Garden-fancies - Ii. Sibrandus Schafnaburgensis Poem Rhyme Scheme and Analysis


Plague take all your pedants say IA
He who wrote what I hold in my handB
Centuries back was so good as to dieA
Leaving this rubbish to cumber the landB
This that was a book in its timeC
Printed on paper and bound in leatherD
Last month in the white of a matin primeC
Just when the birds sang all togetherD
Into the garden I brought it to readE
And under the arbute and laurustineF
Read it so help me grace in my needG
From title page to closing lineF
Chapter on chapter did I countH
As a curious traveller counts StonehengeI
Added up the mortal amountH
And then proceeded to my revengeI
Yonder's a plum tree with a creviceJ
An owl would build in were he but sageK
For a lap of moss like a fine pont levisL
In a castle of the Middle AgeK
Joins to a lip of gum pure amberD
When he'd be private there might he spendM
Hours alone in his lady's chamberD
Into this crevice I dropped our friendM
Splash went he as under he duckedO
At the bottom I knew rain drippings stagnateP
Next a handful of blossoms I pluckedO
To bury him with my bookshelf's magnateQ
Then I went in doors brought out a loafN
Half a cheese and a bottle of ChablisR
Lay on the grass and forgot the oafN
Over a jolly chapter of RabelaisR
Now this morning betwixt the mossR
And gum that locked our friend in limboS
A spider had spun his web acrossR
And sat in the midst with arms akimboS
So I took pity for learning's sakeT
And de profundis accentibus l tisR
Cantate quoth I as I got a rakeT
And up I fished his delectable treatiseR
Here you have it dry in the sunF
With all the binding all of a blisterD
And great blue spots where the ink has runF
And reddish streaks that wink and glisterD
O'er the page so beautifully yellowS
Oh well have the droppings played their tricksR
Did he guess how toadstools grow this fellowS
Here's one stuck in his chapter sixR
How did he like it when the live creaturesR
Tickled and toused and browsed him all overD
And worm slug eft with serious featuresR
Came in each one for his right of troverD
When the water beetle with great blind deaf faceR
Made of her eggs the stately depositU
And the newt borrowed just so much of the prefaceR
As tiled in the top of his black wife's closetQ
All that life and fun and rompingV
All that frisking and twisting and couplingV
While slowly our poor friend's leaves were swampingV
And clasps were cracking and covers supplingV
As if you had carried sour John KnoxR
To the play house at Paris Vienna or MunichW
Fastened him into a front row boxR
And danced off the Ballet with trousers and tunicW
Come old Martyr What torment enough is itU
Back to my room shall you take your sweet selfN
Good bye mother beetle husband eft sufficitU
See the snug niche I have made on my shelfN
A 's book shall prop you up B 's shall cover youX
Here's C to be grave with or D to be gayV
And with E on each side and F right over youX
Dry rot at ease till the Judgment dayV

Robert Browning


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