9.16.2009

Rosa's Poetry Archives: A.A. Milne


Bad Sir Brian Botany

by A.A. Milne


Sir Brian had a battleaxe with great big knobs on.

He went among the villagers and blipped them on the head.

On Wednesday and on Saturday,

Especially on the latter day,

He called on all the cottages and this is what he said:

"I am Sir Brian!" (Ting-ling!)

"I am Sir Brian!" (Rat-tat!)

"I am Sir Brian,

"As bold as a lion!

"Take that, and that, and that!"

Sir Brian had a pair of boots with great big spurs on;.

A fighting pair of which he was particularly fond.

On Tuesday and on Friday,

Just to make the street look tidy,

He'd collect the passing villagers and kick them in the pond.

"I am Sir Brian!" (Sper-lash!)

"I am Sir Brian!" (Sper-losh!)

"I am Sir Brian,

"As bold as a Lion!

"Is anyone else for a wash?"

Sir Brian woke one morning and he couldn't find his battleaxe.

He walked into the village in his second pair of boots.

He had gone a hundred paces

When the street was full of faces

And the villagers were round him with ironical salutes.

"You are Sir Brian? My, my.

"You are Sir Brian? Dear, dear.

"You are Sir Brian

"As bold as a lion?

"Delighted to meet you here!"

Sir Brian went a journey and he found a lot of duckweed.

They pulled him out and dried him and they blipped him on the head.

They took him by the breeches

And they hurled him into ditches

And they pushed him under waterfalls and this is what they said:

"You are Sir Brian -- don't laugh!

"You are Sir Brian -- don't cry!

"You are Sir Brian

"As bold as a lion --

"Sir Brian the Lion, goodbye!"

Sir Brian struggled home again and chopped up his battleaxe.

Sir Brian took his fighting boots and threw them in the fire.

He is quite a different person

Now he hasn't got his spurs on,

And he goes about the village as B. Botany, Esquire.

"I am Sir Brian? Oh, no!

"I am Sir Brian? Who's he?

"I haven't any title, I'm Botany;

"Plain Mr. Botany (B.)"


for the Elevens

3 comments:

Mum said...

Who knew that A.A. had a dark side? Should be call "Redemption of a Sociopath" Not quite bed time story material.

rosa said...

Oh dear! Maybe the humor of this poem isn't quite conveyed without EH Shepard's drawings. Or maybe it's the lack of B's silly British accent, he still reads this aloud in a very funny way. This is from the collection "When We Were Very Young".
I've read a collection of his poetry that is quite a bit darker-political poems written during WW2-Milne was a pacifist (and an atheist too, from what I remember.)

Made For You By Mrs Woo said...

I didn't know you had a blog either!!!! I'm so excited to catch up! It looks like I'm gonna really enjoy it!

Read Your Way Through the Garden: Choice Tomes From Garden Literature

  • A Book of Salvias by Betsy Clebsch
  • Botany for Gardeners by Brian Capon
  • Making Bentwood Trellises by Jim Long
  • RHS Encyclopedia of Plants & Flowers
  • Rose Primer: An Organic Approach to Rose Selection & Care by Orin Martin
  • Start With the Soil by Grace Gershuny
  • Sunset Western Garden Book
  • Sunset Western Landscaping Book
  • The Book of Garden Secrets by Patent & Bilderback
  • The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Botany
  • the Gardener's Table: A Guide to Natural Vegetable Growing and Cooking by Richard Merrill & Joe Ortiz
  • The Gardener's Year by Karel Capek
  • The Hutchinson Dictionary of Plant Names: Common & Botanical
  • We Made A Garden by Margaret Fish

lotsa latin: rosa's botanical & etymological ruminations

  • vespertinus: flowers in the evening
  • vernalis:spring
  • veni vidi nates calcalvi: we came, we saw, we kicked butt. This was printed on a T shirt I bought at Abbot's Thrift many years ago. It encircled the NEA symbol. I wish I knew why.
  • superciliaris: shaped like an eyebrow ex: sturnella superciliaris, the White-browed Blackbird
  • rosa-sinensis: species of Hibiscus: Hibiscus rosa-sinensis. Lit. Rosa of China, so named by British plant hunters.
  • placentiformis: shaped like a cake ex: discocactus placentiformis
  • nudiflorus: flowers before leaves show ex: flowering quince, magnolia
  • nivalis: growing in or near snow ex: galanthus nivalis (common snowdrop)
  • muralis: growing on walls
  • mirabilis: marvellous, wonderful
  • formosa: beautiful ex: dicentra formosa, a.k.a.western bleeding heart/dutchman's breeches/lady in a bath
  • carpe vitam: get a life
  • Carolus Linnaeus: Latinized name of Carl von Linne (1707-1778), Swedish naturalist considered the father of plant taxonomy. Whatta guy.