgators of each food consuming plan
To consider man's interior economy.
I shall not go into details. But I merely wish to say
My observance hitherto has been meticulous
Of the many noble slogans: but I fear the scheme today
Has at last begun to merge with the ridiculous.

Very nobly I responded to the urge to 'Eat More Fruit';
I bought it and consumed it with avidity.
I was keen to serve my country; and the diet seemd to suit
(If we waive a tendency to slight acidity)
Then the ringing slogan sounded thro' the contry: 'Eat More Wheat!'
I assimilated faithfully that cereal
Then we were asked to eat more eggs, to eat more oats, more meat;
While tissue waxed - both moral and material.

And now, sir, to my horror, 'Eat more butter' is the plan.
But I ask you: Can I hope to rise superior?
There are symptoms. And I fear the patriotic outer man
Is at issue, so to speak, with the interior,
On, I long to do my gastronomic duty; yet I shrink
I shudder - tho' I swear I am no sceptic
But butter! Slabs of butter! There are limits, don't you think?
Sir, I remain,
Yours faithfully,
 'DYSPEPTIC.'

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis, better known as C. J. Dennis, was an Australian poet known for his humorous poems, especially "The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke", published in the early 20th century. Though Dennis's work is less well known today, his 1915 publication of The Sentimental Bloke sold 65,000 copies in its first year, and by 1917 he was the most prosperous poet in Australian history. Together with Banjo Paterson and Henry Lawson, both of whom he had collaborated with, he is often considered among Australia's three most famous poets. While attributed to Lawson by 1911, Dennis later claimed he himself was the 'laureate of the larrikin'. When he died at the age of 61, the Prime Minister of Australia Joseph Lyons suggested he was destined to be remembered as the 'Australian Robert Burns'. more…

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