Departmental Ditties and Other Verses

The Moon of Other Days

Rudyard Kipling

BENEATH the deep veranda’s shade,
     When bats begin to fly,
I sit me down and watch—alas!—
     Another evening die.
Blood-red behind the sere ferash
     She rises through the haze.
Sainted Diana! can that be
     The Moon of Other Days?

Ah! shade of little Kitty Smith,
     Sweet Saint of Kensington!
Say, was it ever thus at Home
     The Moon of August shone,
When arm in arm we wandered long
     Through Putney’s evening haze,
And Hammersmith was Heaven beneath
     The moon of Other Days?

But Wandle’s stream is Sutlej now,
     And Putney’s evening haze
The dust that half a hundered kine
     Before my window raise.
Unkempt, unclean, athwart the mist
     The seething city looms,
In place of Putney’s golden gorse
     The sickly babul blooms.

Glare down, old Hecate, through the dust,
     And bid the pie-dog yell,
Draw from the drain its typhoid-term,
     From each bazaar its smell;
Yea, suck the fever from the tank
     And sap my strength therewith:
Thank Heaven, you show a smiling face
     To little Kitty Smith!

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