Last Songs from Vagabondia

by Bliss Carman and Richard Hovey




I THINK it must be spring. I feel
All broken up and thawed.
I’m sick of everybody’s "wheel;"
I’m sick of being jawed.

I am too winter-killed to live,

Cold-sour through and through.
O Heavenly Barber, come and give
My soul a dry shampoo!

I’m sick of all these nincompoops,
Who weep through yards of verse,

And all these sonneteering dupes
Who whine and froth and curse.

I’m sick of seeing my own name
Tagged to some paltry line,
While this old corpus without shame

Sits down to meat and wine.

I’m sick of all these Yellow Books,
And all these Bodley Heads;
I'm sick of all these freaks and spooks
And frights in double leads.


When good Napoleon’s publisher
Was dangled from a limb,
He should have had an editor
On either side of him.

I’m sick of all this taking on

Under a foreign name;
For when you call it decadent,
It’s rotten just the same.

I’m sick of all this puling trash
And namby-pamby rot,—

A Pegasus you have to thrash
To make him even trot!

An Age-end Art! I would not give,
For all their plotless plays,
One round Falstaffian adjective

Or one Miltonic phrase.

I’m sick of all this poppycock
In bilious green and blue;
I’m tired to death of taking stock
Of everything that’s "New."


New Art, New Movements, and New Schools,
All maimed and blind and halt!
And all the fads of the New Fools
Who cannot earn their salt.

I’m sick of the New Woman, too.

Good Lord, she’s worst of all.
Her rights, her sphere, her point of view,
And all that folderol!

She makes me wish I were the snake
Inside of Eden’s wall,

To give the tree another shake,
And see another fall.

I’m very much of Byron’s mind;
I like sufficiency;
But just the common garden kind

Is good enough for me.

I want to find a warm beech wood,
And lie down, and keep still;
And swear a little; and feel good;
Then loaf on up the hill,


And let the Spring house-clean my brain,
Where all this stuff is crammed;
And let my heart grow sweet again;
And let the Age be damned.