University of Virginia Library



The man of bone confirms his throne
In cave where fossils be;
Outdating every mummy known,
Not older Cuvier's mastodon,
Nor older much the sea:
Old as the Glacial Period, he;
And claims he calls to mind the day
When Thule's king, by reindeer drawn,
His sleigh-bells jingling in icy morn,
Slid clean from the Pole to the Wetterhorn
Over frozen waters in May!
Oh, the man of the cave of Engihoul,
With Eld doth he dote and drule?


A wizard one, his lore is none
Ye spell with A. B. C.;
But do-do tracks, all up and down
That slate he poreth much upon,
His algebra may be:—
Yea, there he cyphers and sums it free;
To ages ere Indus met ocean's swell
Addeth æons ere Satan or Saturn fell.
His totals of time make an awful schism,
And old Chronos he pitches adown the abysm
Like a pebble down Carisbrook well.
Yea, the man of the cave of Engihoul
From Moses knocks under the stool.
In bas-relief he late has shown
A horrible show, agree—
Megalosaurus, iguanodon,
Palæotherium Glypthæcon,
A Barnum-show raree;
The vomit of slimy and sludgey sea:
Purposeless creatures, odd inchoate things
Which splashed thro' morasses on fleshly wings;
The cubs of Chaos, with eyes askance,
Preposterous griffins that squint at Chance
And Anarch's cracked decree!
Oh the showman who dens in Engihoul,
Would he fright us, or quit us, or fool?
But, needs to own, he takes a tone,
Satiric on nobs, pardee!
“Though in ages whose term is yet to run,
Old Adam a seraph may have for son,


His gran'ther's a crab, d'y'see!
And why cut your kinsman the ape?” adds he:
“Your trick of scratching is borrowed from him,
Grimace and cunning, with many a whim,
Your fidgets and hypoes, and each megrim—
All's traced in the family tree!”
Ha, the wag of the cave of Engihoul:
Buss me, gorilla and ghoul!
Obstreperous grown he'd fain dethrone
Joe Smith, and e'en Jones Three;
Against even Jos and great Mahone
He flings his fossiliffer's stone
And rattles his shanks for glee.
I'll settle these parvenu fellows, he-he!
Diluvian Jove of Ducalion's day—
A parting take to the Phocene clay!
He swears no Ens that takes a name
Commensurate is with the vasty claim
Of the protoplastic Fegee.
O, the spook of the cave of Engihoul
He flogs us and sends us to school.
Hyena of bone! Ah, beat him down,
Great Pope, with Peter's key,
Ere the Grand Pan-Jam be overthrown
With Joe and Jos and great Mahone,
And the firmament mix with the sea;
And then, my masters, where should we be?


But the ogre of bone he snickers alone,
He grins for his godless glee:
“I have flung my stone, my fossil stone,
And your gods, how they scamper,” saith he.
Imp! imp of the cave of Engihoul,
Shall he grin like the Gorgon and rule?