Great Caesar! Condescend
The Daisy, to receive,
Gathered by Cato's Daughter,
With your majestic leave!
What is the rhyme for porringer?
The king he had a daughter fair,
And gave the Prince of Orange her.
At my daughter's grave, thirty days
after her death:
these are the scarlet flowers
she liked to pick.
U was a silver urn,
Full of hot scalding water; Papa said, "If that Urn were mine,
I'd give it to my daughter!"
There was an old man of Messina,
Whose daughter was named Opsibeena;
She wore a small wig, and rode out on a pig,
To the perfect delight of Messina.
There was an Old Man of Bohemia,
Whose daughter was christened Euphemia;
But one day, to his grief, she married a thief,
Which grieved that Old Man of Bohemia.
There was an Old Person of Cadiz,
Who was always polite to all ladies;
But in handing his daughter, he fell into the water,
Which drowned that Old Person of Cadiz.
There was a young person in pink,
Who called out for something to drink;
But they said, "O my daughter, there's nothing but water!"
Which vexed that young person in pink.
Love without hope, as when the young bird-catcher
Swept off his tall hat to the Squire's own daughter,
So let the imprisoned larks escape and fly
Singing about her head, as she rode by.
BLEST be M’Murdo to his latest day!
No envious cloud o’ercast his evening ray;
No wrinkle, furrow’d by the hand of care,
Nor ever sorrow add one silver hair!
O may no son the father’s honour stain,
Nor ever daughter give the mother pain!
Little Polly Flinders
Sat among the cinders
Warming her pretty little toes;
Her mother came and caught her,
Whipped her little daughter
For spoiling her nice new clothes.
The parasol is the umbrella's daughter,
And associates with a fan
While her father abuts the tempest
And abridges the rain.
The former assists a siren
In her serene display;
But her father is borne and honored,
And borrowed to this day.
The lover of child Marjory
Had one white hour of life brim full;
Now the old nurse, the rocking sea,
Hath him to lull.
The daughter of child Marjory
Hath in her veins, to beat and run,
The glad indomitable sea,
The strong white sun.
William Carlos (WCW) Williams
I bought a dishmop—
having no daughter—
for they had twisted
fine ribbons of shining copper
about white twine
and made a tousled head
of it, fastened it
upon a turned ash stick
slender at the neck
when tied upright
on the brass wallbracket
to be a light for me
as a girl should seem
to her father.
Edgar Lee Masters
If you in the village think that my work was a good one,
Who closed the saloons and stopped all playing at cards,
And haled old Daisy Fraser before Justice Arnett,
In many a crusade to purge the people of sin;
Why do you let the milliner's daughter Dora,
And the worthless son of Benjamin Pantier,
Nightly make my grave their unholy pillow?
"Whistle, daughter, whistle;
Whistle, daughter dear.
"I cannot whistle, mammy,
I cannot whistle clear.
"Whistle, daughter, whistle;
Whistle for a pound.
"I cannot whistle, mammy,
I cannot make a sound.
Your baby grows a tooth, then two,
and four, and five, then she wants some meat
directly from the bone.
over: she'll learn some words, she'll fall
in love with cretins, dolts, a sweet
talker on his way to jail.
your wife, get old, flyblown, and rue
You did, you loved, your feet
Your daughter's tall.
Shall I woo the one or other?
Both attract me--more's the pity!
Pretty is the widowed mother,
And the daughter, too, is pretty.
When I see that maiden shrinking,
By the gods I swear I'll get 'er!
But anon I fall to thinking
That the mother 'll suit me better!
So, like any idiot ass
Hungry for the fragrant fodder,
Placed between two bales of grass,
Lo, I doubt, delay, and dodder!
You call me
I who grew up
gnawing on books,
as some kids
on bubble gum,
who married disastrously
but three times,
yet have a lovely daughter
I would not undo
for all the dope
Fear was my element,
fear my contagion.
I swam in it
till I became
The plane takes off
& I laugh aloud.
Call me courageous.
I am still alive.
Trip upon trenchers,
And dance upon dishes,
My mother sent me for some barm, some barm;
She bid me go lightly,
And come again quickly,
For fear the young men should do me some harm.
Yet didn't you see, yet didn't you see,
What naughty tricks they put upon me?
They broke my pitcher
And spilt the water,
And huffed my mother,
And chid her daughter,
And kissed my sister instead of me.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
'TIS easier far a wreath to bind,
Than a good owner fort to find.
I KILL'D a thousand flies overnight,
Yet was waken'd by one, as soon as twas light.
To the mother I give;
For the daughter I live.
A BREACH is every day,
By many a mortal storm'd;
Let them fall in the gaps as they may,
Yet a heap of dead is ne'er form'd.
WHAT harm has thy poor mirror done, alas?
Look not so ugly, prythee, in the glass!
All around me, the sky with its deep shade of dark.
The moon with its shrunken soul.
Can I become what I want to become?
Neither wife or mother.
I am noone and nobody is my lover.
I am afraid
that when I go mad,
my father will bow his downy head
into his silver wings and weep.
My daughter, O my daughter.
Originally Published in The 2River View, 10.
Copyright © Lisa Zaran, 2005
When I taught you
at eight to ride
a bicycle, loping along
as you wobbled away
on two round wheels,
my own mouth rounding
in surprise when you pulled
ahead down the curved
path of the park,
I kept waiting
for the thud
of your crash as I
sprinted to catch up,
while you grew
smaller, more breakable
for your life, screaming
the hair flapping
behind you like a
The stone-built villages of England.
A cathedral bottled in a pub window.
Cows dispersed across fields.
Monuments to kings.
A man in a moth-eaten suit
sees a train off heading like everything here
for the sea
smiles at his daughter leaving for the East.
A whistle blows.
And the endless sky over the tiles
grows bluer as swelling birdsong fills.
And the clearer the song is heard
the smaller the bird.
HOW cruel are the parents
Who riches only prize,
And to the wealthy booby
Poor Woman sacrifice!
Meanwhile, the hapless Daughter
Has but a choice of strife;
To shun a tyrant Father’s hate—
Become a wretched Wife.
The ravening hawk pursuing,
The trembling dove thus flies,
To shun impelling ruin,
Awhile her pinions tries;
Till, of escape despairing,
No shelter or retreat,
She trusts the ruthless Falconer,
And drops beneath his feet.