Being bored with just watching the tide come in in Dar-es-Salaam — this horrible blotch on an otherwise superb country — I wrote this poem. The quality reflects the quality of sleep I got while in Dar.
In all things Mr. James is too particular.
He always wants his shoelaces just so.
He walks five paces, then looks down
His brow contorted in a frown:
His favourite scheme —
His shoelace dream! —
Disturbed by the necessity of walking.
In all things Mr. Giles is quite peculiar:
His shoes are no exception, I can tell!
Three sets of laces (red, blue, black),
All tied together, back to back,
Run up the calf,
Then down one half.
“It aids in the necessity of walking!”
In all things Mrs. Sparrow is too careless.
You’d never think she’d dare to leave the house!
For shoelaces she simply slips
Some old discarded paper-clips
“It keeps ’em on,
and I shan’t go long.”
— Quite true for the necessity of walking!
In all things Miss Eliza is quite dazzling
Her hair and skirt and jacket scarlet-toned
Her shoes are red but every lace
Shine forth like sunlight’s golden rays
From carmine lips
to blood-red slips
She delights in the necessity of walking.
In all things Sir Devizes is a giant
His hands alone could shade a flock of sheep!
Each shoe would dwarf the London Bridge
When asked, “How do you keep them hitched?”
He shows the stable
In use for the necessity of walking.
In all things our small dog is a disaster
His pet-name “Duke” he never really earned
He likes to pull the laces out
And then, with a triumphant shout!
Away he’ll go
The shoe in tow
When feeling the necessity for walking.