A learned judge found occasion to refer recently to what he called "the gloomy psychology of Victorians."
Where is this glum Victorian -- This man of mien forlorn -- Fit but for some historian To heap with heavy scorn? I've sought him up an down the street Thro' labyrinthine ways, Wherever men and maidens meet; By road or rail, or on two feet I've searched for him for days. I've looked for him where business cares Weigh down on every rank, Seeking to catch him unawares In tears upon the office stairs; Yet ever drew a blank I've sought him in the hinterland On Sunny Saturdays. He smiled a while and waved his hand Amid his draughts and drays, And said, "Excuse me: I must catch This bus to see a football match," And gaily went his ways. In palaces and picture shows Where e'er a soul for solace goes I've hunted him; and goodness knows He seemed too gay by half; And neither consciousness of sin Nor sorrow kept his gladness in; For, truth to tell, his silly grin Fled only for a laugh. Where is this glum Victorian -- Man of the brooding eye? His story, tho' a hoary 'un I've failed to verify. I've sought him on the sandy beach, Mid shining sheik and perfect peach; But he was never there. I've sought him in the gleaming bush Mid many a merry hiking push, And moaned in my despair. I've sought him him on the sunlit course Doing his dough on some slow horse, And glimpsed a gloomy note. But swiftly, moved by some queer force, He grinned, and backed without remorse Another hairy goat .... Then hopeless, haggard and distraught, I met a ragged man And pitifullyhim besought To tell me where he might be caught, This glum Victorian. He looked me up, he looked me down And, tho' he seemed a sorry clown, A merry smile replaced his frown As thus to me he spoke: "So far, I ain't met such 'tis true," Said he; "but, by the looks of you, I reckon you're the bloke."
|Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2003-06|