The Poetry Corner

In Imitation Of E. Of Dorset : Artemisia

By Alexander Pope

Tho' Artemisia talks, by fits, Of councils, classics, fathers, wits; Reads Malbranche, Boyle, and Locke; Yet in some things methinks she fails, 'Twere well if she would pare her nails, And wear a cleaner smock. Haughty and huge as High-Dutch bride, Such nastiness, and so much pride Are oddly join'd by fate: On her large squab you find her spread, Like a fat corpse upon a bed, That lies and stinks in state. She wears no colours (sign of grace) On any part except her face; All white and black beside: Dauntless her look, her gesture proud, Her voice theatrically loud, And masculine her stride. So have I seen, in black and white A prating thing, a Magpye hight, Majestically stalk; A stately, worthless animal, That plies the tongue, and wags the tail, All flutter, pride, and talk.