« ПретходнаНастави »
SOME people hang portraits up
In a room where they dine or sup:
And the wife clinks tea-things under,
And her cousin, he stirs his cup,
Asks, “ Who was the lady, I wonder ?”
“ 'Tis a daub John bought at a sale,”
Quoth the wife,- looks black as thunder:
" What a shade beneath her nose !
Snuff-taking, I suppose, —”
Adds the cousin, while John's corns ail.
Or else, there's no wife in the case,
But the portrait 's queen of the place,
Alone mid the other spoils
Of youth,-masks, gloves and foils,
And pipe-sticks, rose, cherry-tree, jasmine,
And the long whip, the tandem-lasher,
And the cast from a fist (“ not, alas! mine,
But my master's, the Tipton Slasher”)
And the cards where pistol-balls mark ace,
And a satin shoe used for cigar-case,
And the chamois-horns (" shot in the Chablais ")
And prints—Rarey drumming on Cruiser,
And Sayers, our champion, the bruiser,
And the little edition of Rabelais :
Where a friend, with both hands in his pockets,
May saunter up close to examine it,
And remark a good deal of Jane Lamb in it,
“ But the eyes are half out of their sockets ;
That hair 's not so bad, where the gloss is,
But they ’ve made the girl's nose a proboscis :
Jane Lamb, that we danced with at Vichy!
What, is not she Jane? Then, who is she?"
All that I own is a print,
An etching, a mezzotint;
'Tis a study, a fancy, a fiction,
Yet a fact (take my conviction)
Because it has more than a hint
Of a certain face, I never
Saw elsewhere touch or trace of
In women I've seen the face of:
Just an etching, and, so far, clever.
I keep my prints, an imbroglio,
Fifty in one portfolio.
When somebody tries my claret,
We turn round chairs to the fire,
Chirp over days in a garret,
Chuckle o’er increase of salary,
Taste the good fruits of our leisure,
Talk about pencil and lyre,
And the National Portrait Gallery :
Then I exhibit my treasure.
After we've turned over twenty,
And the debt of wonder my crony owes
Is paid to my Marc Antonios,
He stops me
“ Festina lente !
What's that sweet thing there, the etching ?”
How my waistcoat-strings want stretching,
How my cheeks grow red as tomatos,
How my heart leaps ! But hearts, after leaps, ache.
By the by, you must take, for a keepsake, That other, you praised, of Volpato's.”
The fool! would he try a flight further and say
He never saw, never before to-day,
What was able to take his breath away,
A face to lose youth for, to occupy age
With the dream of, meet death with,—why, I'll
But that, half in a rapture and half in a rage,
I should toss him the thing's self—“ 'Tis only a
A thing of no value! Take it, I supplicate !"
MR. SLUDGE, " THE MEDIU M."