Elizabeth Horrocks: Jugged Jane

Northanger Abbey

Country-bred Catherine's naive, and her youth
Excuses her thinking that fiction is truth.
(For Northanger Abbey is partly a skit
On the time's Gothic Novels, though there's much more to it)
The General mistakenly thinks she'll have money:
His errors – and hers – at his house are quite funny.
But his son, Henry T, sees our Catherine's true worth
And proposes, so all ends in gladness and mirth.

Sense and Sensibility

Elinor’s sensible, thinks coolly on things;
Young Marianne’s ripe for wild, passionate flings.
But Elinor's Edward has got in a tangle
With Miss Lucy Steele and her mercenary angle.
Miss Marianne’s attached to a bounder, it seems,
Who cruelly puts paid to his young lover’s dreams,
While Edward, now free, has to Elinor turned,
And her sister weds Brandon, whose love she had spurned

Pride and Prejudice

Mrs Bennet’s determined her girls should all wed,
As they’ll be thrown out when their father is dead.
She’s right, but she’s vulgar, and by being so busy
She quite puts proud Darcy off clever, bright Lizzie.
And Mary’s a prude, and Kitty’s a cough,
And Jane is too nice. And Lydia’s run off!
But Lizzie and Darcy get wed in the end
As do Jane and Bingley, who’s Darcy’s best friend.

Mansfield Park

As a child Fanny Price was sent off to stay
With her mother's relations a long way away
They're cold, and they're morally lax at the Park,
(They put on a dubious play for a lark).
Cousin Edmund is kind, and Fan loves him for this,
but he's taken with Mary, a worldly young miss.
(But)when his sisters run off, he picks Fan for his wife,
As the one who's more fit for a clergyman's life.

Emma

Emma’s a meddler, and told off, quite rightly,
(for being rude to Miss Bates) by Mr. George Knightly.
She bosses poor Harriet, but if she’d been quicker,
She’d have guessed the intentions of Elton, the vicar.
And not flirted with Frank, been disdainful of Jane
Or tried pairing off Harriet, again and again.
But Harriet and Robert, and Frank and Jane, wed,
As do Emma and Knightly. No more’s to be said.


Persuasion

Anne is persuaded to give up her love:
(She’s been brought up compliant to those ranked “above”)
But eight years have passed, and she’s now on the shelf:
and her man’s doing well – she’s seen so herself.
She thinks he’s moved on and now loves Louisa,
For he stands on the Cobb, just waiting to seize her.
But that’s a mistake, it comes right in the end.
The Moral: don’t listen to Mother’s old friend!

Yellow tulips in field