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And darkening in fleecy flocks

We seek the roots of trees and rocksAnd blowing thence, in summer hours,

We are the fairies of the Flowers!

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I DISTINCTLY remember (and who dares doubt me?)
Having been (now, I care not who believes !)
An ape
with a forest around about me-
Prodigious trees and enormous leaves,
Great bulks of flowers, gigantic grasses,
Boughs that bent not to any gale:
And thence, I date my contempt for Asses,
And my deep respect for the Devil's Tail!


I shall never forget the exquisite feeling
Of elevation, sans thought, sans care,

When I twisted my tail round the wood's bough


And swung, meditatively, in the air.There's an advantage !-Fairer shapes can Aspire, yearn upward, tremble and glow, But, by means of their posteriority, apes can Look down on aspirants that walk below!


There was a life for a calm philosopher,

Self-supplied with jacket, and trousers, and socks,

Nothing to learn, no hopes to get cross over,

A head that resisted the hardest knocks,
Liquor and meat in serene fruition,

A random income from taxes free,
No cares at all, and but one ambition-

To swing by the Tail to the bough of a tree!


Whence I firmly believe, to the consternation
Of puppies who think monkeyosophy sin,

In gradual human degeneration

And a general apely origin.

Why, the simple truth's in a nutshell or thimble,

Though it rouses the monkey in ignorant elves; And the Devil's Tail is a delicate symbol

Of apehood predominant still in ourselves.


Pure class government, family glory,

Were the delights of that happy lot;

My politics were serenely Tory,

And I claim'd old descent from God knows what: Whence I boast extraction loftier, nobler,

Than the beggarly Poets one often meets, A boast I am happy to share with the cobbler Who whisked his Tail out-to whip John Keats.


There was a life, I assever! With reasons

That lead me to scorn every star-gazing Ass; And because I loved it, at certain seasons

'Tis a pleasure to gaze in the looking-glass.

When the bright sun beckons the spring, green-deckt,


The Ape swells within me: whenever I see Mortals look skyward, walking erect up,

I long for a Tail and a large strong Tree!

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