At the Drop of a Hat
At the Drop of Another Hat
Tried by the Centre Court
And Then We Wrote...
1957 recording introduction:
Donald and I like to go down to the Natural History Museum to check up on the habits of these animals we write about. Last time we were there, we noticed a glass case near the entrance, describing the habits of certain climbing plants. Well, plants are a new venture for us, but we've written a rather unusual song, I think, about this perhaps rather unusual subject, and it's called Misalliance, and we'd very much like to know what you think of it.
1959 recording introduction:
My friend here from outer space and I, we like to go down to the Natural History Museum from time to time, check up on these animals we write about. Every so often he comes over to Kensington, which is a great treat for him, of course, I give him lunch, after lunch he takes me to the museum, which is his treat. Last time we were there I discovered it was free. DS: Oh well. MF: Also last time we were there we noticed something we'd never spotted before, near the entrance is a glass case, and in this glass case are described the habits of certain climbing plants. Now this may seem a rather strange subject for a song, but we have written what is perhaps, a rather strange song. It's called Misalliance.
The fragrant Honeysuckle spirals clockwise to the sun
And many other creepers do the same.
But some climb anti-clockwise; the Bindweed does, for one,
Or Convolvulus, to give her proper name.
Rooted on either side a door one of each species grew
And raced towards the window-ledge above;
Each corkscrewed to the lintel in the only way it knew,
Where they stopped, touched tendrils, smiled, and fell in love.
Said the right-handed Honeysuckle
To the left-handed Bindweed:
'Oh, let us get married
If our parents don't mind; we'd
Be loving and inseparable,
we'd Live happily ever after,'
Said the Honeysuckle to the Bindweed.
To the Honeysuckle's parents it came as a shock.
'The Bindweeds', they cried, 'are inferior stock,
They're uncultivated, of breeding bereft;
We twine to the right-and they twine to the left!'
Said the anti-clockwise Bindweed
To the clockwise Honeysuckle:
'We'd better start saving,
Many a mickle maks a muckle,
Then run away for a honeymoon
And hope that our luck'll
Take a turn for the better,'
Said the Bindweed to the Honeysuckle.
A Bee who was passing remarked to them then:
Tve said it before, and I'll say it again;
Consider your off-shoots, if off-shoots there be,
They'll never receive any blessing from me!
'Poor little sucker, how will it learn
When it is climbing, which way to turn?
Right-left-what a disgrace!
Or it may go straight up and fall flat on its face!'
Said the right-hand thread Honeysuckle
To the left-hand thread Bindweed:
'It seems that against us
All fate has combined ...
Oh my darling, oh my darling
Oh my darling Columbine,
Thou art lost and gone for ever,
We shall never intertwine.'
Together they found them the very next day.
They had pulled up their roots and just shrivelled away,
Deprived of that freedom for which we must fight-
To veer to the left or to veer to the right!
Originally from the album 'At The Drop of a Hat'.