Of Buttoning Up
dogs; when you meet someone new,
Please, thank you, never mind –
speak a tight version of your mother tongue
but when it comes to languages
you’re expected to master,
Behave at dinner
and when leaving the table,
wine glasses should be held
like they were flowers,
flirt with them.
Don’t go into debates,
not even with yourself.
Don’t drink straight from the bottle,
in your circle it’s the glass
that makes the drink clean.
When going out, don’t wear
a football jersey.
But you might hide one in your wardrobe,
lacking a lady living up to
get a sight of it.
Of Pedigree Dogs
A pedigree dog knows, without fail,
when tail wagging is due.
It doesn’t bark, doesn’t chase,
but arrives sooner than its
It doesn’t step across the doorsill.
Should you ask him to, he does obey
while keeping the eye‐contact.
Sharp nose is not a good reason
to use its juice to share.
Sniffing animals or people is a no‐no.
Sniffing food? Yes, unseen.
Mud is to avoid but your
thoughts might linger around it
at home, when no opera is on.
Of Being Smug
A real gent is unwilling to watch
TV‐shows but acquires the know‐how
of smugness from film characters.
Smugness is a delicate subject, not foreign
to most, and shaped by most.
A gent’s smugness can neither be
open nor moderate.
Smugness is addressing
certain age ranges,
it comes up to arranging
the pocket or the neck‐wear.
Szabó Dárió magyar nyelven megjelent verseinek forrása: