Femina Ad FinitumI
If you must know, my path has been box-hedged,
Flag-bordered, square-cornered, trimmed close.
Men never tempted me outside. They've edged
From me with level eyes. Their stormy woes
Have filled my ears, my shoulder ever damp
With grief that other women caused___Marie
Or Sue or Kate . . . A prissy saint. No vamp.
My tame, gray goodness anyone could see.
But life is queer. At times some catty dame
Suspects my virgin past. Were it but known
I've lived too gay. Some dark red sin, she'll claim
Has been lived down, and wild oats, wildly I have sown.
And for this blot upon my white, you think I'm wearing
My dear, I have a secret hope that they may think it true.
That strange inheritance of mingled strains
Perhaps is why I led a varied past,
And fished in various streams, and seized, sometimes,
The man whose cash would make the days go fast.
The words of simple honest men would sting
Me deep at times had I not by
A single, double, or quadruple fling
Been disciplined where they were good and dry.
But how my schooled blood beats a tom-tom when
Some adolescent wide-eyed boy, I find,
Accepts my calculated look and phrase,
And breathes, "How could she know, with her pure
__Margaret E. Haughawout.
Margaret E. Haughawout
(Pittsburg, Kansas: __. 1929)