34 STEVENSON'S POEMS HAIL! CHILDISH SLAVES OF SOCIAL RULES HAIL ! Childish slaves of social rules You had yourselves a hand in making! How I could shake your faith, ye fools, If but I thought it worth the shaking. I see, and pity you ; and then Go, casting off the idle pity, In search of better, braver men, My own way freely through the city. My own way freely, and not yours; And, careless of a town's abusing, Seek real friendship that endures Among the friends of my own choosing. I'll choose my friends myself, do you hear ? And won't let Mrs. Grundy do it, Tho' all I honour and hold dear * And all I hope should move me to it. I take my old coat from the shelf— I am a man of little breeding. And only dress to please myself— I owri, a, v@ry strange proceeding.