Sir Christopher WrenSaid, "I am going to dine with some men.If anybody callsSay I'm designing St. Paul's"-o-The younger Van EyckWas christened Jan, and not Mike.The thought of this curious mistakeOften kept him awake.-o-The intrepid RicardoWith characteristic bravadoAlluded openly to RentWherever he went.-o-Professor DewarIs a better man than you are.None of you assesCan condense gases.-o-John Stuart MillBy a mighty effort of willOvercame his natural bonhomieAnd wrote "Principles of Political Economy"
|Mill demonstrating a mighty effort of will|
Until recently the only clerihews by E. C. Bentley I had read were ones found in various anthologies of light verse. Auden, who clearly likes them, has a bunch in his Oxford Book of Light Verse, for instance. But then I thought about the dates and realized that the first of his three books of clerihews, Biography for Beginners, might be available at Project Gutenberg. And so it was! And with illustrations by G. K. Chesterton. (Whom I didn't know could draw, but clearly can...)
I had to look up James Dewar, but he invented the vacuum flask.
Note: the index to Biography for Beginners is pretty hilarious, too. I don't know why Bentley has it in for Christopher Wren, but he clearly does.
Turns out clerihews are even more catching than I realized!
The idea of publishing poem posts on Thursday originates with Jennifer at Holds Upon Happiness. Brona has some great animal prayer poems in an inadvertent teaser 😉 for Rumer Godden reading week.