By James Stanley Gilbert


I sit on my lofty piazza,

O'erlooking the restless sea;

(A spider glides over my forehead,

A cockroach runs over my knee!)


The god of the day is preparing

His bed for another night;

(A swarm of pestiferous sand-flies

Is obscuring the glorious sight!)


He's piling his cloud-blankets round him,

Of crimson embroidered with gold;

(That ant crawling under my collar,

Down my spine sends a shiver of cold!)


He's noddingóbut with eyes still half-open

Tips a distant sail with his fire;

(Dios mio! another mosquito

Is twanging his dissonant lyre!)


He's sleepingóthe night-lamps are twinkling

All around his limitless bed;

(A bat, darting hither and thither,

Has just missed hitting my head!)


Farewell till to-morrow,old fellow!

Thou warmest, most tropical friend!

(A centipede's slowly approachingó

'Tis time for my reverie to end!)