« AnteriorContinuar »
But the gnat
In the sun
When it rains
On the window-panes. Tongue to talk have you and I; God has given the little fly
No such things,
Flies can see
Spiders are near by.
He can eat
On his back
Like a pedler's sack.
Put a crumb
276 Prominent among American writers who have
contributed to the happiness of children is Lucy Larcom (1826–1893). One of a numerous family, she worked as a child in the Lowell mills, later taught school in Illinois, was one of the editors of Our Young Folks, and wrote a most fascinating autobiography called A New England Girlhood. Several of her poems are still used in schools. The one that follows is, perhaps, the most popular of these. It is semi-dramatic, and the three voices of the poem can be easily discovered. Miss Larcom's finest poem is the one entitled “Hannah Binding Shoes.”
Catch him? No,
But no doubt
Just to gad about.
Fie, oh fie,
THE BROWN THRUSH
All wet flies
Cats, you know,
Then their whiskers grow.
There's a merry brown thrush sitting up
in the tree, He's singing to me! He's singing to me! And what does he say, little girl, little
boy? "Oh, the world's running over with joy!
Don't you hear? Don't you see?
Hush! Look! In my tree I'm as happy as happy can be!”
Over the river and through the wood,
Over the river and through the wood Now grandmother's cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun!
Is the pudding done? Hurrah for pumpkin-pie!
WHO STOLE THE BIRD'S
LYDIA MARIA CHILD
“To-whit! to-whit! to-whee!
"Not I," said the cow, "Moo-oo!
277 Mrs. Child (1802–1880) was the editor of
the first monthly for children in the United States, the Juvenile Miscellany. She wrote and compiled several works for children, and her optimistic outlook has led someone to speak of her as the "Apostle of Cheer." She wrote a novel, Hobomak (1821), which is still spoken of with respect, and she was a prominent figure in the anti-slavery agitation. The two poems following have held their own with children for reasons easily recognized.
LYDIA MARIA CHILD
Over the river and through the wood,
The horse knows the way
To carry the sleigh Through the white and drifted snow.
Over the river and through the wood
Oh, how the wind does blow!
I saw them; on the ground they lay, “Susan Coolidge” was the pseudonym used
Golden and red, a huddled swarm, by Sarah C. Woolsey (1845-1905). She Waiting till one from far away, wrote numerous tales and verses for young White bedclothes heaped up on her people, and her series of Katy Books was
arm, widely known and enjoyed. The poem Should come to wrap them safe and that follows is a very familiar one, and its
warm. treatment of its theme may be compared with that in Henry Ward Beecher's little The great bare Tree looked down and prose apologue (No. 249).
“Good-night, dear little leaves," he HOW THE LEAVES CAME
And from below each sleepy child "SUSAN COOLIDGE"
mured, I'll tell you how the leaves came down:
“It is so nice to go to bed.” The great Tree to his children said, "You're getting sleepy, Yellow and The poems for young readers produced by Brown,
the sisters Alice Cary (1820-1871) and
Phoebe Cary (1824-1871) constitute the Yes, very sleepy, little Red;
most successful body of juvenile verse yet It is quite time to go to bed."
produced in this country. One of Alice “Ah!” begged each silly, pouting leaf,
Cary's poems, “An Order for a Picture,” "Let us a little longer stay;
is of a very distinguished quality, but as
its appeal is largely to mature readers, two Dear Father Tree, behold our grief!
of Phoebe Cary's poems of simpler quality 'Tis such a very pleasant day,
are chosen for use here. The first of these We do not want to go away.”
marks, by means of three illustrations
within the range of children's observation, So, just for one more merry day
a very common defect of child nature and To the great Tree the leaflets clung,
is, by the force of these illustrations, a Frolicked and danced and had their way
good lesson in practical ethics. The appeal Upon the autumn breezes swung,
of the second is to that inherent ideal of Whispering all their sports among, disinterested heroism which is so strong in
children. The setting of the story amidst "Perhaps the great Tree will forget
the ever-present threat of the sea affords a And let us stay, until the spring,
good chance for the teacher to do effective If we all beg and coax and fret.”
work in emphasizing the geographical backBut the great Tree did no such thing; ground. This should be done, however, He smiled to hear their whispering. not as geography merely, but with the
attention on the human elements involved. "Come, children all, to bed," he cried;
280 And ere the leaves could urge their
THEY DID N'T THINK prayer, He shook his head, and far and wide,
PHOEBE CARY Fluttering and rustling everywhere, Once a trap was baited Down sped the leaflets through the air. With a piece of cheese;
Down he flew, and Kitty seized him,
Before he'd time to blink. “Oh,” he cried, “I'm sorry,
But I did n't think."
Now my little children,
You who read this song, Don't you see what trouble
Comes of thinking wrong? And can't you take a warning
From their dreadful fate Who began their thinking
When it was too late? Don't think there's always safety
Where no danger shows, Don't suppose you know more
Than anybody knows;
Pause upon the brink,
'Cause you did n't think.
Which tickled so a little mouse
It almost made him sneeze;
Be careful where you go!” "Nonsense!" said the other,
“I don't think you know!" So he walked in boldly
Nobody in sight; First he took a nibble,
Then he took a bite; Close the trap together
Snapped as quick as wink, Catching mousey fast there,
'Cause he did n't think.
Once a little turkey,
Fond of her own way,
Where to go or stay;
Here I am half-grown;
To run about alone!”
Hiding saw her pass;
Covered all the grass. So she made a supper
For a sly young mink, 'Cause she was so headstrong
That she would n't think.
THE LEAK IN THE DIKE
A Story of Holland
At the close of the pleasant day,
Outside the door at play:
While there is light to see,
Across the dike, for me;
They are hot and smoking yet;
Before the sun is set."
Once there was a robin
Lived outside the door, Who wanted to go inside
And hop upon the floor. “Ho, no," said the mother,
"You must stay with me; Little birds are safest
Sitting in a tree.” "I don't care," said Robin,
And gave his tail a fling, “I don't think the old folks
Know quite everything.”
Then the good-wife turned to her labor,
Humming a simple song,