you are old, father william, the young man said,
and your hair has become very white
and yet you incessantly stand on your head,
do you think at your age it is right?
in my youth, father william replied to his son,
i feared it might injure my brain
but now that i’m perfectly sure i have none
why do it again and again.
you are old, said the youth, one would hardly suppose
that your eyes was as steady as ever
yet you balance an eel on the end of your nose
what made you so awfully clever?
i have answered your questions and that is enough,
said his father, don’t give yourself airs
do you think i can listen all day to such stuff?
be off! or i’ll kick you downstairs!