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Category: Funny Whimsical Poems
       Classic humorous and funny poems using whimsy. Humourosly quaint and fanciful, especially in an amusing way.

  THE CATARACT OF LODORE  

            "How does the water
                Come down at Lodore?"
                    My little boy asked me
                Thus, once on a time;
            And moreover he tasked me
                To tell him in rhyme.
                    Anon at the word,
            There first came one daughter,
                And then came another,
                    To second and third
                The request of their brother,
            And to hear how the water
                    Comes down at Lodore,
                    With its rush and its roar,
                        As many a time
                    They had seen it before.
                    So I told them in rhyme,
                For of rhymes I had store;
                And 'twas in my vocation
                        For their recreation
                    That so I should sing;
                Because I was Laureate
                    To them and the King.

                From its sources which well
                    In the tarn on the fell;
                    From its fountains
                    In the mountains,
                Its rills and its gills;
            Through moss and through brake,
                    It runs and it creeps
                For a while till it sleeps
                    In its own little lake.
                And thence at departing,
                Awakening and starting,
            It runs through the reeds,
                    And away it proceeds,
            Through meadow and glade,
                    In sun and in shade,
            And through the wood-shelter,
                Among crags in its flurry,
                    Helter-skelter,
                    Hurry-skurry,
                    Here it comes sparkling,
                And there it lies darkling;
                Now smoking and frothing
                    Its tumult and wrath in,
                        Till, in this rapid race
                            On which it is bent,
                            It reaches the place
                        Of its steep descent.

                            The cataract strong
                            Then plunges along,
                            Striking and raging
                            As if a war waging
                        Its caverns and rocks among;
                                        Rising and leaping,
                                    Sinking and creeping,
                                Swelling and sweeping,
                            Showering and springing,
                        Flying and flinging,
                        Writhing and wringing,
                        Eddying and whisking,
                        Spouting and frisking,
                    Turning and twisting
                        Around and around
                    With endless rebound:
                        Smiting and fighting,
                        A sight to delight in;
                    Confounding, astounding,
    Dizzying and deafening the ear with its sound.

                    Collecting, projecting,
                    Receding and speeding,
                    And shocking and rocking,
                    And darting and parting,
                    And threading and spreading,
                    And whizzing and hissing,
                    And dripping and skipping,
                    And hitting and splitting,
                    And shining and twining,
                    And rattling and battling,
                    And shaking and quaking,
                    And pouring and roaring,
                    And waving and raving,
                    And tossing and crossing,
                    And flowing and going,
                    And running and stunning,
                    And foaming and roaming,
                    And dinning and spinning,
                    And dropping and hopping,
                    And working and jerking,
                    And guggling and struggling,
                    And heaving and cleaving,
                    And moaning and groaning;
                    And glittering and frittering,
                    And gathering and feathering,
                    And whitening and brightening,
                    And quivering and shivering,
                    And hurrying and skurrying,
                    And thundering and floundering;

        Dividing and gliding and sliding,
        And falling and brawling and sprawling,
        And driving and riving and striving,
        And sprinkling and twinkling and wrinkling,
        And sounding and bounding and rounding,
        And bubbling and troubling and doubling,
        And grumbling and rumbling and tumbling,
        And clattering and battering and shattering;

Retreating and beating and meeting and sheeting,
Delaying and straying and playing and spraying.
Advancing and prancing and glancing and dancing,
Recoiling, turmoiling and toiling and boiling,
And gleaming and streaming and steaming and beaming,
And rushing and flushing and brushing and gushing,
And flapping and rapping and clapping and slapping,
And curling and whirling and purling and twirling,
And thumping and plumping and bumping and jumping,
And dashing and flashing and splashing and clashing;
And so never ending, but always descending,
Sounds and motions forever and ever are blending,
All at once and all o'er, with a mighty uproar,--
And this way the water comes down at Lodore.

                                                                Robert Southey.


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