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Mister Twister

"Mister Twister" illustration series

translated from the Russian to the English by Julian Lowenfeld

"Mister Twister" (excerpt)
Samuel Marshak

There is overseas, a firm, Thomas Cook,
if bored, if you please, and you wish to look
at the Isle of Tahiti, the snowy Pamirs,
or else to visit "gay Paree",
it takes Cook a minute,
your ship cabin's booked.
Your airplane is landing,
your camel waits, too.
He'll find you a room in the best hotel,
with a nice warm bath and breakfast in bed.
Mountain peaks, caves,
so dark all lights pall,
North, south, palms, pines:
Cook shows them all!

Mister Twister,
Man of great worth,
Owner of factories, ships, journals, boats
Decided at leisure to sail 'round the world.

"That's lovely," cried out his daughter, Susan.
"Why don't we go to the Soviet Union?
I'm going to eat nothing but caviar black,
And catch real live sturgeons in handfuls!
On the banks of the Volga
I'll ride in a troika
I'll run round collective farms
With nothing but raspberries heaped in my arms!
"My dear, what a thought!"
Said Dad, as they sat there eating.
"Why should we visit the USSR?
Let's just go visit Denmark, or Sweden.
Or tour around Naples, or visit Baghdad!"
But Susie insisted: "I want Leningrad!
And if Daddy's girl wants it really,
then that's what she's given. Period!