Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Parody Anthology

A Parody Anthology
Collected by Carolyn Wells
Charles Scribner’s Sons
Published September 1904
397 pages

Image: inside front cover (click to enlarge)

After Whitman . . .

An American, One of the Roughs, a Kosmos

Nature, continuous Me!
Saltness, and vigorous, never torpi-yeast of Me!
Florid, unceasing, forever expansive;
Not Schooled, not dizened, not washed and powdered;
Strait-laced not at all; far otherwise than polite;
Not modest, nor immodest;
Divinely tanned and freckled; gloriously unkempt;
Ultimate yet unceasing; capricious though determined;
Speak as thou listeth, and tell the askers that which they seek to know.
Thy speech to them will be not quite intelligible.
Never mind! utter thy wild commonplaces;
Yawp them loudly, shrilly;
Silence with shrill noise the lisps of the foo-foos.
Answer in precise terms of barbaric vagueness
The question that the Fun editor hath sparked through Atlantic cable
To W . . T W. . TM . . N, the speaker of the pass-word primeval;
The signaller of the signal of democracy;
The seer and hearer of things in general;
The poet translucent; fleshy, disorderly, sensually inclined;
Each tag and part of whom is a miracle.
(Thirteen pages of MS. relating to Mr. W. . t W. . tm . n are here omitted.)
Rhapsodically state the fact that is and is not;
That is not, being past; that is, being eternal;
If indeed it ever was, which is exactly the point in question.


In the Forum: an ongoing nightmare.

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