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A poem by Harry Graham

Aftword [from "Perverted Proverbs"]

Title:     Aftword [from "Perverted Proverbs"]
Author: Harry Graham [More Titles by Graham]

'Tis done! We reach the final page,
With feelings of relief, I'm certain;
And there arrives at such a stage,
The moment to ring down the curtain.
(This metaphor is freely taken
From Shakespeare--or perhaps from Bacon.)

The Book perused, our Future brings
A plethora of blank to-morrows,
When memories of Happier Things
Will be our Sorrow's Crown of Sorrows.
(I trust you recognize this line
As being Tennyson's, not mine.)

My verses may indeed be few,
But are they not, to quote the poet,
"The sweetest things that ever grew
Beside a human door"? I know it.
(What an inhuman door would be,
Enquire of Wordsworth, please, not me.)

'Twas one of my most cherished dreams
To write a Moral Book some day;
What says the Bard? "The best laid schemes
Of Mice and Men gang aft agley!"
(The Bard here mentioned, by the bye,
Is Robbie Burns, of course--not I.)

And tho' my pen records each thought
As swift as the phonetic Pitman,
Morality is not my "forte,"
O Camarados! (vide Whitman)
And, like the Porcupine, I still
Am forced to ply a fretful quill.

We may be Master of our Fate,
(As Henley was inspired to mention)
Yet am I but the Second Mate
Upon the ss. "Good Intention";
For me the course direct is lacking--
I have to do a deal of tacking.

To seek for Morals here's a task
Of which you well may be despairing;
"What has become of them?" you ask,
They've given us the slip--like Waring.
"Look East!" said Browning once, and I
Would make a similar reply.

Look East, where in a garret drear,
The Author works, without cessation,
Composing verses for a mere-
ly nominal remuneration;
And, while he has the strength to write 'em,
Will do so still--ad infinitum.

[The end]
Harry Graham's poem: Aftword