Dedicated to a Young Lady Representing the Indian Race at Howard University

While sitting in my room kind Miss,
I thought I'd sing a praise,
But now I think I'll write a word,
To lighten up thy days.

It's true I often write on Queens,
And those of noble fame;
But now I seek to write a line
Upon thy honored name.

What's in thy name moves me to write,
This little verse on thee?
Perhaps it is thy pleasant ways,
And cheering looks to me.

How oft I think of thee kind Miss,
And oft admire thy grace,
Because I know that thou art of
Another noble race!

When by the bells to meals we're called,
Or round the table meet,
With anxious eye I look to see
If thou art in thy seat.

And then I cast my eyes around,
Through hall, though long and wide,
And then I quickly look to see
Thy tea-mate by thy side.

But first of all the bell is rung,
And each within his place,
In silence each one bows his head,
'Till some one asks the grace.

Then each in seat with upturned plates,
And scarce a word is said,
Until we have a full supply
Of meats and baker's bread.

And dishes, too, are passing round
About from you and me;
And Clara she looks up and asks—
Pray, sir, what can it be?

It's pork, of course, or else it's beef;
Perchance it may be ham—
Except the baker cooked a goose,
And passed it off for lamb.

And if he has a cut will tell,
If round about its swallow,
For surely it is not so dead,
That it would fail to halloo.

While all of this is going on,
There're other things in view;
For oft I catch myself, dear Miss,
Exchanging looks with you.

But soon we're through, the bell does ring,
We're called by duty's 'larms;
Nor can I longer sit and look
Upon thy brilliant charms.

I'd speak of all my table mates
Had I another pen,
For surely we're as happy guests
As here have ever been.

Last updated March 22, 2023