by William Makepeace Thackery
In tattered old slippers that toast at the bars,
And a ragged old jacket perfumed with cigars,
Away from the world and its toils and its cares,
I've a snug little kingdom up four pairs of stairs.
To mount to this realm is a toil, to be sure,
But the fire there is bright and the air rather pure;
And the view I behold on a sunshiny day
Is grand, through the chimney pots over the way.
This snug little chamber is crammed in all nooks
With worthless old knickknacks and silly old books
And foolish old odds and foolish old ends,
Cracked bargains from brokers, cheap keepsakes from friends.
Old armor, prints, pictures, pipes, china (all cracked),
Old rickety tables and chairs broken backed;
A twopenny treasury, wondrous to see;
What matter? 'Tis pleasant to you friend, and me.
No better divan need the Sultan require
Than the creaking old sofa that basks by the fire,
And 'tis wonderful, surely, the music you get
From the rickety, ramshackle, wheezy spinet.
That praying rug came from a Turcoman's camp;
By Tiber, once twinkled that brazen old lamp;
A Mameluke fierce yonder dagger has drawn;
'Tis a murderous knife to toast muffins upon.
Long, long, through the hours, and the night, and the chimes,
Here we talk of old books, and old friends, and old times:
As we sit in a fog made of rich Latakie,
This chamber is pleasant to you, friend, and me.