She stood beside me while I gave
an order for a bonnet.
She shuddered when I said,
"and put a bright bird's wing upon it."
A member of the Audubon Society was she;
and cutting were her comments
made on worldly folks like me.
She spoke about the helpless birds
we wickedly were harming:
She quoted the statistics,
and they really were alarming:
She said God meant his little birds
to sing in trees and skies;
And there was pathos in her voice,
and tears were in her eyes.
"Oh, surely in this beauteous world
you can find lovely things
Enough to trim your hats," she said,
"without the dear birds' wings."
I sat beside her that same day,
in her own house at dinner,
Angelic being that she was
to entertain a sinner!
Her well-appointed table groaned
beneath the ample spread;
Course followed appetizing course,
and hunger sated fled;
But still my charming hostess urged,
"Do have a reed-bird, dear,
They are so delicate and sweet
at this time of the year."
From her Poems of Pleasure (1888)
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