Nay, do not bring me the jewels;
Away with that robe of white:
I am sick of the ball-room, sister,
I would rather stay here to-night.
"The grandest ball of the season?"
"The upper ten thousands' shout?"
Yes! yes! I know it, my darling,
But I do not care to go.
Last night I was thinking deeply,
Something I seldom do;
You know I came home at midnight;
Well, I lay awake till two.
I was thinking about my girlhood,
Just how I had spent its years,
And I blushed for shame, my darling,
And my pillow was wet with tears.
I have lived in a whirl of fashion,
I have kept right up to the style,
I have learned how to dance the German,
How to bow, and flirt, and smile.
I have worn most beautiful dresses,
Been the belle of many a ball,
I have won the envy of women,
And the praise of fops--that's all.
Does any one really respect me?
Could a single thing be said
That would give the mourners pleasure,
To-morrow, if I were dead?
"She wore such beautiful dresses,"
"She'd a dozen strings to her bow,"
"She could waltz like a perfect fairy,"
Would you like me remembered so?
Well, there's nothing else to remember.
What thing have I ever done
That has made a soul the better
Or cheered a hopeless one?
I have spent my time and money,
The best of my fortune and days,
In gaining the envy of women,
And making the poor fops gaze.
I am going to be a woman,
And live for others, awhile,
Forgetting myself for a season,
Though I know it isn't the style.
I am in no mood for the revel;
Away with that robe of white,
And I will stay here my darling,
And talk with my heart to-night.
Maurine by Ella Wheeler
Milwaukee: Cramer, Aikens & Cramer, 1876.
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