The Last Despatch.

A poem by Henry Austin Dobson

Hurrah! the Season's past at last;
At length we've "done" our pleasure.
Dear "Pater," if you only knew
How much I've longed for home and you,--
Our own green lawn and leisure!

And then the pets! One half forgets
The dear dumb friends--in Babel.
I hope my special fish is fed;--
I long to see poor Nigra's head
Pushed at me from the stable!

I long to see the cob and "Rob,"--
Old Bevis and the Collie;
And won't we read in "Traveller's Rest"!
Home readings after all are best;--
None else seem half so "jolly!"

One misses your dear kindly store
Of fancies quaint and funny;
One misses, too, your kind bon-mot;--
The Mayfair wit I mostly know
Has more of gall than honey!

How tired one grows of "calls and balls!"
This "toujours perdrix" wearies;
I'm longing, quite, for "Notes on Knox";
(Apropos, I've the loveliest box
For holding Notes and Queries!)

A change of place would suit my case.
You'll take me?--on probation?
As "Lady-help," then, let it be;
I feel (as Lavender shall see),
That Jams are my vocation!

How's Lavender? My love to her.
Does Briggs still flirt with Flowers?--
Has Hawthorn stubbed the common clear?--
You'll let me give some picnics, Dear,
And ask the Vanes and Towers?

I met Belle Vane. "HE'S" still in Spain!
Sir John won't let them marry.
Aunt drove the boys to Brompton Rink;
And Charley,--changing Charley,--think,
Is now au mieux with Carry!

And NO. You know what "No" I mean--
There's no one yet at present:
The Benedick I have in view
Must be a something wholly new,--
One's father's far too pleasant.

So hey, I say, for home and you!
Good-by to Piccadilly;
Balls, beaux, and Bolton-row, adieu!
Expect me, Dear, at half-past two;
Till then,--your Own Fond--MILLY.

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