The eminent Victorian scholar Daniel M. Riess of the University of Texas
offers the following remarkable and heretofore unpublished variant of Rossetti's
Blessed Wombat. Says Mr. Riess: "I copied out the MS of DGR's
poem The Blessed Wombat, which is here in Special Collections at
the University of Texas. I should point out, however, that WMR notes in
his autobiography, Sibling Parasite, that DGR revised the poem later
in life and altered its title to The Blasted Wombat. I here use
the latter version."
It should be noted that Mr. Riess is unaccustomed to the Texas heat
. . .
THE BLASTED WOMBAT
(with apologies to DGR)
- THE blasted wombat retched over
- A railing up in Heaven;
- His miserable state induced by
- His imbibing with St. Stephen.
- He dropped three goblets from his hands;
- His blood alcohol was point-eleven.
- He'd mixed chloral with nectar,
- And paid a heaving price:
- He threw up over Purgatory
- And watered Paradise.
- God then called Moses to prepare
- A great plague of fur lice.
- (For the wombat was hairy -- and short, and fat
- Like any good Rossetti --
- (One could denounce the foregoing
- As Buchananish and petty;
- But ill effects do oft result
- From eating lard with one's spaghetti.))
- He penned some obscene verse he called
- "The Blessed Damozel"
- He showed it to the seraphim,
- Who let out a painful yell:
- They seized the wombat all as one
- And blasted him to Hell.