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An Unmarried Female
by [?]

I looked right at her ‘most a minute with a majestic look. In spite of her false curls and her new white ivory teeth, she is a humbly critter. I looked at her silently while she sot and twisted her long yellow bunnet-strings, and then I spoke out. “Hain’t the editor of the Augur a widower with a pair of twins?”

“Yes,” says she with a happy look.

Then says I, “If the man hain’t a fool, he’ll think you are one.”

“Oh!” says she, and she dropped her bunnet-strings and clasped her long bony hands together in her brown cotton gloves. “Oh, we ahdent soles of genious have feelin’s you cold, practical natures know nuthing of, and if they did not gush out in poetry we should expiah. You may as well try to tie up the gushing catarack of Niagarah with a piece of welting-cord as to tie up the feelin’s of an ahdent sole.”

“Ardent sole!” says I coldly. “Which makes the most noise, Betsey Bobbet, a three-inch brook or a ten-footer? which is the tearer? which is the roarer? Deep waters run stillest. I have no faith in feelin’s that stalk round in public in mournin’ weeds. I have no faith in such mourners,” says I.

“Oh, Josiah’s wife, cold, practical female being, you know me not; we are sundered as fah apart as if you was sitting on the North Pole and I was sitting on the South Pole. Uncongenial being, you know me not.”

“I may not know you, Betsey Bobbet, but I do know decency, and I know that no munny would tempt me to write such stuff as that poetry and send it to a widower with twins.”

“Oh!” says she, “what appeals to the tendah feelin’ heart of a single female woman more than to see a lonely man who has lost his relict? And pity never seems so much like pity as when it is given to the deah little children of widowehs. And,” says she, “I think moah than as likely as not, this soaring sole of genious did not wed his affinity, but was united to a mere woman of clay.”

“Mere woman of clay!” says I, fixin’ my spektacles upon her in a most searchin’ manner. “Where will you find a woman, Betsey Bobbet, that hain’t more or less clay? And affinity, that is the meanest word I ever heard; no married woman has any right to hear it. I’ll excuse you, bein’ a female; but if a man had said it to me I’d holler to Josiah. There is a time for everything, and the time to hunt affinity is before you are married; married folks hain’t no right to hunt it,” says I sternly.

“We kindred soles soah above such petty feelin’s–we soah far above them.”

“I hain’t much of a soarer,” says I, “and I don’t pretend to be; and to tell you the truth,” says I, “I am glad I ain’t.”

“The editah of the Augah” says she, and she grasped the paper offen the stand, and folded it up, and presented it at me like a spear, “the editah of this paper is a kindred sole: he appreciates me, he undahstands me, and will not our names in the pages of this very papah go down to posterety togathah?”

“Then,” says I, drove out of all patience with her, “I wish you was there now, both of you. I wish,” says I, lookin’ fixedly on her, “I wish you was both of you in posterity now.”