Saturday, August 24, 2013

A (Late) Birthday Tribute To Ogden Nash

Hey, I'm always late for birthdays, anniversaries, and so on. I love celebrating Christmas in early January.  Thanksgiving--why not Friday or Saturday, eh?

So--yeah.  Happy Birthday, Ogden Nash.  He was actually born August 19th, but hey, the 24th is close enough, right?

A friend of mine, Carol Tomany, wrote a beautiful post yesterday that featured the little snippery quasi-rhymes that Nash was famous for, and it caused me to remember how entertained I can be, for long periods of time, reading Nash's work.

Here are some of his shorter pieces:

I test my bath before I sit, 
And I'm always moved to wonderment 
That what chills the finger not a bit 
Is so frigid upon the fundament. 
I would live all my life in nonchalance and insouciance 
Were it not for making a living, which is rather a nouciance.

I think that I shall never see 
A billboard as lovely as a tree. 
Perhaps unless the billboards fall, 
I'll never see a tree at all. 

Beneath this slab 
John Brown is stowed. 
He watched the ads 
And not the road. 

A child need not be very clever 
To learn that "Later, dear" means "Never."

The Lord in His wisdom made the fly,
And then forgot to tell us why.

The truth I do not stretch or shove 
When I state that the dog is full of love. 
I've also found, by actual test, 
A wet dog is the lovingest. 
Sure, deck your limbs in pants; 
Yours are the limbs, my sweeting. 
You look divine as you advance -- 
Have you seen yourself retreating?
(one of my favorites, that one is)

Affection is a noble quality;
It leads to generosity and jollity. 
But it also leads to breach of promise 
If you go around lavishing it on red-hot momise.

I have a bone to pick with fate, 
Come here and tell me girly, 
Do you think my mind is maturing late, 
Or simply rotting early. 

Senescence begins 
And middle age ends 
The day your descendents 
Outnumber your friends.

Enter, breath;
Breath, slip out; 
Blood, be channeled, 
And wind about. 
O, blessed breath and blood which strive 
To keep this body of mine alive! 
O gallant breath and blood 
Which choose 
To wage the battle 
They must lose. 

He tells you when you've got on too much lipstick 
And helps you with your girdle when your hips stick.
(the perfect husband, right?)

(and speaking of husbands, some Nash advice)
To keep your marriage brimming, 
With love in the loving cup, 
Whenever you're wrong, admit it; 
Whenever you're right, shut up.

Hope you enjoyed!


No comments:

Post a Comment