Saturday, October 01, 2005


That Poetry Doth Flow From The Soul

Thanks to Clairwil, my attention is drawn to this quiz, which claims to match a poem to your mood. Here's mine:

'Down! Down! Well, it's what poetry has been used for since the dawn of time - so all right, here's something suitably passionate that might just persuade the object of your desire into bed.'

'Phillis, Or, the Progress of Love'

'DESPONDING Phillis was endu'd
With ev'ry Talent of a Prude,
She trembled when a Man drew near;
Salute her, and she turn'd her Ear:
If o'er against her you were plac't
She durst not look above your Wa[i]st;
She'd rather take you to her Bed
Than let you see her dress her Head;
In Church you heard her thro' the Crowd
Repeat the Absolution loud;
In Church, secure behind her Fan
She durst behold that Monster, Man:
There practic'd how to place her Head,
And bit her Lips to make them red:
Or on the Matt devoutly kneeling
Would lift her Eyes up to the Ceeling,
And heave her Bosom unaware
For neighb'ring Beaux to see it bare...'

Jonathan Swift (1667 - 1745)

First of all, I must congratulate the quiz for working out that I was well horny when I did it. How it got there from my selection of 'Eeyore' as my favourite literary character I don't know, and frankly I don't want to.

However, I do have one problem with this, which is the claim that poetry 'might just persuade the object of your desire into bed.' Look, the only women who would really be turned on by poetry are women with long black hair, thick rimmed spectacles, and long, flowing bohemian skirts, worn not because they're fashionable, but because they haven't shaved their legs in a year and anything else would chafe.

I find 'old-time' romance infuriating, not least because I really wish it worked, whereas instead every single bloke knows the only way to score, unless you're really good looking, is to hit the cheesiest club in town and prey on that lass from Huddersfield who's bursting out of her top and falling off her stilletos because she's had eight snakebites too many, and gently guiding her towards the old bachelor pad.

I'm the sad git who actually wishes for the days of Bertie Wooster, when all a man had to do was take a girl for a moonlight stroll in the garden. Now, the only moonlight stroll you'll be doing is the one down the road to the gutter where your newest acquaintance is vomiting up the evening's curry.

Still, on a less depressing note, I must just say I really like this poem. Maybe I was wrong to dismiss Swift as a buffoon as early as I did. That's quality adolescent humour on display there, and it did raise a chuckle.

Even poetry would be better than negotiating this. Good God, I sound like I'm seventy-five!

Speaking as a young lady, who has been known to vomit up the odd curry after a few milk stouts, I think you're wrong about poetry as a seduction tool. A well timed rendition of 'The Owl And The Pussycat' and I'm anyones. Then again I do go through razors at an alarming rate. Damn those hairy legs!
Excellent! Well, I shan't give up on moonlight strolling just yet then. I shall arm myself to the teeth with poetry, place a dried flower in my shirt pocket, and amble through the city centre.

You never know, someone may be so out of it they think it's a great novelty act.
Never underestimate the power of a well-placed burst of verse to make a lady weak at the knees. I once made a girl positively swoon as I drunkenly intoned to her the lyric iambic tetrameter of Horny by Mousse T.
Any lady unlucky enough to hear my singing voice is more likely to be gagging than swooning, unfortunately.
Dunno about you, but a wild bespectacled lass with an easy-access skirt--regardless of length--might not be a half-bad way to wend your way through a warm evening.

Seriously, courtship is so modified by modernity that the quaint old ways are just that. But I would posit that it isn't quite to the point that romance is equivalent to mounting a drunkard long about an early Saturday morning. That isn't romance, that's sex. Nothing wrong with it, really, just a different animal.
Good heavens no, romance is out of the question. It's sex is the key, sir, sex is the key.
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