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Owen Seaman (Оуэн Симен)


Ars Postera


[On an advertisement of A Comedy of Sighs.]

Mr. Aubrey Beer de Beers,
You’re getting quite a high renown;
Your Comedy of Leers, you know,
Is posted all about the town;
This sort of stuff I cannot puff,
As Boston says, it makes me ‘tired’;
Your Japanee-Rossetti girl
Is not a thing to be desired.

Mr. Aubrey Beer de Beers,
New English Art (excuse the chaff)
Is like the Newest Humour style,
It’s not a thing at which to laugh;
But all the same, you need not maim
A beauty reared on Nature’s rules;
A simple maid au naturel
Is worth a dozen spotted ghouls.

Mr. Aubrey Beer de Beers,
You put strange phantoms on our walls,
If not so daring as To-day’s,
Nor quite so Hardy as St. Paul’s;
Her sidelong eyes, her giddy guise,––
Grande Dame Sans Merci she may be;
But there is that about her throat
Which I myself don’t care to see.

Mr. Aubrey Beer de Beers,
The Philistines across the way,
They say her lips––well, never mind
Precisely what it is they say;
But I have heard a drastic word
That scarce is fit for dainty ears;
But then their taste is not the kind
Of taste to flatter Beer de Beers.

Bless me, Aubrey Beer de Beers,
On fair Elysian lawns apart
Burd Helen of the Trojan time
Smiles at the latest mode of Art;
Howe’er it be, it seems to me,
It’s not important to be New;
New Art would better Nature’s best,
But Nature knows a thing or two.

Aubrey, Aubrey Beer de Beers,
Are there no models at your gate,
Live, shapely, possible and clean?
Or won’t they do to ‘decorate’?
Then by all means bestrew your scenes
With half the lotuses that blow,
Pothooks and fishing-lines and things,
But let the human woman go!



Owen Seaman's other poems:
  1. Probation: To a King's Recruit
  2. To the Memory of Field-Marshall Earl Roberts
  3. Fashions for Men
  4. Thomas of the Light Heart
  5. The Uses Of Ocean


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