O Kate! my dear Partner, through joy and through strife!
When I look back at Hymen's dear day,
Not a lovelier bride ever chang'd to a wife,
Though you're now so old, wizen'd, and gray!
Those eyes, then, were stars, shining rulers of fate!
But as liquid as stars in a pool;
Though now they're so dim, they appear, my dear Kate,
Just like gooseberries boil'd for a fool!
That brow was like marble, so smooth and so fair;
Though it's wrinkled so crookedly now,
As if time, when those furrows were made by the share,
Had been tipsy whilst driving his plough!
Your nose, it was such as the sculptors all chose,
When a Venus demanded their skill;
Though now it can hardly be reckon'd a nose,
But a sort of Poll-Parroty bill!
Your mouth, it was then quite a bait for the bees,
Such a nectar there hung on each lip;
Though now it has taken that lemon-like squeeze,
Not a blue-bottle comes for a sip!
Your chin, it was one of Love's favorite haunts,
From its dimple he could not get loose;
Though now the neat hand of a barber it wants,
Or a singe, like the breast of a goose!
How rich were those locks, so abundant and full,
With their ringlets of auburn so deep!
Though now they look only like frizzles of wool,
By a bramble torn off from a sheep!
That neck, not a swan could excel it in grace,
While in whiteness it vied with your arms;
Though now a grave 'kerchief you properly place,
To conceal that scrag-end of your charms!
Your figure was tall, then, and perfectly straight,
Though it now has two twists from upright -
But bless you! still bless you! my Partner! my Kate!
Though you be such a perfect old fright!