[throughout this question by 'English' I only mean the 'language English' ]

I remember from my childhood a English language poem from a middle/high school general English textbook (India).

I can only recollect following information about that poem -

  • Language - English
  • Genre - Comedy or little childish
  • I read it in a old general English textbook of middle/high school (India) around 10-12 years ago.
  • The poem is about a joker (I'm not sure if he's really a joker or just a man being funny) with disorganized attire
  • That man is was wearing a cooking pan as hat
  • He was wearing (probably) socks as gloves
  • He was travelling in a train or tram and leaves his station behind. (When he asks someone which station the train had reached he got shocked to hear the name of the station as he left his station behind. )

I guess, This poem must be at least 2-3 decades old (or more) [since it mentions train / tram it must belong to 19th or 20th century]

Please tell me name of the poem or poet if anyone remembers such poem.

  • Welcome to Literature SE, even though you were sent here rather than arriving of your own accord. It will be helpful if you can have a look at the tag information for story-identification and see how much of the requested information you can fill in, and generally any more you can tell us, such as where and how you have already searched. When you say 'joker' is that your word for the character or is it likely to appear in the verse?
    – Spagirl
    Oct 20 '20 at 12:53

Your recollections match very well (I would say, precisely) a pretty famous Russian poem by Samuil Marshak, Рассеянный с улицы Бассейной, written in 1930. I found quite a number of English translations in Internet, but they all seem to be fairly recent and amateurish, so I cannot point the version you have read.

The best bet is to find a paper edition of Marshak's poetry collection, and look for something like What an absent-minded guy (this is how it is called in English Wiki page on Marshak); I am sure the piece would be there.

PS: In the original, he was wearing gloves on his feet.

  • Oh my God! Yes! It's the one I was searching for. Thank you! I read it more than a decade ago that's I only remember things with blurry details. I never thought it could be a translation!!!
    – ShivCK
    Oct 22 '20 at 10:06

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