Quit the sword, thou King of men,
Grasp the needle once again;
Making petticoats is far
Safer sport than making war;
Trimming is a better thing,
Than the being trimmed, oh King!
Grasp the needle bright with which
Thou didst for the Virgin stitch
Garment, such as ne'er before
Monarch stitched or Virgin wore,
Not for her, oh semster nimble!
Do I now invoke thy thimble;
Not for her thy wanted aid is,
But for certain grave old ladies,
Who now sit in England's cabinet,
Waiting to be clothed in tabinet,
Or whatever choice étoffe is
Fit for Dowagers in office.
First, thy care, oh King, devote
To Dame Eldon's petticoat.
Make it of that silk whose dye
Shifts for ever to the eye,
Just as if it hardly knew
Whether to be pink or blue.
Or--material fitter yet--
If thou couldst a remnant get
Of that stuff with which, of old,
Sage Penelope, we're told,
Still by doing and undoing,
Kept her suitors always wooing--
That's the stuff which I pronounce, is
Fittest for Dame Eldon's flounces.
After this, we'll try thy hand,
For old Goody Westmoreland;
One who loves, like Mother Cole,
Church and State with all her soul;
And has past her life in frolics
Worthy of our Apostolics.
Choose, in dressing this old flirt,
Something that won't show the dirt,
As, from habit, every minute
Goody Westmoreland is in it.
This is all I now shall ask,
Hie thee, monarch, to thy task;
Finish Eldon's frills and borders,
Then return for further orders.
Oh what progress for our sake,
Kings in millinery make!
Ribands, garters, and such things,
Are supplied by other Kings--
Ferdinand his rank denotes
By providing petticoats.