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Poems by Women

LETTICE

I said to Lettice, our sister Lettice,
While drooped and glistened her eyelash brown,
"Your man's a poor man, a cold and dour man,
There's many a better about our town."
She smiled securely - "He loves me purely:
A true heart's safe, both in smile or frown;
And nothing harms me while his love warms me,
Whether the world go up or down."

"He comes of strangers, and they are rangers,
And ill to trust, girl, when out of sight:
Fremd folk may blame ye, and e'en defame ye,
A gown oft handled looks seldom white."
She raised serenely her eyelids queenly, -
"My innocence is my whitest gown;
No harsh tongue grieves me while he believes me,
Whether the world go up or down."

"Your man's a frail man, was ne'er a hale man,
And sickness knocketh at every door,
And death comes making bold hearts cower, breaking -"
Our Lettice trembled; - but once, no more.
"If death should enter, smite to the center
Our poor home palace, all crumbling down,
He cannot fright us, nor disunite us,
Life bears Love's cross, death brings Love's crown."

Dinah Maria Mulock Craik [1826-1887]

From: Stevenson, Burton Egbert.
The Home Book of Verse.

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This collection assembled by Jone Johnson Lewis.
Collection © 1999-2002 Jone Johnson Lewis.

Citing poems from these pages:

Author. "Poem Title."  Women's History: Poems by Women. Jone Johnson Lewis, editor. URL: (date of logon)
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