Laid Low

He wandered  by the L-wr-nce H-ll 
      (An axe upon his shoulders laid)
Quoth He:—'I do not like at all
      An upstart tree that casts a shade;
Besides, it's bigger than the rest, 
Which rankles in my Liberal breast.

It took some twenty years to grow.
      It is a most offensive tree;
And shall I pass without a blow, 
      Arboreal aristocracy?
Jamais—nevaire! So down it comes.—
Bed out some neat chrysanthemums.

The long weeks came; the long weeks passed; 
      The neat chrysanthemums were bedded;
But some grew slow, while some grew fast,
      And some were long, and some short headed,
He watched  their nodding ranks with tears,— 
And fetched a malli  and the shears.

'Dekho! Look here. Ye burra hai,
      And this is chota don't you see?
And Priest of that dread creed am I 
      Which worships Uniformity.
Iswasti, baito by the beds
And cut kurro the lumbar heads.'

The malli lopt for many years,
      (He came and viewed the work with pride)
Until, beneath official shears,
      Those unresponsive flowers died .
'We'll supersede the lot' He said,
'Make the whole place one kunkur-bed.'

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