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CHARLIE MUST NOT RING TONIGHT
[Parody on 'Curfew Must Not Ring Tonight']
by
Mel B. Spurr

Slowly England's sun was setting o'er a mansion old and grey
Filling all the land with glory, in the usual kind of way
And its bright rays tinged the foreheads of a man and maiden fair
He with powdered head and whiskers, she with locks of - someone's - hair
She was clutching at it wildly, as, with lips all cold and white
She was saying, 'Listen, Thomas, - Charlie must not ring tonight.'

'Thomas,' Bessie's white lips murmured, as she feverishly laid hold
Of the buttons of his liv'ry - lobster red with spots of gold
'Freddy Smith will call this evening, he'll be ringing by-and-by
Charlie does not know about him; if they met here I should die
Tell him I am out, dear Thomas; gone to call on Mrs Blight
Tell him any lie you like, but - Charlie must not ring tonight.'

'Bessie,' calmly said the flunkey - ev'ry word was like a dart
Barbed with poison, entering in that damsel's heart
'For the last three weeks that pusson - w'ich 'is name are Charlie Power
Hev'ry hevenink's called to see you, jest about the dinner-hour
'E 'as never failed to tip me - w'ich is only just and right
So I still must do my dooty, should that pusson ring tonight.'

She with quick steps upward bounded, till she reached the chamber door
Seized her purse, and quick returning, threw it wildly on the floor
'Take it, Thomas, ' cried the maiden, with her eyes and cheeks aglow
'Take it all and welcome - what there is I do not know
But 'tis yours, aye, every farthing; gold and precious silver bright
Only, take good care, dear Thomas, Charlie must not ring tonight.'

She has fled to dress for Freddie, Thomas seeks the front door bell
He will muffle up the clapper, in a way he knows full well
See, the bell is being shaken; 'tis the fateful moment now
Thomas hastes to 'do his dooty' with a firm, determined brow
Shall he let it ring? No never; he has touched the guerdon bright
So he clasps the clapper, whisp'ring, 'Charlie shall not ring tonight.'

It was o'er; the youth ceased pulling, and the maiden breathed once more
But, alas! That fickle maiden wept as maid ne'er wept before
When she learned that he who'd called there, promptly at the dinner-hour
Was the long-expected Freddie, not the hated Charlie Power
Whilst the tried and trusted Thomas, knowing not her evil plight
Open'd wide the door for Charlie when that 'pusson' called that night.
 
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