Robert William Service

(16 January 1874 - 11 September 1958 / Preston)

Henry


Mary and I were twenty-two
When we were wed;
A well-matched pair, right smart to view
The town's folk said.
For twenty years I have been true
To nuptial bed.

But oh alas! The march of time,
Life's wear and tear!
Now I am in my lusty prime
With pep to spare,
While she looks ten more years than I'm,
With greying hair.

'Twas on our trip dear friends among,
To New Orleans,
A stranger's silly trip of tongue
Kiboshed my dreams:
I heard her say: 'How very young
His mother seems.'

Child-bearing gets a woman down,
And six had she;
Yet now somehow I feel a clown
When she's with me;
When cuties smile one cannot frown,
You must agree.

How often I have heard it said:
'For happy fate,
In age a girl ten years ahead
Should choose her mate.'
Now twenty years to Mary wed
I know too late.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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