Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE LEES AND THE LAWSONS, by JAMES SMITH (1775-1839)



Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

Rhyming Dictionary Search
THE LEES AND THE LAWSONS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: If you call on the lees, north of bloomsbury-square
Last Line: Is not the right road to his bosom.
Subject(s): Life; London; Singing & Singers


IF you call on the Lees, north of Bloomsbury-square,
They welcome you blandly, they proffer a chair,
Decorously mild and well bred:
Intent on their music, their books, or their pen,
Employment absorbs their attention, and men
Seem totally out of their head.

If you call on the Lawsons, in Bloomsbury-place,
No fabric of order you seem to deface,
No sober arrangement to break:
They lounge on the sofa, their manners are odd,
Men drop in at luncheon, and give them a nod,
Then run to the sherry and cake.

The house of the Lees has an orderly air,
It sets to its brethren of brick in the square
A model from attic to basement:
The knocker is polished, the name is japanned,
The step, unpolluted, is sprinkled with sand,
White blinds veil the drawing-room casement.

The house of the Lawsons is toute autre chose,
It certainly proffers no air of repose,
For one of the girls always lingers
Athwart the verandah, alert as an ape,
To note to her sisters the forthcoming gape,
Be it monkeys or Savoyard singers.

Whenever the Lees to the theatre stray,
The singers who sing, and the players who play,
Attentive, untalkative, find 'em:
With sound to allure them, or sense to attract,
They rarely turn round, till the end of the act,
To talk with the party behind 'em.

The Lawsons are bent on a different thing:
Miss Paton may warble, Miss Ayton may sing,
To listeners tier above tier:
They heed not song, character, pathos, or plot,
But turn their heads back, to converse with a knot
Of dandies who lounge in the rear.

In life's onward path it has happened to me
With many a Lawson and many a Lee,
In parties to mix and to mingle:
And somehow, in spite of manoeuvres and plans,
I've found that the Lees got united in banns,
While most of the Lawsons keep single.

Coy Hymen is like the black maker of rum --
"De more massa call me de more I vont come,"
He flies from the forward and bold:
He gives to the coy what he keeps from the kind;
The maidens who seek him, the maidens who find,
Are cast in an opposite mould.

Ye female gymnasians, who strive joint by joint,
Come give to my Lawsons some lessons in point,
(They can't from their own sex refuse 'em;)
Whenever you plan an athletic attack,
You know, from experience, to jump on man's back
Is not the right road to his bosom.





Other Poems of Interest...



Home: PoetryExplorer.net