Sweet Doing Nothing. Auguste Toulmouche. 1877.



Walter de la Mare, 1941


Dainty Miss Apathy

Sat on a sofa,

Danglig her legs,

And with nothing to do;

She looked at a drawing of

Old Queen Victoria,

At a rug from far Persia—

An exquisite blue;

At a bowl of bright tulips;

A needlework picture

Of doves caged in wicker

You could almost hear coo;

She looked at the switch

That evokes e-


At the coals of an age

B.C. millions and two—

When the trees were like ferns

And the reptiles all flew;

She looked at the cat

Asleep on the hearthrug,

At the sky in the window,—

The clouds in it, too,

And a marvelous light

From the West burning through;

And the one silly word

In her desolate noddle

As she dangled her legs,

Having nothing to do,

Was not, as you’d guess,

Of dumbfounded felicity,

But contained just four letters,

And these pronounced POOH!


This humorous rebuke was published in a collection for children by Walter de la Mare entitled Bells and Grass.

2 thoughts on “Pooh!”

  1. What a lazy bum! What would Amy Dorrit say…? (Can you tell I’ve been watching Little Dorrit lately?) ;)

    Yet in spite of the wickedness in being idle, I sorely wish I could have such a luxury right now…

Comments are closed.