297 “Be a man!” said the Bellman in wrath, as he heard
298 The Butcher beginning to sob.
299 “Should we meet with a Jubjub, that desperate bird,
300 We shall need all our strength for the job!”
321 Then a scream, shrill and high, rent the shuddering sky,
322 And they knew that some danger was near:
323 The Beaver turned pale to the tip of its tail,
324 And even the Butcher felt queer.
325 He thought of his childhood, left far far behind —
326 That blissful and innocent state —
327 The sound so exactly recalled to his mind
328 A pencil that squeaks on a slate!
329 “’Tis the voice of the Jubjub!” he suddenly cried.
330 (This man, that they used to call “Dunce.”)
331 “As the Bellman would tell you,” he added with pride,
332 “I have uttered that sentiment once.
333 “’Tis the note of the Jubjub! Keep count, I entreat;
334 You will find I have told it you twice.
335 ’Tis the song of the Jubjub! The proof is complete,
336 If only I’ve stated it thrice.”
337 The Beaver had counted with scrupulous care,
338 Attending to every word:
339 But it fairly lost heart, and outgrabe in despair,
340 When the third repetition occurred.
393 “You boil it in sawdust: you salt it in glue:
394 You condense it with locusts and tape:
395 Still keeping one principal object in view—
396 To preserve its symmetrical shape.”
By the way: The bird also lurks in the Jabberwock (1872):
001 “Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
002 The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
003 Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
004 The frumious Bandersnatch!”
You can’t bribe time. The “jub jub” makes me think of a chronometer. But it also could be a reference to a controversial bell tower project where a Jubjub raises its voice periodically in a cage with a symmetrical shape at Christchurch College. Or, of course, it could just be plain nonsense.