Verse > T.S. Eliot > Poems
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T.S. Eliot (1888–1965).  Poems.  1920.
 
4. A Cooking Egg
 
        En l’an trentiesme do mon aage
Que toutes mes hontes j’ay beues…
 
 
PIPIT sate upright in her chair
  Some distance from where I was sitting;
Views of the Oxford Colleges
  Lay on the table, with the knitting.
 
Daguerreotypes and silhouettes,        5
  Her grandfather and great great aunts,
Supported on the mantelpiece
  An Invitation to the Dance.
    .    .    .    .    .
I shall not want Honour in Heaven
  For I shall meet Sir Philip Sidney        10
And have talk with Coriolanus
  And other heroes of that kidney.
 
I shall not want Capital in Heaven
  For I shall meet Sir Alfred Mond:
We two shall lie together, lapt        15
  In a five per cent Exchequer Bond.
 
I shall not want Society in Heaven,
  Lucretia Borgia shall be my Bride;
Her anecdotes will be more amusing
  Than Pipit’s experience could provide.        20
 
I shall not want Pipit in Heaven:
  Madame Blavatsky will instruct me
In the Seven Sacred Trances;
  Piccarda de Donati will conduct me…
    .    .    .    .    .
But where is the penny world I bought        25
  To eat with Pipit behind the screen?
The red-eyed scavengers are creeping
  From Kentish Town and Golder’s Green;
 
Where are the eagles and the trumpets?
 
  Buried beneath some snow-deep Alps.        30
Over buttered scones and crumpets
  Weeping, weeping multitudes
Droop in a hundred A.B.C.’s. 1
 
Note 1. i.e. an endemic teashop, found in all parts of London. The initials signify: Aerated Bread Company, Limited. [back]
 
 
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