"What else do they live for in this world beside?"
What else but for Kittys or one of the same,
Do mothers their daughters at schools give the touch
That leaves them to live as a wife but in name
While position and fashion they frantically clutch.
What else do they live for, our girls so refined,
So forward, precocious, and gifted at ten
They are flirting and courting and things of the kind,
That never came under our grandmother's ken.
At fifteen so dressed up, and hooped up, I ween,
They're mothers full often before they're sixteen,
And fading and dowdy and sickly at twenty,
With one boy in trowsers and two girls in laces
Complaining of starving while dying of plenty
The fate is of ladies in fashionable places.