Works in the Bulletin 1915
THE WHITE FEATHER
The Confessions of a Lady in Distress
I sent a white feather to George to-night -
The coward who stays behind!
Was ever a maiden in such a plight?
My lover is sailing away to fight!
And - why is a man so blind?
I hope he will write when he sees the thing,
I hope he will guess 'twas I!
I want him to squirm at the scorn I fing;
I'd love to be near him and see it sting,
And - I wonder if he'll reply?
I sent a white feather to George. Ah, me!
To Gus I have waved farewell -
Dear Gus, who is faring across the sea
To fight for his country, his flag - and me!
And the other - how can I tell?
Oh, how can I tell of the awful mess
I've made of the whole affair?
Yet how was a poor little girl to guess
The end of it all would be dire distress,
When I played with that spoony pair?
Yes, Gussie and George they were courting me,
And both of them seemed quite nice;
For George is as handsome as he can be,
And Gussie is little, but jolly and free;
And neither was prone to vice.
Now, wasn't I luck with two such swains?
And how could a maiden choose?
For Gussie was witty and blest with brains;
But George offered dresses and sundry gains
That prudence should not refuse.
I think, on the whole, it was George that led.
He had - oh, such splendid eyes!
But darling old Gus, with the things he said,
Would easily turn any poor maid's head
Of she wasn't extremely wise.
So I played with them both, as a maiden will,
And smiled at their fret and fuss.
Dear george was my choice; but I flirted till
The war came upon us. Then, prudent still,
I said: "Well, it must be Gus!"
For George seemed so handsome, so strong and brave,
I thought he was sure to go.
One boy of the two for myself to save
Was just: so my answer I sweetly gave,
And sent him away with "No."
Ah, me! I accepted poor Gus next day.
I had it worked out so grand!
Dear George, broken-hearted, would sail away
To bury his sorrow; while Gus would stay.
Now, wasn't that nicely planned?
Oh I dreamed of it all as I sat alone.
If each had but played his part!
Poor George was to die with a love-lorn moan,
And then, ever after, would Gus atone
To my bruised, remoseful heart.
But _ I sent a white feather to George to-night;
And my lover I've kissed good-bye.
Brave Gus, who is sailing away to fight!
And what holds the other? Mere craven fright!
Oh - I wonder if he'll reply?
The Bulletin, 29 April 1915, p11