THE STORY OF
A BATTLE-AXE
by
Leonard Pounds
A battle-axe, tells this story, 
A battle-axe, worn and grim 
It hangs on the wall, old and hoary, 
Next the photo of Uncle Jim.

Pray silence! That cat on the fender, 
Pray silence! that armchair that creaks, 
Pray silence! each creature and gender, 
Pray silence!... The Battle-Axe speaks.

''Tis centuries now' the Axe started 
'Since the workshop I left, new and gay 
But my usefulness now has departed 
And my glories have faded away.

But I once was a power in the land, sirs 
And feared by all foes was my name 
And I flashed in my bold master's hand, sirs 
Like a terrible weapon of flame.

He kept me all polished and bright, sirs 
Until like the sun's rays I shone 
And ne'er was I vanquished in fight, sirs 
Until... but I'll tell you anon.

From father to son I descended 
In genealogical line 
And ne'er did I need to be mended 
'Twas long e'er my power did decline.

But at last out of fashion I went, sirs 
And they pensioned me off on the wall 
With scarcely a chip or a dent, sirs 
In the fam'ly's baronial hall.

'Twas thought that I'd finished my battles 
Such thoughts were erroneous quite 
For e'er my mem'ry there rattles 
The din of that last awful fight.

My master one evening, I mind, sirs 
Had looked on the wine when 'twas red 
With some medical students he'd dined, sirs 
And at 3.30 got into bed.

In the Buffet at Charing Cross Station 
My master had sat about one 
And was having a strong altercation 
About the Refreshment Room bun.

Some fellows surrounded that bun, sirs 
And conjectured with awe at its age 
Saying, 'Nothing could sever that bun, sirs 
If it dies it will be of old age.'

Quoth my master, 'You're all talking rot, sirs 
Speak only on subjects you know 
I'll wager five pounds on the spot, sirs 
That I'll sever that bun at a blow.'

Some sportsman accepted his wager 
And fixed up the night and the hour 
Then he came and told me, the 'Old Stager' 
And grinned as he thought of my power.

I seemed to smell blood once again, sirs 
Once more I would romp o'er the slain 
To get at that bun I was fain, sirs 
To smash it again and again.

At last came the eve stipulated 
Spectators stood round in a ring 
The betting was quite animated 
Which to me seemed a marvellous thing.

For what chance did a bun stand with me, sirs 
Who the finest chain-armour had split? 
I determined that bun shouldn't flee, sirs 
If only I got a fair hit.

'Stand clear!' called the umpire, 'Stand by, sirs 
Three strokes with the axe are allowed.' 
My master then raised me on high, sirs 
And sneeringly smiled on the crowd.

Then 'Crash'... down I came all my might, sirs 
With every knack that I knew 
Twelve glasses fell down on the right, sirs 
Into pieces the white counter flew.

Two dozen bottles of sherry 
Fell smash on five more of port wine 
But the face of the bun remained merry 
Which is more than I dared say of mine.

My master, quite dazed at the sight, sirs 
With a crash gave his other two blows 
Nine cab-horses promptly took fright, sirs 
And some glass cut the referee's nose.

But still that old bun didn't sever 
The shrivelled old currents shewed plain 
My edge had now vanished for ever 
So they put me along with the slain

That's the story of my sad disgrace, sirs 
'Tis the history true of my fall 
That's the cause of my poor battered face, sirs 
Which I always keep turned to the wall.

Still, often the story is told, sirs 
Of the great bun and battle-axe fight 
And the bun even now is not sold, sirs 
So the next thing to try's dynamite.
The end