Never since the race was started,
    Had a boy in any clime,
Cause to be so thankful-hearted,
    As the boys of present time.

Not a girl in old times living--
    Let the world talk as it may--
Found such reasons for Thanksgiving,
    As the girls who live to-day!

Grandmas, in their corners sitting,
    Toiling till the day grew late,
What knew they with endless knitting,
    Of the jolly roller-skate?

Grandpas sitting by the fender,
    Reading by the faggots' blaze,
What knew they of modern splendor
    Found in incandescent rays?

Where they toiled in bitter weather,
    Braving rain and snow and sleet,
Gathering sticks of wood together,
    We have radiators' heat.

But these fruits of modern science
    They first planted seed by seed,
In their strength and self-reliance
    We may find a noble creed.

With the dawn of great inventions,
    Came the anti-warring days.
Men are sick of armed contentions,
    God be thanked with heart-felt praise.

Once a boy was trained for fighting,
    Now the world is better taught,
'Tis an age when wrongs are righting
    By the force of common thought.

Once a girl was trained for sewing,
    Spinning, knitting, nothing more.
She must never think of knowing
    Aught of things outside her door.

If she soared above her spinning,
    If she sought a life more broad,
She was looked upon as sinning
    'Gainst the laws of man and God.

Now a girl is taught she's human,
    Brain and body, soul and heart--
All are needed by the woman
    Who to-day would play her part.

Swift and sure the world advances,
    Let the critic carp who may.
God be praised for all the chances
    Boys and girls enjoy to-day.

The Beautiful Land of Nod by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Chicago: Morrill, Higgins & Co. [1892]

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