Only three years since, in blankets,
Slovenly they rolled along,
Like old-fashioned Dutch-built vessels
Lurching surging, in a storm.
Sound the voice of exultation,
Let it everywhere be known,
That the Indians round Victoria
Almosst civilized have grown.
That the squaws in radiant colors,
Dress’d in ample crinoline,
And with graceful tread of turkeys,
And with proud and stately mien,
Down the streets like gay gondolas
Gliding o’er Venetian stream
Every day and in all seasons,
May thus constantly be seen.
Now they trip the gay cotillion,
With an elephantine prance,
In the Market Company building,
Glide they through the mazy dance.
Without form of introduction,
They will not allow their forms
To be clasped in waltzing graces
Or in polkas flighty charms.
Not without a Caribooite
On himself the task doth take,
To present a brother miner
Will a foot the klootchman shake.
What a sad and sober moral,
Are we thus compelled to draw,
From the missionary teachings -
From the Christian’s moral law.
Years and years of good men’s efforts
Seem thus exercised in vain,
Fiddle and the toe fantastic
Is the way we’re to reclaim
All the Indian tribes around us,
From their wild and savage life,
And we’ll teach them all the fashions,
All the voices that are rife.
And to . . . those who have an interest
In the Market Company [dance hall]
Will we sing our loudest paeans
Will we chang the greatest praise,
For their calm and Christian efforts
Teaching squaws the Christian’s ways.