Our job was to get" the scratchings" ready for their final flight,
In the steerage class compartment of the angels' satellite,
And Maxie, our technician, was waiting, "Brahms and Liszt",
For a chance to show the world he was a good ventriloquist.
There, stretched out upon the table, in full dignity, was our guest,
Maxie slips a silver hammer in between his chin and chest,
"That'll keep his mouth shut tightly", whispers Maxie, with a grin,
And down the darkened stairway, all the "rellies" rallied in.
They were dressed in sober suits of blue, with hankies to their eyes,
From the ladies came a gentle fragrance, I could hear their sobs and sighs,
They heaped praise upon their loved one, "Heart of golden!" "Good,old Ned!'
Lying silent on the table, lying silent as the dead.
"Schlock!" I heard a flask of something opened by a fretting fist,
Sensed a sudden change of tension in the veiled ventriloquist,
'Cause, with every sip of whiskey, and with every whiff of malt,
They started re-gurgetaten' poor old Edward's bag of faults.
It was brutal was the barrage, he had no chance to answer back,
They heaped scorn upon his memory -"Wouldn't shout in a shark attack!"
More and more, they piled it on - "Starved his "billy-lids", the rat!"
But the hammer that was wedged came loose and skidded to the mat.
His mouth came slowly open, like a drawbridge does, just so,
Maxie timed it to perfection, as it did, he let it go -
"Piss off, you noisy bastards ! You are given' me the creeps !
Piss off, the bloody lot of you! Can't a poor bloke get some sleep!"
When I looked out, they had vanished, not a rellie anywhere,
Just a hanky, like a worried ghost, upon the darkened stair,
With Maxie's laughter roaring, and, as I chanced to see,
I'll swear the bloke upon the slab winked his dexter eye at me.
Copyright; Denis Kevans
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