A Narrative Poem by Edwin Arlington Robinson
Miniver Cheevy, child of scorn,
Grew lean while he assailed the seasons;
He wept that he was ever born,
And he had reasons.
Miniver loved the days of old
When swords were bright and steeds were prancing;
The vision of a warrior bold
Would set him dancing.
Miniver sighed for what was not,
And dreamed and rested from his labors;
He dreamed of Thebes and Camelot
And Priam’s neighbors.
Miniver mourned the ripe renown
That made so many a name so fragrant;
He mourned Romance, now on the town,
And Art, a vagrant.
Miniver loved the Medici,
Albeit he had never seen one;
He would have sinned incessantly
Could he have been one.
Miniver cursed the commonplace,
And eyed a khaki suit with loathing;
He missed the mediaeval grace
Of iron clothing.
Miniver scorned the gold he sought,
But sore annoyed he was without it;
Miniver thought and thought and thought
And thought about it.
Miniver Cheevy, born too late,
Scratched his head and kept on thinking;
Miniver coughed, and called it fate,
And kept on drinking.
“Miniver Cheevy” was first published in The Town down the River in 1910. (see more)