St. Patrick's DayWith St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner, let’s remember the crossover Ireland-New York poem Dorothy Parker wrote for March 17. This was written 96 years ago when Dorothy was 28 years old and a member of the Algonquin Round Table.

This gem, published March 16, 1922, in the old Life, came out when Dorothy and the Vicious Circle were meeting daily. This was never collected in her lifetime, and only appears in Not Much Fun: The Lost Poems of Dorothy Parker and Dorothy Parker Complete Poems. You can find the books here.

Paging St. Patrick
by Dorothy Parker

The good Saint Patrick, in his day,
Performed a worthy act:
He up and drove the snakes away,
With more technique than tact.
Could he descend from realms above
And roam New York,
He’d find in reminiscent of
The good old days in Cork.
The snakes he knew could never tie
The brand our village has —
The kind that daily multiply
And thrive on tea and jazz.

Should he his tales of snakes relate
We’d strive to hide a laugh;
For, though the saint was wise and great,
He didn’t know the half.
Where’er he’d go, to dine or dance,
Or lunch, or tea, or sup,
The saint would have a splendid chance
To do some cleaning up.
Could he but leave his present star,
He’d see that things were changed–
How sad such little visits are
Not easily arranged!