Utter Blame: Fifteenth Tattersby

Posted by ractrose on 10 Mar 2019 in Art, Poems

Charcoal and pastel drawing man feeling mournful



The Folly






Utter Blame


‘De Clieux reports the Celtic daughter could be raised—

His bride full willing,’ the host, sardonic, says

‘So far south as Quimper; the Contessa di Barucchi

Has invited them to stay.

And what can be the meaning of that puppy-doggish eye…?’

he demands of the guest. ‘No sense being envious.’

‘Hardly that. It’s the keenness of pursuit, however…mission!

To marry for science.’ He sighs.

‘I’ve got nowhere whatsoever with my own.’

And doodles on his pad, St. Crispin’s

As usual, and why they pack their bags

Simon Tattersby floats about the place moaning to himself

And Roscoe, when he does not rattle pipes,

Wafts away the pen the host has just set down

Or sings them dirty limericks through the night

‘Miss Keltenham will bring her publicity agent’

The host pronounces this title very foreign

‘Well after all’—offers the guest, who seems to apologize for everyone—

‘they make pictures from her books…I suppose she needs one’

Virginia Keltenham, Simon’s voice comes to them

Buttonholed me once, looking for Fiona

Desperate to write a romance with a ghost in it

Her words

I said…I don’t know where she’s gone

I don’t know where she’s gone

I wish that you would find her for me, intervene

I see myself, I’d told you this, with cruel clarity

Always dogged, finishing up the last job

To close the book, to open it once more and start the next

Lucille’s lessons to be wound up

Because I’d promised her it

She was loved with a passion, she

Who heeds so little, she has gone off to improving Inskip

but I feel…a terrible pity and comprehension

She had said to me, ‘Simon, an affair is what you need’

And I’d said, ‘Yes, no doubt, Lucille, we’ll see’

Poor Roscoe! I utterly forgive

I utterly blame myself

Why, my dear fellow, his ancient rival says

I hope you won’t




Utter Blame
Charcoal and pastel drawing of intelligent woman wearing spectacles

Virginia Keltenham: First Pale Knight














(2017, Stephanie Foster)




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