Page:Departmental Ditties and Ballads and Barrack-Room Ballads, Kipling, 1899.djvu/115

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Too late, alas! the song
To remedy the wrong;—
The rooms are taken from us, swept and garnished for their fate,
But these tear-besprinkled pages
Shall attest to future ages
That we cried against the crime of it—too late, alas! too late!

"What have we ever done to bear this grudge?"
Was there no room save only in Benmore
For docket, duftar, and for office drudge,
That you usurp our smoothest dancing floor?
Must babus do their work on polished teak?
Are ball-rooms fittest for the ink you spill?
Was there no other cheaper house to seek?
You might have left them all at Strawberry Hill.

We never harmed you! Innocent our guise,

Dainty our shining feet, our voices low;