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The Doctor -- A P Herbert

Guest poem sent in by William Grey
(Poem #1800) The Doctor
 The doctor took my shirt away;
 He did it for the best;
 He said, "It's very cold today,"
 And took away my vest;
 Then, having nothing more to say,
 He hit me in the chest.
 Oh, he did clout my ribs about
 Till I was bruised and red,
 Then stood and listened to my spine
 To see if I was dead,
 And when I shouted "Ninety-nine!"
 He simply shook his head.
 He rather thought that rain would fall,
 He made me hop about the hall,
 And savagely he said,
 "There's nothing wrong with you at all
 You'd better go to bed!

 "Oh you must eat no scrap of meat,
 No rabbit, bird, or fish;
 Apart from that have what you please,
 But no potato, bread, or cheese;
 Not butter, alcohol, or peas;
 Not sausage, egg, and ratafias
 A very starchy dish;
 Have any other foods but these
 HAVE ANYTHING YOU WISH!
 But at and after every meal,
 And twice an hour between,
 Take this -- and this -- and this -- and THIS
 In water and quinine,
 And wash it down with liquorice
 And nitro-glycerine.

 "You must not smoke, or read a book,
 You must not eat or drink;
 You must not bicycle or run,
 You must not talk to anyone;
 It's better not to think.
 A daily bath I don't advise;
 It's dangerous to snore;
 But let your life be otherwise
 As active as before.
 And don't imagine you are ill,
 I beg you not to mope;
 There's nothing wrong with you -- but still,
 While there is life, there's hope."

 I woke and screamed a hideous scream
 As greedy children do
 Who eat too much vanilla cream
 For I was having 'flu;
 And it was just an awful dream
 But, all the same, it's true.
-- A P Herbert
Sir Alan Patrick Herbert, 1890-1971, was a regular contributor of comic
verse (over his initials "A.P.H.") to the English magazine 'Punch'. He is a
distinguished member of a great tradition of English comic poets, which
includes such luminaries as Edward Lear (1812-1888), Lewis Carroll
(1832-1898), and Herbert's contemporary Patrick Barrington (1909-1990).  The
only poem of Herbert on Minstrels to date is 'To the Lady Behind Me at the
Theatre'[1]. He merits more extensive representation.

As well as comic verse, Herbert was a novelist, librettist of successful
comic operas, author of children's books, and he served as a member of the
House of Commons for Oxford University from 1935 until 1950. He was largely
responsible for the passage of the bill (1937) which reformed the
then-archaic divorce law of England. For more details see his autobiography[2].

William Grey

[1] Poem #732, To the Lady Behind Me at the Theatre --  A.P. Herbert
[2] A.P.H.: His Life and Times (1970) -- A.P. Herbert

544 comments: ( or Leave a comment )

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obat wasir ambeclear said...

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Anonymous said...

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