Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Nov. 5, 1850 - Oct. 30, 1919


The Belle's Soliloquy

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Heigh ho! well, the season's over!
Once again we've come to Lent!
Programme's changed from balls and parties --
Now we're ordered to repent.
Forty days of self-denial!
Tell you what I think it pays --
Know't'l freshen my complexion
Going slow for forty days.

No more savoury Frenchy suppers --
Such as Madame R - can give.
Well, I need a little thinning --
Just a trifle - sure's you live!
Sometimes been afraid my plumpness
Might grow into downright fat.
Rector urges need of fasting --
Think there's lot of truth in that.

We must meditate, he tells us,
On our several acts of sin.
And repent them. Let me see now --
Whereabouts shall I begin!
Flirting - yes, they say 'tis wicked;
Well, I'm awful penitent.
(Wonder if my handsome major
Goes to early Mass through Lent?)

Love of dress! I'm guilty there too --
Guess it's my besetting sin.
Still I'm somewhat like the lilies,
For I neither toil nor spin.
Forty days I'll wear my plainest --
Could repentance be more true?
What a saving on my dresses!
They'll make over just like new.

Pride, and worldliness and all that,
Rector bade us pray about
Every day through Lenten season,
And I mean to be devout!
Papa always talks retrenchment --
Lent is just the very thing.
Hope he'll get enough in pocket
So we'll move up town next spring.


Poems of Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Copyright 1910
W.P. Nimmo, Hay, and Mitchell, Edinburgh