by Arthur Helliar (1900) There's a bitterness within my soul and anguish in my heart When I think of all the different pets from which I've had to part When I had a caterpillar first - a funny pet you'll say By unremitting care I hoped to win its love some day It's legs were like an elephants in shape not size I mean I'd never time to count how many gross there may have been Its parents must have oft rejoiced that boots it didn't need And if it had a crop of corns I pitied it indeed One day inside the linnet's cage it crawled - a sad mistake For the linnet thought a pleasant little entree it would make Alas, ere many a day had passed I'd scarce got over that When the linnet found a light and pleasing luncheon for the cat The cat next day with Fido rashly wrangled o'er a bone And ere I'd time to interfere, all pussie's lives had flown But Fido found his Waterloo though later in the day He argued with a motor-car about the right of way A most unwise proceeding which resulted in his doom And he promptly joined my other pets inside the silent tomb And my heart was full of sorrow and my soul was filled with gloom One day, a short time after, I was fishing in the sea When I caught a lovely bloater which I thought I'd have for tea I was in the act of taking it with care from off the hook When it gazed into my eyes with such a sweet pathetic look To slay it after that would be like murder on my soul So I took it home and placed it with some water in a bowl One day I thought why need a fish in water dwell at all Birds live in air and beasts on land and insects too which crawl So ev'ry day for several weeks I took some drops away Till there without one single spot my beautious bloater lay And then I placed it in a cage, it tried to hop a bit But several days elapsed ere on the perch it learnt to sit It grew quite fond of bird seed and it even tried to sing When I listened to its efforts tears it used to bring Alas, the day soon came when I was petless once again For I placed it in the garden and there came a shower of rain I flew to fetch it in, but when I reached the cage I found 'Twas lying cold and stark and dead, my bloater had been drowned.
The end