THE BALLAD OF
By Robert Dennis Dick (Class of '60)
April 10, 1959
It was nineteen hundred and fifty-eight,
when there came a thing that was truly great;
And from all around came the joyful cry,
“John Pearson’s come to MacArthur High.”
John Pearson looked at the motley crew,
so recently severed and cut in two –
Sophomores and freshmen first met his stare,
with a Junior or Senior here and there.
“Sophomores and freshmen, well bless my bones,
with their eager hearts and their lousy tones!”
So said John Pearson, but nevertheless,
he made a band of the whole darned mess.
We were many and many a day and a night,
learning our left feet from our right;
And many a diagram here and there,
to learn that our diaphragm’s full of air.
On the night of the concert, John Pearson might hear;
that the valves of the French horns are filled up with beer,
or that the whole stock of music and instrument cases,
has been stolen and hocked to buy drinks for the bases.
That the heater has shorted and melted the flutes,
and welded the trumpets with permanent mutes;
That his first clarinetist has broken a tooth;
That a nose cone has smashed in the whole band hall roof;
That the rats have built nests in the drums and the basses,
out of unpaid for music and instrument cases.
But, still with a smile – or a frown – or a scream!
John Pearson doth work to attain his band’s dreams –
To get them a one, have them heaped down with praise,
and to get them a sweepstakes at Buccaneer Days.