Once a Week (magazine)/Series 1/Volume 4/Take warning
Once lived a comely maid who, proud
Of charms before which all men bow’d,
Wax’d over scornful;
’Twas in those good old ages when
Our grandsires were but grandchildren,
But human nature now as then
Of pride is born full.
Altho’ this maid to lovers’ prayer,
To lady-killer’s deep-laid snare,
Bade bold defiance.
She ne’er intended to remain
A votary in Diana’s train,
But form with some well-favour’d swain
A fit alliance.
Years glided by; full many a chime
Told new year’s eve when ruthless time
Her charms invaded,
But thought she not of tell-tale streak
Which scarr’d her brow, of sunken cheek,
Of pallid lip, of voice grown weak,
At length still fewer and more few,
Behold! aspiring suitors grew;
At festive meeting
No more did youth on youth advance,
To claim her hand for distant dance,
Nor combat for one witching glance,
With heart high-beating.
“Alas,” quoth she, “I’m sore perplex’d,
My beaux desert; the very next
Whose means are ample,
Woos not in vain:” but ah! no more,
Did anxious lover seek her door.
Young ladies, in your bosoms store
This sad example.