The Scarecrow Woman

SOUTHAMPTON JAIL, ENGLAND

Poor Scarecrow Woman, worn and marred,
Unhymned as yet by any bard —
No limb but what is hung askew,
No joint but what the bone shines through;

Broken by need and greed and lust;
With shambling foot and flattened bust,
Removed from beauty or the saints, —
You are the thing no artist paints!

What brought you down so low as this
From all that men feign woman is,
What hidden shame or dreadful chance
From all that poets deem romance?

Yet, whether born, or brought to be
This crawling thing of misery,
You shall not go unsung to death
With rheumy eyes and wheezy breath —
I'll force my loathing Muse to sing
Your fame, at last, poor scarecrow thing!
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