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Diogenes Post by :mehdi_cit Category :Poems Author :Harry Graham Date :November 2011 Read :3336

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Diogenes

He stopped inside a tub, from choice,
But otherwise was well-conducted,
Altho' he raised a rasping voice
To persons who his view obstructed,
And threw a boot at anyone
Who robbed him of his patch of sun.

And thus he lived, without expense,
Arrayed in somewhat scant apparel,
His customary residence
The limits of an empty barrel;
(His spirits would perforce be good,
Maturing slowly "in the wood.")

With lamp alight he sought at night
For honest men, his ruling passion;
But either he was short of sight,
Or honest men were out of fashion;
He never found one, so he said;--
They probably were all in bed.

At last, when he was very old,
He got abducted by a pirate,
And to a man of Corinth sold,
At an exorbitantly high rate;
His owner called him "Sunny Jim,"
And made an indoor pet of him.

And soon, as one may well suppose,
He learnt the very choicest manners,
Could balance sugar on his nose,
Or sit right up and smoke Havanas,
Or swim into the pond for sticks,--
There was no limit to his tricks.

He never tasted wine nor meat,
But ate, in full and plenteous measure,
Grape-Nuts and Force and Shredded Wheat,
Pretending that they gave him pleasure.
At length, at eighty-nine, he died,
Of a too strenuous inside.

Had but this worthy cynic been
A member of our favoured nation,
Niagara he might have seen,
And realised a new sensation,
If he had set himself the task
To brave the Rapids in his cask.

Or if his ghost once more began,
With lighted lamp, his ancient mission,
And searched the city for a man
Whose honesty outsoared suspicion,
We could provide him, in New York,
A nice (if somewhat lengthy) walk.


MORAL.

Tho' thumping tubs is easy work,
With which no critic cares to quarrel,
There may be charms about a Turk,
Policemen even may be moral;
And, tho' they never get found out,
There are some honest men about.


(The end)
Harry Graham's poem: Diogenes

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