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Poem by John Gay


A Lamb and a Lion  a Fox and an Ass, 
Resemble Mankind, as it were in a glass; 
Males are harmless as lambs till theyre fourteen years old, 
And till they are forty, as lions are bold; 
As foxes theyre cunning till three-score and ten, 
Then, silly as asses, no longer are men.

A Dove and a Sparrow  a Parrot and Crow, 
The life of a Woman most aptly will show; 
Girls innocent doves are till fourteen years old, 
And chirrup like sparrows, till forty are told; 
Like parrots theyll prate till theyre three-score and ten, 
And as crows often croak, so do most old wo-men!

John Gay

John Gay's other poems:
  1. Sweet William's Farewell to Black-Ey'd Susan
  2. To a Young Lady, with Some Lampreys
  3. An Elegy on a Lap-dog
  4. If the Heart of a Man
  5. The Quidnunckis

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