Nonfiction > Lionel Strachey, et al., eds. > The World’s Wit and Humor > Russian, Scandinavian, etc.
  PREVIOUSNEXT  
CONTENTS · VOLUME CONTENTS · INDEX TO AUTHORS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
The World’s Wit and Humor: An Encyclopedia in 15 Volumes.  1906.
Vol. XIV: Russian—Scandinavian—Miscellaneous
 
The House-Builder
By Ivan Khemnitser (1745–1784)
 
From the “Fables”

A CERTAIN man a house would build.
The place is with materials filled,
And everything is ready there;
Is it a difficult affair?
Yes, till you fix the corner-stone;        5
It won’t erect itself alone.
Day rolls on day, and year on year,
And nothing yet is done;
There’s always something to delay
The business to another day.        10
 
And thus in silent waiting stood
The heaps of stone and piles of wood,
Till Death—who in his vast affairs
Ne’er puts things off (as men in theirs),
And thus, if I the truth must tell,        15
Does his work finally and well—
Winked at our hero as he passed:
“Your house is finished, sir, at last—
A narrower house, a house of clay,
Your palace for another day!”        20
 
 
CONTENTS · VOLUME CONTENTS · INDEX TO AUTHORS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
  PREVIOUSNEXT  
 
Loading
Click here to shop the Bartleby Bookstore.

Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2014 Bartleby.com · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors