TATI’s & TONY’s DEAD POET TOUR // Halloween by Madison Julius Cawein

It was down in the woodland on last Hallowe’en,
Where silence and darkness had built them a lair,
That I felt the dim presence of her, the unseen,
And heard her still step on the ghost-haunted air.

It was last Hallowe’en in the glimmer and swoon
Of mist and of moonlight that thickened and thinned,
That I saw the gray gleam of her eyes in the moon,
And hair, like a raven, blown wild in the wind.

It was last Hallowe’en where starlight and dew
Made mystical marriage on flower and leaf,
That she led me with looks of a love that I knew,
And lured with the voice of a heart-buried grief.

It was last Hallowe’en in the forest of dreams,
Where trees are eidolons and shadows have eyes,
That I saw her pale face like the foam of far streams,
And heard, like the leaf-lisp, her tears and her sighs.

It was last Hallowe’en, the haunted, the dread,
In the wind-tattered wood by the storm-twisted pine,
That I, who am living, kept tryst with the dead,
And clasped her a moment and dreamed she was mine.

 

by MADISON JULIUS CAWEIN (1865-1914)
Public Domain Poetry

TATI’s & TONY’s DEAD POET TOUR // The Sissy Boy by Edwin C. Ranck

Beware the Sissy Boy my child,
Not because he’s very wild;
The Sissy Boy is never that,
Although he’ll run if you say “Scat!”
The Sissy Boy’s infinitesimal,
He is not worth a duodecimal.

If you should take a custard pie
And hit a Sissy in the eye,
He would not go before a jury,
He’d only blush and say “Oh Fury!”
For he is perfumed, sweet and mild,
That’s just his kind, my dearest child.

One should never strike a Sissy,
He is too lady-like and prissy.
You do not need to use your fist
But merely slap him on the wrist,
And if this will not make him budge,
Then glare at him and say “Oh Fudge!”

The Sissy sports a pink cravat
And often wears a high silk hat;
His voice is like a turtle dove’s
And he always wears the “cutest” gloves.
At playing ping-pong he’s inured,
And his finger-nails are manicured.

He uses powder on his face
And his handkerchiefs are trimmed with lace;
He loves to play progressive euchre
And spend his papa’s hard-earned lucre.
He wears an air of nonchalance
And always takes in every dance.

Socially, he’s quite a pet
And always fashionably in debt.
He hates to be considered slow
And poses as a famous beau.
He loves to cut a swath and dash
When papa dear puts up the cash.

This, my child, is the Sissy Boy
Who acts so womanly and coy.
His head’s as soft as new-made butter;
His aim in life is just to flutter;
Yet he goes along with unconcern
And marries a woman with money to burn.

 

by EDWIN C. RANCK (1879-?)
Public Domain Poetry

TATI’s & TONY’s DEAD POET TOUR // The Quest of the Purple Cow by Hilda Johnson

He girded on his shining sword,
He clad him in his suit of mail,
He gave his friends the parting word,
With high resolve his face was pale.
They said, “You’ve kissed the Papal Toe,
To great Moguls you’ve made your bow,
Why will you thus world-wandering go?”
“I never saw a purple cow!”

“I never saw a purple cow!
Oh, hinder not my wild emprise,
Let me depart! For even now
Perhaps, before some yokel’s eyes
The purpling creature dashes by,
Bending its noble, horned brow.
They see its glowing charms, but I,
I never saw a purple cow!”

“But other cows there be,” they said,
“Both cows of high and low degree,
Suffolk and Devon, brown, black, red,
The Ayrshire and the Alderney.
Content yourself with these.” “No, no,”
He cried, “Not these! Not these! For how
Can common kine bring comfort? Oh!
I never saw a purple cow!”

He flung him to his charger’s back,
He left his kindred limp and weak,
They cried: “He goes, alack! alack!
The unattainable to seek.”
But westward still he rode, pardee!
The West! Where such freaks be; I vow,
I’d not be much surprised if he
Should some day see
A
Purple
Cow!

 

by HILDA JOHNSON (?-?)
Public Domain Poetry

TATI’s & TONY’s DEAD POET TOUR // A Crushed Leaf by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

An hour ago when the wind blew high
At my lady’s window a red leaf beat.
Then dropped at her door, where, passing by,
She carelessly trod it under her feet.

I have taken it out of the dust and dirt,
With a tender pity but half defined.
Ah! poor bruised leaf, with your stain and hurt,
‘A fellow-feeling doth make us kind.’

On winds of passion my heart was blown,
Like an autumn leaf one hapless day.
At my lady’s window with tap and moan
It burned and fluttered its life away.

Bright with the blood of its wasting tide
It glowed in the sun of her laughing eyes.
What cared she though a stray heart died –
What to her were its sobs and sighs.

The winds of passion were spent at last,
And my heart like the leaf in her pathway lay;
And under her slender foot as she passed,
My lady she trod it and went her way.

So I picked the leaf from its dusty place,
With a tender pity -too well defined.
And I laid it here in this velvet case,
Ah! a fellow-feeling doth make us kind.

 

by ELLA WHEELER WILCOX (1855-1919)
Public Domain Poetry

TATI’s & TONY’s DEAD POET TOUR // Daedalon by J.R. Ackerley

Aye, I am foolish for I know
That I shall sadden when you go,
And I am blind because I see
That you were more than God to me:
A brighter sun than Heaven’s shone
When I was with you, Daedalon.

Can I find strength enough to stand
The last slight pressure of your hand;
Can I find fortitude to bear
The knowledge that you are not there,
Then turn my Book of Life upon
The memory of Daedalon

Remember you! No, no, I’ll shut
The Book, or from its pages cut
The image of you graven there,
The dingy tangle of your hair,
Your ill-kept hands and lifeless face,
And seek friends in some other place.

Forget you? … When my heart repeats
Your wisdom to me as it beats? …
That always you may be the same
My rhymes shall vivify your name …
Aye, cunningly I’ll play upon
The happy name of Daedalon.

But you were cold to me, I know,
Who never dreamed my thoughts to show,
But sat content to hear you speak,
And see the bronzeness of your cheek,
Your sunburnt nose and wounded eye …
But never told you, no, not I.

Yes, I am blind; but still I saw
The beauty of you all the more,
How slowly came your drawled reply,
How gleamed your artificial eye;
And on the morrow you’ll be gone …
Ah, but I loved you, Daedalon.

 

by J.R. ACKERLEY (1896-1967)
Public Domain Poetry