Dyneley Hussey cites Walter Savage Landor’s poem
and asks for a version substituting someone other than Rose Aylmer (who was incidentally a real person, a friend of Landor’s who died in 1800 aged 21). Suggestions include Will Shakespeare and Max Aitken (the latter also the hook for 35B). In the event, the entrants commended have had a shot at Gus Mahler, Charles Chaplin, Don Bradman, Pavlova, but the winner is more traditional. A.J. Perman (who is starting to do rather well) goes for Vergil:
Ah! what avail’d the tender heart?
Ah! what the sculptur’d line?
What perfect word and perfect art?
Vergilius, all were thine.
Vergilius, whom my youthful eyes
With joy could never see,
These few words to apologise
I consecrate to thee.
This seems a little sappy for two guineas (this is one competition that would be done well now, I think). L.V.Upward gets the second prize.
Ah what avails the I.L.O.
Ah! What that sub. of mine!
What energy, what push and go,
Tom Beecham, all were thine.
Tom Beecham, whom the B.B.C.
Annoy’d but never still’d,
How glad Elysian fields will be
To see thy concerts bill’d.
[Beecham was not dead, incidentally – he died in 1961 – but he had just failed to secure an arrangement with the BBC to form a radio orchestra]
35B asks for a three verse ballad called ‘Follow-my-leader’, with the refrain ‘I’ll follow any leader if the leader follows me.’ The cue for this was Lord Beaverbrook’s (i.e. Max Aitken’s) announcement that he would back Baldwin, the Conservative leader – see the Origins section – an endorsement he offered with these words: ‘I confess that the leadership [of Baldwin] suits me, provided that the leaderrship carries with it the policy I support.’
The winner is a new name, Arthur Oliver:
and the runner-up is another new name, T.G.U.: