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Page:Gaston Leroux--The man with the black feather.djvu/65

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THE MAN WITH THE BLACK FEATHER
 

"Bullies all! In our snug cribs
We live like fighting-cocks:
On dainties rich we splash the dibbs,
And booze we never docks.
Then guzzle, cullies, and booze away
Till Gabriel's trump on Judgment Day!"


In spite of the richness of the rhyme, no applause followed the stanza. The ladies did not clink their glasses with their knives; they stared at Theophrastus with their eyes starting out of their heads; and the eyes of Marceline projected furthest of all.

Theophrastus did not need any applause; like one possessed of a devil, he bawled on:


"Bullies all! In our snug cribs
Dan Cupid loves to dance.
He brings to help us splash the dibbs
The prettiest silk in France.
Then guzzle, cullies, and booze away
Till Gabriel's trump on Judgment Day!"


In a final triumphant roar he repeated the last couplet and prolonged the final note, his eyes on the sun, which was sinking over the edge of the horizon, laid one hand on his heart, embraced "Nature" with a sweeping gesture of the other, and bellowed:


"Then guzzle, cullies, and booze away
Till Gabriel's trump on Judgment Day!"