October 3, 2013

National Poetry Day: “The Taxis” by Louis MacNeice

Filed under: events,things Rhiannon likes — Rhiannon Lassiter @ 8:54 am

Today is National Poetry Day. In honour of the day, I’m sharing a poem I learned when I was about ten. My father always keeps a book of poetry in the car and I read and learned by heart many poems this way.

The Taxis
Louis MacNeice

In the first taxi he was alone tra-la,
No extras on the clock. He tipped ninepence
But the cabby, while he thanked him, looked askance
As though to suggest someone had bummed a ride.

In the second taxi he was alone tra-la
But the clock showed sixpence extra; he tipped according
And the cabby from out his muffler said: ‘Make sure
You have left nothing behind tra-la between you’.

In the third taxi he was alone tra-la
But the tip-up seats were down and there was an extra
Charge of one-and-sixpence and an odd
Scent that reminded him of a trip to Cannes.

As for the fourth taxi, he was alone
Tra-la when he hailed it but the cabby looked
Through him and said: ‘I can’t tra-la well take
So many people, not to speak of the dog.’

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