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Frederick Locker-Lampson (Фредерик Локер-Лэмпсон)


Picadilly


PICCADILLY! Shops, palaces, bustle, and breeze,
The whirring of wheels, and the murmur of trees;
By night or by day, whether noisy or stilly,
Whatever my mood is, I love Piccadilly.

Wet nights, when the gas on the pavement is streaming,
And young Love is watching, and old Love is dreaming,
And Beauty is whirling to conquest, where shrilly
Cremona makes nimble thy toes, Piccadilly!

Bright days, when a stroll is my afternoon wont
And I meet all the people I do know, or don't:
Here is jolly old Brown, and his fair daughter Lillie --
No wonder, young Pilgrim, you like Piccadilly!

See yonder pair riding, how fondly they saunter,
She smiles on her poet, whose heart's in a canter!
Some envy her spouse, and some covet her filly,
He envies them both, -- he's an ass, Piccadilly!

Now were I such a bride, with a slave at my feet,
I would choose me a house in my favourite street;
Yes or no -- I would carry my point, willy-nilly:
If "no," -- pick a quarrel; if "yes" -- Piccadilly!

From Primrose balcony, long ages ago,
"Old Q." sat at gaze, -- who now passes below?
A frolicsome statesman, the Man of the Day,
A laughing philosopher, gallant and gay;

Never darling of fortune more manfully trod,
Full of years, full of fame, and the world at his nod,
Can the thought reach his heart, and then leave it more chilly --
Old P. or old Q., -- "I must quit Piccadilly?"

Life is chequer'd; a patchwork of smiles and of frowns;
We value its ups, let us muse on its downs;
There's a side that is bright, it will then turn us t'other,
One turn, if a good one, deserves yet another.
These downs are delightful, these ups are not hilly, --
Let us try one more turn ere we quit Piccadilly.



Frederick Locker-Lampson's other poems:
  1. A Word That Makes Us Linger
  2. On an Old Muff
  3. To My Grandmother
  4. At her Window
  5. My Mistress's Boots


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