Lawrence Lefferts Drank Here (villanelle)

by Ashley Lane

I wonder what the lady would say
about the girl dancing on the bar
like she's the star of a third-rate play.

She would stake a curt sip of a bay
breeze. Too crude, too crude by far
is probably what the lady would say.

She would prefer something quiet, a cafe,
a more civilized place, a kinder hour
and no sign of a toxic third-rate play.

Who would want to watch the luscious sway
and stumble into a waiting car
avoiding the words a lady would say

to such a reckless creature. Away
with her! Away with the unpleasant subpar
action that comprises this third-rate play.

Tragic! A farce! An unseemly day.
There she is covered in feather and tar.
I might wonder what the lady would say
because no one proper enjoys a third-rate play.


Author's Note: Lawrence Lefferts is a character in The Age of Innocence. He's basically 1870's society gossip/moral guardian who gets outraged on some scandal or another every time he was suspected of cheating on his wife.

Posted on 06/27/2007
Copyright © 2022 Ashley Lane

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by JD Clay on 07/04/07 at 04:57 PM

Very crafty, Ashley! This marvelous piece strikes a puritanical nerve while staring change directly in the face. Prim and proper to say the least! Congratulations on becoming The Pragmatic Poet Of The Day.

Posted by Kyle Anne Kish on 07/04/07 at 07:06 PM

This is a marvelous poem, Ashley. I have shyed awsy from villanelles, but you make me want to try one on for size. Congratulations on your POTD.

Posted by Quentin S Clingerman on 07/05/07 at 02:22 AM

The lady would not be found in the bar to begin with. Right? An enduring satire on society whatever the era.

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