The Spike or Victoria University College Review 1935
I Come from haunts of Keats and Burns
I make a sudden sonnet;
As one who sees a lamb, and yearns
To write a poem on it.
I mingle in my boyhood days
With literary rebels
I struggle for my laureate bays,
I babble over pebbles.
And what though life may often seem
Unhappy, drab and hollow?
I write it off as but a dream
And close my eyes and swallow.
I oft forgo my food and rest
With mental torture racked, till
I weave a subtle anapaest
Or snappy little dactyl.
On swift iambic feet I fly
With tricks of rhythm clever:
On such an easy metre I
Could rhyme along for ever.
O'er literary ways I dance
Through doggerel and classic,
With here and there a hopeful glance
At altitudes Parnassic.
For even Wordsworth's stony waste
Of wilderness Siberian
Has oftentimes a little taste
Of water-cress Pierian.
So gather I, through toil and debt,
For my poetic salad,
With here and there a triolet
And here and there a ballad.
With Cowper now I gloom and glide
Through dark and dreary levels,
Or plunge into the swirling tide
Of loose Byronic revels.
I walk the green Elysian lawns
With Grecian gods and goddesses
Or raise the gentle reader's yawns
With tough, long-winded Odysseys.
Or as the Swinburne manner is,
With pessimism weary all,
And toss off his philosophies
Of decadence venereal.
Or else with Blake I foam and prance
In metaphysic shallows;
I slip! I slide!—and end my dance
On some reviewer's gallows.
I burble, burble, as I go
To Lethe's brimming river,
Till claimed by that oblivious flow
I'm swallowed up forever.