My first is no proof of my second,
Though my second's a proof of my first:
If I were my whole I should tell you
Quite freely my best and my worst.

One clue more: if you fail to discover
My meaning, you're blind as a mole;
But if you will frankly confess it,
You show yourself clearly my whole.


My first may be the firstborn,
The second child may be;
My second is a texture light
And elegant to see:
My whole do those too often write
Who are from talent free.


How many authors are my first!
And I shall be so too
Unless I finish speedily
That which I have to do.

My second is a lofty tree
And a delicious fruit;
This in the hot-house flourishes-
That amid rocks takes root.

My whole is an immortal queen
Renowned in classic lore:
Her a god won without her will,
And her a goddess bore.


Me you often meet
In London's crowded street,
And merry children's voices my resting-place proclaim.
Pictures and prose and verse
Compose me-I rehearse
Evil and good and folly, and call each by its name.
I make men glad, and I
Can bid their senses fly,
And festive echoes know me of Isis and of Cam.
But give me to a friend,
And amity will end,
Though he may have the temper and meekness of a lamb.