A Celebration of Women Writers

"The Atheist and the Acorn" by Anne Kingsmill Finch, Countess of Winchilsea (1661 - 1720)
From Winchilsea, Anne (Kingsmill) Finch, Countess of. Miscellany Poems, on Several Occasions, London: printed for J[ohn] B[arber] and sold by Benj. Tooke at the Middle-Temple-Gate, William Taylor in Pater-Noster-Row, and James Round, in Exchange-Alley, Cornhil, 1713. p. 202-204.

Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom

The ATHEIST and the ACORN.

Methinks this World is oddly made,
  And ev'ry thing's amiss,
A dull presuming Atheist said,
As stretch'd he lay beneath a Shade;
  And instanced in this:

[Page 203]

Behold, quoth he, that mighty thing,
  A Pumpkin, large and round,
Is held but by a little String,
Which upwards cannot make it spring,
  Or bear it from the Ground.

Whilst on this Oak, a Fruit so small,
  So disproportion'd, grows;
That, who with Sence surveys this All,
This universal Casual Ball,
  Its ill Contrivance knows.

My better Judgment wou'd have hung
  That Weight upon a Tree,
And left this Mast, thus slightly strung,
'Mongst things which on the Surface sprung,
  And small and feeble be.

[Page 204]

No more the Caviller cou'd say,
  Nor farther Faults descry;
For, as he upwards gazing lay,
An Acorn, loosen'd from the Stay,
  Fell down upon his Eye.

Th' offended Part with Tears ran o'er,
  As punish'd for the Sin:
Fool! had that Bough a Pumpkin bore,
Thy Whimseys must have work'd no more,
  Nor Scull had kept them in.


Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom