A Pin

Ella Wheeler Wilcox 1855 (Janesville) – 1919



Oh, I know a certain lady who is reckoned with the good,
Yet she fills me with more terror than a raging lion would.
The little chills run up and down my spine whene’er we meet,
Though she seems a gentle creature, and she’s very trim and neat.

And she has a thousand virtues and not one acknowledged sin,
But she is the sort of person you could liken to a pin.
And she pricks you and she sticks you in a way that can’t be said.
If you seek for what has hurt you – why, you cannot find the head.

But she fills you with discomfort and exasperating pain.
If anybody asks you why, you really can’t explain!
A pin is such a tiny thing, of that there is no doubt,
Yet when it’s sticking in your flesh you’re wretched till it’s out.

She’s wonderfully observing – when she meets a pretty girl,
She is always sure to tell her if her hair is out of curl;
And she is so sympathetic to her friend who’s much admires,
She is often heard remarking, ‘Dear, you look so worn and tired.’

And she is an honest critic, for on yesterday she eyed
The new dress I was airing with a woman’s natural pride,
And she said, ‘Oh, how becoming! ’ and then gently added, ‘it
Is really a misfortune that the basque is such a fit.’

Then she said, ‘If you heard me yester eve, I’m sure, my friend,
You would say I was a champion who knows how to defend.’
And she left me with the feeling – most unpleasant, I aver –
That the whole world would despise me is it hadn’t been for her.

Whenever I encounter her, in such a nameless way
She gives me the impression I am at my worst that day.
And the hat that was imported (and cost me half a sonnet) ,
With just one glance from her round eyes becomes a Bowery bonnet.

She is always bright and smiling, sharp and pointed for a thrust;
Use does not seem to blunt her point, nor does she gather rust.
Oh! I wish some hapless specimen of mankind would begin
To tidy up the world for me, by picking up this pin!

Font size:
Collection  PDF     
 

Submitted on May 13, 2011

Modified on March 05, 2023

1:55 min read
123

Quick analysis:

Scheme AABB CCDD EEFF GGXX HHII JJKK LLIX MMCC
Closest metre Iambic heptameter
Characters 1,953
Words 385
Stanzas 8
Stanza Lengths 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Ella Wheeler Wilcox was an American author and poet. more…

All Ella Wheeler Wilcox poems | Ella Wheeler Wilcox Books

2 fans

Discuss the poem A Pin with the community...

0 Comments

    Translation

    Find a translation for this poem in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)

    Citation

    Use the citation below to add this poem to your bibliography:

    Style:MLAChicagoAPA

    "A Pin" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 17 Jul 2024. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/10496/a-pin>.

    Become a member!

    Join our community of poets and poetry lovers to share your work and offer feedback and encouragement to writers all over the world!

    July 2024

    Poetry Contest

    Join our monthly contest for an opportunity to win cash prizes and attain global acclaim for your talent.
    14
    days
    11
    hours
    51
    minutes

    Special Program

    Earn Rewards!

    Unlock exciting rewards such as a free mug and free contest pass by commenting on fellow members' poems today!

    Browse Poetry.com

    Quiz

    Are you a poetry master?

    »
    "Lady, make a note of this: One of you is lying."
    A May Sarton
    B Ogden Nash
    C Dorothy Parker
    D Bill Collins