A Celebration of Women Writers

"She Is Overheard Singing" by Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950)
From Millay, Edna St. Vincent. A Few Figs From Thistles   New York: Harper & Brothers, 1922. p. 19-21.

[Page 19] 


OH, Prue she has a patient man,
  And Joan a gentle lover,
And Agatha's Arth' is a hug-the-hearth,–
  But my true love's a rover!

Mig, her man's as good as cheese
  And honest as a briar,
Sue tells her love what he's thinking of,–
  But my dear lad's a liar!

Oh, Sue and Prue and Agatha
  Are thick with Mig and Joan!
They bite their threads and shake their heads
  And gnaw my name like a bone;

And Prue says, "Mine's a patient man,
  As never snaps me up,"

[Page 20] 

And Agatha, "Arth' is a hug-the-hearth,
  Could live content in a cup,"

Sue's man's mind is like good jell–
  All one color, and clear–
And Mig's no call to think at all
  What's to come next year,

While Joan makes boast of a gentle lad,
  That's troubled with that and this;–
But they all would give the life they live
  For a look from the man I kiss!

Cold he slants his eyes about,
  And few enough's his choice,–
Though he'd slip me clean for a nun, or a queen,
  Or a beggar with knots in her voice,–

And Agatha will turn awake
  While her good man sleeps sound,
And Mig and Sue and Joan and Prue
  Will hear the clock strike round,

For Prue she has a patient man,
  As asks not when or why,

[Page 21] 

And Mig and Sue have naught to do
  But peep who's passing by,

Joan is paired with a putterer
  That bastes and tastes and salts,
And Agatha's Arth' is a hug-the-hearth,–
  But my true love is false!


Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom