Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 100, May 16, 1891
Produced by Malcolm Farmer, William Flis, and the Online Distributed
OR THE LONDON CHARIVARI.
May 16, 1891.
MR. PUNCH'S PRIZE NOVELS.
(_BY_ OLPH SCHREION, _AUTHOR OF "SCREAMS," "THE ALLEGORY OF AN ASIAN
["You will perceive," writes the Author of the following
story, "that this is allegorical, but it is not by any means
necessary that you should understand it. The chief charm of
allegorical writing is its absolute freedom from the trammels
of convention. You write something large and vague, with any
amount of symbols thrown in. The words flow quite easily;
you cover scores of pages. Then you read it over again next
morning. If you understand it so little as to think some other
fellow must have written it, you may be quite certain it is
an allegory. When you print it, your public reads into it
all kinds of mysterious and morbid religious emotions, and
confused misinterpretations of life-problems, and everybody
tacks on his own special explanation. That being so, it is
quite unnecessary for you to explain things--which saves
a great deal of trouble. The plan is an excellent one. Try
it.--Yours, allegorically, O.S."]
TANT' SANNIE was stewing _kraut_ in the old Dutch saucepan. The
scorching rays of the African sun were beating down upon BONAPARTE
BLENKINS who was doing his best to be sun-like by beating WALDO.
His nose was red and disagreeable. He was something like HUCKLEBERRY
FINN's Dauphin, an amusing, callous, cruel rogue, but less
resourceful. TANT' SANNIE laughed; it was so pleasant to see a German
boy beaten black and blue. But the Hottentot servants merely gaped. It
was their custom.
But in the middle distance Life was playing marbles with the Unknown.
And the Unknown said unto Life, "Give me an alley-tor." But Life
replied, "Nay, for the commoneys are lying well, and the thumb of
him that aimeth is seasoned unto the stroke." And the Unknown beat
his sable wings together, and one black feather flitted far into the
breast of the day and fell to earth. And there came a fair-haired
Child plucking flowers in the desert with brows bent in thought.
And Life said unto the Child, "Play with me."
And the Unknown said, "Play with me."
But the Child raised its soft hand slowly and the tender fingers grew
apart, and its thumb was poised in thought upon its nose, and it spake
not at all. And the feather flitted far, far over the waste, and men
came forth and gazed upon it, but it heeded them not.
Then said Life, "I am strong. Kings have need of me and earth is
my dominion." But the Unknown gathered up the scattered marbles,
concealing them gently, and answered only this--"I am a greater than
And the Child strayed onwards and the feather flitted, and TANT'
SANNIE still stewed _kraut_ in the old Dutch saucepan. And BONAPARTE
BLENKINS was glad.
Cruelty, cruelty, cruelty--all is cruelty! Boys are beaten; oxen
are stabbed till the blood bursts forth; happy, industrious,
dung-collecting beetles are bitten in two by careless, happy,
beetle-collecting dogs--everything is wicked and cruel. The Kaffir
has beautiful legs, but he will kick his wife, and TANT' SANNIE,
alas! will not be there to drop a pickle-tub on his head. And over
everything hangs that inscrutable charm which hovers for ever for the
human intellect over the incomprehensible and shadowy. _Omne ignotum
pro mirifico_, I might say, but I prefer the longer phrase.
And I stood at the gate of Heaven, I and TANT' SANNIE; and we spoke
to everybody quite affably; and they all had time to listen to what we
said, and to make suitable replies.
And I said, "Are we all here?"
And she said, "Not all."
And I said, "The absent are always in the wrong."
And she said, "I have heard that in French."
And I said, "Is not that impertinent?"
And she said, "No."
And a great Light fell across her face, as though a palm had smitten
it, and the name of the palm was Hand, and its fruits were fingers
And again I addressed myself in terms of familiarity to the
Ever-lasting, and I planted a book upon the clouds, where eight
children lay prone with bees flying about their childish bonnets.
And there came a knock at my door.
"Eight o'clock!" said One. "Arise!"
"Nay," I answered; "it cannot be."
"But the water is hot within the can, and the table will be spread for
them that break their fast."
"So be it. I rise." And behold it was a dream!
Far away the mother of the little nigger stood churning. Where is
the mother of the little black nigger? She is churning slowly in the
garden. But cannot the aunt of the good gardener churn herself? No;
for she is in the orchard, plucking the apples, peaches, apricots,
pears (_Birnen_), to give to the butler's grandmother.
And there came Life and The Ideal walking hand in hand. And behind
them came Wealth and Vastness singing together. And Infinity was
there, and Health, and Wisdom, and Love. And Reflection was mounted
on a steed with Joy. And many other shapes followed, delicately
arrayed in fine linen. And helmet-wearing Men in Blue marshalled the
procession. And they spake roughly, saying, "Pass away there, pass
And I said, "Is this the Lord Mayor's Show?"
And One said, "No."
And I said, "Is it the Salvation Army?"
And again One said, "No."
And I said, "Is it SEQUAH?"
And One said again. "No."
And I said, "I have guessed enough."
And One said, "Yes."
But The Real was not there, and they passed away.
And One said, "I am Wealth," which was absurd, but No-one laughed. And
they all danced a fandango on the points of their toes. And a shaft of
light lay over them. And they wandered on. At last they came to a bad,
wicked naughty, brimstone place. And I said to Some-one, "I like this.
It seems a good place." And still No-one laughed. And Wealth touched
me, and I was glad. And I said, "Give me millions, or buy a box of
matches," and Law seized me and took me to the Cell. Then I said to
the Beak, "Your Worship." And the Beak said unto me, "Begging again.
Forty shillings." And again I woke. And it was all a striving and a
striving and an ending in Nothing.
* * * * *
TO MLLE. JANE MAY.
"Au clair de la lune,
Mon ami PIERROT,
Prete-moi ta plume
Pour ecrire un mot."
_Prete-moi ta plume!_ Could wit borrow a feather
From Cupid's own pinion, 'tis doubtfullish whether
A "_mot_" might be made which should happily hit
The "gold" of desert; and Love, aided by Wit,
Though equal to eloquent passion's fine glow,
Might both be struck mute by the Muse of Dumb-Show.
That "actions speak louder than words" we all knew;
But now we may add, "and more gracefully, too."
_Performances_ fine _Punch_ has praised in his day,
But how few take the _pas_ of the _Promise_--of MAY!
* * * * *
"NATIVE RACES AND THE LIQUOR TRAFFIC."--An important subject strangely
omitted at the recent meeting of this Society was "The Consumption of
Champagne on the Derby and Oaks Days." The Duke of WESTMINSTER will
take the earliest opportunity of rectifying this error.
* * * * *
[Illustration: A BLEND.
_The Wine Merchant_ (G-SCH-N). "I'M AFRAID SOME OF OUR OLD CUSTOMERS
WON'T LIKE IT AT FIRST; BUT, WITH A LITTLE PERSUASION, I THINK I CAN
GET 'EM TO TAKE TO IT KINDLY."]
* * * * *
JOKIM THE CELLARER; OR, THE BLEND.
AIR.--"_SIMON THE CELLARER_."
'Cute JOKIM the Cellarer keeps a large store
Of choice Party Spirits, d'ye see;
Scotch, Irish, and who can say how many more?
An eclectic old soul is he.
But mainly in "Blends" he is good, dark or pale,
For he knows without them his best bottlings may fail;
But he never faileth, he archly doth say,
For he well knows what tap suits the taste of the day.
And ho! ho! ho! his books will show
He oft taps the barrels of Brummagem JOE!
JOE sits all the time in his own still-room,
And a taster clever is he.
'Tis in vain that his enemies kick up a fume.
And swear he is half a Torie.
But there are sly meetings upon the backstair.
And watchers say JOE is oft gossiping there.
Now JOE distrusts someone who's Grand, and who's Old,
And says that he _must_ be kept "out in the cold."
And ho! ho! ho! old JOKIM doth know
That many a flask of his best comes from JOE.
'Cute JOKIM keeps blending JOE's taps and his own;
Though knowing harsh rumours are rife;
And Brummagem JOE is oft heard to declare,
Their partnership _may_ last for life.
And JOKIM says, "some call Brum JOE a bad chap,
But they'll soon learn to relish the taste of his tap,
And while I may Brummagem JOE call my friend,
I _think_ I shall customers find for our 'Blend.'"
While ho! ho! ho! he'll chuckle and crow;
"What, turn up Brum JOE, my boys? No! no! no!"
* * * * *
_Monday, May 4_.--ZELIE DE LUSSAN's _Carmen_ is about the best when
all the other dear charmers are away, and in the character she will
probably remain in possession of the field, or, rather, "the Garden,"
till the end of the season. The remainder as before, with DEVOYOD
as _Escamillo_. But what has become of the "go" in the _Toreador's_
great song? Where are the double _encores_? Where, indeed, the hearty
applause? Surely it has gone the way of the March in _Faust_, once
so enthusiastically received and cheered to the echo; and now--"March
off!" It is true that, once let a "tuney tune" become vulgarised by
street-musicians, and organic disease would be sufficient to kill it
were it not tortured and ground to death by remorseless hands. But
the _Toreador's_ song and the March have not been the victims of an
organised opposition. Perhaps, though, they may have been, only 'tis
so long ago as not to be within the ken of the present deponent.
Anyhow, the _Toreador's_ song goes for nothing nowadays, and yet 'tis
as good as ever.
_Thursday_.--We welcomed _The Don_. Not the Academic Don once so
popularly represented by Mr. J.L. TOOLE, but MOZART's Italianised
Spanish Don. _A propos_ of Mr. TOOLE, it has always been the wonder of
his friends, to whom the quality of his vocal powers is so well known,
that he has never been tempted to renounce the simple histrionic for
the lyric Drama. It is said, and "greatly to his credit," that, had
it not been for his unwillingness to rob his friend SIMS REEVES of the
laurel-crown he wears as first English Tenor of his age, he would long
ago have set up a most dangerous opposition to that sweet singer, and
have ridden off victoriously with "_My Pretty Jane_" seated up behind
him, pillion-wise, on the noble steed known as "_The Bay of Biscay
But the above is an _entr'acte_, shorter than those at Covent Garden,
by the way. M. MAUREL first-rate as the _Don_, both in acting and
singing, even better in former than latter; but the dear old serenade,
which never can be vulgarised, in spite of its popularity, was
encored, and the encore was gracefully accepted, Signor BEVIGNANI
being in the chair, and willing to tap the desk and announce,
"Gentlemen! Monsieur MAUREL will oblige again!" Applause.
If all the village maidens could dress in a costume such as Miss
ZELIE-ZERLINA wears, then, to take the best and nicest view of it,
that village must be uncommonly prosperous. Probably tourists' visits
are not few and far between: but anyhow, even the most unsuspicious
bumpkin of a lover, would be inclined to ask a few questions about
this finery. However, her performance was as fine as the dress, and
she looked quite the ZELIE-ZERLINA, so fascinating to the Lord and the
_Saturday_.--_Romeo et Juliette_, that is, M. JEAN DE RESZKE and Mlle.
EAMES. A nearly perfect performance. JEAN a trifle too stout for an
ideal _Romeo_, but of course he couldn't go into training for the
part at short notice. The spirit with which he played the part far
outweighed the error of the flesh. Miss EAMES a charming _Juliet_
in every way, though her singing of the waltz was not of dazzling
firework brilliancy. Brother NED was the _Frere Laurent_. Excellent.
The name Anglo-Frenchified, suggests a reverend gentleman who would
meddle with legal marriages and perform private ceremonies without
leave or licence from his Ordinary, and might be known as Brother
Law-wrong, an Extra-Ordinary Friar. The House crammed full with an
audience as brilliant as the performance.
* * * * *
[Illustration: THE ETERNAL FITNESS OF THINGS.
_Son of the House_. "YOU'RE NOT DANCING, MR. LAMBERT! DON'T YOU WISH
_Mr. Lambert_ (_who is not so slim as he used to be_). "CERTAINLY--IF
YOU CAN FIND ME A _CONCAVE PARTNER_!"]
* * * * *
THE LAST SONG.
[Mr. SIMS REEVES was announced to sing "_Total Eclipse_" at
his Farewell Concert on Monday.]
Farewell! A most unwelcome word to all
Whom fifty years of charm have held in thrall:
Total eclipse--of pleasure on their part
Who love pure melody and polished Art.
Memory will echo long the silvery chime
Of such a voice as even ruthless Time
Might stay his stride to listen to, and spare
From the corroding touch. Some scarce will care
To hear "_Tom Bowling_" sung by other lips,
And when in tenor strains "_Total Eclipse_"
Sounds next upon our ears, SIMS REEVES will seem
To sing again to us as in a pleasant dream.
* * * * *
ESSENCE OF PARLIAMENT.
EXTRACTED FROM THE DIARY OF TOBY, M.P.
[Illustration: Mr. McEwan.]
_House of Commons, Monday, May 4_.--Windbag SEXTON had fine
opportunity to-night; made the most of it. SEYMOUR KEAY absent through
greater part of sitting. Various rumours current in explanation of the
happy accident. Influenza hinted at; but Grand Young GARDNER, who is
familiar with both, says _Grippe_ much too knowing to link itself with
Member for Elgin and Nairn. Towards Eleven o'Clock, rumour set at rest
by appearance of KEAY. Simple explanation of temporary absence is,
that he has been at home, drawing up a few more Amendments.
In his absence. Windbag had it all to himself. How many speeches he
has made through the dreary sitting am afraid to reckon up. Members
going off to write letters, smoke a cigar, read evening papers, or
dine, leave him on his legs, with one hand in pocket, and smile of
serene satisfaction on face, prosing on. Coming back, they find him
still in same position, apparently saying same thing. Has lately
developed new oratorical charm. Constantly repeats his sentences, word
for word. Everybody cleared out, even Mr. G., and JOHN MORLEY. Only
Prince ARTHUR left languorous on Treasury Bench.
"Drooping like a lily out of water," MCEWAN says. Not that he's given
to tropes of the kind; but, being lately at a wedding feast smothered
in flowers, some of them have got into his conversation.
_Business done_.--In Committee on Irish Land Bill, but no forrader.
[Illustration: W.H. Smith in his new character as Warden of the Cinque
Ports and Constable of Dover Castle.]
_Tuesday_.--"Do you think I ought to wear spurs, TOBY?"
It was Old MORALITY who spoke. We were in his room at House; just
torn ourselves away from Committee on Irish Land Bill, where, at the
moment, oddly enough SEXTON chanced to be speaking. Old MORALITY
has been made Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports, and is trying on his
uniform. Rather piratical arrangement; blue cloth coat with large
brass buttons, red sash round his waist, with holster thrust in
it, containing the horse-pistol with which PITT armed himself when
he sat at the window of Walmer Castle, looking across the Channel,
momentarily expecting to discover BONEY crossing in a flat-bottomed
boat. The trousers are of scarlet, with broad braid of gold lace
on outer seams. Finally there is a truculent cocked hat, which OLD
MORALITY persists in putting on with the peak astarn. The dress
is picturesque, and OLD MORALITY's figure lends itself to it with
peculiar grace and fitness.
"I fancy WELLINGTON wore spurs," the Lord Warden persisted.
Yes, I point out; but PITT didn't, nor did PALMERSTON. Anyhow just
as well not to begin with spurs. Might in time grow up to them, as
Wanted the Lord Warden to enter House in his uniform: sadly in need
of sensation. One would certainly be provided if Old MORALITY were
discovered sitting on Treasury Bench in his present costume.
"No," he said, "they would think I was going to move or second the
Address. Should like to get used to the clothes a little before
appearing in them in public places."
So go back to House myself, leaving the Lord Warden marching up and
down, making believe he is on the ramparts at Walmer. Oddly enough,
when I arrive Windbag SEXTON making a speech, the few Members present
talking about Old MORALITY's promotion. A dangerous epoch in a man's
life. People apt just then to discover all kinds of shortcomings, and
reasons why the promotion should have fallen elsewhere. But no one
grudges OLD MORALITY this high and ancient honour; a fresh chapter in
the pleasant story of "Mr. SMITH," a new "Part of His Life." For five
years he has sat on the Treasury Bench in succession to DISRAELI and
GLADSTONE; now he will answer for the safety of the Cinque Ports in
succession to PITT and WELLINGTON, DALHOUSIE and PALMERSTON. _Business
done_.--OLD MORALITY made Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports.
_Thursday_.--"TAY PAY also among the Gentlemen of England!" exclaimed
SAGE OF QUEEN ANNE'S GATE, for once almost moved out of his customary
self-possession. It certainly seems so. Came about on Second Reading
of London Tramways Bill; promoters want to bring tramway over
Westminster Bridge, and along Embankment. DEMOS desires to go about
his business on the tramway, and does not see why he should be
arbitrarily stopped before he has accomplished his journey. Carriage
folk say, No; let DEMOS and his penny tram stop at other side of
the water, leaving the broad thoroughfare of the Embankment for what
RADCLIFFE COOKE called "the gilded chariot."
Debate gone forward for some time. No one expected to find TAY PAY in
this Galley. Since his return from Ameriky hasn't opened his voice in
debate; spoken in public only once. That was to his constituents in
Scotland Road, Liverpool; announced with portentous blast in advance
that then and there the anxious world should learn what side he took
in the leadership controversy. Others had declared themselves, whether
for Brer FOX or Brer RABBIT. The momentous issue of TAY PAY's decision
required further deliberation. So all the world had to wait till
TAY PAY came home and saw his constituents. Result not altogether
satisfactory. As TIM HEALY put it, "TAY PAY showed disposition to hunt
with Brer FOX and run with Brer RABBIT." If in the end Brer FOX won,
nothing in TAY PAY's Scotland Road speech need prevent him returning
to his allegiance. If Brer FOX remained under a cloud, he could jog
along with Brer RABBIT. Been careful not to spoil the little game by
taking part in debate in House.
Now, on this London Tramways Bill, which touches neither Brer FOX
nor Brer RABBIT, TAY PAY interposes. Conservatives snort impatiently
when he rises; cry aloud for division; take it for granted that TAY
PAY will back up DEMOS's demand for equal right of way. But TAY PAY
has genuine little surprise in store; is loftily contemptuous of
tramways, doncha. If they cross the bridge and approach the precincts
of the West End, what is to become of carriage-folk? "A noisy and
inconvenient system of locomotion," said TAY PAY, shuddering with
disgust, as though he heard a coarse voice crying "Fares, please!"
House roared with laughter; RADCLIFFE COOKE talked about opposition
"coming from Members who hoped to ride in gilded coaches"; CREMER
rudely reminded TAY PAY that ten or fifteen years ago, he would have
taken a very different view of the convenience of tramway cars. This
wasn't pleasant; but when the Division bell rang, TAY PAY had the
satisfaction of walking, alone amongst his Party, with the Gentlemen
of England, triumphantly vindicating the rights of carriage-folk
against tramway trabs. Long time since House of Commons witnessed
a scene so rich as this in material for reflection. _Business
done_.--TAY PAY declares against trams.
_Friday_.--Attendance on House gradually diminishing; what with
influenza, and Irish Land Bill in Committee, Members gradually
thinning off. No M.P. complete without his influenza. Barks shall not
be out of anything if its humble, but conscientious Member can manage
it; so I've "took" the influenza, or the influenza's "took" me.
Don't exactly know how it came about. Anyhow, we're in bed together.
_Business done_.--Don't know anything about it.
* * * * *
LEAVES FROM A CANDIDATE'S DIARY.
[Illustration: Looking for a Seat.]
_Wednesday, April 30th, "George Hotel," Billsbury_.--Spent yesterday
and the day before in chambers at the Temple. No work as usual. Think
I shall give it all up, and take entirely to politics. Yesterday
afternoon a Mr. RICHARDSON GROGRAM called on me by appointment. He had
written me a long letter stating that he had important information to
communicate to me with reference to my candidature at Billsbury, and
desired a short interview in order to lay it before me, Said he was
"a Billsbury man born and bred, and naturally interested in everything
that concerned the welfare of the old place, though for family
reasons he had found it best to make the home of his riper manhood in
the Metropolis." I smelt a rat, but thought it best to give him an
interview. He is a tall man, with a dark beard, straight dark hair, a
sallow face and shifty eyes, and was dressed rather like a dissenting
clergyman. He was immensely genial in his manner, said he had read
every word of my eloquent speeches, and thoroughly agreed with all
I had said, though he himself would never have been able to say it
half as well. He then asked me if I had heard of his "History of the
Borough of Billsbury" in four volumes. I asked him who had published
it and when, but he said he had been made the victim of intrigues, and
had not yet secured a publisher, though there was any amount of money
to be made out of the book. Would I like to read it in MS., and give
him my candid opinion of it? Excused myself on the ground of great
pressure of work. He talked like this for about twenty minutes, and at
last came to what he called the chief purport of his visit. He said
he had in the course of his investigations, been fortunate enough to
acquire important and exclusive knowledge with regard to the early
life of Sir THOMAS CHUBSON and his chief supporters in Billsbury.
"If it is published," he continued, "it will absolutely blast the
prospects of Radicalism in Billsbury. I am not a grasping man, but I
must consider my family. Still, Sir, such is my respect and liking
for you, that I am willing to place a sealed packet containing all
these stories in your hands on payment of L150 down." I told him that
wasn't my way either of fighting a constituency or of doing business,
whereupon he became more voluble than ever, and I had no end of a job
to get rid of the oily beast. JERRAM tells me to-day that he was once
a solicitor's clerk in Billsbury, and had to leave on account of
some missing money. Since then he appears to have lived a shady life,
varied by attempts at blackmail. Faugh!
Came down to Billsbury to-day, to attend the inaugural dinner of the
season of the Billsbury Cricket Club. I am a Vice-President, and so
is CHUBSON. The dinner was held in the large room of the "Blue Posts
Hotel." General BANNATYNE, an old Indian, who is the President of the
Club, was in the chair, having CHUBSON on his right, and me on his
left. Old CHUBSON, to whom I was introduced, seems not half a bad old
fellow, but he can't speak a bit. The dinner was awful, everything
as tough as leather, and the Cabinet Pudding more beastly than any
Cabinet Pudding I ever tasted--which is saying a good deal. CHUBSON
proposed, "Prosperity to the Billsbury C.C." "Politics," he said,
"are like Cricket. We spend our time in bowling overs." At this point
a young Conservative, who had drunk too much, shouted, "Ah, and you
mostly change sides, too"--an allusion to the fact that CHUBSON is
believed to have started in politics as a Tory. Somebody removed
the interrupter, and CHUBSON finished his speech all right, but
the incident must have annoyed him. I proposed "The Town and Trade
of Billsbury," and started by saying what pleasure it gave anybody
occupied in politics to take a part in a non-political celebration
like this. "My friend, Sir THOMAS CHUBSON," I said, "and I have not
met before, and I congratulate myself, therefore, on having been
introduced to him to-day. We shall do our level best to bowl one
another out, but I know we shall play the game according to the rules,
and in that spirit of fair-play for which Englishmen in general, and
Billsbury cricketers in particular, are celebrated."
This was rather mixed, but it went very well. I think I took the shine
out of CHUBSON. Later on there was a shocking row between two of the
town-councillors, who got to loggerheads over the question of the
Billsbury Waterworks. It was smoothed over, however, after everybody
had shouted "No politics!" for about ten minutes.
TOLLAND says we must begin to canvas a little soon. Horrible work, but
* * * * *
(BY A BUFFER.)
"Unfortunately (at bowls) one had to stoop to conquer: it is
that stooping which (except in politics) plays the deuce with
us after fifty."--_James Payn's Plea for Bowls_.
Yes, PAYN, you are right--as you commonly are--
The vertebrae creak and the ribs seem to jar,
When a man bends his back--after fifty--
If only to pull off his boots; he at length
Finds that curve in his spine is a strain on the strength
Of which middle-age must be thrifty.
But Bowls! Yes, my boy, it's a jolly old game,
Though athletic fanatics might vote it too tame,
But sense is not baffled by bogies.
The Emerald Green and the "bowls" and the "jack,"
Are beautiful--but for that bend in the back--
To those the young furies call "fogies."
You have not to "sprint" o'er some acres of grass,
To "slog" or to scamper, to "scrummage" or "pass,"
At the risk of your ribs, or "rheumatics";
You have not to treat your opponents like foes,
Or "go for" your rival's shin-bone or his nose,
As do the aforesaid fanatics.
But how pleasant the "green" in the cool of the day,
The tankard of stingo, the yard of white clay,
And the play and the chaff of good fellows!
Although not a betting man howls out the odds,
And no ring of mad backers--like gallery "gods"---
About us insensately bellows.
Yes, PAYN, the "crank in," and the "kiss of the Jack,"
_All_--save, as you say, that darned bend in the back--
About the old game is delightful.
We thank you for "trolling the bowl" once again,
Ah! it were a pleasure to play it with PAYN--
(By Jove, though--that loin-twinge was frightful!)
* * * * *
A THEATRICAL PLUNGE; OR, TAKING A HEDDA.
A plunge indeed! but fortunately the swimmers are strong, and able
to save the suicidal Ibsenites. For my part,--that is, as one of the
audience drawn by curiosity,--I should say that were it not for the
excellent acting of all concerned in the piece, and especially of Miss
ELIZABETH ROBINS as the Hanwellian heroine, IBSEN's _Hedda Gabler_
would scarcely have been allowed a second night's existence at the
Vaudeville. Miss ROBINS is so much in earnest--as a true artist should
be--that she excites your curiosity to discover what on earth she is
taking all this trouble about; and thus she compels your attention.
That the result is eminently unsatisfactory is no fault of hers.
The piece itself is stuff and nonsense; poor stuff and "pernicious
nonsense." It is as if the author had studied the weakest of the
Robertsonian Comedies, and had thought he could do something like it
in a tragic vein.
[Illustration: A Powerful Cast.]
In the last Act there is a situation reminding us strongly of one
short scene in _Caste; there_--so delicately and touchingly treated by
its author; _here_--so repulsively treated by IBSEN. Let it be reduced
to serious burlesque, and let us have it played by PENLEY as _George
Tesman_, ARTHUR ROBERTS (with a song) as _Judge Brack_, WEEDON
GROSSMITH as _Ejlbert Loevborg_, Miss LOTTIE VENNE as _Mrs. Hedda
Tesman_, Mrs. JOHN WOOD as _Aunt Juliana_, and Miss JESSIE BOND (with
song and dance) as _Mrs. Elvsted_. It is announced in the bill as
"IBSEN's Last Play." There's a crumb of comfort in this.
* * * * *
OATMEAL PORRIDGE.--Would some Scotch housewife kindly enlighten me
as to the proper mode of preparing the above delicacy? I fancy there
must be some mistake about the method I have hitherto adopted. Is it
_really_ necessary to "boil for forty-eight hours, and then mix with
equal quantities of gin, Guinness's Stout, Gum Arabic, and Epsom
Salts?" I have followed this recipe (given me by a young friend, who
says he has often been in Scotland) faithfully, but the result is not
wholly satisfactory. I doubt whether genuine porridge should be of the
consistency of a brick-bat, or taste of hair-oil.--UNDAUNTED.
* * * * *
[Illustration: CLERICAL AESTHETICS.
_Fair Parishioner_. "AND DO YOU LIKE THE PULPIT, MR. AURIOL?"
_The New Curate_. "I DO NOT. ER--IT HIDES TOO MUCH OF THE FIGURE, AND I
LIKE EVERY SHAKE OF THE SURPLICE TO TELL!"]
* * * * *
"BLOOD" V. "BULLION."
"Well then, it now appears you need my help.
Go to then: you come to me, and you say,
'SHYLOCK, we would have moneys'--you say so;
You that did void your rheum upon my beard,
And foot me, as you spurn a stranger cur
Over your threshold: moneys is your suit.
What should I say to you? Should I not say
'Hath a dog money?'"
_Merchant of Venice_, Act I., Scene 3.
"With bated breath and whispering humbleness?"
Not so! There comes a season when the stress
Of insolent and exacting tyranny
Makes the most patient turn.
Without the despot's vaunted virtue, pride,
Shows small indeed. Can Power lay aside
Its swaggering port, and low petition make
(Driven by those Treasury thirsts which never slake)
For help from those it harries? PHARAOH's scourge
Was the taskmaster's weapon, used to urge
The Hebrew bondsmen to their tale of toil,
But they round whom the Russian's knout thongs coil,
Are of the breed of those the Russian palm
Can make petition to. Could triumph balm
The wounds of ages, here were balm indeed;
But blood revolts.
Race of the changeless creed,
And ever-shifting sojourn, SHAKSPEARE's type
Deep meaning hides, which, when the world is ripe
For wider wisdom, when the palsying curse
Of prejudice, the canker of the purse,
And blind blood-hatred, shall a little lift,
Will clearlier shine, like sunburst through a rift
In congregated cloud-wracks. _Shylock_ stands
Badged with black shame in all the baser lands.
Use him, and--spit on him! That's Gentile wont;
Make him gold-conduit, and befoul the font,--
That's the true despot-plan through all the days,
And cackling _Gratianos_ chorus praise.
"The Jew shall have all justice." Shall he so?
The tyrant drains, his gold, then bids him--"Go!"
_Shylock_? The name bears insult in its sound;
But _he_ was nobler than the curs who hound
The patient Hebrew from his home, and drive
Deathward the stronger souls they dread alive.
_Shylock_? So brand him, boors and babbling wags,
Who scorn him, yet would share his money-bags;
Who hate him, yet can stoop to such appeal!
Beneath his meekness there's a soul of steel.
High-featured, amply-bearded, see he stands
Facing the Autocrat; those sinewy hands,
Shaped but for clutching--so his slanderers say--
The huckster bait can coldly put away
"Blood against bullion." The Jew-baiting band
Howl frantic execration o'er the land;
Malign and menace, pillage, persecute;
Though the heart's hot, the mouth must fain be mute.
The edict fulminates, the goad pursues;
Proscription, deprivation,--ay, they use
All the old tortures, nor are then content,
But crown the work with ruthless banishment.
And then--then the proud Muscovite seeks grace,
And gold, from kinsmen of the harried race!
"He would have moneys" from the Hebrew hoard,
To swell his state, or whet his warlike sword;
Perchance buy heavier scourges for the backs
Of lesser Hebrews, whom his wolfish packs
Of salaried minions hunt.
Take back thine hand,
Imperious Autocrat, and understand
Gold buys not, rules not, serves not, salves not all.
Blood speaks--in favour of the helpless thrall
Of tyranny. Here's no tame _Shylock_: he
Shall not bend low, and in a bondsman's key,
Make o'er his money-bags with unctuous grace
To an enthroned enslaver of his race.
"Well then, it now appears you need my help".
(You--whose trained curs at my poor kinsmen yelp!)
"What should I say to you? Should I not say,
"Hath a dog money?" Blood's response is--"Nay!"
* * * * *
A somewhat curious association of names and ideas occurs in last
week's _Sporting and Dramatic_, where there is an illustration of some
ceremony taking place which is described as "The RAINE's Foundation
May Day Celebration." Odd, that this particular RAINE should always
fall on the First of May.
* * * * *
[Illustration: "BLOOD" _VERSUS_ "BULLION."
"WELL THEN, IT NOW APPEARS YOU NEED MY HELP: YOU THAT DID VOID
YOUR RHEUM UPON MY BEARD, AND FOOT ME, AS YOU SPURN A STRANGER CUR
OVER YOUR THRESHOLD; _MONEYS IS YOUR SUIT. WHAT SHOULD I SAY TO
YOU?"_--_Merchant of Venice_, Act I., Sc. 3.]
* * * * *
ODE TO COMPENSATION.
(_AFTER_ KIRKE WHITE.)
"That blessed word--'Compensation.'"
Come Compensation, come!
Not in thy terrors clad,
But in thy fairest, gentlest guise,
Thy "blessed" name but terrifies
The "Templar" and the "Rad."
Thou must not come as "Right,"
That is--alas!--"too steep."
The Law has put its foot hard down,
And "BUNG," so far, is quite done brown;
It makes the "Witler" weep!
No "Vested Interest,"
Whereon to found a claim?
And after all that we have done
To keep the Tories in the run!
It is a thundering shame!
We deemed Sir EDWARD CLARKE
Knew what he was about;
We thought good GOSCHEN, sharp and slick,
Had "gently, gently done the trick,"
We have been sold, no doubt.
But FORREST FULTON comes,--
Sharp fellow that F.F.!
And in the Commons sneaks a vote
Which sticks hard in the "Temperance" throat,--
Dull churls, to justice deaf!
Come, Compensation, come!
Come in by the back-door,
Come unawares, come _anyhow_,
Only _do_ come to smooth the brow
Of Wittlers weak and poor.
GOSCHEN has played us false;
It makes our bosom ache.
But to abate our indignation
If he'll secure us Compensation,
'Twill compensation make.
* * * * *
[Illustration: THE TRAINER INFORMS HIS LORDSHIP THAT HIS NEW PURCHASE
"WILL TAKE A LOT OF BEATING,"]
[Illustration: AND--SO HE DID!]
* * * * *
OVERHEARD AT EARL'S COURT.
_First Citizen._ And what did you see at the German Exhibition?
_Second Citizen_. A magnificent collection of German pictures, many
German manufactures, and several German Bands.
_First C._ Are these the only attractions?
_Second C._ No, there is some cleverly painted canvas representing
German scenery in the grounds.
_First C._ Anything else?
_/Second C._ I enjoyed the Switchback Railway.
_First C._ I see--anything else?
_Second C._ Well, the Scenes in the Circle added to my enjoyment, but,
as an enthusiastic admirer of all that is German, I do not consider
them entirely necessary.
_First C._ Anything further?
_Second C._ There are the lights and the company.
_First C._ But of course these are superfluous?
_Second C._ From a German point of view--entirely so. I consider them
merely as fringe.
_First C._ Exactly--and, were they not there, you would extend as much
patronage to the German Exhibition--you would go there as frequently?
_Second C._ Yes--in spirit, if not in person.
_First C._ And if for the German some other foreign element were
_Second C._ No doubt I should be present quite as much in person, but
_not_ in German spirit!
* * * * *
THE PICK OF THE PICTURES. (AT THE ROYAL ACADEMY.)
[Illustration: No. 475. A Day's Sport in the Olden Times. Ancient
Mariner regrets that guns are not yet invented, wishes he'd brought a
Bow and Arrow with him. J. Waterhouse, A.]
[Illustration: No. 138. Tootsy Pootsies. "O dear, what is the matter
with my poor feet!!" Edith Sprague.]
No. 129. "_Love in Winter_." By G.H. BOUGHTON, A. But a poor sort of
amusement for this nice young lady to be walking out all alone with a
big muff! eh? Mr. BOUGHTON, eh?
No. 292, _Bar-Maids Resting_. W.R. STEPHENS.
No. 346. "_Moor and Mountain_." By CHARLES STUART. The name CHARLES
STUART suggests "restoration," but this is a brand new work. It is
mostly mountain, and very little more.
No. 397. "Miss LYDIA LESLIE at her lessons" may be termed a group of
One or Little Daughter and Less Sons. G.D. LESLIE, R.A.
No. 410. Two horses in a field during a Snowstorm. Good subject for a
Tavern sign-board, entitled, "Two Out." EDWARD STOTT.
No. 452. "Mrs. X----," i.e., a lady with a good deal of dash. HUGH DE
[Illustration: No. 518. A Practical Joke. "I shall startle 'em if I go
in suddenly dressed like this." J.C. Horsley, R.A.]
[Illustration: No. 167. Pott Luck; or, the Arch Archdeacon. W.B.
No. 467. "_Angela Vanbrugh" playing the Fiddle; or, All alone with her
Beau_. EDWIN LONG, R.A.
No. 558. Lady going out for a row. Odd sort of boat: Wherry Funny. E.
No. 630. "_Iona_." By COLIN HUNTER, A. Buy it, and in _Iona_ you'll
own a good picture.
No. 664. "_La Cigale_." A sporting subject suggestive of "Got nothing
on." It is not a portrait of _La Cigale_ at the Lyric. H. RAE.
No. 714. Wind Lads and Wind-Lasses. FRANK DICKSEE, A.
No. 743. "If I had a donkey what wouldn't go.". ALFRED W. STRUTT.
No. 1006. A Little Duck. WILLIAM STRUTT. (Must be seen for title to be
No. 1106. Hares Apparent. WILLIAM FOSTER.
No. 1108. _Napoleon leaving the room where Josephine is fainting on
the floor._ Short title, "Going Nap." LASLETT J. POTT.
* * * * *
THE ABC OF IBSENITY.
A is the ARCHER who booms in the _World_,
B is the Banner of IBSEN unfurled.
C the Commotion it makes for the minute,
D is the _Doll's House_, and all there is in it.
E is the Eagerness shown in the fray,
F the Fanatics, who will have their way.
G is a Ghost, and oh! there are lots of 'em,
H is Heredity, making pot-shots of 'em.
I is the Ibsenite so analytic,
J is the Jeer of the Philistine critic.
K is a _Kroll_, and a Pastor is he,
L is a _Lady_, who comes from the Sea.
M is the Master, speak soft as you name him,
N stands for Norway, so eager to claim him.
O his Opponents, who speak out their mind,
P stands for _Punch_, where his dramas you'll find.
Q is the Question, should _Rosmer_ have wed her?
R is _Rebecca_, who took such a header.
S is the _Speaker_, which gets quite excited,
T is the Temper, it shows uninvited.
U the Unquestioning Faith of the some,
V is the Vaudeville, where they all come.
W stands for the Worshipping Few,
X their Xtreme disproportionate view.
Y ends Ibsenity, and, as everyone knows,
Z brings an alphabet rhyme to a close.
* * * * *
_The Diary of a Pilgrimage_ occupies 175 pages of one of ARROWSMITH's
three-and-sixpenny books, and no doubt the admirers of its author, Mr.
JEROME K. JEROME, may possibly not grudge this amount when gauging its
value by its attractive cover. It is "'ARRY Abroad," that's all. 'ARRY
Abroad laughs and talks loudly in foreign churches, sneers and jeers
at everything he does not understand--and this includes the greater
portion of all he sees and hears--chaffs puzzled officials, and
everywhere makes himself highly and exceptionally popular. In this
_Diary_ 'ARRY is occasionally rather amusing when he is endeavouring
to be either serious or sentimental, or both. 'ARRY serious or 'ARRY
sentimental, or 'ARRY sentimentally serious and expecting to be taken
at his own valuation, is of course delightful, only a little of it
goes a great way, and this Cockney pilgrim goes too far, especially
when giving us his valuable opinion on the Passion Play. 'ARRY on the
Passion Play, and the character of JUDAS ISCARIOT! As _Hedda Gabler's_
husband observes on every possible opportunity--"Fancy _that_!" Only
once the Baron finds himself in agreement with the travelling 'ARRY,
and this happens when he says, "I must candidly confess that the
English-speaking people one meets with on the Continent are, taken as
a whole, a most disagreeable contingent." Yes, certainly, when they
are all 'Arries. Set an 'ARRY to catch an 'ARRY, and of course to the
regular right-down 'ARRY all other 'ARRIES, not 'appnin' to 'ave the
_h_onour of being 'is own par_tics_, are detestably vulgar cads. The
remainder of the book, i.e., 131 pages, is padded with essays, a fact
not mentioned on the outside of the work, which, like charity, covers
a multitude of sins. Whether this is quite a fair way of stating
contents, is a question which the Baron supposes both Publishers and
Author have thoroughly considered.
Don't skip ELLEN TERRY's Memoirs in _The New Review_. Nothing much in
them, but delightfully chatty and amusing. See _Murray's Magazine_ for
Mr. GLADSTONE on the _Murray Memoirs_, in the number for the "Murray
Month of May." When you are routing about for something short and
amusing, take up the _Cornhill_, and read _A Flash in the Pan_. I
have commenced, says the Baron, my friend GEORGE MEREDITH's _One of
the Conquerors_. Now G.M. is an author whose work does not admit of
the healthy and graceful exercise of skipping. Here the skipper's
occupation is gone. G.M.'s work should be taken away by the reader far
from the madding crowd and perused and pondered over. If Ponder's End
is a tranquil place as the name implies, then to that secluded spot
betake yourself with your GEORGE MEREDITH, O happy and studious
reader, and ponder in peace.
Since the time of _Richard Feverel_, which I shall always consider his
best, "of the very best" as ZERO of the Monte Carlo Bar has it, G.M.
has developed into a gold-beater of epigrams. What once served him
as a two-line epigram, is now spread out over a couple of pages. Two
volumes instead of three would serve his turn far better, or rather
the public's turn, for his own is a very peculiar one. But to my task,
says the Baron, give me a slight refresher and a suck at the lemon as
it were, or a sip of the lemonade, and at him again. _Festina lente_.
More anon from
THE BARON DE BOOK-WORMS.
* * * * *
ROBERT ON ENGLISH AND FOREIGN WAITERS.
Well, things is cumming to a pretty pass, things is, when I'm acshally
told that, as it used to be said formerly, "No Hirish need apply for
nothing," so now, we are told, that no English Waiters need apply at
the Royal Nawal Xhibishun unless he bes a German!
[Illustration: "RULE, BRITANNIA, BRITANNIA RULES THE WAVES! FOR
BRITONS NEVER, NEVER, NEVER SHALL BE SLAVES!"
_Robert the Waiter_. "WHAT'S THIS! 'NO ENGLISH NEED APPLY! GERMANS
ONLY TAKEN'! THIS _IS_ 'BRITONS NEVER SHALL BE SLAVES' WITH A
I never knowed as Jack Tars, and Powder-Munkys, and Admerals (as is so
fond of Port, that they takes the werry name), was so werry parshal
to Germans, that they woud sooner go without their dinners and tease,
than be waited on by any other gennelmen, most suttenly not. "_O
contrare_," as the French Waiters says. It 'ud be a jolly long time,
I shood think, before your real British Sailers wood learn to call
a Waiter a _Gasson_, tho' as it means, I'm told, a Boy, there is sum
little sense in it, coz there's, in course. Old Boys as well as yung
ones; but what on airth meaning is there in a Kelner! as I'm acshally
told all German Waiters insists on being called! Why the thing's too
absurd to tork about.
Besides the British Publick is used to our little ways, as we are
quite used to theirn, and they talk to us in that nice confidenshal
tone about the different wines, et setterer, as no true Born
Englishman ewer yet spoke to a Frenchman, much less a German. No,
no, the hole thing's a mistake, as will soon be found out. And what a
groce injustice to the native article. These sollem-looking Germans,
not content with pushing our poor sons from their stools in our
counting-houses, as _Macbeth_ says, must now cum and take the werry
bread out of their poor Father's mouths. Oh pale-faced shame, where's
your blush? And think too of their himperance. Why they are acshilly a
going for to have a hexibition of their own, here in Lundon, and does
anyone think as they'll write up on the gates, "Only English Waiters
need apply?" Why the hidear is ridiclous, but where's the difference
I should like to kno. No, no, no one can kno better than I do, from
a long and waried xperience, from the Grand old City, the ome of
ospitality and turtle soup, to the "Grand" and "Metropole," the omes
of lucksury and refinement, that the British Public likes his British
Waiter, he likes his nice respecful ways, the helligent Bow with which
he ands him his At, and the graceful hair with which he receeves his
* * * * *
SPECIMENS FROM MR. PUNCH'S SCAMP-ALBUM.
NO. IV.--THE HUSBAND'S OLD SCHOOL-FELLOW.
We will suppose that you are a young wife, and that your husband is
absent in the City during the greater part of the day. One afternoon a
card is brought in bearing the inscription:--
_United Service Club. The Hermitage, Coventry_.
Which document is followed closely by a tall, well-groomed, rather
portly and florid stranger, with a military moustache, who greets
you with the utmost cordiality. "I happened to find myself in
this neighbourhood," he says, "and I could not--I really could
_not_--resist this opportunity. My name, I venture to think, is a
It is nothing of the sort--but you are too shy and too polite to admit
it, so you merely murmur some incoherency. He detects you at once.
"Ah!" he cries, in good-tempered reproach; "I see, I've been too
sanguine. Now confess, my dear lady, you haven't a _notion_ who I am!"
Thus brought to bay, you own that you have no clue to your visitor's
identity--as yet. "Well--well," he says, tolerantly, "Time is a
terrible sponge--though I had hoped that, even after all these years,
your dear husband might have occasionally mentioned the name of his
old school-chum! I've never forgotten _him_--no, all through the years
I've been in India I've never forgotten dear old WALTER!"
"But my husband's name is _WILLIAM_!" you say here.
"He was always WALTER to _me_, Madam, or rather--WATTY. He was so
like a favourite young brother of mine, who died young. That drew
us together from the first. Did dear old WATTY never tell you how
he saved my life once?... No? So like him!--he wouldn't. But he did,
though; yes, by Gad, jumped into fifteen foot of water after me, and
kept me up when I was going under for the last time. Pardon me, but I
see a photograph upon your writing-table--surely, unless I am wrong,
"That is a portrait of my only brother," you will say; "he is out in
India with his regiment--perhaps you may have met him there?"
"Thought I knew the face--met him at Simla, several times," says the
Captain; "wonderful how small the world is! But have you one of old
WATTY's photos? I should so like to see whether the dear old chap has
altered ... Ah, I should hardly have known him--and yet, yes, the same
cheery, jolly look, I can trace the boy there, I can see my old WATTY
again! No friends, my dear Mrs. GOSLING, like those we make in early
youth! And he never mentions me now? Ah! well, he has a very charming
excuse for forgetting the past--though I shall tell him when I see
him that I do think he might have remembered his old school-friend
a little better than he seems to have done. Your servant informed me
that he was seldom at home quite so early as this, but I thought if
I could not see _him_, I would at least give myself the pleasure of
making the acquaintance of his wife, so I just ventured to come in for
"WILLIAM will be so disappointed to have missed you," you say,
eagerly; "can't you wait and let me give you some tea? He may be back
in half an hour."
"In half an hour? Well, 'pon my word, you tempt me very much. I
shouldn't like to go away without seeing him, but I must send away my
cab first--no, it's not outside, left it at the corner of the road,
as I wasn't certain of the number--I s'pose I've got enough silver
to--no, I haven't, by Jove! _Could_ you oblige me by change for
a--well, really, this is very awkward. I've positively come out with
only a shilling--thought it was a sovereign! I shall have to ask dear
old WATTY to accommodate me--I've lent _him_ many a half-crown in
the old days. Absurd predicament to be in, and if I keep my cabman
waiting, I don't know what he mayn't charge me. I took him three hours
ago. I tell you what, my dear Mrs. GOSLING; If you'll advance me a
sovereign, I could run out and settle with the fellow, and then it
won't signify _how_ long I wait for WATTY. _Can_ you? Too good of
you, I'm sure! WATTY will chaff me when he hears I've been borrowing
like this, ha, ha!" Here your ear, sharpened by affection, catches
a well-known turn of the latch-key at your front-door. "Why, how
fortunate!" you exclaim, "here _is_ my husband already, Captain
CAULKER. He will come in as soon as he has changed his shoes."
"Capital!" cries the Captain. "Look here, Mrs. GOSLING,--I've just
thought of a little joke. I want to see if he'll _know_ me. Now you go
and talk to him a little, and--presently, you know--say there's a man
in the drawing-room, who's come to wind the clocks, and then I'll come
in to where you are, and make believe to wind the clock there--do you
see? I'd bet anything he won't spot me at first!"
You are young enough to be delighted at the idea of such a pretty
little comedy, and you trip away to the study, and archly keep
dear WILLIAM in conversation until the Captain is ready to make
his appearance. At last, a little impatiently, you give the cue by
mentioning that there is a clock-winder in the drawing-room. WILLIAM
is amusingly suspicious, and insists on seeing the man. As the
scene will be just as funny in the drawing-room, you accompany him
thither--but there is no gallant Captain there affecting to wind
your charming little Sevres clock (a wedding present)--he has gone,
and--alas! without leaving a timepiece for anybody else to wind. And
WILLIAM is _most_ disagreeable and unpleasant about it!
* * * * *
NOTES FROM A NURSERY-GARDEN.
(_BY AN AWFULLY CLEVER CHILD_.)
DEAR MR. PUNCH,--I am a Poetess. I am told that the Age is old, and
that Poetry is over. _My_ age is ten, and my poetry is certainly not
over. My nurse (one of those horrid critics) has ventured to suggest
that I am not original. I leave you to judge. Yours impatiently,
Alack! up Northern Primrose Hill
(_Sing, oh, JACK! sing, ah, GILL!_)
They climbed, and deemed it Helicon,
Those childish bards, GILLETTE and JOHN,
Their pails with Hippocrene to fill.
(_Sing, oh, JACK! sing, ah, GILL!_)
Adown that Western Hill, alack!
(_Sing, ah, GILL! sing, oh, JACK!_)
Or e'er they gained the Muses' well,
JACK kicked his bucket frail and, fell.
And GILL was brought upon her back.
(_Sing, ah, GILL! sing, oh, JACK!_)
TO A SCENTY PEDE.
How doth yonder miniature featness,
Though wingless, with gossamer wit,
Foregather mellifluent sweetness,
While Fates unrelenting permit--
Wise heir of bright hours, completeness
Of blossoms that flicker and flit.
ON A JAPANESE SCREEN.
In Yeddo, where long lilies weep, Bo' Peep
The shepherdess hath lost her sheep.
She recks not where the sheep have strayed, Poor maid,
Beneath the Boodha-Temple's shade.
Her solace is the Minstrel's: _I'd_ Let slide
My flocks of verse without a guide.
So will they best return without A doubt--
Or tale that mortal can make out.
Child-Innocence, with upward-curling feet
Resolving (as we all resolve) to eat.
The ravening Spider from his eyrie mad
Swoops, boldly bad,
And scares (as spiders scare) the Pure and Glad.
ON A KLEPTOMANIAC.
Ah, Violin Cremonian!
Ah, Pussy-cat of Ispahan!
Moo-cow that dost outmoon the moon!
Yes, dainty poodle, laugh away,
And mock the pranks poor mortals play
Who spoon the dish and dish the spoon!
* * * * *
TO THE QUEEN OF MAYS.
Give me an elfin, frolic MAY,
No Queen with hoarse cadenzas,
Who pipes a frozen roundelay
Of spiteful influenzas.
_My_ MAY shall air no voices crude.
No chained and chilly dances--
With wordless harmonies endued
And pirouetting fancies.
She'll draw us round no Northern Poles
With crowns of mimic roses.
That mock our sad sepulchral souls
And counterfeit our noses.
But white as hawthorn blossom, free
As air to shed her pleasures,
_My_ mute, melodious MAY shall be
The soul of wayward measures.
To put it plainly, while the ban
Of Spring on us and gales is,
I'll bask and smile and worship JEANNE
Within the Prince of Wales's.
* * * * *
CONSERVATIVE COMMENT ON A RECENT ELECTION (_after Mr.
Middlewick_).--"Humph! Inferior Dosset!"
* * * * *
NOTICE.--Rejected Communications or Contributions, whether MS.,
Printed Matter, Drawings, or Pictures of any description, will in no
case be returned, not even when accompanied by a Stamped and Addressed
Envelope, Cover, or Wrapper. To this rule there will be no exception.
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