The minstrel in the gallery
looked down upon the smiling faces.
He met the gazes observed the spaces
between the old men's cackle.
Who would be a poor man, a beggarman, a thief -
if he had a rich man in his hand.
And who would steal the candy
from a laughing baby's mouth
if he could take it from the money man.
Cross-eyed Mary goes jumping in again.
She signs no contract
but she always plays the game.
She dines in Hampstead village
on expense accounted gruel,
and the jack-knife barber drops her off at school.
Cross-eyed Mary finds it hard to get along.
She's a poor man's rich girl
and she'll do it for a song.
She's a rich man stealer
and her favour's good and strong:
She's the Robin Hood of Highgate -
helps the poor man get along.