Verse > Anthologies > Fuess and Stearns, eds. > The Little Book of Society Verse
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Fuess and Stearns, comps.  The Little Book of Society Verse.  1922.
 
The Female Phaeton
By Matthew Prior
 
THUS Kitty, beautiful and young,
  And wild as colt untamed,
Bespoke the fair from which she sprung,
  With little rage inflamed:
 
Inflamed with rage at sad restraint,        5
  Which wise mamma ordained,
And sorely vex’d to play the saint,
  Whilst wit and beauty reign’d.
 
“Shall I thumb holy books, confined
  With Abigails, forsaken?        10
Kitty’s for other things design’d,
  Or I am much mistaken.
 
“Must Lady Jenny frisk about,
  And visit with her cousins?
At balls must she make all the rout,        15
  And bring home hearts by dozens?
 
“What has she better, pray, than I?
  What hidden charms to boast,
That all mankind for her should die,
  Whilst I am scarce a toast?        20
 
“Dearest mamma, for once let me,
  Unchain’d, my fortune try;
I’ll have my Earl as well as she,
  Or know the reason why.
 
“I’ll soon with Jenny’s pride quit score,        25
  Make all her lovers fall;
They’ll grieve I was not loosed before:
  She, I was loosed at all!”
 
Fondness prevail’d,—mamma gave way:
  Kitty, at heart’s desire,        30
Obtain’d the chariot for a day,
  And set the world on fire.
 
 
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