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Newest Bath Guide

Music and lyrics by Donovan P. Leitch.


Of all the gay places
The world can afford
By gentle and simple
For pastime adored
Fine balls, fine concerts
Fine buildings and springs
Fine walks and fine views
And a thousand fine things
Not to mention
The sweet situation and air
What place, my dear mother
With Bath can compare?

It's two hundred years
Since he got in his stride
And cantered away
With the New Bath Guide
His spondees and dactyls
Were quite a success
Several editions
Were called from the press
The guidebook consisted
Of letters in rhyme
Of the follies and fashions
Of Bath at the time

I notice a quiver
Come over my pen
As I think of the follies
And fashions since then

Proud City of Bath
With your crescents and squares
Your hoary old Abbey
Your playbills and chairs
Plentiful chapels
Where preachers would preach
And a different doctrine
Expounded in each
Your gallant assemblies
Where squires took their daughters
Your medicinal springs
Where the wives took their waters

Terraces trim
And the comely young wenches
Cobbled back streets
With their privies and stenches

How varied and human
Did Bath then appear
As the roar of the Avon
Rolled up from the weir

In those days, no doubt
There was not so much taste
Now there's so much
It has all run to waste
Working out methods
Of cutting down cost
So that mouldings, proportions
And texture are lost
In a uniform nothingness
This I first find
Is the terrible Tech
With its pointed behind

New houses are units
And people are digits
Bath has been planned
Into quarters for midgets
Official designs
Are aggressively neuter
The Puritan work
Of an eyeless computer

Goodbye to old Bath!
We who loved you are sorry

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