Lewis Carroll’s “The Lady of the Ladle”

The Youth at Eve had drunk his fill,

Where stands the “Royal” on the Hill,

And long his mid-day stroll had made,

On the so-called “Marine Parade”–

(Meant, I presume, for Seamen brave,

Whose “march is on the Mountain wave”

‘Twere just the bathing-place for him

Who stays on land till he can swim)

And he had strayed into the Town,

And paced each alley up and down,

Where still, so narrow grew the way,

The very houses seemed to say,

Nodding to friends across the Street,

“One struggle more and we shall meet.”

And he had scaled that wondrous stair

That soars from earth to upper air,

Where rich and poor alike must climb,

And walk the treadmill for a time.

That morning he had dressed with care,

And put Pomatum on his hair;

He was, the loungers all agreed,

A very heavy swell indeed:

Men thought him, as he swaggered by,

Some scion of nobility,

And never dreamed, so cold his look,

That he had loved–and loved a Cook.

Upon the beach he stood and sighed

Unheedful of the treacherous tide;

Thus sang he to the listening main,

And soothed his sorrow with the strain!


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