A Secured House

Image: “Modern bust of Catullus on the Piazza Carducci in Sirmione”, Wikimedia The following epigram illustrates an amusing play on words. It was written by Gaius Valerius Catullus (c. 84 BC – c. 54 BC), a Roman poet during the late Roman Republic, and was translated by Theodore Martin from Latin in The Poems of Catullus, 1861. […]

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A One Syllable Per Line Sonnet

The following is an remarkable short “sonnet” titled “An Aeronaut to his Lady” composed by Frank Sidgwick (1879-1939) quoted in David McCord (Editor), What Cheer: An Anthology of American and British Humorous and Witty Verse, 1945: I Through Blue Sky Fly To You. Why? Sweet Love, Feet Move So Slow! This sonnet differs from traditional […]

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Be Good, Be Good…

Be good, be good, be always good, And now & then be clever, But don’t you ever be too good, Nor ever be too clever; For such as be too awful good They awful lonely are, And such as often clever be Get cut & stung & trodden on by persons of lesser mental capacity, […]

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The Two-Toed & Three-Toed Tree Toads

A he-toad loved a she-toad That lived high in a tree. She was a two-toed tree toad But a three-toed toad was he. The three-toed tree toad tried to win The she-toad’s nuptial nod, For the three-toed tree toad loved the road The two-toed tree toad trod. Hard as the three-toed tree toad tried, He […]

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“Successful And Fortunate Crime Is Called Virtue” And Other Parallels In Literature

Seneca the Younger While reading Edward Walker’s Historical Discourses (1705), the following sentence he quoted got my attention: Prosperum ac felix scelus, virtus vocatur. Walker neglected to provide the source of the quote. However, I am pretty sure that he was referring to the passage from the tragedy Hercules Furens (The Madness of Hercules) written […]

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A Poetic Knight’s Tour

Image: Flickr For those of you who are familiar with the knight’s tour, you’d immediately get it.

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The ABCs Of War

“The Harvest of Battle” by Christopher R. W. Nevinson, 1919 An Austrian Archduke, assaulted and assailed, Broke Belgium’s barriers, by Britain bewailed, Causing consternation, confused chaotic crises; Diffusing destructive, death-dealing devices. England engaged earnestly, eager every ear, France fought furiously, forsaking foolish fear, Great German garrisons grappled Gallic guard, Hohenzollern Hussars hammered, heavy, hard.

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The Birds Sing Together

Image: Shutterstock As the sun rises, the birds sing together. A man with a gifted ear for music analyzed How the birds’ voices differ from each other; He then lengthily discussed and emphasized How some birds are better than the others. But it didn’t make a difference, I realized, As I watched the birds continue […]

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A Verse Full Of Footnotes

Edward Edwin Foot seemed to like using footnotes in his poems. For example, the last stanza of his poem “The Fallen Leaves”, published in The Original Poems of Edward Edwin Foot (1867) contained three footnotes: Altho’ we* mourn for one now gone, And he — that grey-hair’d Palmerston,† We will give God the praise,– For he, beyond […]

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