Advantage of a Bookish Upbringing

When the wine has done its rosy deed
(As the reputable English poet said)
I enjoy to study in tranquillity
The lovable absurdities of men.
And then my familiarity with literatures
Besteads me well,
Affording me always a scholarly explanation
For conduct seemingly eccentric.

Once, I remember,
After an evening in which Chancellor Mu Kow and myself
Had repeatedly toasted the loveliness of the moon,
Condoling her solitude
In the wide pale sky,
I lay in a perfection of comfortable thought
In a gently revolving cabbage field.
But my wife's parents
Heading the search party
Discovered me there, and cried lamentation and oxytones.
Be of good cheer, I said:
It is with me as with the great Flaubert
Who pernoctated in a cabbage patch
Noting down, for purpose of literature,
The tincture of moonshine
On the leaves of the vegetables.
Even so, I sacrifice myself for realism.
Tenderly they carried me in.
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