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In Miniver Cheevy, where to Miniver's alcohol-eroded mind it is the age and not himself that is out of tune, the terseness of the image is that of a local idiom:

He mourned Romance, now on the town, And Art, a vagrant.


There are, however, other poems in which the contribution of form to effect is more obvious; and some analysis of these will throw light on the compositions that are more subtly contrived. In Miniver Cbeevy, for instance, the short last line with its feminine ending provides precisely the anticlimax that is appropriate to the ironic contrast between Miniver's gilded dream and the tarnished actuality:

Miniver loved the Medici,

    Albeit he had never seen one;

He would have sinned incessantly

    Could he have been one.


Miniver cursed the commonplace

    And eyed a khaki suit with loathing;

He missed the mediaeval grace

    Of iron clothing.


In the dramatic poems comedy results if the disparity is never perceived by the character mainly involved, as in Miniver Cbeevy . . . .