Punch, August 19, 1903


Whene’er I take my Phyllis out
 For moonlight walks, I like to stroll;
It gives me—I am rather stout—
 More chance of laying bare my soul.
My tender pleading, I reflect,
 Is robbed of all the charm that’s in it
If my remarks are rudely checked
 By gasps and puffing every minute.

Yet nothing less is now my fate;
 Each night we wander to and fro:
Our normal pace has been of late
 A good six miles an hour or so.
Sadly the moments flit away:
 No rays of joy my burdens lighten;
My Phyllis, I regret to say,
 Is training for a walk to Brighton.

When I let fall a gentle hint
 That I’m no devotee of pace,
She answers, “Now, suppose we sprint?
 I must get fit before the race.
Unless I exercise my limbs
 I feel my chances wane, diminish;
And I should die if that Miss Sims
 Arrived before me at the finish.”

So off we go. No more her ears
 May I enchant with honeyed phrase;
No more I win her smiles and tears,
 As once I could—in happier days.
We don’t fall out; we’ve have no tiff;
 My passion glows without cessation;
But still, I’d love her better if
 She’d choose some calmer recreation.




Unsigned verse as printed; credited to P. G. Wodehouse in the Index to Vol. 125 of Punch.