The collected poems of James Elroy Flecker/Inscription for Arthur Rackham’s "Rip Van Winkle"
Inscription for Arthur Rackham's Rip Van Wrinkle
Since youth is wise, and cannot comprehend
Proportion, nor behold things as they are,
Φιλοθεὰμονες we'll be, my friend,
And laugh at what appears quadrangular.
Our only Gods shall be the Subterrane,
Pictures of things misshapen, harsh and crude,
The flattened Face outside the window-pane,
The little Squeak behind us in the wood.
Here, friend, are subtly drawn uncommon things:
Make such your Gods: they only understand.
Only a Headless Ape with slimy wings
Can whisk you round the Interesting Land.
Though after twenty years they may not please,
Sane men have worshipped stranger Gods than these.