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    The Poet's Apology

    by Andrew Lang
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    No, the Muse has gone away,
    Does not haunt me much to-day.
    Everything she had to say
    Has been said!
    'Twas not much at any time
    She could hitch into a rhyme,
    Never was the Muse sublime,
    Who has fled!

    Any one who takes her in
    May observe she's rather thin;
    Little more than bone and skin
    Is the Muse;
    Scanty sacrifice she won
    When her very best she'd done,
    And at her they poked their fun,
    In Reviews.

    'Rhymes,' in truth, 'are stubborn things.'
    And to Rhyme she clung, and clings,
    But whatever song she sings
    Scarcely sells.
    If her tone be grave, they say
    'Give us something rather gay.'
    If she's skittish, then they pray
    'Something else!'

    Much she loved, for wading shod,
    To go forth with line and rod,
    Loved the heather, and the sod,
    Loved to rest
    On the crystal river's brim
    Where she saw the fishes swim,
    And she heard the thrushes' hymn,
    By the Test!

    She, whatever way she went,
    Friendly was and innocent,
    Little need the Bard repent
    Of her lay.
    Of the babble and the rhyme,
    And the imitative chime
    That amused him on a time,-
    Now he's grey.
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