Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal 8.9-24
Eight years back about this time
I came to live in this hazy city
To work in a building caked with grime
Teaching the classics to Midland students;
Virgil, Livy, the usual round,
Principal parts and the lost digamma;
And to hear the prison-like lecture room resound
To Homer in a Dudley accent.
But Life was comfortable, life was fine
With two in a bed and patchwork cushions
And checks and tassels on the washing-line,
A gramophone, a cat, and the smell of jasmine.
The steaks were tender, the films were fun,
The walls were striped like a Russian ballet,
There were lots of things undone
But nobody cared, for the days were early.