Ogden Nash

Winter is the king of showmen, Turning tree stumps into snowmen And houses into birthday cakes And spreading sugar over lakes. Smooth and clean and frosty white, The world looks good enough to bite. That’s the season to be young, Catching snowflakes on your tongue. Snow is snowy when it’s snowing, I’m sorry it’s slushy when it’s going.

A Lady Who Thinks She Is Thirty

Unwillingly Miranda wakes,
Feels the sun with terror,
One unwilling step she takes,
Shuddering to the mirror.

Miranda in Miranda’s sight
Is old and gray and dirty;
Twenty-nine she was last night;
This morning she is thirty.

Shining like the morning star,
Like the twilight shining,
Haunted by a calendar,
Miranda is a-pining.

Silly girl, silver girl,
Draw the mirror toward you;
Time who makes the years to whirl
Adorned as he adored you.

Time is timelessness for you;
Calendars for the human;
What’s a year, or thirty, to
Loveliness made woman?

Oh, Night will not see thirty again,
Yet soft her wing, Miranda;
Pick up your glass and tell me, then–
How old is Spring, Miranda?

Poem – Always Marry An April Girl

Praise the spells and bless the charms,
I found April in my arms.
April golden, April cloudy,
Gracious, cruel, tender, rowdy;
April soft in flowered languor,
April cold with sudden anger,
Ever changing, ever true —
I love April, I love you.

Poem –  The Romantic Age

This one is entering 

her teens,Ripe for sentimental scenes,

Has picked a gangling unripe male,

Sees herself in bridal veil,

Presses lips and tosses head,

Declares she’s not too young to wed,

Informs you pertly you forget

Romeo and Juliet.

Do not argue, do not shout;

Remind her how that one turned out. 

Poem – The People Upstairs

The people upstairs all practise ballet

Their living room is a bowling alley

Their bedroom is full of conducted tours.

Their radio is louder than yours,

They celebrate week-ends all the week.

When they take a shower, your ceilings leak.

They try to get their parties to mix

By supplying their guests with Pogo sticks,

And when their fun at last abates,

They go to the bathroom on roller skates.

I would love the people upstairs wondrous

If instead of above us, they just lived under us. 

Poem – Oh To be Odd


Spend  the winter at the bottom of Florida and the summer on top of

the Adirondriacs.

You go to Paris and live on champagne wine and cognac

If you’re dipsomognac.

If you’re a manic-depressive

You don’t go anywhere where you won’t be cheered up, and people say

“There, there!” if your bills are excessive.

But you stick around and work day and night and night and day with

your nose to the sawmill.

If you’re nawmill.
Note: Dipsomaniac — alcoholic 

Poem – No You be a Lone Eagle

I find it very hard to be fair-minded

About people who go around being air-minded.

I just can’t see any fun

In soaring up up up into the sun

When the chances are still a fresh cool orchid to a paper geranium

That you’ll unsoar down down down onto your (to you) invaluable


I know the constant refrain

About how safer up in God’s trafficless heaven than in an automobile

or a train

But …

My God, have you ever taken a good look at a strut?

Then that one about how you’re in Boston before you can say antidis-


So that preferring to take five hours by rail is a pernicious example of


At least when I get on the Boston train I have a good chance of landing

in the South Station

And not in that part of the daily press which is reserved for victims of


Then, despite the assurance that aeroplanes are terribly comfortable I

notice that when you are railroading or automobiling

You don’t have to take a paper bag along just in case of a funny feeling.

It seems to me that no kind of depravity

Brings such speedy retribution as ignoring the law of gravity.

Therefore nobody could possibly indict me for perjury

When I swear that I wish the Wright brothers had gone in for silver

fox farming or tree surgery. 

Poem – No Doctor’s Today, Thank You

They tell me that euphoria is the feeling of feeling wonderful,well, 

today I feel euphorian,

Today I have the agility of a Greek god and the appetitite of a


Yes, today I may even go forth without my galoshes,

Today I am a swashbuckler, would anybody like me to buckle

any swashes?

This is my euphorian day,

I will ring welkins and before anybody answers I will run away.

I will tame me a caribou

And bedeck it with marabou.

I will pen me my memoirs.

Ah youth, youth! What euphorian days them was!

I wasn’t much of a hand for the boudoirs,

I was generally to be found where the food was.

Does anybody want any flotsam?

I’ve gotsam.

Does anybody want any jetsam?

I can getsam.

I can play chopsticks on the Wurlitzer,

I can speak Portuguese like a Berlitzer.

I can don or doff my shoes without tying or untying the laces because

I am wearing moccasins,

And I practically know the difference between serums and antitoccasins.

Kind people, don’t think me purse-proud, don’t set me down as


I’m just a little euphorious. 

Poem – Morning Prayer 

Now another day is breaking,

Sleep was sweet and so is waking.

Dear Lord, I promised you last night

Never again to sulk or fight.

Such vows are easier to keep

When a child is sound asleep.

Today, O Lord, for your dear sake,

I’ll try to keep them when awake. 

Poem – A Drink With Something In It – Ogden Nash 

There is something about a Martini, 

A tingle remarkably pleasant; 

A yellow, a mellow Martini; 

I wish I had one at present. 

There is something about a Martini, 

Ere the dining and dancing begin, 

And to tell you the truth, 

It is not the vermouth– 

I think that perhaps it’s the gin.

Poem – Common Cold – Ogden Nash

Go hang yourself, you old M.D.! 

You shall not sneer at me. 

Pick up your hat and stethoscope, 

Go wash your mouth with laundry soap; 

I contemplate a joy exquisite 

I’m not paying you for your visit. 

I did not call you to be told 

My malady is a common cold. 
By pounding brow and swollen lip; 

By fever’s hot and scaly grip; 

By those two red redundant eyes 

That weep like woeful April skies; 

By racking snuffle, snort, and sniff; 

By handkerchief after handkerchief; 

This cold you wave away as naught 

Is the damnedest cold man ever caught! 
Give ear, you scientific fossil! 

Here is the genuine Cold Colossal; 

The Cold of which researchers dream, 

The Perfect Cold, the Cold Supreme. 

This honored system humbly holds 

The Super-cold to end all colds; 

The Cold Crusading for Democracy; 

The Führer of the Streptococcracy. 
Bacilli swarm within my portals 

Such as were ne’er conceived by mortals, 

But bred by scientists wise and hoary 

In some Olympic laboratory; 

Bacteria as large as mice, 

With feet of fire and heads of ice 

Who never interrupt for slumber 

Their stamping elephantine rumba. 
A common cold, gadzooks, forsooth! 

Ah, yes. And Lincoln was jostled by Booth; 

Don Juan was a budding gallant, 

And Shakespeare’s plays show signs of talent; 

The Arctic winter is fairly coolish, 

And your diagnosis is fairly foolish. 

Oh what a derision history holds 

For the man who belittled the Cold of Colds!

Poem – Always Marry An April Girl – Ogden Nash

Praise the spells and bless the charms, 

I found April in my arms. 

April golden, April cloudy, 

Gracious, cruel, tender, rowdy; 

April soft in flowered languor, 

April cold with sudden anger, 

Ever changing, ever true — 

I love April, I love you.