Ballade at Thirty-five

Original Text: 
Enough Rope: Poems by Dorothy Parker (New York: Boni and Liveright, 1926): 74. PS 3531 A5855E5 Robarts Library
1This, no song of an ingénue,
2    This, no ballad of innocence;
3This, the rhyme of a lady who
4    Followed ever her natural bents.
5    This, a solo of sapience,
6This, a chantey of sophistry,
7    This, the sum of experiments, --
8I loved them until they loved me.
9Decked in garments of sable hue,
10    Daubed with ashes of myriad Lents,
11Wearing shower bouquets of rue,
12    Walk I ever in penitence.
13    Oft I roam, as my heart repents,
14Through God's acre of memory,
15    Marking stones, in my reverence,
16"I loved them until they loved me."
17Pictures pass me in long review,--
18    Marching columns of dead events.
19I was tender, and, often, true;
20    Ever a prey to coincidence.
21    Always knew I the consequence;
22Always saw what the end would be.
23    We're as Nature has made us -- hence
24I loved them until they loved me.
Princes, never I'd give offense,
    Won't you think of me tenderly?
Here's my strength and my weakness, gents, --
    I loved them until they loved me.
Publication Start Year: 
Publication Notes: 
Life (June 26, 1924): 12
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 1999.