Thursday, 20 April 2017

I am also called Played-out and Done to Death

As an undergraduate I collected parodies and must dig out my ancient commonplace books. This is H.D. Traill, a great parodist, teasing Dante Gabriel Rossetti.

"Look in my face. My name is Used-to-was;
I am also called Played-out, and Done to Death,
And It-will-wash-no-more. Awakeneth
Slowly but sure awakening it has,
The common-sense of man; and I, alas!
The ballad-burden trick, now known too well, And turned to scorn, and grown contemptible-- A too transparent artifice to pass."

"What a cheap dodge I am! The cats who dart
Tin-kettled through the streets in wild surprise
Assail judicious ears not otherwise;
And yet no critics praise the urchin's 'art,'
Who to the wretched creature's caudal part
Its foolish empty-jingling 'burden' ties."

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