Treasure Island

William Ernest Henley

(1849 - 1902 / Gloucester / England)

Madam Life's a Piece in Bloom


Madam Life's a piece in bloom
Death goes dogging everywhere:
She's the tenant of the room,
He's the ruffian on the stair.

You shall see her as a friend,
You shall bilk him once or twice;
But he'll trap you in the end,
And he'll stick you for her price.

With his kneebones at your chest,
And his knuckles in your throat,
You would reason -- plead -- protest!
Clutching at her petticoat;

But she's heard it all before,
Well she knows you've had your fun,
Gingerly she gains the door,
And your little job is done.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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  • Topaz Antony (6/9/2013 4:25:00 PM)

    A visual poem. One can picture this in stages. The awareness of the rotten underbelly of Victorian life is immense. This poem deserves more appreciation. (Report) Reply

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