It is a humorous punning poem, with personified musical instruments — Miss Violin, Misses Mandolin and Banjo, Mr. Cornet, Madame Cello and Mrs. Viola, and others. The ensemble is ready to perform, but cannot play because Miss Violin is missing her "beau" — she is broken-hearted and "unstrung."
A dispute erupts, and the instruments have their say. Miss Mandolin complains that "Someone is always picking on me." Mr. Flute grows rude: "Mrs. Harp, you're a lyre!" Soon enough, though, the Director arrives, and locates Miss Violin's missing "beau" — in her case.