Carmen Simlaensis

A Ballade of the Break Up

I’ve danced till my shoes are outworn
From ten till the hours called small;
I’ve cantered with Beauty at morn—
At even made love at the ball.
Light Loves for five months were my lot,
Heavy bills and long `ticks’ that appal
Me when counting the cost of the shot.
Lord! What was the good of it all?
Good—bye to the Annandale (1) roses—
Sweet talks in the dusk on the Mall;
Adieu to a season that closes—
Peliti’s (2) the Club, and the call!
To the pines that moaned over our playtime,
The deodars (3) sombre and tall—
Diversions of night and of daytime.
Lord! What was the good of it all?
I sit on my bulgy portmanteau
(As once in his tent—gloom lay Saul), (4)
And I write me this cynical canto,
In the ink of derision and gall,
As I think of the cash I must borrow
From that excellent shroff (5) Bunsee Lal,
And the tonga (6) I’ve booked for to—morrow.
Lord! What was the good of it all?
Of tuppenny passions and small,
Of Levee and function and feast,
Of charmers that used to enthral
For a month, or a fortnight at least,
From October to April I’m clear—
From Olympus to Hades I fall.
By the bills on my file, ye were dear!
But what was the good of it all?
Princess! It was pleasant to meet;
(Loves fade, and Leave ends, and snows fall)
And I turn to the Plains at our feet
From the racket, the ride and the ball;
From a season that comes to a stop,
From flirtations that weary and pall,
Lord! What was the good of it all?]
Other works by Rudyard Kipling...