To the Ladies.

When bills are long, and Credit low,1
And things are bad as they can be,2
And Banks go down with sudden blow,3
And nought is sure—but Penury !4
When ‘ Pater ’ in his private den5
Looks sad, and savage as a bear,6
Because his funds are low—O then,7
Dear Ladies—of your debts beware !8
Your gorgeous gown of new silk stuff9
Will surely ‘ do ’ a second time ?10
Of hats and bonnets, you’ve enough !11
Your jackets too are in their prime.12
No need to ‘ run up little bills,’13
Because your last are not yet paid,14
Nor multiply a thousand ills15
By bringing others to their aid !16
You see how ‘ Pater’s ’ rugged brow17
Is seamed with lines of care and grief.18
The cause is plain—and even now19
His case seems quite beyond relief.20
His income—just five hundred pounds,21
Is nothing—when a thousand’s due.22
Things really are beyond all bounds.23
The reason, Ladies, lies with you !24
So many wants, ’ you always say ;25
So many things we have to buy ;26
And money runs so fast away,27
That we can’t pay (although we try) ;28
And go the bills just grow and grow29
Like mushrooms, only not so good.’30
And ‘ Pater ’ paces to and fro31
His sanctum, in a horrid mood !32
I think you sometimes might refrain33
From buying—when you cannot pay ;34
The reason is so very plain35
That ‘ money runs so fast away !’36
Restrain expenses—stay at home ;37
Make ‘ Pater ’ happy if you can ;38
And then whatever crash may come,39
Pater ’ will be an honest man !40