Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Daily Dose

From Later Essays: 1917 - 1920, by Austin Dobson



This text is not what it should be.
There are some strange mistakes I see
I must have missed. For who, right-witted,
Would dream of putting 'filled' for 'fitted'?
Or 'light' for 'tight'? Or 'sleep' for 'steep'?
Such things would make the angels weep.


That is so. Still they do occur
To the most proved artificer.
You must have failed to cross your 't's':
GENIUS is prone to that disease!


True. (And sometimes, by accident,
The blunder betters what was meant!)
But tell me. What is my position?
Correction? In a new edition?
-- Those 'new editions' have a knack
Unluckily, of holding back...


That is because men take more pains
To feed their bodies than their brains;
Or else because they really care
For little save the lighter fare;
And then -- though this is poor relief --
The life of modern books is brief.
We'll paste in an 'Errata' slip...


Which none will look at but to skip.
No: the misfortune must be gulped,
Until the masterpiece is... pulped.

From A Casual Causerie

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