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Friday, January 3, 2003

The Green Eye Of The Little Yellow God

There's a one-eyed yellow idol to the north of Khatmandu,
There's a little marble cross below the town;
There's a broken-hearted woman tends the grave of Mad Carew,
And the Yellow God forever gazes down.

He was known as "Mad Carew" by the subs at Khatmandu,
He was hotter than they felt inclined to tell;
But for all his foolish pranks, he was worshipped in the ranks,
And the Colonel's daughter smiled on him as well.

He had loved her all along, with a passion of the strong,
The fact that she loved him was plain to all.
She was nearly twenty-one and arrangements had begun
To celebrate her birthday with a ball.

He wrote to ask what present she would like from Mad Carew;
They met next day as he dismissed a squad;
And jestingly she told him then that nothing else would do
But the green eye of the little Yellow God.

On the night before the dance, Mad Carew seemed in a trance,
And they chaffed him as they puffed at their cigars:
But for once he failed to smile, and he sat alone awhile,
Then went out into the night beneath the stars.

He returned before the dawn, with his shirt and tunic torn,
And a gash across his temple dripping red;
He was patched up right away, and he slept through all the day,
And the Colonel's daughter watched beside his bed.

He woke at last and asked if they could send his tunic through;
She brought it, and he thanked her with a nod;
He bade her search the pocket saying "That's from Mad Carew,"
And she found the little green eye of the god.

She upbraided poor Carew in the way that women do,
Though both her eyes were strangely hot and wet;
But she wouldn't take the stone and Mad Carew was left alone
With the jewel that he'd chanced his life to get.

When the ball was at its height, on that still and tropic night,
She thought of him and hurried to his room;
As she crossed the barrack square she could hear the dreamy air
Of a waltz tune softly stealing thro' the gloom.

His door was open wide, with silver moonlight shining through;
The place was wet and slipp'ry where she trod;
An ugly knife lay buried in the heart of Mad Carew,
'Twas the "Vengeance of the Little Yellow God."

There's a one-eyed yellow idol to the north of Khatmandu,
There's a little marble cross below the town;
There's a broken-hearted woman tends the grave of Mad Carew,
And the Yellow God forever gazes down.
COMMENTS
Peter O''Reilly 13 August 2020
From the first two lines we are drawn into a truly riveting and suspenseful tale, never fails to stir the soul.
1 0 Reply
raymond 27 March 2020
had to learn off by heart now can sleep
1 0 Reply
Chas Rose 12 March 2020
Great and classic poem
1 0 Reply
Ji Howgate 09 September 2019
I really would like to hear the poem read out
1 0 Reply
VINNIE CLEARY 17 June 2019
I once heard this by Tommy Cooper, when I was just a boy, and ALWAYS wanted to read this poem myself. Reading it is not the same as when Tommy did on the T.V.
1 1 Reply
alan morley 31 August 2018
having been in the army, and attended this sort of thing i can emagine the sound of the musci, as yoe walk across the abandond parade ground, . very spooky
3 1 Reply
Takbeer Salati 18 February 2018
Such a great toxic insight to Kathmandu.
3 2 Reply
Marian 16 February 2018
My mother used to recite this as we washed the dishes of an evening. I never tired of the suspense and the sadness. Now that I have the words I don't think I can do it justice as my mother did.
4 1 Reply
Gerry Freeman 27 November 2016
Any writer in any genre would be proud to write such a memorable piece. So atmospheric and descriptive in the absolute minimum of words. We don't know what happened up in the temple or who really killed Mad Carew and we never shall. That is why we remain fascinated after all these years.
4 3 Reply
Stephen Loomes 24 July 2013
Really great exotic narrative told with a rollicking meter, a joy for the reader
4 3 Reply

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