Darkness—expectant, discreet— Only a lamp here and there, Gloom in the clattering street, Stygian black in the square; Dazzling fascias and fronts, Scintillant sky-scrapers banished, Snuffed and shut down are the spangles of Town. London has vanished. Only a few months ago London woke up every night; Dances or “Chemin” or Show, Festival vistas or light. Everywhere glitter and glare, Junket and revelry keeping. Yes, but despite the laughter and light, London was sleeping. Searchlights are probing the skies, Eastward their streamers are trailed; Masked are the city’s bright eyes— Even the tramcars are veiled. Cockneys turn in at eleven, “Stop Press” thirst finally slaked. Turn the lights out. Now, without doubt, London’s awake!
Jessie Pope - 1868-1941
The War Budget
Hodge waded through the weekly news, “The Income Tax,” he said, “That’s nowt to me, I shallunt lose, ’Twill hit the boss instead. Lloyd Garge he be the man for I, Us poor have nowt to bear.” He paused—then gave a dismal cry: “They’re goin’ to tax my beer!” “A good thing too!” replied his wife. “’Twill keep you from the pub, Swilling each evening of your life, While I work at the tub!” Across the inglenook she reached, The welcome news to see, Then, in resentful clamour, screeched: “3d. a pound on tea!” MORAL To foot the bill it’s only fair That everyone should do their share, And since we all are served the same, Pay and look pleasant—that’s the game.