Hot and Cold

A woman who my mother knows Came in and took off all her clothes. Said I, not being very old, ‘By golly gosh, you must be cold!’ ‘No, no!’ she cried. ‘Indeed I’m not! I’m feeling devilishly hot!’

St Ives

As I was going to St Ives I met a man with seven wives Said he, ‘I think it’s much more fun Than getting stuck with only one.’

Television

The most important thing we’ve learned, So far as children are concerned, Is never, NEVER, NEVER let Them near your television set — Or better still, just don’t install The idiotic thing at all. In almost every house we’ve been, We’ve watched them gaping at the screen. They loll and slop and lounge about, And … Read more

The Pig

In England once there lived a big And wonderfully clever pig. To everybody it was plain That Piggy had a massive brain. He worked out sums inside his head, There was no book he hadn’t read. He knew what made an airplane fly, He knew how engines worked and why. He knew all this, but … Read more

“Mike Teavee…”

The most important thing we’ve learned, So far as children are concerned, Is never, NEVER, NEVER let Them near your television set — Or better still, just don’t install The idiotic thing at all. In almost every house we’ve been, We’ve watched them gaping at the screen. They loll and slop and lounge about, And … Read more

TO THE COUNTESS GRANVILLE.

MY DEAR LADY GRANVILLE,– THE reluctance which must naturally be felt by any one in venturing to give to the world a book such as the present, where the beauties of the great original must inevitably be diminished, if not destroyed, in the process of passing through the translator’s hands, cannot but be felt in … Read more

ORIGINAL PREFACE.

I feel no small reluctance in venturing to give to the public a work of the character of that indicated by the title-page to the present volume; for, difficult as it must always be to render satisfactorily into one’s own tongue the writings of the bards of other lands, the responsibility assumed by the translator … Read more

PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION.

I have taken advantage of the publication of a Second Edition of my translation of the Poems of Goethe (originally published in 1853), to add to the Collection a version of the much admired classical Poem of Hermann and Dorothea, which was previously omitted by me in consequence of its length. Its universal popularity, however, … Read more

DEDICATION.

The morn arrived; his footstep quickly scared The gentle sleep that round my senses clung, And I, awak’ning, from my cottage fared, And up the mountain side with light heart sprung; At every step I felt my gaze ensnared By new-born flow’rs that full of dew-drops hung; The youthful day awoke with ecstacy, And all … Read more

THE MUSE’S MIRROR.

EARLY one day, the Muse, when eagerly bent on adornment, Follow’d a swift-running streamlet, the quietest nook by it seeking. Quickly and noisily flowing, the changeful surface distorted Ever her moving form; the goddess departed in anger. Yet the stream call’d mockingly after her, saying: “What, truly! Wilt thou not view, then, the truth, in … Read more