Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > An American Anthology, 1787–1900
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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  An American Anthology, 1787–1900.  1900.
 
552. “My Dearling”
 
By Elizabeth Akers Allen (“Florence Percy”)
 
 
MY Dearling!—thus, in days long fled,
  In spite of creed and court and queen,
  King Henry wrote to Anne Boleyn,—
The dearest pet name ever said,
  And dearly purchased, too, I ween!        5
 
Poor child! she played a losing game:
  She won a heart,—so Henry said,—
  But ah, the price she gave instead!
Men’s hearts, at best, are but a name:
  She paid for Henry’s with her head!        10
 
You count men’s hearts as something worth?
  Not I: were I a maid unwed,
  I ’d rather have my own fair head
Than all the lovers on the earth,
  Than all the hearts that ever bled!        15
 
“My Dearling!” with a love most true,
  Having no fear of creed or queen,
  I breathe that name my prayers between;
But it shall never bring to you
  The hapless fate of Anne Boleyn!        20
 

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