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Poems
Domestic Happiness
(1790-1867 / the United States)

Domestic Happiness

I.
'BESIDE the nuptial curtain bright'
The Bard of Eden sings,
'Young Love his constant lamp will light,
'And wave his purple wings.'
But rain-drops from the clouds of care
May bid that lamp be dim,
And the boy Love will pout and swear
'Tis then no place for him.

II
So mused the lovely Mrs. Dash;
'Tis wrong to mention names;
When for her surly husband's cash
She urged in vain her claims.
I want a little money, dear,
'For Vandervoort and Flandin,
Their bill, which now has run a year,
To-morrow mean to hand in.'

III
'More?' cried the husband, half asleep,
'You'll drive me to despair;'
The lady was too proud to weep,
And too polite to swear.
She bit her lip for very spite,
He felt a storm was brewing,
And dreamed of nothing else all night
But brokers, banks, and ruin.

IV
He thought her pretty once, but dreams
Have sure a wondrous power,
For to his eye the lady seems
Quite altered since that hour—
And Love, who on their bridal eve,
Had promised long to stay,
Forgot his promise—took French leave—
And bore his lamp away.

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