Marriott Edgar ( )


Asparagus


Mr. Ramsbottom went to the races, 
A thing as hed neer done before,
And as luck always follers beginners, 
Won five pounds, no-less and no-more.

He felt himself suddenly tempted
To indulge in some reckless orgee, 
So he went to a caffy-a-teerer 
And had a dressed crab with his tea.

He were crunching the claws at the finish
And wondering what next he would do, 
Then his thoughts turned to home and to Mother,
And what she would say when she knew. 

For Mother were dead against racing 
And said as she thought twere a sin 
For people to gamble their money 
Unless they were certain to win.

These homely domestic reflections 
Seemed to cast quite a gloom on Pas day
He thought hed best take home a present 
And square up the matter that way.

 Twere a bit ofa job to decide on 
What best to select for this ere,
So he started to look in shop winders 
In hopes as hed get some idea.

He saw some strange stuff in a fruit shop 
Like leeks with their nobby ends gone,
It were done up in bundles like firewood- 
Said Pa to the Shopman, Whats yon?

Thats Ass-paragus-what the Toffs eat 
Were the answer; said Pa That ll suit,
Id best take a couple of bundles, 
For Mothers a bobby for fruit.

He started off home with his purchase 
And pictured Ma all the next week
Eating sparagus fried with her bacon 
Or mashed up in bubble-and-squeak.

He knew when she heard hed been racing 
Shed very nigh talk him to death,
So he thought as hed call in the  Local 
To strengthen his nerve and his breath.

He had hardly got up to the counter 
When a friend of his walked in the bar,
He said What ye got in the bundle? 
A present for Mother, said Pa.

Its sparagus stuff what the Toffs eat  
His friend said Its a rum-looking plant,
Can I have the green ends for my rabbits? 
said Pa Aye, cut off what you want.

He cut all the tips off one bundle,
Then some more friends arrived one by one, 
And all of them seemed to keep rabbits 
Pa had no green ends left when theyd done.

When he got home the ouse were in dark ness,
So he slipped in as sly as a fox, 
Laid the sparagus on kitchen table 
And crept up to bed in his socks.

He got in without waking Mother, 
A truly remarkable feat,
And pictured her telling the neighbours 
As twere sparagus-what the toffs eat.

But when he woke up in the morning 
It were nigh on a quarter to ten,
There were no signs of Mother, or breakfast
Said Pa, Whats she done with her-sen?

He shouted Whats up theer in t kitchen?
She replied, You do well to enquire,
Them bundles of chips as you brought home 
Is so damp... I cant light the fire.



Marriott Edgar's other poems:
  1. The Ole in the Ark
  2. Albert and the Eadsman
  3. Marksman Sam
  4. Up'ards
  5. George and the Dragon


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