It was an Artless Poster Girl pinned up against my wall,
She was tremendous ugly, she was exceeding tall;
I was gazing at her idly, and I think I must have slept,
For that poster maiden lifted up her poster voice, and wept.
She said between her poster sobs, ‘I think it’s rather rough
To be jeered and fleered and flouted, and I’ve stood it long
I’m tired of being quoted as a Fright and Fad and Freak,
And I take this opportunity my poster mind to speak.
‘Although my hair is carmine and my nose is edged with blue,
Although my style is splashy and my shade effects are few, Although I’m out of drawing and my back hair is a show,
Yet I have n’t half the whimseys of the maidens that you know.
‘I never keep you waiting while I prink before the glass,
I never talk such twaddle as that little Dawson lass,
I never paint on china, nor erotic novels write,
And I never have recited “Curfew must not ring tonight”.
‘I don’t rave over Ibsen, I never, never flirt,
I never wear a shirt waist with a disconnected skirt;
I never speak in public on “The Suffrage”, or “The Race”,
I never talk while playing whist, or trump my partner’s ace.’
I said: ‘O artless Poster Girl, you’re in the right of it,
You are a joy forever, though a thing of beauty, nit!’
And from her madder eyebrows to her utmost purple swirl,
Against all captious critics I’ll defend the Poster Girl.
About This Poem
Carolyn Wells was noted for her humor, and is credited for establishing the first humor anthology. She frequently contributed nonsense verse
and whimsical pieces to various little magazines and newspapers.
Carolyn Wells was born in Rahway, New Jersey in 1862. She is regarded as a prolific poet as well as a writer of children’s literature, popular mysteries, parodies, and other humorous verses. For many years, she worked as a librarian for the Rahway Library Association. During her lifetime, Wells produced 170 titles that fall into several genres. She died in 1942 in New York.