Verse > Anthologies > Alfred H. Miles, ed. > Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century
Alfred H. Miles, ed.  Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century.  1907.
IV. Natural Selection
By Constance C. W. Naden (1858–1889)
I HAD found out a gift for my fair,
  I had found where the cave men were laid:
Skulls, femur and pelvis were there,
  And spears that of silex they made.
But he ne’er could be true, she averred,        5
  Who would dig up an ancestor’s grave—
And I loved her the more when I heard
  Such foolish regard for the cave.
My shelves they are furnished with stones,
  All sorted and labelled with care;        10
And a splendid collection of bones,
  Each one of them ancient and rare;
One would think she might like to retire
  To my study—she calls it a “hole”!
Not a fossil I heard her admire        15
  But I begged it, or borrowed, or stole.
But there comes an idealess lad,
  With a strut and a stare and a smirk;
And I watch, scientific, though sad,
  The Law of Selection at work.        20
Of Science he had not a trace,
  He seeks not the How and the Why,
But he sings with an amateur’s grace,
  And he dances much better than I.
And we know the more dandified males        25
  By dance and by song win their wives—
’Tis a law that with avis prevails,
  And ever in Homo survives.
Shall I rage as they whirl in the valse?
  Shall I sneer as they carol and coo?        30
Ah no! for since Chloe is false
  I’m certain that Darwin is true.

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