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Title: On the Tree Top
Author: Bates, Clara Doty, 1838-1895
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "On the Tree Top" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.



(This file was made using scans of public domain works in
the International Children's Digital Library.)



  [Transcriber's Note:

  Illustrations in this picture book are not individually marked.
  Each color plate has a short poem written within the plate; these
  are not listed in the Table of Contents. The inconsistent sequence
  of "Dick Whittington" and "Puss in Boots", and the spelling of "Jack
  and Jill" (or "Gill") are unchanged.]



  ON THE TREE TOP

  by

  Clara Doty Bates And Others.


  Illustrated by F. T. Merrill, Jessie Curtis,
  and Other Well Known Artists.


  Boston:
  D. LOTHROP & COMPANY
  Franklin Street, Cor. Hawley.



  Copyright, 1881,
  By D. Lothrop & Company.



CONTENTS.


  I.
  _THE GOLD SPINNER._

  II.
  _A FISH STORY._

  III.
  _PUSSY CAT'S DOINGS._

  IV.
  _THE THREE LITTLE KITTENS._

  V.
  _THE GROUND SQUIRREL._

  VI.
  _BABY'S TROTTING SONG._

  VII.
  _JOHN S. CROW._

  VIII.
  _SILVER LOCKS AND THE BEARS._

  IX.
  _JACK AND THE BEAN-STALK._

  X.
  _LITTLE RED RIDING-HOOD._

  XI.
  _CINDERELLA._

  XII.
  _PUSS IN BOOTS._

  XIII.
  _DICK WHITTINGTON AND HIS CAT._

  XIV.
  _GOLD-LOCKS' DREAM OF PUSSIE-WILLOW._

  XV.
  _TONY._

  XVI.
  _CAMPING OUT._

  XVII.
  _DAME SPIDER._

  XVIII.
  _HICKORY DICKORY DOCK._

  XIX.
  _DAME FIDGET AND HER SILVER PENNY._

  XX.
  _FOOLISH BOBOLINK._

  XXI.
  _ALADDIN._

  XXII.
  _BLUE BEARD._

  XXIII.
  _THE SLEEPING PRINCESS._

  XXIV.
  _JACK AND GILL._

  XXV.
  _LITTLE BO-PEEP._

  XXVI.
  _HOP O'-MY-THUMB._

  XXVII.
  _THE BABES IN THE WOOD._

  XXVIII.
  _THE THREE LITTLE PIGS._

  XXIX.
  _GOODY TWO-SHOES._

  XXX.
  _SAARCHINKOLD._



ON THE TREE TOP.



  THE GOLD-SPINNER.


  A miller had a daughter,
    And lovely, too, she was;
  Her step was light, her smile was bright,
    Her eyes were gray as glass.
  (So Chaucer loved to write of eyes
  In which that nameless azure lies
  So like shoal-water in its hue,
  Though all too crystal clear for blue.)
  As you would suppose, the miller
    Was very proud of her,
  And would never fail to tell some tale
    As to what her graces were.
  On the powdery air of his own mill
  Floated the whispers of her skill;
  At the village inn the loungers knew
  All that the pretty girl could do.

  Oft in his braggart way
    This foolish tale he told,
  That his daughter could spin from bits of straw
    Continuous threads of gold!
  So boastful had he grown, forsooth,
    That he cared but little for the truth:
  But since this was a curious thing
    It came to the knowledge of the king.

  He thought it an old wife's fable,
    But senseless stuff at best;
  Yet, as he had greed, he cried, "Indeed!
    I will put her powers to test."
  With a wave of his hand, he further said
  That to-morrow morning the clever maid
  Should come to the castle, and he would see
  What truth in the story there might be.

  Next day, with a trembling step,
    She reached the palace door,
  And was shown into a chamber, where
    Was straw upon the floor.
  They brought her a chair and a spinning-wheel,
  A little can of oil, and a reel;
  And said that unless the work was done--
  All of the straw into the gold-thread spun--
  By the time that the sun was an hour high
  Next morning, she would have to die.

  Down sat she in despair,
    Her tears falling like rain:
  She had never spun a thread in her life,
    Nor ever reeled a skein!
  Hark! the door creaked, and through a chink,
  With droll wise smile and funny wink,
  In stepped a little quaint old man,
  All humped, and crooked, and browned with tan.

  She looked in fear and amaze
    To see what he would do;
  He said, "Little maid, what will you give
    If I'll spin the straw for you?"
  Ah, me, few gifts she had in store--
  A trinket or two, and nothing more!
  A necklace from her throat so slim
  She took, and timidly offered him.

  'Twas enough, it seemed; for he sat
    At the wheel in front of her,
  And turned it three times round and round,
    Whirr, and whirr-rr, and whirr-rr-rr--
  One of the bobbins was full; and then,
  Whirr, and whirr-rr, and whirr-rr-rr again,
  Until all the straw that had been spread
  Had been deftly spun into golden thread.

  At sunrise came the king
    To the chamber, and, behold,
  Instead of the ugly heaps of straw
    Were bobbins full of gold!
  This made him greedier than before;
  And he led the maiden out at the door
  Into a new room, where she saw
  Still larger and larger heaps of straw,
  A chair to sit in, a spinning-wheel,
  A little can of oil, and a reel;
  And he said that straw, too, must be spun
  To gold before the next day's sun
  Was an hour high in the morning sky,
  And if 'twas not done, she must die.

  Down sank she in despair,
    Her tears falling like rain;
  She could not spin a single thread,
    She could not reel a skein.
  But the door swung back, and through the chink,
  With the same droll smile and merry wink,
  The dwarf peered, saying, "What will you do
  If I'll spin the straw once more for you?"
  "Ah me, I can give not a single thing,"
  She cried, "except my finger-ring."
  He took the slender toy,
    And slipped it over his thumb;
  Then down he sat and whirled the wheel,
    Hum, and hum-m, and hum-m-m;
  Round and round with a droning sound,
  Many a yellow spool he wound,
  Many a glistening skein he reeled;
  And still, like bees in a clover-field,
    The wheel went hum, and hum-m and hum-m-m.
  Next morning the king came,
    Almost before sunrise,
  To the chamber where the maiden was,
    And could scarce believe his eyes
  To see the straw, to the smallest shreds,
  Made into shining amber threads.
  And he cried, "When once more I have tried
  Your skill like this, you shall be my bride;

  For I might search through all my life
  Nor find elsewhere so rich a wife."
  Then he led her by the hand
    Through still another door,
  To a room filled twice as full of straw
    As either had been before.
  There stood the chair and the spinning-wheel,
  And there the can of oil and the reel;
  And as he gently shut her in
  He whispered, "Spin, little maiden, spin."

  Again she wept, and again
    Did the little dwarf appear;
  "What will you give this time," he asked,
    "If I spin for you, my dear?"

  Alas--poor little maid--alas!
  Out of her eyes as gray as glass
  Faster and faster tears did fall,
  As she moaned, "I've nothing to give at all."
  Ah, wicked indeed he looked;
    But while she sighed, he smiled!
  "Promise, when you are queen," he said,
    "To give me your first-born child!"
  Little she tho't what that might mean,
  Or if ever in truth she should be queen
  Anything, so that the work was done--
  Anything, so that the gold was spun!
  She promised all that he chose to ask;
  And blithely he began the task.

  Round went the wheel, and round,
    Whiz, and whiz-z, and whiz-z-z!
  So swift that the thread at the spindle point
    Flew off with buzz and hiss.

  She dozed--so tired her eyelids were--
  To the endless whirr, and whirr, and whirr;
  Though not even sleep could overcome
  The wheel's revolving hum, hum, hum!
  When at last she woke the room was clean,
  Not a broken bit of straw was seen;
  But in huge high heaps were piled and rolled
  Great spools of gold--nothing but gold!
  It was just at the earliest peep of dawn,
  And she was alone--the dwarf was gone.

  It was indeed a marvellous thing
  For a miller's daughter to wed a king;
  But never was royal lady seen
  More fair and sweet than this young queen.
  The spinning dwarf she quite forgot
  In the ease and pleasure of her lot;
  And not until her first-born child
  Into her face had looked and smiled
  Did she remember the promise made;
  Then her heart grew sick, her soul afraid.

  One day her chamber door
    Pushed open just a chink,
  And she saw the well-known crooked dwarf,
    His wise smile and his blink.
  He claimed at once the promised child;
  But she gave a cry so sad and wild
  That even his heart was touched to hear;
  And, after a little, drawing near,

  He whispered and said: "You pledged
    The baby, and I came;
  But if in three days you can learn
    By foul or fair my name--
  By foul or fair, by wile or snare,
  You can its syllables declare,
  Then is the child yours--only then--
  And me you shall never see again!"

    He vanished from her sight,
      And she called her pages in;
    She sent one this way, and one that;
      She called her kith and kin,
  Bade one go here, and one go there,
  Despatched them thither, everywhere--
  That from each quarter each might bring
  The oddest names he could to the king.

    Next morning the dwarf appeared,
      And the queen began to say,
    "Caspar," "Balthassar," "Melchoir"--
      But the dwarf cried out, "Nay, nay!"
  Shaking his little crooked frame,
  "That's not my name, that's not my name!"

  The second day 'twas the same;
    But the third a messenger
  Came in from the mountains to the queen,
    And told this tale to her:
  That, riding under the forest boughs,
  He came to a tiny, curious house;
  Before it a feeble fire burned wan,
  And about the fire was a little man;
  In and out the brands among,
  Dancing upon one leg, he sung:
  "_To-day I'll stew, and then I'll bake,
  To-morrow I shall the queen's child take;
  How fine that none is the secret in,
  That my name is Rumpelstiltskin!_"

  The queen was overjoyed,
    And when, due time next day,
  The dwarf returned for the final word,
    She made great haste to say:

  "Is it Conrade?" "No,"--he shook his head.
  "Is it Hans? or Hal?" Still "No," he said.
  "_Is it Rumpelstiltskin?_" then she cried.
  "A witch has told you," he replied,
  And shrieked and stamped his foot so hard
  That the very marble floor was jarred;
  And his leg broke off above the knee,
  And he hopped off, howling terribly.

  He vanished then and there,
    And never more was seen!
  This much was in _his_ dreadful name--
    It saved her child to the queen.
  And the little lady grew to be
  So very sweet, so fair to see,
  That none could her loveliness surpass;
  And her eyes--they were as gray as glass!



  A FISH STORY.


        Sir Arthur, the sinner,
        Ate twelve fish for dinner,
  And you may believe it's just as I say!
        For if you but knew it,
        'Twas I saw him do it,
  And just as it happened, sir, this was the way:
        One day this tall fish
        Swallowed this small fish
  (_He_ had just eaten a smaller one still);
        Up came this queer one
        And gobbled that 'ere one--
  Didn't he show the most magical skill?
        Then came this other
        And chewed up his brother,
  Made but one gulp, and behold he was through!
        He was a gold fish
        Oh! he was a bold fish--
  But before he could wink he was eaten up too!
        Up came a flounder,
        He was a ten-pounder,
  Opened his mouth, swallowed _him_ and was gone;
        Before you could blink, sir,
        Before he could shrink, sir,
  This fish came by and the flounder was gone!
        (Alas for my story,
        'Tis getting quite gory!
  So many swallows a summer might make.)
        _This_ one came smiling,
        And, sweetly beguiling,
  Gobbled the last like a piece of hot cake;
        A cod followed after;
        'Twould move you to laughter
  To see in his turn how this hake came up,
        Swallowed that cod, sir,
        As if he were scrod, sir,
  And then went by in a kind of a huff!
        Last, but not least,
        Came this fellow, the beast--
  Down went the hake like a small pinch of snuff!
        Then Cap'en Jim caught him,
        And then mamma bought him,
  And then Annie cooked him, served up in a dish;
        And so this small sinner
        Who had him for dinner--
  'Twas just as I say, sir--had eaten twelve fish!



  PUSSY CAT'S DOING.

  By Susan Hartley


  'Twas a good little lady fairy,
    Who saddled her wee white mouse,
  And rode away to the village,
    Long miles from her snug, wee house;
  She tied her steed to a flower stalk airy,
  And left him there--this most careless fairy!

  In Fairyland no dreadful pussies
    Do prowl, and do growl and slay--
  In Fairyland the mice have honor,
    And draw the queen's carriage gay;
  And the little lady ne'er thought of danger
  Because on the fence sat a green-eyed stranger,

  But hurried away in a twinkling
    Down a dark and gloomy street,
  Where daily the charm of her presence
    Made the children's dreams more sweet;
  Then Pussy Cat sprang as quick as magic!
  One squeal (as I've heard the story tragic)

  And down his throat went steed and saddle,
    So swiftly; and O, dear me!
  'Stead of her gallant mouse, the lady
    Discovered, where he should be,
  A monster with blood on his whiskers showing,
  And dreadful looks in his eyes so knowing!

  Back to Fairyland she must walk, then;
    In winter no butterfly
  Is sailing that way, nor a rose-leaf,
    For fairies to travel by;
  She reached there at length, but with feet aching
  And her little heart with fear most breaking.

  And the dreadful story, spreading
    Through Elfland circles, may be
  The reason why never a fairy
    In these later years we see,
  While children in all the old, old stories
  Found them as plenty as morning glories!



  THE THREE LITTLE KITTENS.


  Knit, knit, knit, knit!
  See old white-capped Pussy sit,
  Fairly gray with worry and care,
  In her little straight-backed rocking-chair?
          Knit, knit, knit,
          Till she is tired of it!

  Why does she work so? Look and see,
  There in the corner, children three!
  Plump and furry and full of fun,
  (A good-for-nothing is every one.)
          And all those kittens
          Must have mittens!

  Weather is cold; and snow and sleet
  Make it bad for their little feet;
  And they dare not peep outside, because
  Jack Frost stands ready to pinch their paws--
          That's why she sits,
          And knits, and knits.

  If by any chance she drops her ball,
  And if one of them chases it at all,
  She peeps out over her glasses' rim
  With a savage, dreadful scowl at him,
          And cries out, "Scat,
          You saucy cat!"

  Or, if her long tail gets uncurled
  And sways but the least bit in the world,
  And one of them makes a roguish nip
  At it, or plays at mouse with the tip,
          _Somebody_ hears,
          A loud boxed ears!

  With them 'tis hurry-scurry and play,
  Or sleep in a round coil half the day;
  While, creakety-creak, the rockers go,
  And the mittens grow, and grow, and grow,
          So shapely and fast--
          They are done at last!

  She summons the kittens; each one stands
  While the mittens are tried on his clumsy hands;
  Then her glasses drop to the end of her nose,
  And her wits go wandering off in a doze,
          And as never before,
          Does old Puss snore!

  She is off to that dream-land paradise
  Of cats, where cupboards are full of mice;
  Where white and sweet and big as the sea
  Are the saucers of warm new milk--ah me,
          There is no cream
          Like that in a dream!

  There the ways of things are very absurd;
  For a bobolink, or a yellow bird,
  Comes of its own accord, and sits
  On every knitting-needle that knits,
          And pipes and sings,
          As the rocker swings.

  Suddenly there is a noise of feet--
  Rattle and clatter and patter and beat!
  Old Puss makes a flying leap from her chair,
  With a half-awake and startled stare,
          Striving to see
          What it may be.

  Helter-skelter the kittens appear;
  "Oh mother dear, we very much fear
  That we have lost our mittens!" they cry.
  "You have? Then you shall have no pie!
          Lost your mittens?
          You naughty kittens!"

  Old mother Puss is dreadfully cross,
  At the spoiled dream first, then at the loss;
  And with floods of tears down either cheek
  Each frightened kitten tries to speak:
          "Miew, miew, miew!
          Miew, miew, miew!"

  A smart cuff over their little brains
  Is the only answer the mother deigns
  "Not another word from one of you!"
  It means, so without more ado,
          Ashamed and slow
          Away they go.

  Again she settles herself and sleeps;
  This time she dreams that she crouches and creeps,
  A great gray tiger along the grass,
  While herds of soft-eyed antelopes pass,
          When--patter, patter!
          "Now what's the matter?"

  Again, with a scramble, the three appear;
  "Oh mammy dear, see here, see here,
  We have found our mittens--see!" they cry.
  "You have? Then you shall have some pie!
          Found your mittens?
          You nice, nice kittens!"

  She goes to the oven; there is a pie;
  She sets it out on the floor close by;
  'Tis smoking hot, and covered with juice;
  And she says to them, "Eat as much as you choose."
          So up to the chin,
          They all dip in.

  Dame Puss goes out to wash her paws,
  And to comb her whiskers with her claws,
  When again the troublesome three appear;
  "Oh mother dear, see here--see here!"
          Distressed and shy
          They begin to cry.

  No wonder they cry; they did not wait
  For a spoon, or knife, or fork, or plate,
  But ate with their fingers! ah, how soiled!
  Dame Puss declares the mittens are spoiled!
          "Miew, miew, miew,
          Miew, miew, miew!"

  Then all run out to the rain-water tub,
  Dip in their mittens, and rub, and rub;
  Their little knuckles are fairly bare,
  And wet, as if drowned, is every hair--
          Still, over the tub,
          They rub, rub, rub!

  Once more they haste to their mother dear;
  "Oh mammy dear, see here, see here,
  We've washed our mittens clean!" they cry.
          "You darling kittens,
          To wash your mittens,"
  She says, and fondles them till they're dry--
          Purr, purr, purr,
          Purr--pu-r-r--p-u-r-r!



  THE GROUND SQUIRREL.

  By Paul H. Hayne.


  I.

  Bless us, and save us! What's here?
              Pop!
              At a bound,
  A tiny brown creature, grotesque in his grace,
  Is sitting before us, and washing his face
        With his little fat paws overlapping;
        Where does he hail from? Where?
              Why, _there_,
              Underground,
        From a nook just as cosey,
        And tranquil, and dozy,
      As e'er wooed to Sybarite napping
      (But none ever caught _him_ a-napping).
  Don't you see his burrow so quaint and queer?


  II.

    Gone! like the flash of a gun!
        This oddest of chaps,
            Mercurial,
            Disappears
                Head and ears!
        Then, sly as a fox,
        Swift as Jack in his box,
        Pops up boldly again!
  What does he mean by thus frisking about,
  Now up and now down, and now in and now out,
  And all done quicker than winking?
  What does it mean? Why, 'tis plain--fun!
          Only Fun! or, perhaps,
    The pert little rascal's been drinking?--
  There's a cider-press yonder all say on the run!


  III.

      Capture him! no, we won't do it,
  Or, be sure in due time we would rue it!


  IV.

      Such a piece of perpetual motion,
              Full of bother
              And pother,
  Would make paralytic old Bridget
              A Fidget.
      So you see (to _my_ notion),
          Better leave our downy
          Diminutive browny
      Alone, near his "diggings;"
          Ever free to pursue,
          Rush round, and renew
              His loved vaulting
              Unhalting,
              His whirling,
              And curling,
              And twirling,
              And swirling,
          And his ways, on the whole
                So unsteady!
          'Pon my soul,
              Having gazed
              Quite amazed,
          On each wonderful antic
          And summersault frantic,
              For just a bare minute,
          My head, it feels whizzy;
          My eyesight's grown dizzy;
          And both legs, unstable
          As a ghost's tipping table,
          Seem waltzing, already!


  V.

  Capture him! no we won't do it,
  Or, in less than _no_ time, _how_ we'd rue it!



  [Color Plate:]

  Hippity hop
  To the barber's shop
  To buy a stick of candy.



  BABY'S TROTTING SONG

    [Transcriber's Note:
    The bracketed text was written vertically as part of each
    accompanying illustration.]


  [Daintily]

  Come, see how the ladies ride,
    All so pretty, all so gay,
  In their beauty, in their pride,
    Down Broadway;
  Prancing horses silver shod,
    All so pretty, all so gay;
  Princely feathers bend and nod,
    Down Broadway.


  [Roughly]

  Jiggety-jog, jiggety-jog,
  Over the mountain, through the bog--
  That's the way the farmers go,
  Hear the news and see the show;
  Pumpkins round strapped on behind,
  Eggs in baskets, too, you'll find,
  Soon to change for calico--
  That's the way the farmers go.


  [Tea-Bell Accompaniment]

  Bells a-jingle, fingers tingle,
  Ditto toes, likewise nose.
  The wind doth blow,
  And all the snow
  Around doth scatter;
  Our teeth they chatter,
  But that's no matter--
  The song rings clear
  With a Happy New Year,
  And never a mutter,
  As we fly in our cutter.


  [Trot to Boston]

  Jingle, jar, horse car,
  Leave you near, or take you far.
  Take a seat upon my lap,
  Cling on, swing on by the strap;
  Here a stop, and there a start--
  Let me off, I'll take a cart!


  [Boisterously]

  Sword and pistols by their side,
  And that's the way the officers ride!
  Boots stretched out like a letter V,
  we belong to the cavalry!
  Over the hurdles after the hounds,
  tirra-la! the hunting-horn sounds--
  Dashaway, slashaway, reckless and fast!
  Crashaway, smashaway, tumbled at last!



  JOHN S. CROW.


  All alone in the field
  Stands John S. Crow;
    And a curious sight is he,
  With his head of tow,
  And a hat pulled low
    On a face that you never see.

  His clothes are ragged
  And horrid and old,
    The worst that ever were worn;
  They're covered with mold,
  And in each fold
    A terrible rent is torn.

  They once were new
  And spick and span,
    As nice as clothes could be;
  For though John hardly can
  Be called a man,
    They were made for men you see.

  That old blue coat,
  With a double breast
    And a brass button here and there,
  Was grandfather's best,
  And matches the vest--
    The one Uncle Phil used to wear.

  The trousers are short;
  They belonged to Bob
    Before he had got his growth;
  But John's no snob,
  And, unlike Bob,
    Cuts his legs to the length of his cloth.

  The boots are a mystery:
  How and where
    John got such a shabby lot,
  Such a shocking pair,
  I do declare
    Though he may know, I do not.

  But the hat that he wears
  Is the worst of all;
    I wonder that John keeps it on.
  It once was tall,
  But now it is small--
    Like a closed accordeon.

  But a steady old chap
  Is John S. Crow,
    And for months has stood at his post;
  For corn you know
  Takes time to grow,
    And 'tis long between seed and roast.

  And it had to be watched
  And guarded with care
    From the time it was put in the ground,
  For over there,
  And everywhere,
    Sad thieves were waiting around.

  Sad thieves in black,
  A cowardly set,
    Who waited for John to be gone,
  That they might get
  A chance to upset
    The plans of the planter of corn.

  They were no kin to John,
  Though they bore his name
    And belonged to the family Crow;
  He'd scorn to claim
  Any part of the fame
    That is theirs wherever you go.

  So he has stuck to the field
  And watched the corn,
    And been watched by the crows from the hill;
  Till at length they're gone,
  And so is the corn--
    They away, and it to the mill.

  Now the work is done,
  And it's time for play,
    For which John is glad I know;
  For though made of hay,
  If he could he would say,
    "It's stupid to be a scarecrow."

  But though it is stupid,
  And though it is slow,
    To fill such an humble position;
  To be a _good_ scarecrow
  Is better I know
    Than to scorn a lowly condition.



  SILVER LOCKS AND THE BEARS.

  Versified by Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


    Silver Locks was a little girl,
      Lovely and good;
    She strayed out one day
      And got lost in the wood,
    And was lonely and sad,
      Till she came where there stood
  The house which belonged to the Bears.

    She pulled the latch string,
      And the door opened wide;
    She peeped softly first,
      And at last stepped inside;
    So tired her little feet
      Were that she cried,
  And so hungry she, sobbed to herself.

    She did not know
      Whether to stay or to go;
    But there were three chairs
      Standing all in a row,
    And there were three bowls
      Full of milk white as snow,
  And there were three beds by the wall.

    But the Father Bear's chair
      Was too hard to sit in it,
    And the Mother Bear's chair
      Was too hard to sit in it;
    But the Baby Bear's chair
      Was so soft in a minute
  She had broken it all into pieces.

    And the Father Bear's milk
      Was too sour to drink,
    And the Mother Bear's milk
      Was too sour to drink;
    But the Baby Bear's milk
      Was so sweet, only think,
  When she tasted she drank it all up.

    And the Father Bear's bed
      Was as hard as a stone,
    And the Mother Bear's bed
      Was as hard as a stone;
    But the Baby Bear's bed
      Was so soft she lay down,
  And before she could wink was asleep.

    By and by came the scratch
      Of old Father Bear's claw,
    And the fumbling knock
      Of old Mother Bear's paw,
    And the latch string flew up,
      And the Baby Bear saw
  That a stranger had surely been there.

    Then Father Bear cried,
      "Who's been sitting in my chair?"
    And Mother Bear cried,
      "Who's been sitting in _my_ chair?"
    And Baby Bear smiled,
      "Who's been sitting in my chair,
  And broken it all into pieces?"

    Then Father Bear growled,
      "Who's been tasting of my milk?"
    And Mother Bear growled,
      "Who's been tasting of _my_ milk?"
    And Baby Bear wondered,
      "Who's tasted of my milk,
  And tasting has drank it all up?"

    And Father Bear roared,
      "Who's been lying on my bed?"
    And Mother Bear roared,
      "Who's been lying on _my_ bed?"
    And Baby Bear laughed,
      "Who's been lying on my bed?
  O, here she is, fast asleep!"

    The savage old Father Bear cried,
      "Let us eat her!"
    The savage old Mother Bear cried,
      "Let us eat her!"
    But the Baby Bear said,
      "Nothing ever was sweeter.
  Let's kiss her, and send her home!"



  JACK AND THE BEAN-STALK.

  Versified by Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  A lazy and careless boy was Jack,--
    He would not work, and he would not play;
  And so poor, that the jacket on his back
    Hung in a ragged fringe alway;
  But 'twas shilly-shally, dilly-dally,
              From day to day.

  At last his mother was almost wild,
    And to get them food she knew not how;
  And she told her good-for-nothing child
    To drive to market the brindle cow.
  So he strolled along, with whistle and song,
              And drove the cow.

  A man was under the wayside trees,
    Who carried some beans in his hand--all white.
  He said, "My boy, I'll give you these
    For the brindle cow." Jack said, "All right."
  And, without any gold for the cow he had sold,
              Went home at night.

  Bitter tears did the mother weep;
    Out of the window the beans were thrown,
  And Jack went supperless to sleep;
    But, when the morning sunlight shone,
  High, and high, to the very sky,
              The beans had grown.

  They made a ladder all green and bright,
    They twined and crossed and twisted so;
  And Jack sprang up it with all his might,
    And called to his mother down below:
  "_Hitchity-hatchet, my little red jacket,
              And up I go!_"

  High as a tree, then high as a steeple,
    Then high as a kite, and high as the moon,
  Far out of sight of cities and people,
    He toiled and tugged and climbed till noon;
  And began to pant: "I guess I shan't
              Get down very soon!"

  At last he came to a path that led
    To a house he had never seen before;
  And he begged of a woman there some bread;
    But she heard her husband, the Giant, roar,
  And she gave him a shove in the old brick oven,
              And shut the door.

  And the Giant sniffed, and beat his breast,
    And grumbled low, "_Fe, fi, fo, fum!_"
  His poor wife prayed he would sit and rest,--
    "I smell fresh meat! I will have some!"
  He cried the louder, "_Fe, fi, fo, fum!_
              I will have some."

  He ate as much as would feed ten men,
    And drank a barrel of beer to the dregs;
  Then he called for his little favorite hen,
    As under the table he stretched his legs,--
  And he roared "Ho! ho!"--like a buffalo--
              "Lay your gold eggs!"

  She laid a beautiful egg of gold;
    And at last the Giant began to snore;
  Jack waited a minute, then, growing bold,
    He crept from the oven along the floor,
  And caught the hen in his arms, and then
              Fled through the door.

  But the Giant heard him leave the house,
    And followed him out, and bellowed "Oh-oh!"
  But Jack was as nimble as a mouse,
    And sang as he rapidly slipped below:
  "_Hitchity-hatchet, my little red jacket,
              And down I go!_"

  And the Giant howled, and gnashed his teeth.
    Jack got down first, and, in a flash,
  Cut the ladder from underneath;
    And Giant and Bean-stalk, in one dash,--
  No shilly-shally, no dilly-dally,--
              Fell with a crash.

  This brought Jack fame, and riches, too;
    For the little gold-egg hen would lay
  An egg whenever he told her to,
    If he asked one fifty times a day.
  And he and his mother lived with each other
              In peace alway.



  LITTLE RED RIDING-HOOD.

  Versified by Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  If you listen, children, I will tell
    The story of little Red Riding-hood:
  Such wonderful, wonderful things befell
    Her and her grandmother, old and good
  (So old she was never very well),
    Who lived in a cottage in a wood.

  Little Red Riding-hood, every day,
    Whatever the weather, shine or storm,
  To see her grandmother tripped away,
    With a scarlet hood to keep her warm,
  And a little mantle, soft and gay,
    And a basket of goodies on her arm.

  A pat of butter, and cakes of cheese,
    Were stored in the napkin, nice and neat;
  As she danced along beneath the trees,
    As light as a shadow were her feet;
  And she hummed such tunes as the bumble-bees
    Hum when the clover-tops are sweet.

  But an ugly wolf by chance espied
    The child, and marked her for his prize.
  "What are you carrying there?" he cried;
    "Is it some fresh-baked cakes and pies?"
  And he walked along close by her side,
    And sniffed and rolled his hungry eyes.

  "A basket of things for granny, it is,"
    She answered brightly, without fear.
  "Oh, I know her very well, sweet miss!
    Two roads branch towards her cottage here;
  You go that way, and I'll go this.
    See which will get there first, my dear!"

  He fled to the cottage, swift and sly;
    Rapped softly, with a dreadful grin.
  "Who's there?" asked granny. "Only I!"
    Piping his voice up high and thin.
  "Pull the string, and the latch will fly!"
    Old granny said; and he went in.

  He glared her over from foot to head;
    In a second more the thing was done!
  He gobbled her up, and merely said,
    "She wasn't a very tender one!"
  And then he jumped into the bed,
    And put her sack and night-cap on.

  And he heard soft footsteps presently,
    And then on the door a timid rap;
  He knew Red Riding-hood was shy,
    So he answered faintly to the tap:
  "Pull the string and the latch will fly!"
    She did: and granny, in her night-cap,

  Lay covered almost up to her nose.
    "Oh, granny dear!" she cried, "are you worse?"
  "I'm all of a shiver, even to my toes!
    Please won't you be my little nurse,
  And snug up tight here under the clothes?"
    Red Riding-hood answered, "Yes," of course.

  Her innocent head on the pillow laid,
    She spied great pricked-up, hairy ears,
  And a fierce great mouth, wide open spread,
    And green eyes, filled with wicked leers;
  And all of a sudden she grew afraid;
    Yet she softly asked, in spite of her fears:

  "Oh, granny! what makes your ears so big?"
    "To hear you with! to hear you with!"
  "Oh, granny! what make your eyes so big?"
    "To see you with! to see you with!"
  "Oh, granny! what makes your teeth so big?"
    "To eat you with! to eat you with!"

  And he sprang to swallow her up alive;
    But it chanced a woodman from the wood,
  Hearing her shriek, rushed, with his knife,
    And drenched the wolf in his own blood.
  And in that way he saved the life
    Of pretty little Red Riding-hood.



  [Color Plate:]

    Hark, hark
    The dogs do bark
  Beggars are coming to town;
      Some in jags,
      Some in rags,
    And some in velvet gowns.



  CINDERELLA.

  Versified by Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  Poor, pretty little thing she was,
    The sweetest-faced of girls,
  With eyes as blue as larkspurs,
    And a mass of tossing curls;
  But her step-mother had for her
    Only blows and bitter words,
  While she thought her own two ugly crows,
    The whitest of all birds.

  She was the little household drudge,
    And wore a cotton gown,
  While the sisters, clad in silk and satin,
    Flaunted through the town.
  When her work was done, her only place
    Was the chimney-corner bench.
  For which one called her "Cinderella,"
    The other, "Cinder-wench."

  But years went on, and Cinderella
    Bloomed like a wild-wood rose,
  In spite of all her kitchen-work,
    And her common, dingy clothes;
  While the two step-sisters, year by year,
    Grew scrawnier and plainer;
  Two peacocks, with their tails outspread,
    Were never any vainer.

  One day they got a note, a pink,
    Sweet-scented, crested one,
  Which was an invitation
    To a ball, from the king's son.
  Oh, then poor Cinderella
    Had to starch, and iron, and plait,
  And run of errands, frill and crimp,
    And ruffle, early and late.

  And when the ball-night came at last,
    She helped to paint their faces,
  To lace their satin shoes, and deck
    Them up with flowers and laces;
  Then watched their coach roll grandly
    Out of sight; and, after that,
  She sat down by the chimney,
    In the cinders, with the cat,

  And sobbed as if her heart would break.
    Hot tears were on her lashes,
  Her little hands got black with soot,
    Her feet begrimed with ashes,
  When right before her, on the hearth,
   She knew not how nor why,
  A little odd old woman stood,
    And said, "Why do you cry?"

  "It is so very lonely here,"
    Poor Cinderella said,
  And sobbed again. The little odd
    Old woman bobbed her head,
  And laughed a merry kind of laugh,
    And whispered, "Is that all?
  Wouldn't my little Cinderella
    Like to go to the ball?

  "Run to the garden, then, and fetch
    A pumpkin, large and nice;
  Go to the pantry shelf, and from
    The mouse-traps get the mice;
  Rats you will find in the rat-trap;
    And, from the watering-pot,
  Or from under the big, flat garden stone,
    Six lizards must be got."

  Nimble as crickets in the grass
    She ran, till it was done,
  And then God-mother stretched her wand
    And touched them every one.
  The pumpkin changed into a coach,
    Which glittered as it rolled,
  And the mice became six horses,
    With harnesses of gold.

  One rat a herald was, to blow
    A trumpet in advance,
  And the first blast that he sounded
    Made the horses plunge and prance;
  And the lizards were made footmen,
    Because they were so spry;
  And the old rat-coachman on the box
    Wore jeweled livery.

  And then on Cinderella's dress
    The magic wand was laid,
  And straight the dingy gown became
    A glistening gold brocade.
  The gems that shone upon her fingers
    Nothing could surpass;
  And on her dainty little feet
    Were slippers made of glass.

  "Be sure you get back here, my dear,
    At twelve o'clock at night,"
  Godmother said, and in a twinkling
    She was out of sight.
  When Cinderella reached the ball,
    And entered at the door,
  So beautiful a lady
    None had ever seen before.

  The Prince his admiration showed
    In every word and glance;
  He led her out to supper,
    And he chose her for the dance;
  But she kept in mind the warning
    That her Godmother had given,
  And left the ball, with all its charm.
    At just half after eleven.

  Next night there was another ball;
    She helped her sisters twain
  To pinch their waists, and curl their hair,
    And paint their cheeks again.
  Then came the fairy Godmother,
    And, with her wand, once more
  Arrayed her out in greater splendor
    Even than before.

  The coach and six, with gay outriders,
    Bore her through the street,
  And a crowd was gathered round to look,
    The lady was so sweet,--
  So light of heart, and face, and mien,
    As happy children are;
  And when her foot stepped down,
    Her slipper twinkled like a star.

  Again the Prince chose only her
    For waltz or _tete-a-tete_;
  So swift the minutes flew she did not
    Dream it could be late,
  But all at once, remembering
    What her Godmother had said,
  And hearing twelve begin to strike
    Upon the clock, she fled.

  Swift as a swallow on the wing
    She darted, but, alas!
  Dropped from one flying foot the tiny
    Slipper made of glass;
  But she got away, and well it was
    She did, for in a trice
  Her coach changed to a pumpkin,
    And her horses became mice;

  And back into the cinder dress
    Was changed the gold brocade!
  The prince secured the slipper,
    And this proclamation made:
  That the country should be searched,
    And any lady, far or wide,
  Who could get the slipper on her foot,
    Should straightway be his bride.

  So every lady tried it,
    With her "Mys!" and "Ahs!" and "Ohs!"
  And Cinderella's sisters pared
    Their heels, and pared their toes,--
  But all in vain! Nobody's foot
    Was small enough for it,
  Till Cinderella tried it,
    And it was a perfect fit.

  Then the royal heralds hardly
    Knew what it was best to do,
  When from out her tattered pocket
    Forth she drew the other shoe,
  While the eyelids on the larkspur eyes
    Dropped down a snowy vail,
  And the sisters turned from pale to red,
    And then from red to pale,

  And in hateful anger cried, and stormed,
    And scolded, and all that,
  And a courtier, without thinking,
    Tittered out behind his hat.
  For here was all the evidence
    The Prince had asked, complete,
  Two little slippers made of glass,
    Fitting two little feet.

  So the Prince, with all his retinue,
    Came there to claim his wife;
  And he promised he would love her
    With devotion all his life.
  At the marriage there was splendid
    Music, dancing, wedding cake;
  And he kept the slipper as a treasure
    Ever, for her sake.



  DICK WHITTINGTON AND HIS CAT.

  Versified by Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  Dick, as a little lad, was told
  That the London streets were paved with gold.
  He never, in all his life, had seen
  A place more grand than the village green;
  So his thoughts by day, and his dreams by night,
  Pictured this city of delight,
  Till whatever he did, wherever he went,
  His mind was filled with discontent.

  There was bitter taste to the peasant bread,
  And a restless hardness to his bed;
  So, after a while, one summer day,
  Little Dick Whittington ran away.
  Yes--ran away to London city!
  Poor little lad! he needs your pity;
  For there, instead of a golden street,
  The hot, sharp stones abused his feet.

  So tired he was he was fit to fall,--
  Yet nobody cared for him at all;
  He wandered here, and he wandered there,
  With a heavy heart, for many a square.
  And at last, when he could walk no more,
  He sank down faint at a merchant's door.
  And the cook--for once compassionate--
  Took him in at the area-gate.

  And she gave him bits of broken meat,
  And scattered crusts, and crumbs, to eat;
  And kept him there for her commands
  To pare potatoes, and scour pans,
  To wash the kettles and sweep the room;
  And she beat him dreadfully with the broom;
  And he staid as long as he could stay,
  And again, in despair, he ran away.

  Out towards the famous Highgate Hill
  He fled, in the morning gray and chill;
  And there he sat on a wayside stone,
  And the bells of Bow, with merry tone,
  Jangled a musical chime together,
  Over the miles of blooming heather:
  "Turn, turn, turn again, Whittington,
  Thrice Lord Mayor of London town!"

  And he turned--so cheered he was at that--
  And, meeting a boy who carried a cat,
  He bought the cat with his only penny,--
  For where he had slept the mice were many.
  Back to the merchant's his way he took,
  To the pans and potatoes and cruel cook,
  And he found Miss Puss a fine device,
  For she kept his garret clear of mice.

  The merchant was sending his ship abroad,
  And he let each servant share her load;
  One sent this thing, and one sent that,
  And little Dick Whittington sent his cat.
  The ship sailed out and over the sea,
  Till she touched at last at a far country;
  And while she waited to sell her store,
  The captain and officers went ashore.

  They dined with the king; the tables fine
  Groaned with the meat and fruit and wine;
  But, as soon as the guests were ranged about,
  Millions of rats and mice came out.
  They swarmed on the table, and on the floor,
  Up from the crevices, in at the door,
  They swept the food away in a breath,
  And the guests were frightened almost to death!

  To lose their dinners they thought a shame.
  The captain sent for the cat. She came!
  And right and left, in a wonderful way,
  She threw, and slew, and spread dismay.
  Then the Moorish king spoke up so bold:
  "I will give you eighteen bags of gold,
  If you will sell me the little thing."
  "I will!" and the cat belonged to the king.

  When the good ship's homeward voyage was done,
  The money was paid to Dick Whittington;
  At his master's wish 'twas put in trade;
  Each dollar another dollar made.
  Richer he grew each month and year,
  Honored by all both far and near;
  With his master's daughter for a wife,
  He lived a prosperous, noble life.

  And the tune the Bow-bells sang that day,
  When to Highgate Hill he ran away,--
  "Turn, turn, turn again, Whittington,
  Thrice Lord Mayor of London town,"--
  In the course of time came true and right,
  He was Mayor of London, and Sir Knight;
  And in English history he is known,
  By the name of Sir Richard Whittington!



  PUSS IN BOOTS.

  Versified by Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  A miller had three sons,
    And, on his dying day,
  He willed that all he owned should be
    Shared by them in this way:
  The mill to this, and the donkey to that,
  And to the youngest only the cat.

  This last, poor fellow, of course
    Thought it a bitter fate;
  With a cat to feed, he should die, indeed,
    Of hunger, sooner or late.
  And he stormed, with many a bitter word,
  Which Puss, who lay in the cupboard, heard.

  She stretched, and began to purr,
    Then came to her master's knee,
  And, looking slyly up, began:
    "Pray be content with me!
  Get me a pair of boots ere night,
  And a bag, and it will be all right!"

  The youth sighed heavy sighs,
    And laughed a scornful laugh:
  "Of all the silly things I know,
    You're the silliest, by half!"
  Still, after a space of doubt and thought,
  The pair of boots and the bag were bought.

  And Puss, at the peep of dawn,
    Was out upon the street,
  With shreds of parsley in her bag,
    And the boots upon her feet.
  She was on her way to the woods, for game,
  And soon to the rabbit-warren came.

  And the simple rabbits cried,
    "The parsley smells like spring!"
  And into the bag their noses slipped,
    And Pussy pulled the string.
  Only a kick, and a gasp for breath,
  And, one by one, they were choked to death.

  So Sly Boots bagged her game,
    And gave it an easy swing
  Over her shoulder; and, starting off
    For the palace of the king,
  She found him upon his throne, in state,
  While near him his lovely daughter sate.

  Puss made a graceful bow
    No courtier could surpass,
  And said, "I come to your Highness from
    The Marquis of Carabas.
  His loyal love he sends to you,
    With a tender rabbit for a stew."

  And the pretty princess smiled,
    And the king said, "Many thanks."
  And Puss strode off to her master's home,
    Purring, and full of pranks.
  And cried, "I've a splendid plan for you!
  Say nothing, but do as I tell you to!

  "To-morrow, at noon, the king
    And his beautiful daughter ride;
  And you must go, as they draw near,
    And bathe at the river side."
  The youth said "Pooh!" but still, next day,
  Bathed, when the king went by that way.

  Puss hid his dingy clothes
    In the marshy river-grass.
  And screamed, when the king came into sight,
    "The Marquis of Carabas--
  My master--is drowning close by!
  Help! help! good king, or he will die!"

  Then servants galloped fast,
    And dragged him from the water.
  "'Tis the knight who sent the rabbit stew,"
    The king said, to his daughter.
  And a suit of clothes was brought with speed,
  And he rode in their midst, on a royal steed.

  Meanwhile Puss, in advance,
    To the Ogre's palace fled,
  Where he sat, with a great club in his hand,
    And a monstrous ugly head.
  She mewed politely as she went in,
  But he only grinned, with a dreadful grin.

  "I have heard it said," she purred,
    "That, with the greatest ease,
  You change, in the twinkling of an eye,
    Into any shape you please!"
  "Of course I can!" the Ogre cried,
  And a roaring lion stood at her side.

  Puss shook like a leaf, in her boots,
    But said, "It is very droll!
  Now, please, if you can, change into a mouse!"
    He did. And she swallowed him whole!
  Then, as the king and his suite appeared,
  She stood on the palace porch and cheered.

  'Twas a grand old palace indeed,
    Builded of stone and brass.
  "Welcome, most noble ladies and lords,
    To the Castle of Carabas!"
  Puss said, with a sweeping courtesy;
  And they entered, and feasted royally.

  And the Marquis lost his heart
    At the beautiful princess' smile;
  And the very next day the two were wed,
    In wonderful state and style.
  And Puss in Boots was their favorite page,
  And lived with them to a good old age.



  GOLD-LOCKS' DREAM OF PUSSIE WILLOW.

  By Clara Doty Bates.


  One sunny day, in the early spring,
  Before a bluebird dared to sing,
  Cloaked and furred as in winter weather,--
  Seal-brown hat and cardinal feather,--
    Forth with a piping song,
      Went Gold-Locks "after flowers."
    "Tired of waiting so long,"
      Said this little girl of ours.

  She searched the bare brown meadow over,
  And found not even a leaf of clover;
  Nor where the sod was chill and wet
  Could she spy one tint of violet;
    But where the brooklet ran
      A noisy swollen billow,
    She picked in her little hand
      A branch of pussie-willow.

  She shouted out, in a happy way,
  At the catkins' fur, so soft and gray;
  She smoothed them down with loving pats,
  And called them her little pussie-cats.
    She played at scratch and bite;
      She played at feeding cream;
    And when she went to bed that night,
      Gold-Locks dreamed a dream.

  Curled in a little cosy heap,
  Under the bed-clothes, fast asleep,
  She heard, although she scarce knew how,
  A score of voices "_M-e-o-w! m-e-o-w!_"
    And right before her bed,
      Upon a branching tree,
    Were kittens, and kittens, and kittens,
      As thick as they could be.

  Maltese, yellow, and black as ink;
  White, with both ears lined with pink;
  Striped, like a royal tiger's skin;
  Yet all were hollow-eyed, and thin;
    And each one wailed aloud,
      Once, and twice, and thrice:
    "We are the willow-pussies;
      O, where are the willow-mice!"

  Meanwhile, outside, through branch and bough,
  The March wind wailed, "_M-e-o-w! m-e-o-w!_"
  'Twas dark, and yet Gold-Locks awoke,
  And softly to her mother spoke:
    "If they were fed, mamma,
      It would be very nice;
    But I _hope_ the willow-pussies
      Won't find the willow-mice!"



  [Color Plate:]

    Little girl,
      Little girl,
  Where have you been?
  Gathering roses to give to the queen.



  TONY.

  By Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  Whisk!--away in the sun
    His little flying feet
    Scamper as softly fleet
  As ever the rabbits run.
    He is gone like a flash, and then
    In a breath is back again.

  The silky flosses shine
    Down to his very toes:
    Tipped with white is his nose:
  And his ears are fleeces fine,
    Blowing a shadow-grace
    Breeze-like about his face.

  Quick to a whistled call
    Hearkens his ready ear,
    Scarcely waiting to hear;
  Silk locks, white feet, all
    Rush, like a furry elf
    Tumbling over himself.

  How does he sleep? He winks
    Twice with his mischief eyes;
    Dozes a bit; then lies
  Down with a sigh; then thinks
    Over some roguish play,
    And is up and away!



  CAMPING OUT.

  By Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  Dame Spider had spun herself lank and thin
  With trying to take her neighbors in;
  Grasshopper had traveled so far and so fast
  That he found he must give up at last;
  And the maiden Ant had bustled about
  The village till she was all worn out.

  Old Bumble Bee had lived on sweet
  Till he couldn't help but overeat;
  Miss Worm had measured her puny length
  Till she had no longer any strength;
  And Mr. Beetle was shocked to find
  His eyes were failing and almost blind.

  So they all decided that they must seek
  Their health in the country for a week.
  And they made a mixed but a merry throng,
  For those who had children took them along.
  They pitched their tent and made their camp,
  Shelter from possible cold and damp.

  'Twas novel, and each in his own way
  Sought to make happy the holiday.
  Grasshopper took his youngest daughter
  Out for a stroll along the water;
  She shrieked with joy, "O, see the cherries!"
  When they found some low-bush huckleberries.

  Dame Spider, with mischief in her eye,
  Thought she would angle for a fly;
  So, spinning a silk thread, long and fine,
  With wicked skill she cast the line;
  While Bumble Bee, in his gold-laced clothes,
  In the shade of a clover leaf lay for a doze.

  Miss Worm, who was full of sentiment,
  With the maiden Ant for a ramble went;
  Here was a flower, and there a flower--
  But suddenly rose a thunder shower.
  They screamed; but they got on very well,
  For they found what the Ant called an "umberell."

  A leaf on the water lay afloat,
  Which the blundering Beetle thought a boat.
  Far down in his heart his dearest wish
  Was to find some hitherto unfound fish.
  He never came back from that fatal swim,
  So 'twas always thought that a fish found him.

  At night when the cheery fire was lit
  They heaped dry branches over it,
  And in the light of the crackling blaze
  Told funny stories of other days,
  And smoked, till the Ant yawned wide and said:
  "'Tis time we folks were all abed!"

  But scarce was each to his slumber laid,
  When the country folks came to serenade;
  With twang of fiddle, and toot of horn,
  And shriek of fife, they stayed till morn!
  Poor Campers! never a wink got they!
  So they started for home at break of day.



  DAME SPIDER.

  By Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  Little Dame Spider had finished her spinning,
  Just as the warm summer day was beginning,
  And the white threads of her beautiful curtain
  Tied she and glued she to make them more certain.

  Dressed in her old-fashioned feathers and fringes,
  Then she sat down to wait; on silken hinges
  Swung the light fleece with a moonshiny glisten;
  Nothing for her but to watch and to listen.

  Presently, going off early to labor,--
  Bowing politely, as neighbor to neighbor,
  When he caught sight of this little old woman,--
  Sailed by a honey-bee, serge-clad and common.

  "Are you so scornful because I am humble?
  Many a time your rich relatives, Bumble,
  Pause in their flying to chat for an hour!"
  She called out after him, half gay, half sour.

  "O, no," he cried. "I am off to discover
  What I can find fresh in the way of white clover;
  But since your window is cosy and shady,
  I _will_ sit down half a minute, dear Lady."

  Little Dame Spider arose with a rustle,
  Welcomed him with ceremonious bustle;
  Quick as a flash threw her long arms around him,
  Heeded no buzzing, but held him and bound him;

  Tied knots so tight that he could not undo them;
  Wove snares so strong that he could not break through them;
  Then, with a relish, stood chuckling and grinning,
  "This is to pay me for my early spinning!"


  At the home-hive the bees going and coming
  Kept up all day their industrious humming,
  Nor did it one of their busy heads bother
  That Madame Spider had dined off their brother.



  HICKORY DICKORY DOCK.

  by

  Clara Doty Bates


    Tick-Tack! tick-tack!
  This way, that way, forward, back,
  Swings the pendulum to and fro,
  Always regular, always slow.
  Grave and solemn on the wall,--
  Hear it whisper! hear it call!
  Little Ginx knows naught of Time,
  But has heard the mystic rhyme,--
    "Hickory, dickory, dock!
    The mouse ran up the clock!"

    Tick-tack! tick-tack!
  White old face with figures black!
  So when dismal, stormy days
  Keep him from his out-door plays,
  Most that he cares for is to sit
  Watching, always watching it.
  And when the hour strikes he thinks,--
  (A dear, wise head has the little Ginx!)
    "The clock strikes one,
    The mice ran down!"

    Tick-tack! tick-tack!
  This way, that way, forward, back!
  Though so measured and precise,
  Ginx believes it full of mice.
  A mouse runs up at every tick,
  But when the stroke comes, scampering quick,
  Mice run down again; so they go,
  Up and down, and to and fro!
    Hickory, dickory, dock,
    Full of mice is the clock!



  DAME FIDGET AND HER SILVER PENNY.

  Versified by Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  A Wee, wee woman
  Was little old Dame Fidget,
  And she lived by herself
    In a wee, wee room,
  And early every morning,
  So tidy was her habit,
  She began to sweep it out
  With a wee, wee broom.

  To sweep for the cinders,
  Though never were there any,
  She whisked about, and brushed about,
    Humming like a bee;
  When, odd enough, one day
  She found a silver penny,
  Shining in a corner,
    As bright as bright could be.

  She eyed it, she took it
  Between her thumb and finger;
  She put it in the sugar bowl
    And quickly shut the lid;
  And after planning over carefully
  The way to spend it,
  She resolved to go to market
    And to buy herself a kid.

  And that she did next day; but, ah,
  The kid proved very lazy!
  And it moved toward home so slowly
    She could scarcely see it crawl;
  At first she coaxed and petted it,
  And then she stormed and scolded,
  Till at last, when they had reached the bridge,
    It would not go at all.

  Just then Dame Fidget saw a dog run by,
  And whistled to him,
  And cried:--"Pray dog bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  I see by the moonlight
  'Tis almost midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
  Half an hour ago!"

  But no, he said he wouldn't;
  So to the stick she pleaded:--
  "Pray stick beat dog, dog won't bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  I see by the moonlight
  'Tis almost midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
    Half an hour ago!"

  But the stick didn't stir,
  So she called upon the fire:--
  "Pray fire burn stick, stick won't beat dog,
  Dog won't bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  And I see by the moonlight
  'Tis almost midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
    Half an hour ago!"

  But the fire only smoked,
  So she turned and begged the water:--
  "Pray water quench fire, fire won't burn stick,
  Stick won't beat dog, dog won't bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  I see by the moonlight
  'Tis already midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
    An hour and a half ago!"

  "Ha, ha!" the water gurgled,
  So to the ox appealing:--
  "Pray ox drink water, water won't quench fire,
  Fire won't burn stick, stick won't beat dog,
  Dog won't bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  And I see by the moonlight
  'Tis already midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
  An hour and a half ago!"

  But the ox bellowed "no!"
  So she shouted to the butcher:--
  "Pray butcher kill ox, ox won't drink water,
  Water won't quench fire, fire won't burn stick,
  Stick won't beat dog, dog won't bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  I see by the moonlight
  'Tis getting past midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
    An hour and a half ago!"

  But the butcher only laughed at her,
  And to the rope she hurried:--
  "Pray rope hang butcher, butcher won't kill ox,
  Ox won't drink water, water won't quench fire,
  Fire won't burn stick, stick won't beat dog,
  Dog won't bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  And I see by the moonlight
  'Tis getting past midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
    An hour and a half ago."

  The rope swayed round for "nay!"
  So to the rat she beckoned:--
  "Pray rat gnaw rope, rope won't hang butcher,
  Butcher won't kill ox, ox won't drink water,
  Water won't quench fire, fire won't burn stick,
  Stick won't beat dog, dog won't bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  And I see by the moonlight
  'Tis long past midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
    A couple of hours ago!"

  A scornful squeak was all he deigned,
  And so she called the kitten:--
  "Pray cat eat rat, rat won't gnaw rope,
  Rope won't hang butcher, butcher won't kill ox,
  Ox won't drink water, water won't quench fire,
  Fire won't burn stick, stick won't beat dog,
  Dog won't bite kid,
    Kid won't go!
  And I see by the moonlight
  'Tis long past midnight,
  And time kid and I were home
    Hours and hours ago!"

  Now pussy loved a rat,
  So she seized him in a minute:
  And the cat began to eat the rat,
  The rat began to gnaw the rope,
  The rope began to hang the butcher,
  The butcher began to kill the ox,
  The ox began to drink the water,
  The water began to quench the fire,
  The fire began to burn the stick,
  The stick began to beat the dog,
  The dog began to bite the kid,
    And the kid began to go!
  And home through the moonlight,
  Long after midnight,
  The little dame and little kid
    Went trudging--oh, _so_ slow!



  [Color Plate:]

    The little Boy in the Barn,
    Lay down on some hay.
    The Owl came out,
        And flew about,
  And the little Boy ran away.



  FOOLISH BOBOLINK.

  By Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


  What a silly bobolink,
    Down in the meadow grasses!
  What can the noisy fellow think,
    When, to everyone who passes,
      He calls out cheerily,
      "Here, here is my nest! See! see!"

  He could hide the summer through
    In the thick, sweet-smelling clover,
  Nor could anyone from dawn to dew,
    His little house discover,
      Did he not make so free
      With the secret--"Here! see! see!"

  Little Ted has ears and eyes,
    And how can he keep from knowing
  Just where the cosy treasure lies,
    When bobolink, coming, going,
      Shouts, plain as plain can be,
      "Here, here is a nest! See! see!"

  And Teddy would like to creep
    Tip-toe across the meadow,
  And for just one minute stoop and peep
    Under the clover shadow.
      He would do no harm--not he!
      But would only see, see, see!

  And what would he find below
    The sheltering grass, you wonder?
  Why, a nest, of course, and an egg or so,
    A mother's dark wings under.
      But bobolink--he would flee
      In a fright--"A boy! see! see!"

  So Teddy, whose heart is kind,
    Though he longs to venture near him,
  Sighs to himself, "Ah, never mind!"
    And listens, glad to hear him
      Shouting, in tireless glee,
      "Here, here is my nest! See! see!"



  [Color Plate:]

      Green gravel, Green gravel,
          The grass is so green,
    The fairest young maiden, that ever was seen,
  Oh Mary, oh Mary, your true love is dead.
    He's sent you a green bough
      To tie round your head.



  ALADDIN

  Versified by Clara Doty Bates


  I see a little group about my chair,
        Lovers of stories all!
  First, Saxon Edith, of the corn-silk hair,
        Growing so strong and tall!

  Then little brother, on whose sturdy face
        Soft baby dimples fly,
  As fear or pleasure give each other place
        When wonders multiply;

  Then Gold-locks--summers nine their goldenest
        Have showered on her head,
  And tinted it, of all the colors best,
        Warm robin-red breast red;

  Then, close at hand, on lowly haunches set,
        With pricked up, tasseled ear,
  Is Tony, little cleared-eyed spaniel pet,
        Waiting, like them, to hear.

  I say I have no story--all are told!
        Not to be daunted thus,
  They only crowd more confident and bold,
        And laugh, incredulous.

  And so, remembering how, once on a time,
        I, too, loved such delights,
  I choose this one and put it into rhyme,
        From the "Arabian Nights."


  A poor little lad was Aladdin!
        His mother was wretchedly poor;
  A widow, who scarce ever had in
        Her cupboard enough of a store
        To frighten the wolf from the door.

  No doubt he was quite a fine fellow
        For the country he lived in--but, ah!
  His skin was a dull, dusky yellow,
        And his hair was as long as 'twould grow.
        ('Tis the fashion in China, you know.)

  But however he looked, or however
        He fared, a strange fortune was his.
  None of you, dears, though fair-faced and clever,
        Can have anything like to this,
        So grand and so marvelous it is!

  Well, one day--for so runs the tradition--
        While idling and lingering about
  The low city streets, a Magician
        From Africa, swarthy and stout,
        With his wise, prying eyes spied him out,

  And went up to him very politely,
        And asked what his name was and cried:
  "My lad, if I judge of you rightly,
        You're the son of my brother who died--
        My poor Mustafa!"--and he sighed.

  "Ah, yes, Mustafa was my father,"
        Aladdin cried back, "and he's dead!"
  "Well, then, both yourself and your mother
        I will care for forever," he said,
        "And you never shall lack wine nor bread."

  And thus did the wily old wizard
        Deceive with his kindness the two
  For a deed of dark peril and hazard
        He had for Aladdin to do,
        At the risk of his life, too, he knew.

  Far down in the earth's very centre
        There burned a strange lamp at a shrine;
  Great stones marked the one place to enter;
        Down under t'was dark as a mine;
        What further--no one could divine!

  And that was the treasure Aladdin
        Was sent to secure. First he tore
  The huge stones away, for he had in
        An instant the strength of a score;
        Then he stepped through the cavern-like door.

  Down, down, through the darkness so chilly!
        On, on, through the long galleries!
  Coming now upon gardens of lilies,
        And now upon fruit-burdened trees,
        Filled full of the humming of bees.

  But, ah, should one tip of his finger
        Touch aught as he passed, it was death!
  Not a fruit on the boughs made him linger,
        Nor the great heaps of gold underneath.
        But on he fled, holding his breath,

  Until he espied, brightly burning,
        The mystical lamp in its place!
  He plucked the hot wick out, and, turning,
        With triumph and joy in his face,
        Set out his long way to retrace.

  At last he saw where daylight shed a
        Soft ray through a chink overhead,
  Where the crafty Magician was ready
        To catch the first sound of his tread.
        "Reach the lamp up to me, first!" he said.

  Aladdin with luck had grown bolder,
        And he cried, "Wait a bit, and we'll see!"
  Then with huge, ugly push of his shoulder,
        And with strong, heavy thrust of his knee,
        The wizard--so angry was he--

  Pried up the great rock, rolled it over
        The door with an oath and a stamp;
  "Stay there under that little cover,
        And die of the mildew and damp,"
        He shouted, "or give me the lamp!"

  Aladdin saw darkness fall o'er him;
        He clutched at the lamp in his hand,
  And, happening to rub it, before him
        A Genius stood, stately and grand.
        Whence he came he could not understand.

  "I obey you," it said, "and whatever
        You ask for, or wish, you shall have!
  Rub the lamp but the least bit soever,
        It calls me, for I am its slave!"
        Aladdin said, "Open this cave!"

  He was freed from the place in a minute;
        And he rubbed once again: "Take me home!"
  Home he was. And as blithe as a linnet
        Rubbed again for the Genius with: "Come,
        I am dying for food; get me some!"

  Thus at first he but valued his treasure
        Because simple wants it supplied.
  Grown older it furnished him pleasure;
        And then it brought riches beside;
        And, at last, it secured him his bride.

  Now the Princess most lovely of any
        Was Badroulboudour, (what a name!)
  Who, though sought for and sued for by many,
        No matter how grandly they came,
        Yet merrily laughed them to shame,

  Until with his riches and splendor,
        Aladdin as lover enrolled!
  For the first thing he did was to send her
        Some forty great baskets of gold,
        And all the fine gems they would hold.

  Then he built her a palace, set thickly
        With jewels at window and door;
  And all was completed so quickly
        She saw bannered battlements soar
        Where was nothing an hour before.

  There millions of servants attended,
        Black slaves and white slaves, thick as bees,
  Obedient, attentive, and splendid
        In purple and gold liveries,
        Fine to see, swift to serve, sure to please!

  Him she wedded. They lived without trouble
        As long as the lamp was their own;
  But one day, like the burst of a bubble,
        The palace and Princess were gone;
        Without wings to fly they had flown!

  And Aladdin, dismayed to discover
        That the lamp had been stolen away,
  Bent all of his strength to recover
        The treasure, and day after day,
        He journeyed this way and that way;

  And at last, after terrible hazard,
        After many a peril and strife,
  He found that the vengeful old wizard,
        Who had made the attempt on his life,
        Had stolen lamp, princess and wife.

  With a shrewdness which would have done credit
        To even a Yankee boy, he
  Sought the lamp where the wizard had hid it,
        And, turning a mystical key,
        Brought it forth, and then, rubbing with glee,

  "Back to China!" he cried. In a minute
        The marvellous palace uprose,
  With the Princess Badroulboudour in it
        Unruffled in royal repose,
        With her jewels and cloth-of-gold clothes;

  And with gay clouds of banners and towers,
        With its millions of slaves, white and black.
  It was borne by obedient Powers,
        As swift as the wind on its track,
        And ere one could count ten it was back!

  And ever thereafter, Aladdin
        Clung close to the lamp of his fate,
  Whatever the robe he was clad in,
        Or whether he fasted or ate;
        And at all hours, early and late!
  Right lucky was Lord Aladdin!



  BLUE BEARD


  Once on a time there was a man so hideous and ugly
    That little children shrank and tried to hide when he appeared;
  His eyes were fierce and prominent, his long hair stiff like bristles,
    His stature was enormous, and he wore a long blue beard--
  He took his name from that through all the country round about him,--
    And whispered tales of dreadful deeds but helped to make him feared.

  Yet he was rich, O! very rich; his home was in a castle,
    Whose turrets darkened on the sky, so grand and black and bold
  That like a thunder-cloud it looked upon the blue horizon.
    He had fertile lands and parks and towns
                    and hunting-grounds and gold,
  And tapestries a queen might covet, statues, pictures, jewels,
    While his servants numbered hundreds,
                    and his wines were rare and old.

  Now near to this old Blue-beard's castle lived a lady neighbor,
    Who had two daughters, beautiful as lilies on a stem;
  And he asked that one of them be given him in marriage--
    He did not care which one it was, but left the choice to them.
  But, oh, the terror that they felt, their efforts to evade him,
    With careless art, with coquetry, with wile and stratagem!

  He saw their high young spirits scorned him, yet he meant to conquer.
    He planned a visit for them,--or, 'twas rather one long fête;
  And to charming guests and lovely feasts, to music and to dancing,
    Swung wide upon its hinges grim the gloomy castle gate.
  And, sure enough, before a week was ended, blinded, dazzled,
    The youngest maiden whispered "yes," and yielded to her fate.

  And so she wedded Blue-beard--like a wise and wily spider
    He had lured into his web the wished-for, silly little fly!
  And, before the honeymoon was gone, one day he stood beside her,
    And with oily words of sorrow, but with evil in his eye,
  Said his business for a month or more would call him to a distance,
    And he must leave her--sorry to--but then, she must not cry!

  He bade her have her friends, as many as she liked, about her,
    And handed her a jingling bunch of something, saying, "These
  Will open vaults and cellars and the heavy iron boxes
    Where all my gold and jewels are, or any door you please.
  Go where you like, do what you will, one single thing excepted!"
    And here he look a little key from out the bunch of keys.

  "This will unlock the closet at the end of the long passage,
    But that you must not enter! I forbid it!"--and he frowned.
  So she promised that she would not, and he went upon his journey.
    And no sooner was he gone than all her merry friends around
  Came to visit her, and made the dim old corridors and chambers
    With their silken dresses whisper, with laugh and song resound.

  Up and down the oaken stairways flitted dainty-footed ladies,
    Lighting up the shadowy twilight with the lustre of their bloom;
  Like the varied sunlight streaming through an old cathedral window
    Went their brightness glancing through the unaccustomed gloom,
  But Blue-beard's wife was restless, and a strong desire possessed her
    Through it all to get a single peep at that forbidden room.

  And so one day she slipped away from all her guests, unnoted,
    Down through the lower passage, till she reached the fatal door,
  Put in the key and turned the lock, and gently pushed it open--
    But, oh the horrid sight that met her eyes! Upon the floor
  There were blood-stains dark and dreadful,
                    and like dresses in a wardrobe,
    There were women hung up by their hair, and dripping in their gore!

  Then, at once, upon her mind the unknown fate that had befallen
    The other wives of Blue-beard flashed--'twas now no mystery!
  She started back as cold as icicles, as white as ashes,
    And upon the clammy floor her trembling fingers dropped the key.
  She caught it up, she whirled the bolt to, shut the sight behind her,
    And like a startled deer at sound of hunter's gun, fled she!

  She reached her room with gasping breath,--behold, another terror!
    Upon the key within her hand; she saw a ghastly stain;
  She rubbed it with her handkerchief, she washed in soap and water,
    She scoured it with sand and stone, but all was done in vain!
  For when one side, by dint of work, grew bright, upon the other
    (It was bewitched, you know,) came out that ugly spot again!

  And then, unlooked-for, who should come
                    next morning, bright and early,
    But old Blue-beard himself who hadn't been away a week!
  He kissed his wife, and, after a brief pause, said, smiling blandly:
    "I'd like my keys, my dear." He saw a tear upon her cheek,
  And guessed the truth. She gave him all
                    but one. He scowled and grumbled:
    "I want the key to the _small room_!"
                    Poor thing, she could not speak!

  He saw at once the stain it bore while she turned pale and paler,
    "You've been where I forbade you! Now you shall go there _to stay_!
  Prepare yourself to die at once!" he cried. The frightened lady
    Could only fall before him pleading: "Give me time to pray!"
  Just fifteen minutes by the clock he granted. To her chamber
    She fled, but stopped to call her sister Anne by the way.

  "O, sister Anne, go to the tower and watch!" she cried, "Our brothers
    Were coming here to-day, and I have got to die!
  Oh, fly, and if you see them, wave a signal! Hasten! hasten!"
    And Anne went flying like a bird up to the tower high.
  "Oh, Anne, sister Anne, do you see anybody coming?"
    Called the praying lady up the tower-stairs with piteous cry.

  "Oh Anne, sister Anne, do you see anybody coming?"
    "I see the burning sun," she answered, "and the waving grass!"
  Meanwhile old Blue-beard down below was whetting up his cutlass,
    And shouting: "Come down quick, or I'll come after you, my lass!"
  "One little minute more to pray, one minute more!" she pleaded--
    To hope how slow the minutes are, to dread how swift they pass!

  "Oh Anne, sister Anne, do you see anybody coming?"
    She answered: "Yes I see a cloud of dust that moves this way."
  "Is it our brothers, Anne?" implored the lady. "No, my sister,
    It is a flock of sheep." Here Blue-beard thundered out: "I say,
  Come down or I'll come after you!" Again the only answer:
    "Oh, just one little minute more,--one minute more to pray!"

  "Oh, Anne, sister Anne, do you see anybody coming?"
    "I see two horsemen riding, but they yet are very far!"
  She waved them with her handkerchief; it bade them, "hasten, hasten!"
    Then Blue-beard stamped his foot so hard
                    it made the whole house jar;
  And, rushing up to where his wife knelt, swung his glittering cutlass,
    As Indians do a tomahawk, and shrieked: "How slow you are!"

  Just then, without, was heard the beat of hoofs upon the pavement,
    The doors flew back, the marble floors rang to a hurried tread.
  Two horsemen, with their swords in hand,
                    came storming up the stairway,
    And with one swoop of their good swords
                    they cut off Blue-beard's head!
  Down fell his cruel arm, the heavy cutlass falling with it,
    And, instead of its old, ugly blue, his beard was bloody red!

  Of course, the tyrant dead, his wife had all his vast possessions;
    She gave her sister Anne a dower to marry where she would;
  The brothers were rewarded with commissions in the army;
    And as for Blue-beard's wife, she did exactly as she should,--
  She wore no weeds, she shed no tears; but very shortly after
    Married a man as fair to look at as his heart was good.



  [Color Plate:]

  The little brown owl sits up in the Tree,
  And if you look well
  His big eyes you may see.
  He says Whit a whoo, when the night grows dark,
  And he hears the dogs
  and the little foxes bark.



  THE SLEEPING PRINCESS

  Versified by Clara Doty Bates


  The ringing bells and the booming cannon
        Proclaimed on a summer morn
  That in the good king's royal palace
        A Princess had been born.

  The towers flung out their brightest banners,
        The ships their streamers gay,
  And every one, from lord to peasant,
        Made joyful holiday.

  Great plans for feasting and merry-making
        Were made by the happy king;
  And, to bring good fortune, seven fairies
        Were bid to the christening.

  And for them the king had seven dishes
        Made out of the best red gold,
  Set thickly round on the sides and covers
        With jewels of price untold.

  When the day of the christening came, the bugles
        Blew forth their shrillest notes;
  Drums throbbed, and endless lines of soldiers
        Filed past in scarlet coats.

  And the fairies were there the king had bidden,
        Bearing their gifts of good--
  But right in the midst a strange old woman
        Surly and scowling stood.

  They knew her to be the old, old fairy,
        All nose and eyes and ears,
  Who had not peeped, till now, from her dungeon
        For more than fifty years.

  Angry she was to have been forgotten
        Where others were guests, and to find
  That neither a seat nor a dish at the banquet
        To her had been assigned.

  Now came the hour for the gift-bestowing;
        And the fairy first in place
  Touched with her wand the child and gave her
        "Beauty of form and face!"

  Fairy the second bade, "Be witty!"
        The third said, "Never fail!"
  The fourth, "Dance well!" and the fifth, "O Princess,
        Sing like the nightingale!"

  The sixth gave, "Joy in the heart forever!"
        But before the seventh could speak,
  The crooked, black old Dame came forward,
        And, tapping the baby's cheek,

  "You shall prick your finger upon a spindle,
        And die of it!" she cried.
  All trembling were the lords and ladies,
        And the king and queen beside.

  But the seventh fairy interrupted,
        "Do not tremble nor weep!
  That cruel curse I can change and soften,
        And instead of death give sleep!

  "But the sleep, though I do my best and kindest,
        Must last for an hundred years!"
  On the king's stern face was a dreadful pallor,
        In the eyes of the queen were tears.

  "Yet after the hundred years are vanished,"--
        The fairy added beside,--
  "A Prince of a noble line shall find her,
        And take her for his bride."

  But the king, with a hope to change the future,
        Proclaimed this law to be:
  That, if in all the land there was kept one spindle,
        Sure death was the penalty.

  The Princess grew, from her very cradle
        Lovely and witty and good;
  And at last, in the course of years, had blossomed
        Into full sweet maidenhood.

  And one day, in her father's summer palace,
        As blithe as the very air,
  She climbed to the top of the highest turret,
        Over an old worn stair

  And there in the dusky cobwebbed garret,
        Where dimly the daylight shone,
  A little, doleful, hunch-backed woman
        Sat spinning all alone.

  "O Goody," she cried, "what are you doing?"
        "Why, spinning, you little dunce!"
  The Princess laughed: "'Tis so very funny,
        Pray let me try it once!"

  With a careless touch, from the hand of Goody
        She caught the half-spun thread,
  And the fatal spindle pricked her finger!
        Down fell she as if dead!

  And Goody shrieking, the frightened courtiers
        Climbed up the old worn stair
  Only to find, in heavy slumber,
        The Princess lying there.

  They bore her down to a lofty chamber,
        They robed her in her best,
  And on a couch of gold and purple
        They laid her for her rest,

  The roses upon her cheek still blooming,
        And the red still on her lips,
  While the lids of her eyes, like night-shut lilies,
        Were closed in white eclipse.

  Then the fairy who strove her fate to alter
        From the dismal doom of death,
  Now that the vital hour impended,
        Came hurrying in a breath.

  And then about the slumbering palace
        The fairy made up-spring
  A wood so heavy and dense that never
        Could enter a living thing.

  And there for a century the Princess
        Lay in a trance so deep
  That neither the roar of winds nor thunder
        Could rouse her from her sleep.

  Then at last one day, past the long-enchanted
        Old wood, rode a new king's son,
  Who, catching a glimpse of a royal turret
        Above the forest dun

  Felt in his heart a strange wish for exploring
        The thorny and briery place,
  And, lo, a path through the deepest thicket
        Opened before his face!

  On, on he went, till he spied a terrace,
        And further a sleeping guard,
  And rows of soldiers upon their carbines
        Leaning, and snoring hard.

  Up the broad steps! The doors swung backward!
        The wide halls heard no tread!
  But a lofty chamber, opening, showed him
        A gold and purple bed.

  And there in her beauty, warm and glowing,
        The enchanted Princess lay!
  While only a word from his lips was needed
        To drive her sleep away.

  He spoke the word, and the spell was scattered,
        The enchantment broken through!
  The lady woke. "Dear Prince," she murmured,
        "How long I have waited for you!"

  Then at once the whole great slumbering palace
        Was wakened and all astir;
  Yet the Prince, in joy at the Sleeping Beauty,
        Could only look at her.

  She was the bride who for years an hundred
        Had waited for him to come,
  And now that the hour was here to claim her,
        Should eyes or tongue be dumb?

  The Princess blushed at his royal wooing,
        Bowed "yes" with her lovely head,
  And the chaplain, yawning, but very lively,
        Came in and they were wed!

  But about the dress of the happy Princess,
        I have my woman's fears--
  It must have grown somewhat old-fashioned
        In the course of so many years!



  JACK AND JILL.


        Little boys, sit still--
        Girls, too, if you will--
  And let me tell you of Jack and Jill;
        For I think another
        Such sister and brother
  Were never the children of one mother!

        For an idle lad,
        As he was, Jack had
  No traits, after all, that were very bad.
        He, was simply Jack,
        With the coat on his back
  Patched up in all colors from gray to black.

        Both feet were bare;
        And I do declare
  That he never washed his face; and his hair
        Was the color of straw--
        You never saw
  Such a crop--as long as the moral law!

        When he went to school,
        It was the rule
  (Though 'twas hard to say he was really a fool)
        To send him at once,
        So thick was his sconce,
  To the block that was kept for the greatest dunce.

        And Jill! no lass
        Scarce ever has
  Made bigger tracks on the country grass;
        For her only fun
        Was to romp and run,
  Bare-headed, bare-footed, in wind and sun.

        Wherever went Jack,
        Close on his track,
  With hair unbraided and down her back,
        Loud-voiced and shrill,
        She followed, until
  No one said "Jack" without saying "Jill."

        But to succeed
        In teaching to read
  Such a harum-scarum, was work indeed!
        And I'm forced to tell
        That her way to spell
  Her name was with only a single 'l.'

        Yet they were content.
        One day they were sent
  To the hill for water, and they went.
        They did not drown,
        But Jack fell down,
  With a pail in his hand, and broke his crown!

        And Jill, who must go
        And always do
  Exactly as Jack did, tumbled too!
        Just think, if you will,
        How they rolled down hill--
  Straw-headed Jack and bare-footed Jill!

        But up Jack got,
        And home did trot,
  Nor cared whether Jill was hurt or not;
        While his poor bruised knob
        Did burn and throb,
  Tear falling on tear, sob following sob!

        He could run the faster,
        So a paper plaster
  Had bound up the sight of his disaster
        Before Jill came;
        And the thoughtful dame,
  For a break in _her_ head, had fixed the same.

        But Jill came in,
        With a saucy grin
  At seeing the plight poor Jack was in;
        And when she saw
        That bundle of straw
  (His hair) bound up with a cloth, and his jaw

        Tied up in white,
        The comical sight
  Made her clap her hands and laugh outright!
        The dame, perplexed
        And dreadfully vexed,
  Got a stick and said, "I'll whip her next!"

        How many blows fell
        I will not tell,
  But she did it in earnest, she did it well,
        Till the naughty back
        Was blue and black,
  And Jill needed a plaster as much as Jack!

        The next time, though,
        Jack has to go
  To the hill for water, I almost know
        That bothering Jill
        Will go up the hill,
  And if _he_ falls again, why, of course _she_ will!



  LITTLE BO-BEEP.


  What was Bo-Peep? Can anyone guess?
    Why, little Bo-Peep was a shepherdess!
  And she dressed in a short white petticoat,
    And a kirtle of blue, with a looped-up look,
  And a snowy kerchief about her throat,
    And held in her hand a crook.

  What eyes she had, the little Bo-Peep!
  They had tears to laugh with, and tears to weep.
    So fringy, and shy, and blue, and sweet,
      That even the summer skies in color,
    Or the autumn gentians under her feet,
      Less tender were and duller.

  Now, a shepherdess ought to watch her sheep;
  But the careless little girl, Bo-Peep,
    Was hunting for late wild strawberries,
      The sweetest her tongue had ever tasted;
    They were few in number, and small in size,
      Too good, though, to be wasted.

  And in that way the little Bo-Peep,
  The first she knew, had lost her sheep!
    To the top of the nearest knoll she ran,
      The better to look the pasture over;
    She shaded her face, and called, "Nan! Nan!"
      But none of them could discover.

  About and about went little Bo-Peep;
  Her feet grew tired, the hills were steep;
    And in trying her fears to overcome
      She sighed, "I don't know where to find 'em.
    But let 'em alone, and they'll come home,
      And bring their tails behind 'em!"

  So down sat trustful little Bo-Peep,
  And in a minute was fast asleep!
    Arm over her head, and her finger-ends
      All red with the fruit she had been eating;
    While her thoughts were only of her lost friends,
      And she dreamed she heard them bleating.

  'Twas a happy dream for little Bo-Peep;
  As she lay on the grass, her flock of sheep,
    With scatter and clatter and patter of feet,
      Came hastening from all ways hither, thither;
    First one would bleat, then another would bleat,
      Then "b-a-a--a-a!" all together!

  But ah, it was only while Bo-Peep
  Was tired enough to stay asleep
    That her flock was with her; for when she woke,
      Rubbing her eyes to see the clearer,
    She found that her dream was all a joke,
      And they were nowhere near her.

  Tearful and sorrowful grew Bo-Peep!
  Down from her lashes the tears would creep;
    But she started out, as there was need,
      Before it should be too dark to find them;
    She found them indeed, but it made her heart bleed,
      For they'd left their tails behind them!

  Did she laugh or cry, our little Bo-Peep,
  To see such a comical crowd of sheep?
    There were plenty of bodies, white and fat;
      And plenty of wide mouths, eating, eating;
    Plenty of soft wool, and all that:
      And plenty of noisy bleating;

  Yet all of them stood, and tried to keep
  At a little distance from Bo-Peep!
    They knew her voice, and were very glad
      To have her come with her crook to find them,
    But they felt so strangely because they had
      Not a single tail behind them.

  The innocent-faced old mother-sheep,
  Who bleated and stamped to greet Bo-Peep,
    With their tails shorn close, were odd enough;
      But the very oddest of all was when a
    Group of the lambs went galloping off,
      All legs, and hadn't any!

  Though sorry enough was little Bo-Peep
  That the tails were lost from her pretty sheep,
    She murmured, "I'll find them easily,
      And there's very little good in crying!"
    So away she went, and at last, in a tree,
      She saw them hung a-drying!

  She piled them up in a great white heap,
  And the best she could do, poor little Bo-Peep!
    Was to try to fasten them where they grew--
      Or that was, at least, what she intended,--
    But if she did it I never knew,
      For now my story is ended!



  [Color Plate:]

  Buz, Buz, Buz--says the Great buzzing Bee.
  Go away butterfly--this flower is for me.
  Why? Why? Why? says the little butterfly,
  If you may sit on this flower, why may'nt I?



  HOP-O-MY-THUMB


  Once on a time there was a fagot-maker,
            And he had seven sons.
  Who could be aught but poor to feed and shelter
            So many little ones?

  For all were merely lads; not one was able
            To earn the crust of bread,
  Though scant it might be, coarse and black and humble,
            With which he must be fed.

  And, worst of all, the youngest one was puny,
            So odd, and still, and slight,
  That father, mother, and the other brothers,
            Thought him not over bright.

  So small he was when he was born, so tiny
            Since then he had become,
  That--for he was no bigger than your finger--
            They called him Hop-o'-my-Thumb.

  Now at this time, for days and days together,
            There fell no drop of rain;
  The corn shrunk on the stalks; and in the sunshine
            Rustled the shriveled grain;

  As if a fire had swept across the meadows
            They shriveled in the drouth;
  And what this meant for the poor fagot-maker
            Was famine, without doubt.

  One night he sat before a smouldering fire,
            His head bowed down with grief,
  Trying with those weak wits of his to compass
            Some scheme for their relief.

  His wife above the feeble embers hovered,
            And wrung her toil-hard hands;
  She knew there was no help for their starvation,
            No hope in making plans.

  At last he spoke: "Ah, bad luck to the trying,
            I cannot find them food!
  To-morrow morning with me to the forest
            I'll take the little brood!

  "I cannot bear to watch this piece meal starving,
            So, while they run and play,
  Or gather fagots for me, or pick berries
            To eat, I'll come away!"

  "Oh!" groaned the wife, "I'm sure the wolves will eat them,
            Poor dears--poor little dears!
  Yet do as you think best--we all must perish!"
            Then went to bed in tears.

  Meanwhile, though all the rest were sleeping soundly,
            Hop-o'-my-Thumb had heard,
  And at the thought of wolves and woods, in terror
            His little heart was stirred;

  And so he lay and planned; and early dressed him,
            And ran with all his might
  Down to the river, where he filled his pockets
            With pebbles small and white.

  And, as they started for the wood, he lingered
            Somewhat behind, and when
  They came to dismal places, dropped in secret
            A pebble now and then.

  Thick grew the trees; 'twas twilight in their shadows,
            Although broad day without;
  But gay the laddies at the fagot-picking
            Went scampering about,

  And chattering like a flock of busy sparrows;
            Till, having hungry grown,
  They turned to ask their mother for their dinner,
            And found they were alone!

  Then all but Hop-o'-my-Thumb wailed out affrighted.
            "Don't cry so hard!" said he.
  "I'll find the path, if you'll but keep together
            And try to follow me!"

  By the white stones strewn on the dead pine needles,
            Though night had fallen, he soon
  Led the way out, and spied their humble cottage,
            Low lying 'neath the moon.

  They hurried near, and, pausing at the window,
            Hop-o'my-Thumb climbed up,
  And peeped within; his father and his mother
            Were just about to sup.

  Some one had paid them two gold guineas
            On an old debt; and when
  They went for beef for two, they were so hungry
            They bought enough for ten.

  Quick as a flash the ravenous seven went rushing
            Pell-mell into the house,
  Nor left, of the fine roast upon the table,
            Enough to feed a mouse.

  It all went well long as the money lasted.
            When that was gone, once more
  The father planned to take them to the forest,
            And leave them as before.

  Hop-o'-my-Thumb, who heard again the plotting,
            Crept from his trundle-bed,
  But in the place of pebbles in his pockets
            Put only crumbs of bread.

  Again they went, through brier and through thicket,
            Into the darksome wood;
  Again he dropped his clues along the pathway
            Behind him when he could.

  But when once more they found themselves deserted,
            And little Hop-o'-my-Thumb
  Felt sure to lead them out, he found the finches
            Had eaten every crumb!

  Then what to do! They wandered hither, thither,
            For hours in dread and fear,
  Until at last they saw, with fitful glimmer,
            A feeble light appear.

  It shone but faintly, like a single candle,
            But, trudging towards the ray,
  They reached a house and knocked; the door was opened
            After a brief delay,

  And a kind woman asked them what they wanted.
            They said: "To stay all night."
  "Run, run away! The faster you run the better!"
            She answered in affright.

  "An Ogre lives here, cruel and bloody minded!
            He eats up little boys!
  Run, run! I hear him coming from the mountains,
            I know him by the noise!"

  "But we can't run, we are so faint and tired!"
            Hop-o'-my-Thumb began--
  "'Tis all the same whether the wolves shall eat us,
            Or your good gentleman."

  And so she took them in, fed them, and hid them
            All underneath her bed;
  And in a minute more they heard approaching,
            Tramp! tramp! an awful tread!

  It was the Ogre coming home; his supper
            Was steaming nice and hot,--
  Two calves upon a spit, ten rabbits roasting,
            A whole sheep in the pot.

  He banged the door wide open, sniffed and snorted,
            Then, in a dreadful voice,
  Roared out, while his poor wife stood by and trembled,
            "I smell seven little boys!"

  In vain she told him 'twas the mutton scorching;
            The veal had browned too fast;
  He searched the house, peering around and under,
            And reached the bed at last,

  Then dragged them one by one out, fairly shouting
            At little Hop-o'my-Thumb,
  Saying the lads would make, towards a dinner,
            Six mouthfuls and one crumb.

  "O, leave them till to-morrow!" cried the woman;
            "You've meat enough to-night."
  "Well, so I have," he said, "I'll wait a little.
            Ah! ugh! they're plump and white."

  Now it so chanced the Ogre had seven daughters,
            And all slept in one bed,
  In a large room, and each wore for a nightcap
            A gold crown on her head.

  And Hop-o'-my-Thumb, when all the house was quiet,
            Into their chamber crept,
  And the gold head-bands for himself and brothers
            Stole from them while they slept.

  Wicked and sly it was; he knew the Ogre
            Would, no doubt, rise at dawn,
  And, being but half awake, would kill the children
            Who had no night-caps on.

  And, sure enough, he did! He was so drowsy,
            And fogs so veiled the sun,
  That, whetting up a huge, broad-bladed dagger,
            He slew them, every one.

  Then Hop-o'-my-Thumb, awakening his brothers,
            Whispered: "Make haste and fly!"
  Without a word they did as they were bidden,
            In twinkling of an eye,

  Out in the drizzly mist of a gray morning,
            Off through the chill and dew,
  And none too soon! Within an hour the Ogre
            His dreadful blunder knew.

  "Wife, fetch my seven-league boots at once!" he shouted;
            "I'll catch the vipers yet!"
  He stamped his feet into the magic leather
            With many a muttered threat;

  And off he started, over hill and valley,
            Seven leagues at every stride;
  The children saw him like a giant shadow,
            But they could only hide.

  He scoured the country, rumbling like a tempest;
            Far, near, they heard his roar,
  Until at last his seven-league feet grew tired,
            And he could go no more.

  And down he lay to rest him for a minute--
            The day had grown so hot--
  Close to a rock where lay the seven children,
            Although he knew it not.

  Hop-o'-my-thumb spoke softly to his brothers:
            "Run! fast as ever you can,
  And leave me to take care of Mr. Ogre."
            And hurry-scurry they ran.

  And Hop-o'-my-Thumb, creeping from out his crevice,
            With greatest caution drew
  The Ogre's boots off (these would shrink or widen
            Just as you wished them to),

  And put them on himself. Then he decided
            To hasten to the king;
  And, as he traveled towards the royal palace,
            Each boot was like a wing.

  There was a war. The king had need of service
            In carrying the news.
  He heard his tale, and said, "I'll use this fellow
            Who wears the magic shoes."

  So little Hop-o'-my-Thumb made mints of money,
            And his whole family
  Lived very easy lives, and from his bounty
            Grew rich as rich could be.

  As for the Ogre, in his sleep he tumbled
            Down from that ledge of rock,
  And was so bumped and bruised he never rallied,
            But perished from the shock.

  And Hop-o'-my-Thumb, whose influence in high places
            Was certain to prevail,
  Made the kind Ogress, who had hidden and fed them,
            Duchess of Draggletail.



  THE BABES IN THE WOOD.


  Come, list to my story,
    More sorry, by far,
  To her who must tell it,
  And you who will hear it,
    Than all others are!

  'Tis the darling of each, who
    Has spirit so mild
  As to grieve for the Human--
  The sad man or woman,
    Or desolate child!

  Of eyes, my dear children,
    Yours are not the first,
  Through whose teary lashes,
  In soft, pitying splashes,
    The warm drops have burst

  At hearing it. Many,
    For hundreds of years,
  Have in the same fashion
  Their heartfelt compassion
    Shown thus--with their tears!


  A dying father in his arms
    Two children did enfold.
  The eldest one, a little boy,
    Was only three years old;
  Even less than that had served to tint
    The baby's head with gold.

  The mother, too, lay ill to death,
    No human power might save,
  And to her darlings, that same hour,
    Her farewell blessing gave.
  Father and mother--one in life--
    Were laid in the same grave.

  But, ere the latest breath was drawn,
    The father's brother came--
  Nearest of kin, upon whose love
    The orphaned ones had claim--
  And he made oath to cherish them
    As his own blood and name.

  The will devised three hundred pounds
    A year unto the son,
  Three hundred, on her marriage-day,
    To Jane, the little one.
  Thus it was from the uncle's greed
    That trouble first begun.

  For if, by chance, they both should die,
    He was to have their gold;
  He felt no love for either child--
    His heart was hard and cold.
  And, while he promised fair, he planned
    A scheme both bad and bold.

  A twelvemonth did his darksome mind
    Plot for the dreadful deed.
  Two brutal ruffians he hired
    To help him in his need;
  And yet, so secret were his ways,
    None knew to intercede.

  He formed a wily, plausive tale,
    And told it everywhere,
  How the two children were to go,
    Under the best of care--
  Two friends of his--for holiday
    To London, for the fair.

  The horses stood before the gate,
    The ruffians twain astride;
  And gay with scarlet girth and rein
    They started, side by side.
  O, blithe the babies' spirits were,
    That they could have a ride!

  For every pretty sight they saw,
    For every sound they heard,
  The boy had noisy laugh or shout,
    The girl had winsome word--
  He questioned, never satisfied,
    She chattered like a bird.

  Meanwhile each ruffian surly sat,
    In dark and restless mood;
  Little the prattlers, in their joy,
    Such silence understood,
  As on through the warm early day
    They rode towards the wood.

  They reached the leafy wilderness,
    And then the way grew wild;
  But ever with new glee the babes
    The gathering gloom beguiled.
  Until, at last, quite cheered and won,
    One of the ruffians smiled.

  Love had o'ercome within his breast
    His wicked avarice.
  "I will not kill the little things,"
    He said, "for any price!"
  Then passed hot words between the two,
    But only once or twice,

  For blows fell, and the kindly one
    Dropped to the earth and died;
  The children sank upon the ground,
    Trembling and terrified,
  And clung together, wondering,
    And moaned, and sobbed, and cried.

  Then he who lived led them away,
    Both shivering with dread;
  They begged for food; he paused a space;
    "Stay here awhile," he said,
  "And I will go into the town
    At once, and fetch you bread."

  He went. In their sweet innocence
    They trusted to his word;
  Meanwhile, the sparkling morning sun
    With a grey cloud was blurred;
  And long, in vain, they waited there,
    Nor cried again, nor stirred!

  How can I write the mournful end--
    And tell how, up and down,
  At last, by hunger driven, they stray
    Over the mosses brown--
  She clutching at his little coat,
    He clinging to her gown?

  More than one day--more than one night,
    Comes on them there alone!
  They search for blackberries, so weak
    And starving they are grown,
  Now through a thicket of wild brier,
    Now 'gainst a hindering stone!

  Then they lie down to die, poor babes!
    The cruel ground receives
  Their little bodies as a bed;
    Long time the south wind grieves
  Above them; and a hovering bough
    A pall of shadow weaves;
  And robin-red-breasts pity them,
    And cover them with leaves!



  THE THREE LITTLE PIGS


  Ah, very, very poor was she--
  Old Dame Pig, with her children three!
        Robust, beautiful little ones
        Were those three sons,
  Each wearing always, without fail,
  A little fanciful knot in his tail.

  But never enough of sour or sweet
        Had they to eat;
  And so, one day, with a piteous squeak,
        Did the mother speak:
  "My sons, your fortune you must seek!"
  And out in the world, as they were sent,
    The three pigs went.

  Trotting along, the first one saw
  A man who carried a bundle of straw.
        "Give me some straw for a house and bed,"
        The little pig said.
  Straightway, not even waiting a bit,
  The kind man did as he was bid;
  And the little pig built a house of it.

  But he was no more than settled, before
  A wolf came along and knocked at the door,
        Tap-tap, and cried,
  "Little pig, little pig, let me come in!"
        But the pig replied,
  "No, no, by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin!"
        The old wolf grumbled, and added beside,
  "Then I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house in!"

        He was gray and big,
  And he huffed and he puffed and he blew the house in,
        And he ate up the poor little pig.

        The very next day,
        All blithe and gay,
  The second little pig went marching away
  To the world to find his fortune. And when
        He met two men,
  Who bore on their shoulders bunches of furze,
        "My gentle sirs,
  Give me some furze for a house and bed!"
        The little pig said.
  They gave it him freely, every whit,
  And the little pig built a house of it.

  But he could no more than get in before
  The wolf came along and knocked at the door:
  "Little pig, little pig, let me come in!"
        But the pig replied,
  "No, no, by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin!"
        Then the old wolf growled, and added beside,
  "Then I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house in!"

  He was fierce and big,
  And he huffed and he puffed,
  And he puffed and he huffed,
  And he blew the house in,
  And he ate up the poor little pig.

  And then the third little pig went out,
  With his curly tail and his saucy snout,
  Up to all kinds of pranks and tricks;
  And he met a man with a load of bricks,
        And he said, "I suppose
  You are perfectly willing to give me those?"

  By the begging he got them every one,
        And in a trice
        Was the house begun,
  And very shortly the house was done,
        Plastered and snug and nice.

  And along came the same wolf as before,
        And knocked at the door,
        Thump, thump, and cried,
  "Little pig, little pig, let me come in!"
        But the pig replied,
  "No, no, by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin!"
  Then the wolf filled his cheeks out on each side,
        Like a bellows, to blow,
        And he howled, "O ho!
  Then I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house in!"

  Well, he huffed and he puffed and he huffed,
  And he puffed and he huffed and he puffed,
        But with all his huffing,
        And all his puffing,
        The house would _not_ fall in!

        And so, despite
        His appetite,
  He was forced to go with never a bite,
  And for once, at least, was cheated out
  Of the little pig with the saucy snout.

        Of the wily kind,
        Though, he was, and he whined,
  "I know, little pig, where we can find
  Some nice fresh turnips!" Pig grunted, "Where?"
  "O, over at Smith's, in his home field--
        It's not far there.
        If it's pleasant weather
        Shall we go together
  To-morrow at six?" "Yes," piggie squealed.

  But what should the little pig contrive
        But to rise at five
  Next day, and to go through the early dew
        To the field where the turnips grew;
        They were plenty and sweet,
  And he ate of them all he cared to eat,
  And took enough for his dinner, and then
        Went home again.

  The wolf came promptly at six o'clock,
        Gave a friendly knock,
  And asked the pig, "Are you ready to go?"
        "Why, I'd have you know
  I've already been there, and beside
  I've enough for dinner," the pig replied.

        The wolf saw then
        He was cheated again;
  But, "I know where's a lovely apple tree,"
        In a winsome voice said he.
  And the wise little pig, from where he sat,
        Peered out and smiled, "Where's that?"
  "At the Merry Garden; if you'll be fair,
        And it's pleasant weather,
        We two together
  At five in the morning will go there."

        Ah, sly and cunning
    The little pig was, for as early as four
    He was out next day, and running, running,
      Hoping to get the apples before
  The wolf was up. But the apple-tree
  Proved twice as far as he thought 'twould be.

  He climbed the boughs in the greatest haste,
  And thought to himself, "I'll only taste,
        As a bit of a lunch."
        But soon, crunch, crunch,
  He had eaten a score--then what should he see
  But the big gray wolf just under the tree!

      Yes, there he stood,
  Trying to look as meek as he could,
  And he said, "Little pig, are the apples good?"
  Pig thought he should fall from where he sat,
  So heavy his heart went pit-a-pat.
  But he answered, "The nicest under the sun!
        I'll throw down one!"

  The wolf ran after it as he threw it,
        And, before he knew it,
  The pig was out of the tree, and as fleet
        As his four little feet
        Could scamper he fled,
  On, into his house, while after him sped
  The wolf, with a savage voice and face,
        In a furious chase.
        He was long and slim,
  But the little pig proved too swift for him.

  Still, he came again the very next day,
  And he knocked and called "Little pig, I pray,
  You will go to the Shanklin Fair with me.
  Be ready, and I will call at three!"

  Now the pig, as he had always done,
  Got the start of the wolf, and went at one.
  At the fair he bought him a butter churn,
  And with it started out to return;
        But who should he meet--
  The very first one he chanced to spy--
        Upon the street,
  But the wolf! and it frightened him dreadfully.

        So he crept inside
        His churn to hide;
  It began to roll; he began to ride;
        Around and around,
        Along the ground,
  He passed the wolf with a bump and bound.

  He was frightened worse than he'd frightened the pig,
        By the funny, rumbling rig;
        And he fled in dismay
  Far out of his own and the little pig's way.

        Yet in due time--for I suppose
  He was nearly starved--his pattering toes
  Were heard again at the little pig's door.
  Such a haunted look his visage wore,
        When the tale he told
  Of the beast that bumped and bounded and rolled,
  Up hill, down hill, and everywhere,
  And chased him away from the Shanklin Fair!

        Then, with all his might,
        The little pig laughed outright,
        Giving a jocular, scornful shout
        With his saucy snout,
  As he cried, "O, how would you like to learn
  'Twas a churn, and that I was in the churn!"

  Then the wolf exclaimed, "I hate your tricks,
  Your bolted door and your house of bricks!
  I'll eat you anyway--that I'll do!
  I'll come down the chimney after you!"

  But the pig built a fire, high and hot,
  And filled with water his dinner pot,
  And just as the wolf came down the flue,
  Scraping his ribs as he slipped through,
        What did he do
  But lift the cover, and let him fall
  Into the pot--hide, hair and all!

        And what next he did
        Was to slide the lid
  Quick over the pot; "It's boiling hot--
  It'll maybe cook him, and maybe not,"
        He cried in glee,
        "But I'll let him be,
  And when it is dinner-time I'll see!"

  That day he dined quite to his mind;
  And he mused to himself, "I'm half inclined
  To think, by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin,
  That _this_ is the best way to take wolves in!"



  GOODY TWO-SHOES.

  Versified by Mrs. Clara Doty Bates.


    Two-Shoes, Two-Shoes,
      Little Goody Two-Shoes!
  Do you know about her? Well,
  I'm ready now to tell
  How the little creature came
  By so odd a name.

  It was very long ago,
    In the days of good Queen Bess,
  When upon the cold world's care,
    Fatherless and motherless,

  There were thrown two helpless ones,
    Destitute as they could be;
  Tom, they called the little boy,
    And the girl was Margery.

  Many a day they cried for food
    When the cup-board shelves were bare;
  Many an hour they roamed the streets
    Scarcely knowing why or where.

  As to kindred, all were dead;
    As to shelter, they had none;
  As to shoes, Tom had a pair;
    Little Margery had but one!

    One-Shoe, One-Shoe,
    Think of Little One-Shoe!
  Think how never a pretty boot
  Was buttoned on the tender foot;
  Nor yet a slipper, fairy-light,
  With dainty knot or buckle bright!

  But above our human woes
    Bends an always loving Heaven;
  And to every hungry cry
    Is there somewhere answer given.

  Kind eyes watched the wandering ones,
    Pitied their forlorn distress;
  Grieved to note Tom's ragged coat,
    And Margery's tattered dress.

  'Twas the village clergyman,
    And he sought them tenderly,
  Gave them warm, soft clothes to wear.
    Ordered shoes for Margery.

    "Two shoes, two shoes,
    Oh, see my two shoes!"
  So did little Margery cry,
  When the cobbler came to try
  If they fitted trim and neat
  On the worn and tired feet:
  That is how and why she came
  By so strange a name.

  Tom went off to London town;
    Margery went to village school;
  Apt she was, and quick to learn,
    Docile to the simplest rule.

  Out from the long alphabet
    Letters looked at her and smiled,
  Almost seemed to nod and speak,
    Glad to know so bright a child,

  Ranged themselves in winsome words;
    Then in sentences. Indeed,
  Quite before she knew the fact,
    Margery had learned to read.

    Two-Shoes, Two-Shoes,
    Eager Goody Two-Shoes!
  When the magic art she knew,
  She planned to help poor children too;
  And those who had no chance to learn
  Their letters, she would teach in turn.

  Now, in the days of good Queen Bess,
    Few books were printed, very few--
  None, scarcely, for the little folks;
    So Margery studied what to do.

  She cut from proper blocks of wood
    Sets of the letters: A, B, C;
  And in some cosy shady place
    Would group the children round her knee

  And teach them--not alone to read,
    But how to spell, and how to sing;
  And how to practice gentle ways,
    And to be kind to everything.

    Two-Shoes, Two-Shoes,
    So grew Goody Two-Shoes!
  First a maiden, comely, sweet;
  Then a woman, wise, discreet;
  Called now, as a courtesy,
  Little Mrs. Margery.

  An honored, faithful teacher she!
    And every year an added grace,
  More fair than youth's fair roses are,
    Blossomed upon her charming face.

  All living things seemed drawn to her:
    A helpless lamb, whose dam had died,
  She reared and tended till he ran
    Tame as a kitten at her side;

  A sky-lark stolen from its nest
    Sang on her finger, though he knew
  His unclipped wings were free to soar
    At will into the heaven's blue;

  A raven which had fought and torn
    Its captor's hand with savage beak,
  And which at first could only croak,
    She taught in gracious words to speak;

  Jumper, the dog, watched all her steps
    With constant eyes and jealous love;
  A great cat purred and rubbed her dress;
    And on her shoulder perched a dove.

    Two-Shoes, Two-Shoes,
    Ah me, Margery Two-Shoes!
  Maybe the days of good Queen Bess
  Were times of wisdom; nevertheless,
  Witches (the people said) might be--
  And a witch they thought our Margery!

  'Twas Nickey Noodle, a simpleton,
    Who raised the cry, "A witch, a witch!"
  Then she was summoned to the court,
    Amused, or grieved, she scarce knew which.

  Plenty of friends, however, proved
    How false was Justice Shallow's plea
  That "She _must_ be a witch, because--
    Because of the raven, don't you see?"

  Sir Edward Lovell, a baronet,
    Who stood in court and saw her grace
  Her sweet good sense, her dignity,
    And the pure beauty of her face,

  Sighed heavily in his high-born breast
    As Mrs. Margery was set free,
  Saying, "I _know_ she is a witch,
    For, ah, she so bewitches me!"

  He watched her go her quiet ways,
    And vowed, whatever might betide,
  If his best love could win her heart
    And hand, then she should be his bride.

    Two-Shoes, Two-Shoes--
    Lady Lovell, if she choose!
  Her the noble lover wooed,
  Humbly, as a lover should,
  Eagerly, as lover ought,
  With entire heart and thought.

  What her answer, all may guess,
    For the old church chime that rung
  Its next wedding anthem sung
    With a most delighted tongue:

    _"Two-Shoes, Two-Shoes,
    Wedding day of Two-Shoes!
  Barefoot lass but yesterday,
  Lady Lovell is to-day!
  Two-Shoes, Two-Shoes,
  Lovely Lady Two-Shoes!"_

  Who is this that rides so fast,
    With plumed hat and cheek of brown,
  With golden trappings on his horse,
    Gallant and gay from London town?

  He hears the bells, he strikes his spurs,
    The flecks of foam are on his rein,
  The dust of journey whitens him,
    He leans to see the bridal train!

    Two-Shoes, Two-Shoes,
    Lady Goody Two-Shoes!
  Tom it is, come home once more!
  Even now he's at the door,
  Rich and grand as any king--
  Come to bless the wedding ring!



  SAARCHINKOLD!


      Nose to window,
          Still as a mouse,
            Watching grampa
              "Bank the house."
  Out of the barrow he shovels the tan,
  And he piles and packs it as hard as he can
      "All about the house's feet,"
  Says "Phunny-kind,"
    Nose to the window,
      Eager and sweet.
  Now she comes to the entry door:
  "Grampa--_what are you do that for_?
  Are you puttin' stockin's on to the house?"
  (Found her tongue, has Still-as-a-Mouse.)

  Grandpa twinkles out of his eyes,
  Straightens his aching back, and tries
  To look as solemn as Phunny-kind.
  But the child says:
              "Grampa, is it the wind
  That keeps you a-shakin' an' shakin' so?"
  Then the old man, shaking the more, says: "No!
  But I'm bankin' the house, Miss Locks-o-gold,
  To keep out the dreadful--
              _Sa-archin' Cold_!"

  And away he chuckles, barrow and all:
  "_'Mazin' thing_," he says, "_to be small_!
  Folks says the best things 't ever they do
  Afore they git old 'nough to know!"

  Phunny-kind puzzles her queer, wee brain
  As slowly she toddles in again:
  --"Is she a nawful, ugly, old
  Giant--or what--this
              'Sa-archinkold?'"

  She stands by the clock in the corner, now:
  "I wonder," she says, "does the old clock know?"
      But the great clock
              TICKS!
      And the _grim_ clock
              TOCKS!
  Away at the top of his ghostly box;
  The round Full Moon (in his forehead) smiles;
  But with all his wisdom, or all his wiles,
      Though he knows very well,
      He never will tell
  Should he tick and tock till a century old
      What they mean by
              The Sa-archinkold!

  In the great, square room, by a cheerful flame
  In the fire-place, bending above her frame,
  Is grandma, snapping her chalky string
  Across and across a broad, bright thing.
  "Gramma, what you are a-doin' here?"
  "I'm a-makin' a 'comfort,' my little dear;
  For grandpa and I are a-gittin' old.
  And we're afeared o' the Sa-archin' Cold."

  When the daylight fades, and the shadows fall
  Flickering down from the fire-dogs tall,
  Comes Uncle Phil, from his school and his books.
  "Uncle Phil, I know by your smile-y looks--
  You'll let me--get on your knee--jus' _so_--
  An' you'll tell me somefing I want to know:
  'Cos, you see, Uncle Phil, I've _got_ to be told
  _Who she is_--they call her
              'The Sa-archinkold.'"

      Uncle Phil looks up;
        Uncle Phil looks down;
      And he wags his head;
        And he tries to frown;
      But at last he cries
      In a great surprise:
  "Why, yes! to be sure! to be sure, I'll tell
  For I know the old dame, of old, right well:

  "Now Jack is a fine old fellow, you see;
  Spicy, and full of his pranks, is he:
  Snipping off noses, just for fun,
  And sticking 'em on again when he is done;
  A-pinching at pretty, soft ears and cheeks;
  A-wakin' folks up with his jolly freaks;
      But a--h! for your life
      Look sharp for his wife!

  "For she comes after, and comes to stay--
  Welcome or not--for a month and a day!
  She plots, and she plans, she sneaks, and she crawls
  Till she finds a way through the thickest of walls!"

          "ZH----ZH!
  Did you ever meet a
  More dreadful creatur!
    She's Jack Frost's wife!
    And the plague of his life!

          "ZH!--ZH!
  I'm all of a shiver,
  Heart, lungs and liver!
  When I think of that old
          SAARCHINKOLD!

  "Oh--oo!" cries Phunny-kind, "how does she look?"
  "To be sure! I'll picture her just like a book.
  --Her nose--is an icicle, sharp and strong,
    To poke in at every hole and crack;
  Her eyes gleam frostily all night long--
    But who knows whether they're blue or black?

      "She brings on her back
      An astonishing pack.
  Like a blacksmith's bellows, marvellous big;
  And while she dances a horrible jig,
  Out of this bellows a doleful tune
  She skre--eels away, in the dark o' the Moon!

  "But if ever she works with a wicked will,
  'Tis when she is quiet, and sly, and still.
  She pretends that old Jack leaves his work but half done,
  She '_wishes for once he'd be quit of his fun_!'
  So she follows him up with her sour, ugly phiz,
  And wherever she goes, you may know she means 'biz.

  "Look sharp when she peeps through the crack o' the door!
  Look sharp when she hides away under the floor!
  She'll crack the bare ground with a terrible bang!
  And out from the clap boards the nails will go, spang!

  "She'll spoil the potatoes (if once she gets in),
  And she'll shake all the people whose bed-clothes are thin!
  She'll stop the old clock in the dead o' the night,
  And make him hold up both his hands in a fright;
      And--what she _won't_ do,
      Is more than _I_ know!

              "ZH----Zh!
      I'm all of a shiver,
      Heart, lungs, and liver!
      Jist always, whiniver
      I think of that o--o--ld
              SA-ARCHINKOLD!"

  Then Phunny-kind shivers a little, too;
  And heaves a deep sigh; and says, "Are you froo?"
  Then slides down, quietly, to the floor,
  Doubtfully watching the outer door.

  She says, "Is my bed got a fing like you said--
  A 'comfut'--vat I can put over my head?"
  "(Oh, Phil! naughty boy!)" says grandma;--"yes, dear
  Your bed's got a 'comfut,' so never you fear--
  And you should be in it, for see, the old clock
  Points just to your bed-time, and says 'tick-tock!'"

  "Well, grampa, I'm goin' as quick as I can,
  If you'll only give me a handful of 'tan.'
  "What _for_?" "Oh, I'm jus' goin' to take it to bed,
  'Cos, I recollec' every word that you said,
  And gramma, and Phil; for _all of you told_
  How '_comfuts_,' and _'tan'll' keep out_
              SA-ARCHINKOLD!"



Errata

Missing or invisible punctuation has been silently supplied.

  From the time it was put in the ground,  [gound]
  Then, with a relish, stood chuckling and grinning,  [are lish]
  Why, a nest, of course, and an egg or so,
    [_text damaged: reconstructed from "an egg o   o"_]
  "I wonder," she says, "does the old clock know?"
    [_final close quote missing_]
  "She'll spoil the potatoes (if once she gets in),
    [_open quote missing_]
  "(Oh, Phil! naughty boy!)" says grandma;--"yes, dear
  If you'll only give me a handful of 'tan.'"
    [_close quotes missing_]

Text unchanged:

  "Caspar," "Balthassar," "Melchoir"--

  Down under t'was dark as a mine;

  If you may sit on this flower, why may'nt I?

Line division unchanged (_The Gold Spinner_):

  The second day 'twas the same;
    But the third a messenger
  Came in from the mountains to the queen,





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