Doomed Poesy

I thought, one day, what’s better than
To write some lines, some stanzas,
And string them up, and dub them Art,
Entranced at these bonanzas?

I started; scrawled a verse or two;
I felt the Muse’s shadow—
I got some sounds to ring-a-ling,
But others simply rattled.

For soon my chosen form disjoined
To snippets and half-measures;

Meter had enough of itself.
Rhyme didn't stay for censure.

Bright images in fear gave up
My camp, for their own visions.
Pace went limping on weakened legs
To a place of more precision.

Soon metaphors fatigued themselves,
And similes went stretching
Like rubber bands—while assonance
Jumped jigs none reckoned fetching,

As did alliteration.

And so, at last, my head fell low:
I saw no triumph coming—
I left the whole pile on a shelf
And walked off, softly humming!

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