The 'Headers In Life & Legend
by Russell W. Knight

The Lamentations
of an Old Croaker
Hector Oldschool

Ho! all ye gentle gossip-loving cits
Ye sages and matrons, belles, beaux and wits;
A friendly muse would invite you to shed
A sad tear for the times in Marblehead.

When mothers through pure religion's teaching
Taught their daughters the work of the kitchen
And deem'd shoe-binding, dressing and gadding
As naught to cooking, washing and mending.

The greatest source of these Innovations,
On our ancient customs, rank and stations,
Is our Free School; those sinks of quackery,
Where youth are taught all modern mummery.

These, with many other faults of the times
Turn the heads of the young, corrupt their minds;
Puffs them with pride most truly outrageous,
And customs prove their anticks contageous.

O ye Powers! look down on our wretched state,
And in great mercy our evils abate:
Turn us from our evil propensities,
And relieve us from our necessities.

Verily the world is turn'd upside down
Change is the order of country and town;
Angel of mercy! the end discover,
Ere we are lost and ruin'd forever.

-- 1836

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