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Birds, Batsmen and Bowlers



The throstle now in English lanes
Bids Summer strew her dear delights. . . .
But we, intent on cricket gains,
Watch well our valiant willow knights.
With eager eyes on cabled news,
We watch each bravely mounting score;
With ears half frozen, we refuse
To go to bed; but crane for more
From out the ether, as we sit
And 'listen-in,' tho' midnight's gone.
While glorious centuries they hit
(And if it isn't Bradman, it's Ponsford;
and if it isn't Ponsford, it's Woodfull;
and if it isn't Woodfull, it's McCabe;
and if it isn't McCabe, it's Chipperfield;
and if it isn't Chipperfield -)
Gosh! Can this sort of thing go on?
Our hope lies not alone in Don;
Others remain to carry on.

The Merry Mavis, fluting free
In England now by wood and weald,
Calls from the edge of Arcady. . . .
But, as our bowlers take the field,
We mark them with a mental eye,
Striving against the mimic foe,
Despite one Shaw. (Let Mavis cry,
The foolish fowl.) We see them mow
The wickets down; this way and that,
Turning the ball. Rare joy we sup
To mark their cunning beat the bat -
(And if it isn't Wall, it's O'Reilly;
and if it isn't O'Reilly, it's Grimmett;
and if it isn't Grimmett, it's Fleetwood-Smith;
and if it isn't Fleetwood-Smith -)
Oh Gosh! Can our men keep this up?
The Test? Alas, what bitter cup -
Hey! Shut that kookaburra up!

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

1:18 min read
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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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