Science will destroy poetry with its “Electric Light”

by Instant Noodle

SCENE – A Lawn illuminated by the Electric Light

Young Lady (to Scientific Old Gent). Ah Mr. McFungus, we may now indeed say, with TENNYSON, that “the black bat Night hath flown

Scientific Old Gent. Ya-as. Your only “nocturnal bat” now is not the  Tennysonian, but a tennis bat. Fact is, Science will compel the Poets to lay in an entirely new stock of images.

Fred. Poor Diana! Awfully out of it. Can’t fancy Endymion being kissed on the Q.T. by a Brush – Light, can you. though? Modern Science doesn’t lend itself to Poetry.

Long-Haired One (languidly). Bah ! Uttawly Philistian ideah, that. Art can absorb and transmute into Beauty, everything – even Science. See germ of  quite too lovely new Mythos even in your seemingly absurd suggestion. Electric Light poetically personified brilliant new Avatar of the Ineffable Firstborn of created things, Primeval Lux, subtler Cynthia, more terrible Artemis, more perilous Lamia, whose glance is fascination, whose kiss is DEATH !!! Supreme ! (Aside.) Must suggest subject to POSTLETHWAITE.

Secret Gusher, in Terra – Cotta twists (effusively). Science sublimated into quintessential Sweetness ! Dull Prosepoetised into supernal Light. Oh, how quite too utterly Too !

Old Buffet- (yawning) to other Old Buffer. Sleepy ? Eh, my boy ?

Old Buffer Number Two (gaping). Ye-e-s. Turning night into day in this fashion doesn’t suit me.

Young Lady (to Mamma, who has been nodding in a corner). What, asleep, Mamma ?

Mamma, (starting erect). Not at all, my dear not at all. Only this light is just a leetle strong, you know.

Edwin (to ANGELINA, suggeitively), It has one drawback, dear. So few snug shadows, you know !

Angelina, (softly). Ah, yes, dear. Moonlight has its advantages, after all.

[They retire to play Diana and Endymion – old style in the Conservatory.

(7th December 1883)