Wm. Brazier
Graves, Robert (1895-1985)

At the end of Tarriers' Lane, which was the street
We children thought the pleasantest in Town
Because of the old elms growing from the pavement
And the crookedness, when the other streets were straight,
[They were always at the lamp-post round the corner,
Those pugs and papillons and in-betweens,
Nosing and snuffling for the latest news]
Lived Wm. Brazier, with a gilded sign,
'Practical Chimney Sweep'.  He had black hands,
Black face, black clothes, black brushes and white teeth;
He jingled round the town in a pony-trap,
And the pony's name was Soot, and Soot was black.
But the brass fittings on the trap, the shafts,
On Soot's black harness, on the black whip-butt,
Twinkled and shone like any guardsman's buttons.
Wasn't that pretty?  And when we children jeered:
'Hello, my dears!'  [If he was drunk, but otherwise:
'Scum off, you damned young milliners' bastards, you!'}

Let them copy it out on a pink page of their albums,
Carefully leaving out the bracketed lines.
It's an old story--f's for s's--
But good enough for them, the suckers.

The New Oxford Book of Light Verse (Amis)