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On Visiting Westminster Abbey
Amanda McKittrick Ros


Holy Moses! Have a look!
Flesh decayed in every nook!
Some rare bits of brain lie here,
Mortal loads of beef and beer,
Some of whom are turned to dust,
Every one bids lost to lust;
Royal flesh so tinged with 'blue'
Undergoes the same as you.
Famous some were--yet they died;
Poets--Statesmen--Rogues beside,
Kings--Queens, all of them do rot,
What about them? Now--they're not!

This poem is in the public domain.

Amanda McKittrick Ros (1860 - 1939), born Anna Margaret Ross, was an Irish writer who wrote both poetry and novels. She holds the dubious distinction of being called by critics "one of the world's worst poets," due to her flamboyant, flowery prose, overuse of alliteration, and convoluted phrasing. Still, Amanda has many admirers who find her work to be boldly original and tremendously entertaining. In either case, her books are now handsomely priced collector's items. A woman with strong viewpoints who suffered no fools and tolerated no nonsense, she was said to loath lawyers and, when her husband died, refused to accept any funeral wreaths that weren't up to her standards. The Belfast Public Libraries own a vast portion of Amanda's literary estate, including handwritten manuscripts, first editions, and scrapbooks of her letters and publicity clippings.  

Post New Comment:
Marilyn L Taylor:
I love the fact that this poet has been singled out as one of the World's Worst. Might give William McGonagall and Julia A. Moore-- both atrocious poets, as you probably know--some serious competition! But I find myself liking "Westminster Abbey"; i think it's energetic and fun.
Posted 12/08/2011 01:40 PM
I enjoyed the "Rogues beside," which is literally true and contains the inference of "Rogues besides."
Posted 12/08/2011 08:56 AM
Interesting poem, but I have to agree with its overall meaning. When I was in the Poet's Corner o0r Westminster Abbey, I wondered about the low estate these mortals had come to. It was a bit creepy.
Posted 12/08/2011 08:21 AM

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