My worldly wealth I hoard in albums three, My life collection of rare postage stamps; My room is cold and bare as you can see, My coat is old and shabby as a tramp's; Yet more to me than balances in banks, My albums three are worth a million francs.
I keep them in that box beside my bed, For who would dream such treasures it could hold; But every day I take them out and spread Each page, to gloat like miser o'er his gold: Dearer to me than could be child or wife, I would defend them with my very life.
They are my very life, for every night over my catalogues I pore and pore; I recognize rare items with delight, Nothing I read but philatelic lore; And when some specimen of choice I buy, In all the world there's none more glad than I.
Behold my gem, my British penny black; To pay its price I starved myself a year; And many a night my dinner I would lack, But when I bought it, oh, what radiant cheer! Hitler made war that day - I did not care, So long as my collection he would spare.
Look - my triangular Cape of Good Hope. To purchase it I had to sell my car. Now in my pocket for some sous I grope To pay my omnibus when home is far, And I am cold and hungry and footsore, In haste to add some beauty to my store.
This very day, ah, what a joy was mine, When in a dingy dealer's shop I found This franc vermillion, eighteen forty-nine . . . How painfully my heart began to pound! (It's weak they say), I paid the modest price And tremblingly I vanished in a trice.
But oh, my dream is that some day of days, I might discover a Mauritius blue, poking among the stamp-bins of the quais; Who knows! They say there are but two; Yet if a third one I should spy, I think - God help me! I should faint and die. . . .
Poor Monsieur Pns, he's cold and dead, One of those stamp-collecting cranks. His garret held no crust of bread, But albums worth a million francs. on them his income he would spend, By philatelic frenzy driven: What did it profit in the end. . . You can't take stamps to Heaven.