When reading Chekhov with an actor’s eye
And finding written: “Traraboomdeyay,”
I wondered what Chebutykin meant thereby,
And what, if anything, he wished to say.
And just what Ronald Hingley heard him sing
When he transcribed the singing from the Russian.
Was he deliberately altering
The onomatopoeia for discussion
To draw a parallel between the man
Who loved the sisters’ mother and a duke
Who only loved the chase and crooked plans
That Verdi sought to tacitly rebuke?
So when the doctor sings within the play,
I always hear La Dona e Mobile.