To a Burlesque Soubrette

Upstage the great high-shafted beefy choir
Squawked in 2000 watts of orange glare —
You came, and impudent and deuce-may-care
Danced where the gutter flamed with footlight fire.

Flung from the roof, spots red and yellow burned
And followed you. The blatant brassy clang
Of instruments drowned out the words you sang,
But goldenly you capered, twirled and turned.

Boyish and slender, child-limbed, quick and proud,
A sprite of irresistible disdain,
Fair as a jonquil in an April rain,
You seemed too sweet an imp for that dull crowd. . . .
And then, behind the scenes, I heard you say,
" O Gawd, I got a hellish cold to-day! "
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