A Sea Dirge by Lewis Carroll

There are certain things–as, a spider, a ghost,
The income-tax, gout, an umbrella for three –
That I hate, but the thing that I hate the most
Is a thing they call the Sea.

Pour some salt water over the floor –
Ugly I’m sure you’ll allow it to be:
Suppose it extended a mile or more,
THAT’S very like the Sea.

Beat a dog till it howls outright –
Cruel, but all very well for a spree:
Suppose that he did so day and night,
THAT would be like the Sea.

I had a vision of nursery-maids;
Tens of thousands passed by me –
All leading children with wooden spades,
And this was by the Sea.

Who invented those spades of wood?
Who was it cut them out of the tree?
None, I think, but an idiot could –
Or one that loved the Sea.

It is pleasant and dreamy, no doubt, to float
With ‘thoughts as boundless, and souls as free’:
But, suppose you are very unwell in the boat,
How do you like the Sea?

There is an insect that people avoid
(Whence is derived the verb ‘to flee’).
Where have you been by it most annoyed?
In lodgings by the Sea.

If you like your coffee with sand for dregs,
A decided hint of salt in your tea,
And a fishy taste in the very eggs –
By all means choose the Sea.

And if, with these dainties to drink and eat,
You prefer not a vestige of grass or tree,
And a chronic state of wet in your feet,
Then–I recommend the Sea.

For _I_ have friends who dwell by the coast –
Pleasant friends they are to me!
It is when I am with them I wonder most
That anyone likes the Sea.

They take me a walk: though tired and stiff,
To climb the heights I madly agree;
And, after a tumble or so from the cliff,
They kindly suggest the Sea.

I try the rocks, and I think it cool
That they laugh with such an excess of glee,
As I heavily slip into every pool
That skirts the cold cold Sea.


A Mad Gardener’s Song by Lewis Carrol

He thought he saw an Elephant,
That practised on a fife:
He looked again, and found it was
A letter from his wife.
‘At length I realise,’ he said,
‘The bitterness of Life!’

He thought he saw a Buffalo
Upon the chimney-piece:
He looked again, and found it was
His Sister’s Husband’s Niece.
‘Unless you leave this house,’ he said,
“I’ll send for the Police!’

He thought he saw a Rattlesnake
That questioned him in Greek:
He looked again, and found it was
The Middle of Next Week.
‘The one thing I regret,’ he said,
‘Is that it cannot speak!’

He thought he saw a Banker’s Clerk
Descending from the bus:
He looked again, and found it was
A Hippopotamus.
‘If this should stay to dine,’ he said,
‘There won’t be much for us!’

He thought he saw a Kangaroo
That worked a coffee-mill:
He looked again, and found it was
A Vegetable-Pill.
‘Were I to swallow this,’ he said,
‘I should be very ill!’

He thought he saw a Coach-and-Four
That stood beside his bed:
He looked again, and found it was
A Bear without a Head.
‘Poor thing,’ he said, ‘poor silly thing!
It’s waiting to be fed!’

He thought he saw an Albatross
That fluttered round the lamp:
He looked again, and found it was
A Penny-Postage Stamp.
‘You’d best be getting home,’ he said:
‘The nights are very damp!’

He thought he saw a Garden-Door
That opened with a key:
He looked again, and found it was
A Double Rule of Three:
‘And all its mystery,’ he said,
‘Is clear as day to me!’

He thought he saw a Argument
That proved he was the Pope:
He looked again, and found it was
A Bar of Mottled Soap.
‘A fact so dread,’ he faintly said,
‘Extinguishes all hope!’

Comic Miseries by John. G. Saxe

My dear young friend, whose shining wit
Sets all the room ablaze,
Don’t think yourself ‘ a happy dog,’
For all your merry ways ;
But learn to wear a sober phiz,
Be stupid,, if you can.
It’s such a very serious thing
To be a funny man !

You’re at an evening party, with
A group of pleasant folks, —
You venture quietly to crack
The least of little jokes, —
A lady doesn’t catch the point,
And begs you to explain —
Alas I for one who drops a jest
And takes it up again !

You’re talking deep philosophy
With very special force,
To edify a clergyman
With suitable discourse, —
You think you’ve got him — when he calls
A friend across the way.
And begs you’ll say that funny thing
You said the other day !

You drop a pretty jeu-de-mot
Into a neighbor’s ears,
Who likes to give you credit for
The clever thing he hears,
And so he hawks your jest about,
The old, authentic one.
Just breaking off the point of it.
And leaving out the pun !

By sudden change in politics,
Or sadder change in Polly,
You, lose your love, or loaves, and fall
A prey to melancholy,
While every body marvels why
Your mirth is under ban, —
They think your very grief ‘ a joke,’
You’re such a funny man !

You follow up a stylish card
That bids you come and dine,
And bring along your freshest wit,
(To pay for musty wine,)
You’re looking very dismal, when
My lady bounces in,
And wonders what you’re thinking of,
And why you don’t begin !

You’re telling to a knot of friends
A fancy-tale of woes
That cloud your matrimonial sky.
And banish all repose, —
A solemn lady overhears
The story of your strife,
And tells the town the pleasant news : —
You quarrel with your wife !

My dear young friend, whose shining wil
Sets all the room ablaze,
Don’t think yourself ‘ a happy dog,’
For all your merry ways ;
But learn to wear a sober phiz,
Be stupid, if you can,
It’s such a very serious thing
To be a funny man !

Limericks by Edward Lear

There was an Old Man in a tree,
Who was horribly bored by a Bee;
When they said, “Does it buzz?” he replied,
“Yes, it does!
It’s a regular brute of a Bee.”
There was an Old Man on some rocks,
Who shut his Wife up in a box:
When she said, “Let me out,” he exclaimed,
“Without doubt
You will pass all your life in that box.”
There was an Old Man who said “How
Shall I flee from this horrible Cow?
I will sit on this stile, and continue to smile,
Which may soften the heart of that Cow.”
There was an Old Man who said, “Hush!
I perceive a young bird in this bush!”
When they said, “Is it small?” he replied, “Not at all;
It is four times as big as the bush!”
There was once an Old Man with a beard,
Who said, “It is just as I feared!—
Two Owls and a Hen,
Four Larks and a Wren
Have all built their nests in my beard.”
There was an old person of Ware
Who rode on the back of a bear;
When they said, “Does it trot?”
He said, “Certainly not,
It’s a Moppsikon Floppsikon bear.”
There was a young lady in blue,
Who said, “Is it you? Is it you?”
When they said, “Yes, it is,” she replied only,
That ungracious young lady in blue.

On file by John Kendrick Bangs

If an unkind word appears,
File the thing away.
If some novelty in jeers,
File the thing away.

If some clever little bit
Of a sharp and pointed wit,
Carrying a sting with it
File the thing away.

If some bit of gossip come,
File the thing away.
Scandalously spicy crumb,
File the thing away.

If suspicion comes to you
That your neighbor isn’t true
Let me tell you what to do
File the thing away.

Do this for a little while,
Then go out and burn the file.

Ode to a Small Lump of Green Putty I Found in My Armpit One Midsummer Morning by Grunthos the Flatulent

Putty. Putty. Putty.
Green Putty – Grutty Peen.
Grarmpitutty – Morning!
Pridsummer – Grorning Utty!
Discovery….. Oh.
Putty?….. Armpit?
Armpit….. Putty.
Not even a particularly
Nice shade of green.
As I lick my armpit and shall agree,
That this putty is very well green.

this blog is dedicated to all my fellow Vogon Poetry Lovers

One Fine Day in the Middle of the Night by Anonymous

One fine day in the middle of the night,
Two dead boys got up to fight,
They lived on the corner, in the middle of the block,
On the second floor of a vacant lot.
One was blind and the other couldn’t, see
So they chose a dummy for a referee.
A blind man went to see fair play,
A dumb man went to shout “hooray!”
Back to back they faced each other,
Drew their swords and shot each other,
A deaf policeman heard the noise,
And came to arrest the two dead boys,
A paralysed donkey passing by,
Kicked the blind man in the eye,
Knocked him through a nine inch wall,
Into a dry ditch and drowned them all,
A mute onlooker shrieked in fright
And a lame man danced at the ghastly sight
If you don’t believe this story’s true,
Ask the blind man he saw it too!

Style by Karl G. Bradshaw

There’s nifty styles and shifty styles,
And styles ‘that make us smile;
There’s rummy styles mid bummy styles,
And styles that’s out of style;
There’s’ styles’ so bad they make us mad,
And styles that’s fairly good’;
There’s heads of stone and heads of bone,
And heads composed of wood.

There’s Mrs. Brown, who has a gown
That came from Paris, France; ·
To Mrs. Teak she will not speak
Or give a pleasant glance;
Apd Miss Durat, she wears a hat
That cost her dad a pile;
She will not go with Miss Devoe,
Whose hat is out·of style,

Old Daddy Lentz is seven cents,
Ahead of Daddy Gray;
His daughter, Dot, will not be caught
With Gray’s young daughter, May;
And Billy Hawk refused to talk
To neighbor Willie Spoons;
A badly matched big checkered patch
Adorned Spoons’ trouserloons.

There’s ideas dumb and ideas bum,
And ideas strangely queer;
There’s human minds of wondrous kinds
Upon this earthly sphere;
And when away from earth we stray,
We’d better take a file,
For fear the pearly gates are locked
And keys are out of style.

The Whole Mess … Almost by Gregory Corso

I ran up six flights of stairs
to my small furnished room
opened the window
and began throwing out
those things most important in life

First to go, Truth, squealing like a fink:
“Don’t! I’ll tell awful things about you!”
“Oh yeah? Well, I’ve nothing to hide … OUT!”
Then went God, glowering & whimpering in amazement:
“It’s not my fault! I’m not the cause of it all!” “OUT!”
Then Love, cooing bribes: “You’ll never know impotency!
All the girls on Vogue covers, all yours!”
I pushed her fat ass out and screamed:
“You always end up a bummer!”
I picked up Faith Hope Charity
all three clinging together:
“Without us you’ll surely die!”
“With you I’m going nuts! Goodbye!”

Then Beauty … ah, Beauty—
As I led her to the window
I told her: “You I loved best in life
… but you’re a killer; Beauty kills!”
Not really meaning to drop her
I immediately ran downstairs
getting there just in time to catch her
“You saved me!” she cried
I put her down and told her: “Move on.”

Went back up those six flights
went to the money
there was no money to throw out.
The only thing left in the room was Death
hiding beneath the kitchen sink:
“I’m not real!” It cried
“I’m just a rumor spread by life … ”
Laughing I threw it out, kitchen sink and all
and suddenly realized Humor
was all that was left—
All I could do with Humor was to say:
“Out the window with the window!”