Lecture

Lecture

The fringed curtains of thine eye advance,
Prophet of intellectual discipline !
Greet the conceit with a reluctant grin ,
Ransack your memory for an apt retort ,
Until some clumsy bounder barks your shin :
Attempt to crush him with a chilly glance ,
Rescue your notebook from the dusty floor —
Pause there , Morocco! HE is coming in ,
Robed like the Vizier of some eastern court
Pacing majestic through an ancient dance .
How burns his beauty in this world of sin !
Our levity, our slackness , we deplore ,
Shamed by his wisdom : poet seize your chance ;
“Ars longa , vita — “ truly life is short :
Your powers of rhetoric are wearing thin .
The lecture is beginning: close the door.

1948 — and how!
Lord David , I think , m’dear . Sorry.