30 JULY 1954, Page 18

Born Yesterday

(for Sally Amis)

Tightly-folded bud, I have wished you something None of the others would: Not the usual stuff About being beautiful, Or running off a spring Of innocence or love— They will all wish you that, And should it prove possible, Well, you're a lucky girl.

But if it shouldn't, then May you be ordinary; Have like other women An average of talents: Not ugly, not good-looking, Nothing uncustomary To pull you off your balance, That, unworkable itself, Stops all the rest from working. In fact, may you be dull— If that is what a skilled, Vigilant, flexible, Unemphasised, enthralled Capture of happiness is called.