Lewis Carroll: A Game of Fives

Updated February 28, 2017 | Infoplease Staff

A Game of Fives

Five little girls, of Five, Four, Three, Two, One:
Rolling on the hearthrug, full of tricks and fun.
Five rosy girls, in years from Ten to Six:
Sitting down to lessons?no more time for tricks.
Five growing girls, from Fifteen to Eleven:
Music, Drawing, Languages, and food enough for seven!
Five winsome girls, from Twenty to Sixteen:
Each young man that calls, I say ?Now tell me which you mean!?
Five dashing girls, the youngest Twenty-one:
But, if nobody proposes, what is there to be done?
Five showy girls?but Thirty is an age
When girls may be engaging, but they somehow don?t engage.
Five dressy girls, of Thirty-one or more:
So gracious to the shy young men they snubbed so much before!
* * * *
Five pass girls?Their age? Well, never mind!
We jog along together, like the rest of human kind:
But the quondam ?careless bachelor? begins to think he knows
The answer to that ancient problem ?how the money goes?!