Tuesday, June 05, 2007


In honor of my upcoming summer vacation (ahhh), I am posting one of my favorite poems by Philip Larkin. And this fellow on the left could not be a better visual enhancement to the verse. :)


by Philip Larkin

Why should I let that toad work
Squat on my life?
Can't I use my wit as a pitchfork
And drive the brute off?

Six days of the week it soils
With its sickening poison--
Just for paying a few bills!
That's out of proportion.

Lots of folk live on their wits;
Lecturers, lispers,
Losels, loblolly-men, louts--
They don't end as paupers;

Lots of folk live up lanes
With fires in a bucket,
Eat windfalls and tinned sardines--
They seem to like it.

Their nippers have got bare feet,
Their unspeakable wives
Are skinny as whippets--and yet
No one actually starves.

Ah, were I courageous enough
To shout Stuff your pension!
But I know, all too well, that's the stuff
That dreams are made on;

For something sufficiently toad-like
Squats in me, too;
Its hunkers are heavy as hard luck,
And cold as snow,

And will never allow me to blarney
My way to getting
The fame and the girl and the money
All at one sitting.

I don't say, one bodies the other
One's spiritual truth;
But I do say it's hard to lose either,
When you have both.



Admin said...

We came across a huge toad on our walk today. I said I was surprised that it didn't hop away. Daughter, the smarty-pants, said toads aren't much for hopping. They'd rather walk. I must have known that. I've been looking at toads for years and it's obvious that their rear legs aren't as long as frogs' rear legs. Sheesh! How many other obvious things don't I know? Love the photo.


Julia Buckley said...

Well don't feel bad--I didn't know that, either. :)