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Poem by Norman Rowland Gale


Chuck Her Up


The leader was mightily pleased when he saw
That vanguard of his, with their trailing spears,
Stand up from their stoop by a common law
And welcome the sea with a round of cheers!
No doubt that he laughed as he drank his fill
Of the plundered wine in his golden cup;
But he knew not joy as an English boy
With his summer-time shout--'Chuck her up!'

And doubtless Columbus by hope deferred,
Wan, weary and worn, was down in the dumps
Till they brought him news of a mainland bird,
And fished up a couple of floating 'pumps.'
However polished the Portuguese phrase
That left his lips like a shot from a _Krupp_,
Allowing for dates I find it translates
By our cricketing shout--'Chuck her up!'

How decent when free of each Latin rule
To dash on your whites and rush to the field,
To do or die for the sake of your school
Where many have slogged and many appealed!
You feel in your heart like such chaps as Grace,
Or Surrey's old glory, the steadfast Jupp,
When you yell 'How's that?' to the Umpire, Pratt,
And the oracle says--'Chuck her up!'

'Twas a catch that dismissed the finest foe,
And your Captain hastens to pat your back!
So you modestly call it a fluke, and show
The mark through the glove and the thumbnail's crack:
But _Pater_, watching the match from the tent,
Remembers your wish for a Bernard pup,
And makes up his mind to be extra kind
For the sake of the shout--'Chuck her up!'

Thus, too, when our Lion is great again,
And roars at the tramp of advancing foes,
You may purchase praise by a twinge of pain
In the midst of battle and giant blows!
And next, when the English Flag's on the hill--
Though many are never again to sup--
For love of your land where the words were planned
Cry out to your men--'Chuck her up!'



Norman Rowland Gale


Norman Rowland Gale's other poems:
  1. Quinquaginta Annos Natus
  2. Out
  3. England v. Australia
  4. A Boundary
  5. The Olympians


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