Reprint: A Letter to the Editor of The South Australian Advertiser by "An Adelaide Tailor"


Sir - I was much amused last week to see that an hon. member of the House of Assembly enlivened the usual dulness of debate, by a speech of a very witty and highly poetical character. I am informed that the hon. member is not only the Tom Hood, but the Tom Moore of the Parliament, and moreover that he entertains the highest possible opinion of his own transcendant talents. I rejoice to see that he casts aside, with the boldness of true genius, those trammels, which unhappily have shackled so many other great poets, both of ancient and modern times, and with a lofty scorn scatters to the winds all rules as to the number of feet in the lines of his poetry. I speak of it as his, for it is evident that most of it is decidedly original, like the hon. member for the heights of Parnassus himself ; for instance, or, to speak more classically, "exempli gratia" --

"I hear a monster in the lobby roar,
Say, Mr. Speaker, shall we closely bar the door;
Or madly daring shall we let him in,
That we may have to put him out agin."
Here there is also a little liberty taken with the pronunciation, but this is perhaps pardonable, as also is the extra fut in the second line. The delicate allusion to that fierce animal, the Gorilla, which is so much dreaded by the hon. member, cannot be too highly appreciated, and that noble disinterested-ness which prompts the hon. member "madly daring to let him in, that they might have to put him out agin" must claim the admiration of every lover of fair play.

But I will not take up more of your space in eulogising the poetry of the hon. member. I have seen some of a similar style issued under the signature of " R. Venn, butcher, Currie-street west;" but no doubt Mr. Venn, who is a knowing one, pays the hon. member for Mount Parnassus to do it for him. There have also lately appeared some poetical advertisements from another well known tradesman, which from the style I judge must have emanated from the same source. I am anxious to know whether the poet is open to an engagement to supply a weekly poetical advertisement for a contingent reimbursement, to


First published in The South Australian Advertiser, 18 October 1861

[Thanks to the National Library of Australia's newspaper digitisation project for this piece.]

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on November 25, 2009 8:20 AM.

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