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Song: “The Parking Ticket Scholar”

Lyrics (c) April Grant (2010)

My countenance is pale, but kind;
I haunt that lofty tower,
The library, wherein my mind
Drinks knowledge by the hour.

I watch your cars, like beetles, pass
Full many floors below me;
They ticket you; you pay UMass;
UMass pays what they owe me.

If time was always kept in mind,
If no one paid the piper,
If tickets you should never find
Tucked underneath your wiper,

If to your cars you flocked like hens
To save your well-earned dollar,
Then who would keep in books and pens
The Parking Ticket Scholar?

Security accepts your cash,
And piles it in a barrel;
They bring it to me, at a dash,
And find me in my carrel.

“Write of the Quasi-War with France!
Or else Maria Mitchell!
Or reconstruct a contra dance,
And recipes for switchel!

“O Scholar, your reward is here.
Our dullness, pray, inveigle!”
And I say, “Yes, yes, all right, dear,
And then I want a bagel.”

When from your vehicle you’ve strayed
Ten minutes past your quarter,
And turn to find the meter maid
Writing a crimson order,

Don’t spoil her day, or gnash your jaws,
Or otherwise appall her.
You now support a worthy cause:
The Parking Ticket Scholar.

Written in 2010 upon receiving a financial aid package at UMass Amherst that included the Parking Fines Scholarship. May be sung to the tune of “The Vicar of Bray” (thanks to Joe Fineman and Susan T. Grant for pointing this out and putting it into practice).