Century Magazine/Volume 47/Issue 5/Minerva in Boston
My Minerva flouts the Graces, and forgets how fair her face is,
But the higher criticism she entirely comprehends;
So she dresses very plainly, after some reform ungainly,
And looks on Briggs and Spencer as her intimates and friends.
She 's indifferent to ices and confectioners' devices,
But on esoteric Buddhism she loves to ponder well;
And though she never glances at the popular romances,
She indulges on occasion in a "study" or "pastel."
She's superior to flirtation; she contributes to "The Nation,"
And she'd be a rank agnostic if she didn't know so much;
She declines in social duty to display her modest beauty,
But she 's put a poem of Browning into genuine low Dutch.
She is musically clever, and the "tune" taboos forever,
For to "Vaguer" she is faithful, and to Brahms she gives her heart;
Then at art's high altar kneeling she will talk "technic" and "feeling,"
And if I say, "It's pretty," will reply," But is it art?"
Dare I ever hope to hold her in the arms that would infold her?
Or, with Plato for my pattern, must I tell my love in Greek?
Let me curb this crude young passion, and, since courting's out of fashion,
Woo Minerva with a problem, and of Eros shyly speak.
Most persistently I'm cramming, but I weary of my shamming,
And am not intoxicated with Castalia's bitter cup;
I might win the maid's affections through a course in conic sections,
But I wonder if, once married, I could keep the blamed thing up.