THE GENTLEMANLY INTEREST
He polished snubs till they were regnant art,
Curling their shameless toilets round the hour.
Each lay upon his lips an exquisite flower
Subtly malign and poisoned for its part.
The path of victims was no wanton plan--
He had bowed his head in sorrow at his birth,
For he had said long ere he came to earth
That it was no place for a gentleman.
But always a heart-scald lurked behind the screen,
And somehow he missed the ultimate degrees.
He saw a beggar at the daylight's fall
And then he rose and robbed him for the scene;
And when they called him cad he found release--
He felt he had used the finest snub of all.
PORTRAITS OF LOUISE NORTON
Her voice was fleet-limbed and immaculate,
And like peach blossoms blown across the wind
Her white words made the hour seem coo