A Very Charming Gentleman (Poem by C. J. Dennis)

C. J. Dennis Poem

A Very Charming Gentleman (1)
By C. J. Dennis


A very charming gentleman, as old as old could be,
Stared a while, and glared a while, and then he said to me:
"Read your books, and heed your books, and put your books away,
For you will surely need your books upon a later day."
And then he wheezed and then he sneezed, and gave me such a look.
And he said, "Mark — ME — boy! Be careful of your book."

A very charming gentleman, indeed, he seemed to be.
He heaved a sigh and wiped his eye, and then he said to me:
"Take your books and make your books companions — never toys;
For they who so forsake their books grow into gawky boys."
I don't know who he was. Do you? he snuffled at the end;
And he said, "Mark — ME — boy! Your book should be your friend."


A Very Charming Gentleman (2)


This very charming gentleman, extremely old and gruff,
He slowly shook his head and took a great big pinch of snuff,
Then he spluttered and he muttered and he loudly shouted "Fie!
To tear your books is wicked sir! and likewise all my eye!"
I don't know what he meant by that. He had such piercing eyes.
And, he said, "Mark — ME — boy! Books will make you wise."

This very charming gentleman said, "Hum," and "Hoity, Toit!
A book is not a building block, a cushion or a quoit.
Soil your books and spoil your books? Is that the thing to do?
Gammon, sir! and Spinach, sir! And Fiddle-faddle, too!"
He blinked so quick, and thumped his stick, then gave me such a stare.
And he said, "Mark — ME — boy! BOOKS — NEED — CARE!"

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