It was a summer evening
At story-telling time.
Old Kaspar settled in his chair
and sipped his rum-and-lime,
While Peterkin and Wilhelmine
Turned on the television screen.
They saw a dark and stormy coast
Where fog banks whirled and spun;
And multitudes, with faces turned
Toward the setting sun,
Stood holding out their pallid hands
Or fell in rows upon the sands.
The children turned the vision off
And ran to Kaspar’s side.
"Now tell us what ’twas all about,"
They both together cried;
"Now tell us what they did, and where,
And why those people fainted there!"
"It was the Dollar Scarcity,"
Said Kaspar with a sigh;
"For lack of dollars in their hands
Those people faint and die;
In palace ground or peasant shack
It strikes them down like Yellow Jack."
"Why don’t we give them dollars, then?"
Cried little Wilhelmine.
"We give them many billions, dear,
Of dollars long and green;
But still they wait on every shore
In hope that we will give them more."
"How will it end?" cried Peterkin.
"Will all of them be dead?" Old Kaspar took a sip of rum
And shook his snowy head; "We only hope the dollars last Until the dreadful plague is past."