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Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: gwen29 (
Date: November 30, 2003 02:12PM

I am looking for some poems about people who are vain or proud. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: Anneliese (213.78.162.---)
Date: November 30, 2003 02:25PM

Shelley's sonnet 'Ozymandias' comes first to mind - about both pride and vanity - you'd find plenty of copies on the internet.

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: IanB (
Date: December 01, 2003 08:57AM

'My Last Duchess' by Robert Browning

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: IanB (
Date: December 01, 2003 09:04AM

or 'Warty Bliggens' by Don Marquis (writing as Archy the cockroach, who couldn't work the shift key on the typewriter to use upper case):

i met a toad
the other day by the name
of warty bliggens
he was sitting under
a toadstool
feeling contented
he explained that when the cosmos
was created
that toadstool was especially
planned for this personal
shelter from sun and rain
thought out and prepared
for him
do not tell me said warty bliggens
that there is not a purpose in the universe
the thought is blasphemy

a little more conversation revealed
that warty bliggens considers himself to be
the center of the said
the earth exists
to grow toadstools for him
to sit under
the sun to give him light
by day and the moon
and wheeling constellations
to make beautiful
the night for the sake of
warty bliggens

to what act of yours
do you impute
this interest on the part
of the creator
of the universe
i asked him
why is it that you
are so greatly favored

ask rather
said warty bliggens
what the universe
has done to deserve me

if i were a human being i would
not laugh
too complacently
at poor warty bliggens
for similar
have only too often
lodged in the crinkles
of the human cerebrum


Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: JP (
Date: December 01, 2003 12:42PM

The post above reminded me of one my mother used to recite to us.
Strange, the things we remember.

A frog met a toad
At the bend in the road,
He said 'I'm sorry old fellow
That you're stupid and slow
And your coat is so dull you know
Whilst mine is a bright gaudy yellow'
Said the happy old toad
At the bend in the road
'You are stupid and stuck-up and pert
Should a heron pass by
You'll at once catch his eye
And he'll gobble you up for a cert'

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: Chesil (---.clvdoh.adelphia.)
Date: December 01, 2003 01:14PM

By Lord Byron


DEAR Doctor, I have read your play,
Which is a good one in its way,­
Purges the eyes and moves the bowels,
And drenches handkerchiefs like towels
With tears, that, in a flux of grief,
Afford hysterical relief
To shatter'd nerves and quicken'd pulses,
Which your catastrophe convulses.

I like your moral and machinery;
Your plot, too, has such scope for scenery:
Your dialogue is apt and smart:
The play's concoction full of art;
Your hero raves, your heroine cries,
All stab, and everybody dies.
In short, your tragedy would be
The very thing to hear and see:
And for a piece of publication,
If I decline on this occasion,
It is not that I am not sensible
To merits in themselves ostensible,
But – and I grieve to speak it – plays
Are drugs – mere drugs, sir – now-a-days.
I had a heavy loss by ‘Manual’ ­–
Too lucky if it prove not annual,­
And Sotheby, with his 'Orestes,'
(Which, by the by, the author's best is,)
Has lain so very long on hand,
That I despair of all demand.
I've advertised, but see my books,
Or only watch my shopman's looks;–
Still Ivan, Ina, and such lumber,
My back-shop glut, my shelves encumber.

There's Byron too, who once did better,
Has sent me, folded in a letter,
A sort of – it's no more a drama
Than Darnley, Ivan, or Kehama:
So alter'd since last year his pen is,
I think he's lost his wits at Venice.
In short, sir, what with one and t'other,
I dare not venture on another.
I write in haste; excuse each blunder;
The coaches through the street so thun­der!
My room's so full – we've Gifford here
Reading MS., with Hookham Frere
Pronouncing on the nouns and particles
Of some of our forthcoming Articles.

The Quarterly – Ah, sir, if you
Had but the genius to review!­
A smart critique upon St. Helena,
Or if you only would but tell in a
Short compass what – but to resume:
As I was saying, sir, the room­
The room's so full of wits and bards,
Crabbes, Campbells, Crokers, Freres, and Wards,
And others, neither bards nor wits:
My humble tenement admits
All persons in the dress of gent,
From Mr. Hammond to Dog Dent.

A party dines with me to-day,
All clever men, who make their way;
Crabbe, Malcolm, Hamilton, and Chantrey
Are all partakers of my pantry.
They're at this moment in discussion
On poor De Staël's late dissolution.
Her book, they say, was in advance­
Pray Heaven, she tell the truth of France!
Thus run our time and tongues away;
But, to return, sir, to your play:
Sorry, sir, but I cannot deal,
Unless 'twere acted by O'Neill;
My hands so full, my head so busy,
I'm almost dead, and always dizzy;
And so, with endless truth and hurry,
Dear Doctor, I am yours

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: rcpollitz (
Date: December 08, 2003 03:52PM

Maybe this one could help you out?

The Stallion King

What was that sound whispering in the wind?
I fear it was my youth fading with the light.
Whose proud passions lit up the night,
And flaunted every fair maidens virtue?
Nevermore will this stallion run the plains.
A quiet stall in the barn is more appealing.
No standing with my back against the cold.
My stiffness aches focusing on wounds of old.
Memories of my flights into the sun,
I'm alone in a crowd of has been's.
Pacing, I long for the summer of my youth,
When I would run, no, lead the herd,
Thundering across the plains to the sounds
of the rhythms of chance.
I stopped only to embrace that rare romance,
that strengthened my resolve to be free.
What happened to me?
That of which I was so proud has let me down.
Did summers end happen so abruptly,
or did it sneak up like the thief in the night?
A vengeful follower waiting for his chance perhaps
to take what couldn't be earned.
I bear no grudge.
With regal bearing I stand against fate,
And dream of again running with the wind.

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: RJAllen (193.114.111.---)
Date: December 09, 2003 09:09AM

Hilaire Belloc: Godolphin Horne
Alexander Pope "Yes I am proud. I must be proud to see
Men, not afraid of God, afraid of me."
-from The Essay on Man- justified pride here.

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: IanB (
Date: December 09, 2003 09:42AM

'It's Hard To Be Humble', song lyric by Mac Davis:

Oh Lord it's hard to be humble
When you're perfect in every way.
I can't wait to look in the mirror
Cuz I get better lookin' each day.

To know me is to love me
I must be a hell of a man.
Oh Lord it's hard to be humble
But I'm doin' the best that I can.

I used to have a girlfriend
But I guess she just couldn't compete
With all these love starved women
Who keep clamoring at my feet.

Well I probably could find me another
But I guess they're all in awe of me.
Who cares I never get lonesome
Cuz I treasure my own company.

[repeat first two verses]

I guess you could say I am a loner
A cowboy all locked up and proud.
Well I could have lots of friends if I wanted
But then I wouldn't stand out in a crowd.

Some folks say that I'm egotistical.
Hell I don't even know what that means.
I guess it has something to do with the way
That I fill out my skin tight blue jeans.

[repeat first two verses]

an aside ... Don Marquis ...
Posted by: ilza (200.162.243.---)
Date: December 09, 2003 10:23AM

I have to say I just adore Don Marquis
( Jul 29, 1878, Dec 29, 1937)

he said, in 1932 :
It would be one on me if I should be remembered
longest for creating a cockroach character.

a very short story about his friends
shows how much he was loved by them ...
after his paralytic stroke, writers Patterson McNutt,
Gene Fowler, Grover Jones and Nunnally Johnson wrote
a story, under his name, and sold it to the
Saturday Evening Post - and the checks went to
Don Marquis.

People said "he never was known to do a mean thing,
or to speal ill of anyone".

Vain and Proud lyrics ...
Posted by: ilza (200.162.243.---)
Date: December 09, 2003 11:20AM

not a poem ... but come on, isn't it great ?
You walked into the party like you were walking onto a yacht
Your hat strategically dipped below one eye
Your scarf it was apricot
You had one eye in the mirror as you watched yourself gavotte
And all the girls dreamed that they'd be your partner
They'd be your partner, and....

You're so vain, you probably think this song is about you
You're so vain, I'll bet you think this song is about you
Don't you? Don't you?

You had me several years ago when I was still quite naive
Well you said that we made such a pretty pair
and that you would never leave

But you gave away the things you loved and one of them was me
I had some dreams they were clouds in my coffee, clouds in my coffee and....

You're so vain, you probably think this song is about you.....

Well I hear you went up to Saratoga and your horse naturally won
Then you flew your Lear jet up to Nova Scotia to see the total eclipse of the sun
Well, you're where you should be all of the time
And when you're not you're with
Some underworld spy or the wife of a close friend
Wife of a close friend, and....

You're so vain, you probably think this song is about you.....

by Carly Simon

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: Pam Adams (134.71.192.---)
Date: December 09, 2003 02:16PM

How about Browning's 'The Bishop Orders His Tomb.....'?

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Re: an aside ... Don Marquis ...
Posted by: IanB (
Date: December 09, 2003 05:31PM

[...writers Patterson McNutt, Gene Fowler, Grover Jones and Nunnally Johnson wrote a story, under his name, and sold it to the Saturday Evening Post - and the checks went to Don Marquis]

Hmmm...raises some interesting ethical/legal/moral right issues!

I particularly like Don Marquis' saying that 'publishing a volume of verse is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the echo'.

Re: Vain and Proud Poems
Posted by: IanB (
Date: December 09, 2003 05:50PM

The point of view in that Simon lyric posted by Ilza brings to mind this one:

'Intimates' by D.H.Lawrence

Don’t you care for my love? She said bitterly.

I handed her the mirror, and said:
Please address these questions to the proper person!
Please make all requests to head-quarters!
In all matters of emotional importance
please approach the supreme authority direct! –
So I handed her the mirror.

And she would have broken it over my head,
but she caught sight of her own reflection
and that held her spellbound for two seconds
while I fled.

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