(4 November 1872 - 1934 / Scotia, Lake Erie, Ontario)

The Argument

'As friend,' she said, 'I will be kind,
My sympathy will rarely fail,
My eyes to many faults be blind-
As wife, I'll lecture, scold, and rail,

'Be full of moods, a shrew one day,
A thing of tenderness the next,
Will kiss and wound-a woman's way
That long the soul of man has vext.

'You've been a true, unselfish man,
Have thought upon my good alway,
Been strong to shield, and wise to plan,
But ah! there is a change to-day.

'There's mastery in your 'Be my wife!'
For self stands up and eagerly
Claims all my love, and all my life,
The body and the soul of me.

'Come, call me friend, and own me such,
Nor count it such a wondrous thing
To hold me close, thrill at my touch-
A lord and master!-there's the sting.

''Tis all or naught with you, you plead,
And he is blest who boldly wins;
These words,' she said, 'are proof, indeed,
That love and selfishness are twins.

'Yet, had you let my wisdom sway,
Would it have pleased me, who can tell?
I might have said regretfully:
'Methinks I reasoned far too well!''

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