A Discontented Sugar Broker

A GENTLEMAN of City fame

Now claims your kind attention;

East India broking was his game,

His name I shall not mention:

No one of finely-pointed sense

Would violate a confidence,

And shall I go

And do it? No!

His name I shall not mention.

He had a trusty wife and true,

And very cosy quarters,

A manager, a boy or two,

Six clerks, and seven porters.

A broker must be doing well

(As any lunatic can tell)

Who can employ

An active boy,

Six clerks, and seven porters.

His knocker advertised no dun,

No losses made him sulky,

He had one sorrow — only one —

He was extremely bulky.

A man must be, I beg to state,

Exceptionally fortunate

Who owns his chief

And only grief

Is — being very bulky.

" This load, " he'd say, " I cannot bear;

I'm nineteen stone or twenty!

Henceforward I'll go in for air

And exercise in plenty. "

Most people think that, should it come,

They can reduce a bulging tum

To measures fair

By taking air

And exercise in plenty.

In every weather, every day,

Dry, muddy, wet, or gritty,

He took to dancing all the way

From Brompton to the City.

You do not often get the chance

Of seeing sugar brokers dance

From their abode

In Fulham Road

Through Brompton to the City.

He braved the gay and guileless laugh

Of children with their nusses,

The loud uneducated chaff

Of clerks on omnibuses.

Against all minor things that rack

A nicely-balanced mind, I'll back

The noisy chaff

And ill-bred laugh

Of clerks on omnibuses.

His friends, who heard his money chink,

And saw the house he rented,

And knew his wife, could never think

What made him discontented.

It never entered their pure minds

That fads are of eccentric kinds,

Nor would they own

That fat alone

Could make one discontented.

" Your riches know no kind of pause,

Your trade is fast advancing;

You dance — but not for joy, because

You weep as you are dancing.

To dance implies that man is glad,

To weep implies that man is sad;

But here are you

Who do the two —

You weep as you are dancing! "

His mania soon got noised about

And into all the papers;

His size increased beyond a doubt

For all his reckless capers:

It may seem singular to you,

But all his friends admit it true —

The more he found

His figure round,

The more he cut his capers.

His bulk increased — no matter that —

He tried the more to toss it —

He never spoke of it as " fat, "

But " adipose deposit. "

Upon my word, it seems to me

Unpardonable vanity

(And worse than that)

To call your fat

An " adipose deposit. "

At length his brawny knees gave way,

And on the carpet sinking,

Upon his shapeless back he lay

And kicked away like winking.

Instead of seeing in his state

The finger of unswerving Fate,

He laboured still

To work his will,

And kicked away like winking.

His friends, disgusted with him now,

Away in silence wended —

I hardly like to tell you how

This dreadful story ended.

The shocking sequel to impart,

I must employ the limner's art —

If you would know,

This sketch will show

How his exertions ended.


I hate to preach — I hate to prate —

— I'm no fanatic croaker,

But learn contentment from the fate

Of this East India broker.

He'd everything a man of taste

Could ever want, except a waist;

And discontent

His size anent,

And bootless perseverance blind,

Completely wrecked the peace of mind

Of this East India broker.

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