A Song Of Greek Prose

A poem by Robert Fuller Murray

Thrice happy are those
Who ne'er heard of Greek Prose--
Or Greek Poetry either, as far as that goes;
For Liddell and Scott
Shall cumber them not,
Nor Sargent nor Sidgwick shall break their repose.

But I, late at night,
By the very bad light
Of very bad gas, must painfully write
Some stuff that a Greek
With his delicate cheek
Would smile at as 'barbarous'--faith, he well might.

For when it is done,
I doubt if, for one,
I myself could explain how the meaning might run;
And as for the style--
Well, it's hardly worth while
To talk about style, where style there is none.

It was all very fine
For a poet divine
Like Byron, to rave of Greek women and wine;
But the Prose that I sing
Is a different thing,
And I frankly acknowledge it's not in my line.

So away with Greek Prose,
The source of my woes!
(This metre's too tough, I must draw to a close.)
May Sargent be drowned
In the ocean profound,
And Sidgwick be food for the carrion crows!

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