PAPER-BAG COOKERY
 
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You've heard about the latest kind of cooking
In little paper bags - it's quite a craze
My wife has got the fever and I swear I'll have to leave her
If she doesn't change her 'paper cooking' ways
It's not the paper bags that I object to
It's her method that's so very, very crude
For the paper bags she uses are all made up from Daily 'Newses'
And the print boils off and comes out on the food

There's a breach of promise case upon the mutton
And a murder right across the pickled pork
You can read about the Navy on the surface of the gravy
While the spinach gives the latest news from Cork
The Motto on the fish is 'Votes for Women'
While a scandal on the veal attention begs
On the bacon we are getting all the latest London betting
With the names of all the winners on the eggs.

My wife is very fond of reading novels
The good old melodrama kind I mean
With a cottage ivy laden and a youth and village maiden
Who struggles with the villain on the green
She uses all their pages up for cooking
Which doesn't quite conduce for married bliss
For although you're fond of reading
You don't want it when you're feeding
Served in chapters on your eatables like this.

First the hero meets the maiden on the codfish
And murmurs, 'Just one more kiss before we part'
Then the villain his 'Ha Ha! snips
In the middle of the parsnips
And he swears his love upon the apple tart
He murmurs, 'Fly with me!' upon the cabbage
She spurns him - then the villain getting vexed
Cries, 'Your jewels I will purloin'
But she stabs him on the sirloin
And the wedding is 'continued in our next'.

Upon our food last week instead of 'reading'
We'd pictures from the Illustrated News
We'd photographs of actors and famous benefactors
And the very latest panoramic views
I'd snapshots of the Derby on my breakfast
For lunch I'd aeroplanes and motor cars
And no wonder I get thinner for upon my Sunday dinner
I had photographs of all our leading stars.

There was Phyllis Dare reclining on the cutlets
Upon a rabbit pie was Cyril Mauve
There was nothing on the mustard
But all mixed up with the custard
Was a Chorus: girl just married to a lord
We'd Lockhart's Elephants upon the jelly
Upon the cheese an acrobatic group
But really took the biscuit was La Milo on the brisket
With a picture of Salome in the soup.
 
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Performed by Harry Fragson (1869-1913)
 
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