Lapsus Calami (Apr 1891)/An Election Address
An Election Address
(To Cambridge University, 1882.)
I venture to suggest that I
Am rather noticeably fit
To hold the seat illumined by
The names of Palmerston and Pitt.
My principles are such as you
Have often heard expressed before:
They are, without exception, true;
And who can say, with candour, more?
My views concerning Church and State
Are such as Bishops have professed:
I need not recapitulate
The arguments on which they rest.
Respecting Ireland, I opine
That Ministers are in a mess,
That Landlords rule by Right Divine,
That Firmness will remove Distress.
I see with horror undisguised
That freedom of debate is dead:
The Liberals are organised:
The Caucus rears its hideous head.
Yet need'st thou, England, not despair
At Chamberlain's or Gladstone's pride,
While Henry Cecil Raikes is there
To organise the other side.
I never quit, as others do,
Political intrigue, to seek
The dingy literary crew,
Or hear the voice of science speak.
But I have fostered, guided, planned
Commercial enterprise: in me
Some ten or twelve directors and
Six worthy chairmen you may see.
My academical career
Was free from any sort of blot:
I challenge anybody here
To demonstrate that it was not.
At classics too I worked amain,
Whereby I did not only pass,
But even managed to obtain
A very decent second class.
And since those early days, the same
Success has crowned the self-same plan;
Profundity I cannot claim:
Respectability I can.