Page:Departmental Ditties and Ballads and Barrack-Room Ballads, Kipling, 1899.djvu/227

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43
BOH DA THONE

They had crippled his power for rapine and raid,
They had routed him out of his pet stockade,


And at last, they came, when the Day Star tired,
To a camp deserted—a village fired.


A black cross blistered the Morning-gold,
And the body upon it was stark and cold.


The wind of the dawn went merrily past,
The high grass bowed her plumes to the blast.


And out of the grass, on a sudden, broke
A spirtle of fire, a whorl of smoke—


And Captain O'Neil of the Black Tyrone
Was blessed with a slug in the ulna-bone—
The gift of his enemy Boh Da Thone.


(Now a slug that is hammered from telegraph-wire
Is a thorn in the flesh and a rankling fire.)

········

The shot-wound festered—as shot-wounds may
In a steaming barrack at Mandalay.


The left arm throbbed, and the Captain swore,
"I'd like to be after the Boh once more!"