Page:Departmental Ditties and Ballads and Barrack-Room Ballads, Kipling, 1899.djvu/123

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109
CHRISTMAS IN INDIA

Call on Rama, going slowly, as ye bear a brother lowly—
Call on Rama—he may hear, perhaps, your voice!
With our hymnbooks and our psalters we appeal to other altars,
And to-day we bid "good Christian men rejoice!"


High noon behind the tamarisks—the sun is hot above us—
As at Home the Christmas Day is breaking wan.
They will drink our healths at dinner—those who tell us how they love us,
And forget us till another year be gone!
Oh the toil that knows no breaking! Oh the heimweh, ceaseless, aching!
Oh the black dividing Sea and alien Plain!
Youth was cheap—wherefore we sold it.
Gold was good—we hoped to hold it,
And to-day we know the fulness of our gain.


Gray dusk behind the tamarisks—the parrots fly together—

As the Sun is sinking slowly over Home;