Puslapio vaizdai

With the nameless finer leaven
Lent of blood and courtly race;
And he added, too, in duty,
Ninon's wit and Boufflers' beauty;
And La Vallière's yeux veloutés
Followed these;

And you liked it, when he said it
(On his knees),

And you kept it, and you read it,
"Belle Marquise!"


Yet with us your toilet graces

Fail to please,

And the last of your last faces,

And your mise;

For we hold you just as real,
"Belle Marquise!”

As your Bergers and Bergères,
Iles d'Amour and Batelières;
As your parcs, and your Versailles,
Gardens, grottoes, and rocailles;
As your Naiads and your trees ;-
Just as near the old ideal

Calm and ease,

As the Venus there, by Coustou,
That a fan would make quite flighty,

Is to her the gods were used to,-
Is to grand Greek Aphroditè,
Sprung from seas.

You are just a porcelain trifle,
"Belle Marquise!"

Just a thing of puffs and patches,
Made for madrigals and catches,
Not for heart-wounds, but for scratches,
O Marquise !

Just a pinky porcelain trifle,

"Belle Marquise !"
Wrought in rarest rose-Dubarry,
Quick at verbal point and parry,
Clever, doubtless ;-but to marry,
No, Marquise!


For your Cupid, you have clipped him,

Rouged and patched him, nipped and snipped him,
And with chapeau-bras equipped him,
"Belle Marquise !”
Just to arm you through your wife-time,
And the languors of your life-time,

"Belle Marquise!"

Say, to trim your toilet tapers,
Or,-to twist your hair in papers,


Or,-to wean you from the vapours ;—
As for these,
You are worth the love they give you,
Till a fairer face outlive you,

Or a younger grace shall please; Till the coming of the crows' feet, And the backward turn of beaux' feet, "Belle Marquise !”Till your frothed-out life's commotion Settles down to Ennui's ocean, Or a dainty sham devotion,

"Belle Marquise !"


No: we neither like nor love you, "Belle Marquise!"

Lesser lights we place above you,—
Milder merits better please.

We have passed from Philosophe-dom
Into plainer modern days,—
Grown contented in our oafdom,
Giving grace not all the praise;
And, en partant, Arsinoé,--

Without malice whatsoever,-
We shall counsel to our Chloë
To be rather good than clever;

For we find it hard to smother
Just one little thought, Marquise !
Wittier perhaps than any other,-
You were neither Wife nor Mother,
"Belle Marquise!"



"On ne badine pas avec l'amour."

HE scene, a wood.

A shepherd tip-toe creeping, Carries a basket, whence a billet peeps, To lay beside a silk-clad Oread sleeping

Under an urn; yet not so sound she sleeps But that she plainly sees his graceful act; "He thinks she thinks he thinks she sleeps," in fact.


--one sees

One hardly needs the "Peint par François Boucher."
All the sham life comes back again,—
Alcoves, Ruelles, the Lever, and the Coucher,
Patches and Ruffles, Roués and Marquises;
The little great, the infinite small thing
That ruled the hour when Louis Quinze was king.

For these were yet the days of halcyon weather,—
A "Martin's summer", when the nation swam,
Aimless and easy as a wayward feather,


Down the full tide of jest and epigram ;A careless time, when France's bluest blood Beat to the tune of "After us the flood."

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