Peter Swaab (ed.), Sara Coleridge: Collected Poems

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Editor’s NoteGo, you may call it madness, folly – &c.

  • Go! You may call me dowdy, tabby,
  • I will not cast old clothes away!
  • There's such a charm in going shabby,
  • I would not, if I could, be gay!
  • O! had you felt the satisfaction
  • Of causing money far to go,
  • You'd own the secret sweet attraction
  • Some folks are too rich to know!

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Editor’s Note
Page 39. 'Go, you may call it madness, folly – &c.' (RB, 1827, and MS, 1904). Parodying Samuel Rogers, 'To — — ': 'Go! you may call it madness, folly; / You shall not chase my gloom away! / There's such a charm in melancholy / I would not if I could be gay'. A further MS of the poem in EC's hand, dated 14 December 1904, is headed 'Parody of Rogers. Written by Sara Coleridge, when practising economy, with a view to "marrying a poor man" . . . Contained in a letter of about 1827, to HNC, two years before their marriage. The whole correspondence was destroyed by their son and daughter, in the winter of 1853, as being too "sacred" to be left to fall into any other hands.'
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