Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE WIFE'S CHRISTMAS, by PHOEBE CARY

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

THE WIFE'S CHRISTMAS, by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: How can you speak to me so, charlie!
Last Line: Your wife but a single year!
Subject(s): Christmas; Marriage; Nativity, The; Weddings; Husbands; Wives

HOW can you speak to me so, Charlie!
It isn't kind, nor right;
You wouldn't have talked a year ago,
As you have done to-night.

You are sorry to see me sit and cry,
Like a baby vexed, you say;
When you didn't know I wanted a gift,
Nor think about the day!

But I'm not like a baby, Charlie,
Crying for something fine;
Only a loving woman pained,
Could shed such tears as mine.

For every Christmas time till now --
And that is why I grieve --
It was you that wanted to give, Charlie,
More than I to receive.

And all I ever had from you
I have carefully laid aside;
From the first June rose you pulled for me,
To the veil I wore as a bride.

And I wouldn't have cared to-night, Charlie,
How poor the gift or small;
If you only had brought me something to show
That you thought of me at all.

The merest trifle of any kind,
That I could keep or wear;
A flimsy bit of lace for my neck,
Or a ribbon for my hair.

Some pretty story of lovers true,
Or a book of pleasant rhyme;
A flower, or a holly branch, to mark
The blessed Christmas time.

But to be forgotten, Charlie!
'T is that that brings the tear;
And just to think, that I haven't been
Your wife but a single year!

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