Dorothy Parker’s Poetry

The following poems by Dorothy Parker were published in The Saturday Evening Post.

A Triolet

You’ll be returning one day.
(Such premonitions are true ones.)
Treading the dew-spangled way,
You’ll be returning one day.
I’ll have a few things to say—
I’ve learned a whole lot of new ones.
You’ll be returning, one day.
(Such premonitions are true ones.)

Song (3)

When summer used to linger,
Before the daisies died,
You’d but to bend your finger
And I was by your side.
And, oh, my heart was breaking,
And, oh, my life was through;
You had me for the taking;
“Now run along,” said you.

But now the summer’s over,
The birds have flown away,
And all the amorous clover
Has turned to sober hay.
And you’re the one to tarry,
And you’re the one to sigh,
And beg me, will I marry.
“The deuce I will,” say I.

Grandfather Said It

When I was but a little thing of two, or maybe three,
My granddad—on my mother’s side—would lift me on his knee;
He’d take my thumb from out my mouth and say to me: “My dear,
Remember what I tell you when you’re choosing a career:

“Take in laundry work; cart off dust;
Drive a moving van if you must;
Shovel off the pavement when the snow lies white;
But think of your family, and please don’t write.”

When I was two I cannot say his counsel knocked me cold.
But now it all returns—for, darling, I am growing old,
And when I read the writing of the authors of today
I echo all those golden words that grandpa used to say:

“Clean out ferrboats; peddle fish;
Go be chorus men if you wish;
Rob your neighbors’ houses in the dark midnight;
But think of your families, and please don’t write.”

Song of the Conventions

“Song of the Conventions” by Dorothy Parker was originally published in The Saturday Evening Post on February 24, 1923.

We’d dance, with grapes in our wind-tossed hair,
And garments of swirling smoke;

We’d fling wild song to the amorous air,
Till the long-dead gods awoke.

Our quivering bodies, young and white,
Poised light by the brooklet’s brink,

We’d whirl and leap through the moon-mad night—
But what would the neighbors think?

We’d bid the workaday world go hang,
And idle the seasons through;

We’d pay no tribute of thought or pang
To the world that we once knew.

With hearts in ecstasy intertwined,
In languorous, sweet content,

We’d leave all worry and care behind—
But how would we pay the rent?

We’d roam the universe, hand in hand,
Through tropical climes, or cold,

And find each spot was a wonderland,
A country of pearl and gold.

Our hearts as light as the sunlit foam,
We’d voyage the oceans o’er,

With never a thought for those at home—
But wouldn’t our folks be sore?