(A Lay of the Litany Bushes.)

 

The place – we all know it, the Romans before us did,

Totternhoe’s ramparts above it look down;

Hard by the outskirts of Dunstable town.

Never a gunshot disturbs its tranquillity.

Never a cur-dog its privacy mocks;

This takes us first rank as yet,

Never drawn blank as yet,

Haunt of the rabbit and home of the fox.

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The man – we all know him – how cheery his welcome

When meeting at Tilsworth we ride to the fray;

Still more familiar to many among us,

The view of his back when its ‘forrard away!’

Whether the line be for Leighton or Toddington,

Long hunting run or a ten-minute burst,

Timber or ditch it is,

Never mind which it is,

Bet you a fiver the Colonel * goes first!

 

This is the toast I would ask you to honour then –

You who love fences strong-growing and tall:

‘Dunstable’s vale and the man who has “made” it,

The man who can cross it the best of us all.

Eighteen times running we’ve found at the Litany –

Show me a record beats that if you can;

Covert well tended

And sportsman so splendid,

Then long may they flourish – the Place and the Man!

 

*Colonel Martyn Fenwick of Tilsworth.

 

George U, Robins

 
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