A Courtin' Call

Original Text: 
A Patch of Pansies (New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1894): 66-67. Microtext Reading Room CIHM no. 29307. Robarts Library
2    To beat the lates' fash'n.
5He slicked his hair exactly so,
6    An' all ter indicate "his pash'n."
8He kep' the one on that he wore.
9All afternoon she laid abed
10    To make her featturs brighter.
11She tried on ev'ry geoun she hed,
13A dozen times she frizzed her head
16But that 'ld make her eyes so red.
18'Ithout a light, excep' their spark,
19An' neither could have told er guessed


1] ter: to. The poem's dialect imitates colloquial speech of early 20th-century American working people. Back to Line
3] extry: extra. Back to Line
4] dicky: a starched detachable shirtfront. Back to Line
7] hull: whole? Back to Line
12] rasped: filed. Back to Line
14] whiter: tanned faces betrayed outdoor work. Back to Line
15] she' d 'a': she would have. Back to Line
17] sot: sat. Back to Line
20] the t'other: redundant, literally "the the other," but dialectal. Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 2000.