Poetry of Kansas

The Sage's Good Advice.

A sage one time, says Mr. Quad,
      Was walking on his way;
He was accosted by a maid,
      Who thus to him did say:
Grant your advice, it will be kind,
I am so troubled in my mind.
Use sun-flower tea, the wise man said,
      To make your features fair;
And then drew nearer to the maid,
      To pat and stroke her hair.
She said that may my looks improve
But will it try a young man's love?
A nice young man as you can see,
      He loves and lauds me, too;
He will do anything for me
      That manly power can do:
O say will his attachment stand?
If so, I will bestow my hand.
He to a lamp post gave a lear,
      And says: I rather doubt;
For love may cool within a year
      And then skidaddle out;
But will he jump, his love to show,
From heights to danger down below?
Will he at midnight's silent watch
      Pierce through the skin, and then
The oozing blood therewith to catch,
      Insert his fountain pen,
To write a letter unto thee
Declaring he will constant be.
Or will he deadly poison take__
      Committing suicide?
Or at the river for thy sake
      Leap in its foaming tide?
Six letters wrote whith blood have I;
If I refuse him he will die.
Thou ask him next if he can keep
      The wolf from near the door:
Your Pa is old, his debts are deep,
      And all of you are poor.
You well can guess, if he is square,
After the old man mounts the stair.
This cured his love, she hit the mark,
      He did not come again:
She took a handsome grocer's clerk,
      Who told her thus right plain:
No woman ever shoes did wear
Would make him hurry on a stair.

__John Mitchell.

Poets and Poetry of Kansas
Edited by Thomas W. Herringshaw
(Chicago: American Publishers' Association. 1894)
Page 271

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March 8, 2003 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas / howell@kotn.org

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