I’ve been cleaning out my house — closets, basement, under beds… pretty much everywhere… in a very slow process of purging, reordering, spring cleaning and a memory aid (for finding things)! 😉 And today I found a POEM I’d scribbled a few years back which was inspired by a scene in Pride and Prejudice. It starts when Mrs Bennet, visiting Netherfield Park, remarks upon how plain Charlotte Lucas is, then goes on to humiliate her own daughter Jane (while Jane lies ill in a bedroom upstairs). Lizzy Bennet, who is present in the group, tries to derail her mother’s conversation by — no surprise — making a joke of it, and a brief, pointed exchange then ensues between Lizzy and Mr Darcy:
“Oh! dear, yes; — but you must own she is very plain. Lady Lucas herself has often said so, and envied me Jane’s beauty. I do not like to boast of my own child, but to be sure, Jane — one does not often see any body better looking. It is what every body says. I do not trust my own partiality. When she was only fifteen, there was a gentleman at my brother Gardiner’s in town, so much in love with her, that my sister-in-law was sure he would make her an offer before we came away. But however he did not. Perhaps he thought her too young. However, he wrote some verses on her, and very pretty they were.”
“And so ended his affection,” said Elizabeth impatiently. “There has been many a one, I fancy, overcome in the same way. I wonder who first discovered the efficacy of poetry in driving away love!”
“I have been used to consider poetry as the food of love,” said Darcy.
“Of a fine, stout, healthy love it may. Every thing nourishes what is strong already. But if it be only a slight, thin sort of inclination, I am convinced that one good sonnet will starve it entirely away.”
Darcy only smiled,…
You can read my little verse (with all due apology to Miss Austen) here: Darcy’s Dilemma