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112 Works of Carolyn Wells

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The High Horse

Story type: Poetry

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The High Horse often takes a foremost placeAmong the winners of the human race.They say one needs both brawn and brain to ride him,And even then ’tis very hard to guide him.His jockeys gaily prance and boldly scoff,But soon or late they’re sure to tumble off.

The Bugbear

Story type: Poetry

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Of all the fearsome beasts beneath the sunThe Bugbear is the most appalling one.At night he comes and hovers o’er our bed,Filling us with a nameless fear and dread.He is not half so terrible by day–Sometimes he shrinks and dwindles quite away.

The Irish Bull

Story type: Poetry

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Among the stock jokes it is oft averredThe Irish Bull is best of all the heard.He has no points, he has no head or tail,But many a jovial party he’ll regale.And all his hearers will with laughter choke,Except his brother John, who sees no joke.

Forebears

Story type: Poetry

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Misled by certain signs of form and shape,Some think we are descended from the ape.But recent science now the truth declaresThe human race descended from Forebears.And since we’re so inclined to war, I’ll wagerOne of our Forebears was the Ursa Major.

The Golden Buck

Story type: Poetry

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Perhaps because it’s easily approached,The Golden Buck’s a game that’s often poached.‘Tis sometimes mild, again ’tis strong and hearty,It may be found at many a gay stag-party.No branching antlers this strange beast adorn,But with the Golden Buck we take a horn.

The Bumble Puppy

Story type: Poetry

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This is the Bumblepuppy. He’s quite tame,Although he’s said to be a sort of game.You scorn him, yet you must–ah, there’s the rub–Accept him at your table or your club.He has his points, yet he’s a pest, indeed;I would we could exterminate the breed.

The Watch Dog

Story type: Poetry

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This useful animal we keepTo guard our treasure while we sleep.A pointer, not a setter, yetHe’s of no use unless he’s set.Gaze on his open, honest face,–There’s no deception in his case.He is attached to us, ’tis plain,Though often by a slender chain.

The Gold Eagle

Story type: Poetry

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Here’s the Gold Eagle. Very rare. They sayThis bird is worth ten dollars any day.He has no wings, apparently, yet IOr you, or anyone can make him fly.He’s very powerful–held in great esteem;And money talks, so let the eagle scream.

Here’s the Spring Chicken. I have heardThey manufacture this queer birdFrom bits of leather and of stringsAll joined and worked by tiny springs.Whenever this fine fowl is broiled,Each of his springs should be well oiled,Or he may spring across the roomAnd plunge his carver into gloom.

The Shuttlecock

Story type: Poetry

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The Shuttlecock’s a handsome fowl to see,His feathers grow straight upward like a tree.He cannot crow, but oftentimes his flightWill reach up to a most astounding height.He is a gamecock, and, in fighting trim,There are not many birds that equal him.

The Saw-Buck

Story type: Poetry

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The Saw-Buck is a fearsome beast.The tramp objects to it, at least.When to the housewife he appliesFor coffee or for apple-pies,Right speedily he’ll turn and leave herWhen he is seized with Saw-Buck Fever.

The Pigeon Toad

Story type: Poetry

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The Pigeon Toad’s a funny little beast,He’s found in every land from West to East.The children bring him in, to our amaze,And though we try to turn him out, he stays.He’s never seen with soldiers, nor with fops,But with the schoolboys how he jumps and hops.

Golf Lynx

Story type: Poetry

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This is the merry Golf Lynx, as you see;An amiable beast, and fond of tee.Indigenous to all the country round,His snaky length lies prone along the ground.It is the fashion o’er this beast to rave,But have a care, lest you become his slave.

The Traveling Crane’s a bird, of course,Yet he possesses wondrous force.A bird of burden he must be,He lifts and pulls so mightily.And sometimes he will grasp his prey,And with it rise and soar away.His plumage is not fine, but then,He’s of the greatest use to men.

The Flying Buttress, every day and night,Continues in his long, unwearied flight.He’s not a song-bird, but he’s said to beFamed for his beauty and his Symmetry.He frequents an old abbey or a manse;The ostrich eats him if he gets a chance.

The Sea Puss

Story type: Poetry

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In ocean waters the Sea Puss is found,Cat-like, forever chasing round and round.She has no claws, but crouching sly and lowShe stealthily puts out her undertow.And when an old seadog comes in her wayI’ll warrant you there is the deuce to pay!

The Battering Ram

Story type: Poetry

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This is the Battering Ram, a fearful beast,I think he weighs a thousand tons at least.Stronger than any other kind of butter,He goes his way calmly, without a flutter.Big as an elephant, bigger than a horse,He seems the best example of brute force.

The Tomahawk

Story type: Poetry

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The Tomahawk’s a fearsome bird, we deem;Though feathered tribes hold him in great esteem;A bird of prey, he whizzes through the air,And clutches his pale victim by the hair.Gory and grewsome,–he is the mainstayOf the historic novel of to-day.

The Jail-Bird

Story type: Poetry

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This is a Jail-bird. Isn’t it a shameTo keep him in a cage and try to tameHis wild desires for freedom? See him droopBehind his bars. He wants to fly the coop.But to beguile his tedious, lonely hoursKind ladies bring him nosegays of bright flowers.

The Royal Seal

Story type: Poetry

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This noble beast’s impressive form is seen‘Mong the possessions of a king or queen.Hard-favored, yet so valuable is he,He’s ever kept beneath a lock and key.And, since his temper can’t find vent in speech,He stamps and punches everything in reach.

The Fire Dogs

Story type: Poetry

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Here are two Fire Dogs–they are queer, indeed;They seem to come of a three-legged breed.They have no tails, their bark is on their back;They hunt in couples, never in a pack.The day’s work over, ’tis a pleasant sightTo find them waiting by the fire at night.

The Mackerel Kit

Story type: Poetry

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This funny little Mackerel KitIs not like other cats a bit;She cannot mew or scratch or purr,She has no whiskers and no fur.Yet, like all cats, her dearest wishIs just to be filled up with fish;But (and this isn’t so feline)She always takes them steeped in brine.

The Apple Bee

Story type: Poetry

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In country villages is foundThe Apple Bee with buzzing sound.And when our ears it does regaleWe find a sting is in its tale.As to its food,–the Apple BeeIs fond of doughnuts, cheese and tea.

The Welsh Rabbit

Story type: Poetry

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See the Welsh Rabbit–he is bred on cheese;(Or cheese on bread, whichever way you please.)Although he’s tough, he looks so mild, who’d thinkThat a strong man from this small beast would shrink?But close behind him follows the nightmare,Beware of them, they are a frightful pair.

The Cricket Bat

Story type: Poetry

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The Cricket Bat is very often seenFlying perchance around the village green;But unlike many other bats, its flightIs always made by day and not by night.There may be one exception though,–and thatIs when it’s aimed at some stray neighboring Cat.

The Common Swallow is so swift of flight,We scarcely see him ere he’s out of sight.One does not make a summer, it is true,But many of them cause a fall or two.The Swallow’s strong when he is in his prime,And yet a man can down him every time.

The Cat O’ Nine Tails is not very nice,–No good at all at catching rats and mice;She eats no fish, though living on the sea,And no one’s friend or pet she seems to be.Yet oft she makes it lively for poor Jack,–Curls round his legs, and jumps upon his back.

The Round Robin

Story type: Poetry

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Here’s the Round Robin, round as any ball;You scarce can see his head or tail at all.He’s not a carrier-pigeon, though he bringsImportant messages beneath his wings.And ’tis this freak of ornithologyThey mean who say, “A little bird told me.”

The Iron Spider

Story type: Poetry

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The Iron Spider is an insect strange,He loves to stand upon a red-hot range.Unlike his race, he’s not an octoped,He has but three legs and he has no head.Had this but been the kind Miss Muffet saw‘Twould not have filled the maiden with such awe.

The Bookworm

Story type: Poetry

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The Bookworm’s an uninteresting grub,Whether he’s all alone or in a club.Of stupid books which seem to us a bore,The Bookworm will devour the very core.Did Solomon or somebody affirmThe early reed-bird catches the bookworm?

Time Flies

Story type: Poetry

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Time Flies are well-known insects; sages claimThat Tempus Fugit is their rightful name.When we’re on idleness or pleasure bent,They sting our conscience and our fun prevent.We hear them winter mornings ere we rise,And oft in fly-time we observe Time Flies.

The Tree Calf

Story type: Poetry

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The sportive Tree Calf here we see,He builds his nest up in a tree;To this strange dwelling-place he cleavesBecause he is so fond of leaves.‘Twas his ancestral cow, I trow,Jumped o’er the moon, so long ago.But he is not so great a rover,Though at the last he runs to cover.

The Military Frog

Story type: Poetry

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The Military Frog, as well you know,Is the famed one who would a-wooing go.And on the soldier’s manly breast displayed,He wins the heart of every blushing maid.But, as a frog, I think he’s incomplete,He has no good hind legs that we may eat.

The Feather Boa

Story type: Poetry

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This animal of which I speakIs a most curious sort of freak.Though Serpent would its form describe,Yet it is of the feathered tribe.And ’tis the snake, I do believe,That tempted poor old Mother Eve,For never woman did existWho could its subtle charm resist.

The Brick Bat

Story type: Poetry

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Oft through the stillness of the summer nightWe see the Brick Bat take his rapid flight.And, with unerring aim, descending straight,He meets a cat on the back garden gate.The little Brick Bat could not fly alone,–Oh, no; there is a power behind the thrown.

The Humbug

Story type: Poetry

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Although a learned EntomologistMay doubt if Humbugs really do exist,Yet each of us, I’m sure, can truly sayWe’ve seen a number of them in our day.But are they real?–well, a mind judicialPerhaps would call them false and artificial.

The Poppycock

Story type: Poetry

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The Poppycock’s a fowl of English breed,And therefore many think him fine indeed.Credulous people’s ears he would regale,And so he crows aloud and spreads his tale.But he is stuffed with vain and worthless words;Fine feathers do not always make fine birds.

The Haycock

Story type: Poetry

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The Haycock cannot crow; he has no brains,No,–not enough to go in when it rains.He is not gamy,–fighting’s not his forte,A Haycock fight is just no sort of sport.Down in the meadow all day long he’ll bide,(That is a little hay-hen by his side.)

The Powder Monkey

Story type: Poetry

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A Theory, by scientists defended,Declares that we from monkeys are descended.This being thus, we therefore clearly seeThe Powder-Monkey heads some pedigree.Ah, yes,–from him descend by evolution,The Dames and Daughters of the Revolution.

An Old Love

Story type: Poetry

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Priscilla, Auntie’s promised meA brand-new Paris doll;And though I love you, yet you seeI cannot keep you all. Nursey declares I really mustThrow one of you away;And you’re the oldest, so I trustYou will not care to stay. You’ve lost an arm, your dress is torn,Your wig is all awry;Priscilla, you are so forlorn,We’ll have […]

Bobby’s Pocket

Story type: Poetry

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Our Bobby is a little boy, of six years old, or so;And every kind of rubbish in his pocket he will stow. One day he thought he’d empty it (so he again could stock it);And here’s an alphabet of what was found in Bobby’s pocket. A was a rosy Apple, with some bites out, here […]

There was a youthful genius once, a boy of thirteen years,Named Cyrus Franklin Edison Lavoisier De Squeers.To study he was not inclined, for fun he had a bent;But there was just one article he wanted to invent. “It’s a sort of a contraption which will work itself,” he said,“And, without studying, will put my lessons […]

The Lady Lorraine was sweet and fair;The Lady Lorraine was young;She had wonderful eyes and glorious hair,And a voice of a cadence rich and rare;Oh, she was a lady beyond compare–By all were her praises sung,Till valley and plainTook up the refrain,And rang with the praise of the Lady Lorraine. And besides all charms of […]

The Reg’lar Lark’s a very gay old Bird;At sunrise often may his voice be heardAs jauntily he wends his homeward way,And trills a fresh and merry roundelay.And some old, wise philosopher has said:Rise with a lark, and with a lark to bed.

The Smiling Shark

Story type: Poetry

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There was an old Shark with a smileSo broad you could see it a mile.He said to his friends,As he sewed up the ends,“It was really too wide for the style.”

I don’t know why I’m slandered so,If I go high,–if I go low,–There’s always some one who will say,“Just see that mercury to-day!”And whether toward the top I crawlOr down toward zero I may fall,They always fret, and say that IAm far too low or far too high.Although I try with all my might,I never […]

The Pirate Poodle

Story type: Poetry

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Once there was a Pirate Poodle,And he sailed the briny seasFrom the land of Yankee DoodleSouthward to the Caribbees. He would boast with tales outlandish,Of his valor and renown;And his cutlass he would brandishWith a fearful pirate frown. So ferocious was his mannerAll his crew looked on, aghast;And his fearful pirate bannerFloated from his pirate […]

An Alphabet Zoo

Story type: Poetry

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A was an apt Alligator,Who wanted to be a head-waiter;He said, “I opineIn that field I could shine,Because I am such a good skater.” B was a beggarly Bear,Who carefully curled his front hair;He said, “I would buyA red-spotted tie,–But I haven’t a penny to spare.” C was a cool Chimpanzee,Who went to an afternoon […]

Found Wanting

Story type: Poetry

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There lived a wondrous sculptor once, a genius in his way,Named Phidias Praxiteles Canova Merryday.He sat within his studio and said, “I really mustBegin a Rhodian anaglyptic ceroplastic bust. “My customers demand them, their fame rings near and far,But then, alas, the trouble is, I don’t know what they are.Though I could carve a Venus […]

The Beetle was blind, and the Bat was blinder,And they went to take tea with the Scissors-grinder.The Scissors-grinder had gone awayAcross the ocean to spend the day;But he’d tied his bell to the grapevine swing.The Bat and the Beetle heard it ring,And neither the Beetle nor Bat could seeWhy no one offered them any tea.So, […]

The Erratic Rat

Story type: Poetry

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There was a ridiculous RatWho was awfully puffy and fat.“I’ll carry,” he said,“This plate on my head,‘Twill answer in place of a hat.” And then he remarked with a frown,“I suppose that I must have a gown;I’ll make me a kiltOf this old crazy-quilt,To wear when I’m going to town. “And of course, though the […]

Once on a time a lad I knew–His sister called him Bubby;His cheeks were red, his eyes were blue,And he was plump and chubby.Indeed, he was so stout a boy,Some called him Roly Poly Roy;They called him thatFor he was fatAnd very plump and chubby. He caused his father grief profound,And made his mother worry,Because […]

My Barometer

Story type: Poetry

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My little maid with golden hairComes each morning for a kiss;And I know the day will be fine and fairWhen Polly looks like this. Or I know the clouds will frown and lower,The skies will be dull and gray,And perhaps there’ll be a passing shower,When Polly looks this way. But a violent storm of rain […]

Betty Botta bought some butter;“But,” said she, “this butter’s bitter!If I put it in my batterIt will make my batter bitter.But a bit o’ better butterWill but make my batter better.”Then she bought a bit o’ butterBetter than the bitter butter,Made her bitter batter better.So ’twas better Betty BottaBought a bit o’ better butter.

A Marvel

Story type: Poetry

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An old astronomer there wasWho lived up in a tower,Named Ptolemy CopernicusFlammarion McGower.He said: “I can prognosticateWith estimates correct;And when the skies I contemplate,I know what to expect.When dark’ning clouds obscure my sight,I think perhaps ’twill rain;And when the stars are shining bright,I know ’tis clear again.”And then abstractedly he scannedThe heavens, hour by hour,Old […]

The New Cup

Story type: Poetry

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“I’ve a lovely new cup from Uncle John,”Said Dorothy; “only see–It has beautiful golden letters on,And they spell ‘Remember Me.’” “Oho!” laughed Fred. “Why, Dorothy dear,They put that on mugs and plates:I‘ve studied jography ‘most a year,And I know the names of the States. And when you see that anywhere,–At least, since this fuss with […]

Mr. Hezekiah HinkleSaw a patient PeriwinkleWith a kodak, sitting idly by a rill.Feeling a desire awakenFor to have his picture taken,Mr. Hezekiah Hinkle stood stock-still. Mr. Hezekiah HinkleFelt his brow begin to wrinkle,And his pose assume a sad and solemn style;But the Periwinkle trusted,As the focus he adjusted,That his customer would kindly try to smile. […]

Young America

Story type: Poetry

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Wee Willie sat a-thinking,And he shook his curly head.Around him on the nursery floorHis treasures lay outspread. Firecrackers and torpedoes,Trumpet and flag and drum,Rockets and pinwheels and paper caps,For Fourth of July had come. “But it makes me sort o’ sorry,”Wee Willie said with a sigh,“To think of those poor little English boysWithout any Fourth […]

There was an ambitious young eelWho determined to ride on a wheel;But try as he might,He couldn’t ride right,In spite of his ardor and zeal. If he sat on the saddle to rideHis tail only pedalled one side;And I’m sure you’ll admitThat an eel couldn’t sitOn a bicycle saddle astride. Or if he hung over […]

Mamma has bought a calendar,And every single pageHas pictures on of little girls‘Most just about my age. And when she bought it yesterday,Down at the big bazaar,She said, “What lovely little girls,How true to life they are.” But I don’t think they’re true to life,And I’ll just tell you why;They never have a rumpled frockOr […]

There once was an arch ArmadilloWho built him a hut ‘neath a willow;He hadn’t a bedSo he rested his headOn a young Porcupine for a pillow.

A Dream Lesson

Story type: Poetry

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Once there was a little boy who wouldn’t go to bed,When they hinted at the subject he would only shake his head,When they asked him his intentions, he informed them pretty straightThat he wouldn’t go to bed at all, and Nursey needn’t wait. As their arguments grew stronger, and their attitude more strict,I grieve to […]

Old Santa Claus is up-to-date,And hereafter, rumors say,He’ll come with his pack of glittering toys,And visit the homes of girls and boys,In a new reindeerless sleigh.

An April Joke

Story type: Poetry

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Oh, it was a merry, gladsome day,When the April Fool met the Queen of May;She had roguish eyes and golden hair,And they were a mischief-making pair.They planned the funniest kind of a jokeOn the poor, long-suffering mortal folk;And a few mysterious words he said,His fool’s cap close to her flower-crowned head.Then he laughed till he […]

An Alice Alphabet

Story type: Poetry

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A is for Alice a-dressing the Queen. B is for Borogoves, mimsy and lean. C is the Cheshire Cat, wearing a grin. D is the Duchess who had a sharp chin. E is the Eaglet who barred out long words. F, the Flamingo, the queerest of birds. G is the Gryphon, loquacious and gay. H, […]

The Funny Kittens

Story type: Poetry

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Once there were some silly kittens,And they knitted woolly mittensTo bestow upon the freezing Hottentots.But the Hottentots refused them,Saying that they never used themUnless crocheted of red with yellow spots. So the silly little kittensTook their blue and white striped mittensTo a Bear who lived within a hollow tree;The Bear responded sadly,“I would wear your […]

‘Twas the night before the Fourth of July, the people slept serene;The fireworks were stored in the old town hall that stood on the village green.The steeple clock tolled the midnight hour, and at its final stroke,The fire in the queer old-fashioned stove lifted its voice and spoke;“The earth and air have naught to do, […]

A canner, exceedingly canny,One morning remarked to his granny,“A canner can canAnything that he can;But a canner can’t can a can, can he?”

A very grandiloquent GoatSat down to a gay table d’hote;He ate all the corks,The knives and the forks,Remarking: “On these things I dote.” Then, before his repast he began,While pausing the menu to scan,He said: “Corn, if you please,And tomatoes and pease,I’d like to have served in the can.”

A fable told by La Fontaine,Two centuries or more ago,Describes some rats who would arraignA cat, their direst foe,Who killed so many ratsAnd caused the deepest woe,This Catiline of cats. The poor rats were at their wits’ endTheir homes and families to defend;And as a last resortThey took the case to court. It seems they […]

Triangular Tommy, one morning in May,Went out for a walk on the public highway.Just here I will say,‘Twas a bright sunny day,And the sky it was blue, and the grass it was green,The same sky and grass that you’ve all of you seen;And the birds in the trees sang their usual song,And Triangular Tommy went […]

Opulent Ollie

Story type: Poetry

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One Saturday opulent OllieThought he’d go for a ride on the trolley;But his pennies were few,–He only had two,–So he went and made mud-pies with Polly.

The Two Bears

Story type: Poetry

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Prince Curlilocks remarked one dayTo Princess Dimplecheek,“I haven’t had a real good playFor more than ‘most a week.” Said Princess Dimplecheek, “My dear,Your majesty forgets–This morning we played grenadierWith grandpa’s epaulets. “And yesterday we sailed to Spain–We both were pirates bold,And braved the wild and raging mainTo seek for hidden gold.” “True,” said the prince; […]

This figure here before you is a Macaroni Man,Who is built, as you may notice, on a most ingenious plan.His skeleton, I beg to state, is made of hairpins three,Which are bent and curved and twisted to a marvellous degree.His coat-sleeves and his trouser-legs, his head and eke his waistAre made of superfine imported macaroni […]

The 4.04 Train

Story type: Poetry

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“There’s a train at 4.04,” said Miss Jenny;“Four tickets I’ll take. Have you any?”Said the man at the door:“Not four for 4.04,For four for 4.04 is too many.”

A Valuable Gift

Story type: Poetry

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Old Father Time, one dayIn his study, so they say,Was indulging in a surreptitious nap,When from his drowsy dreamsHe was wakened, as it seems,By a timid but persistent little rap. He yawned and rubbed his eyesIn indolent surprise,Then slowly he arose from where he sat;He opened wide his door,And nearly tumbled o’erThe figure that stood […]

The Musical Carp

Story type: Poetry

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There once was a corpulent carpWho wanted to play on a harp,But to his chagrinSo short was his finThat he couldn’t reach up to C sharp.

‘Twas long ago,–a year or so,–In a barnyard by the sea,That an old hen lived whom you may knowBy the name of Fiddle-de-dee.She scratched around in the sand all day,For a lively old hen was she. And then do you know, it happened this wayIn that barnyard by the sea;A great wise owl came down […]

The Happy Hyena

Story type: Poetry

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There once was a happy HyenaWho played on an old concertina.He dressed very well,And in his lapelHe carelessly stuck a verbena.

A Great Lady

Story type: Poetry

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This is the Queen of Nonsense Land,She wears her bonnet on her hand;She carpets her ceilings and frescos her floors,She eats on her windows and sleeps on her doors.Oh, ho! Oh, ho! to think there could beA lady so silly-down-dilly as she! She goes for a walk on an ocean wave,She fishes for cats in […]

Two Old Kings

Story type: Poetry

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Oh! the King of KanoodledumAnd the King of Kanoodledee,They went to seaIn a jigamaree–A full-rigged jigamaree. And one king couldn’t steer,And the other, no more could he;So they both upsetAnd they both got wet,As wet as wet could be. And one king couldn’t swimAnd the other, he couldn’t, too;So they had to float,While their empty […]

A Day Dream

Story type: Poetry

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Polly’s patchwork–oh, dear me!–Truly is a sight to see.Rumpled, crumpled, soiled, and frayed–Will the quilt be ever made?See the stitches yawning wide–Can it be that Polly tried? Some are right and some are wrong,Some too short and some too long,Some too loose and some too tight;Grimy smudges on the white,And a tiny spot of red,Where […]

Our Club

Story type: Poetry

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We’re going to have the mostest fun!It’s going to be a club;And no one can belong to itBut Dot and me and Bub. We thought we’d have a Reading Club,But couldn’t ’cause, you see,Not one of us knows how to read–Not Dot nor Bub nor me. And then we said a Sewing Club,But thought we’d […]

Puzzled

Story type: Poetry

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There lived in ancient Scribbletown a wise old writer-man,Whose name was Homer Cicero Demosthenes McCann.He’d written treatises and themes till, “For a change,” he said,“I think I’ll write a children’s book before I go to bed.” He pulled down all his musty tomes in Latin and in Greek;Consulted cyclopaedias and manuscripts antique,Essays in Anthropology, studies […]

Little Bo-Peep, will you be mine?I want you for my Valentine.You are my choice of all the girls,With your blushing cheeks and your fluttering curls,With your ribbons gay and your kirtle neat,None other is so fair and sweet.Little Bo-Peep, let’s run away,And marry each other on Midsummer Day;And ever to you I’ll be fond and […]

The Little Mothers of the richAre really works of art,They are dressed up to such a pitchIn frocks so fine and smart. They do not have to take the chargeOf baby boys or girls;No, they have dolls exceeding largeWith silky, flaxen curls. Ah, Mothers in Society,Accept this reasoning sound;Dolls far less troublesome would beThan children […]

Fourth Of July

Story type: Poetry

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These boisterous boys, with bang and fizz,They make such noisy noise;But, then, perhaps the reason is,They are such boysy boys. The girls as well,–from early mornThey shoot and shoot and shoot;And on a trumpet or a hornThey toot and toot and toot. But you, whose locks are bleached by Time,(Or by the Chemist’s aid),Heed my […]

Thanksgiving-Day

Story type: Poetry

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When Autumn brings around the dayDevoted to thanksgiving,The children scream with laughter gayFor very joy of living. And every sort of escapadeReceives their commendation;But all agree a masqueradeIs best for celebration. The boys and girls all swarm aroundThe crowd is hourly growing;Straw hatted and grotesquely gowned,–With tin horns loudly blowing. But dear old dames with […]

Ice-Cream

Story type: Poetry

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To Bob and Sue, who have ice-cream,Life is a glowing, halcyon dream,While Tom stands empty by;And says, “Gee! fellers, ain’t it prime?Say, I had ice-cream too, one time,And it was great! Oh, my!” Ah, beaux and belles at rout or ball,Does ice-cream on your palate pall?Is it to you no treat?You never ate it from […]

A kitten went a-walkingOne morning in July,And idly fell a-talkingWith a great big butterfly. The kitten’s tone was airy,The butterfly would scoff;When there came along a fairyWho whisked his wings right off. And then–for it is writtenFairies can do such things–Upon the startled kittenShe stuck the yellow wings. The kitten felt a quiver,She rose into […]

The Tutor

Story type: Poetry

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A tutor who tooted the fluteTried to teach two young tooters to toot.Said the two to the tutor,“Is it harder to toot, orTo tutor two tooters to toot?”

Music’s Might

Story type: Poetry

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On the East Side any day,When the street pianos playYou can see the children dancing witha rhythmic whirl and sway. All untaught their native grace,Joy in every grinning face,To the music they are gaily keepingperfect time and pace. But, infirm and aged crones,Do not risk your ancient bones;Your old nerves would suffer sadlyjarred and jolted […]

A Ball Game

Story type: Poetry

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There never was a place so badBut one redeeming trait it had. Now Harlem is no good at allSave as a place for playing ball. But there the boys will run and playTheir favorite game ‘most every day. But, Reverend sir, ‘twould foolish beTo play, with your rheumatic knee. And, Deacon, do not try, I […]

The Rival Queens

Story type: Poetry

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Now wasn’t this ridiculous?Essie and Mamie had a fuss,And each declared she wouldn’t playUnless she could be Queen of May. “You think you’re smart!” Miss Essie said,And Mamie sneered and tossed her head.And each one angrily declaredThere’d be no queen for all she cared! Mamie was mad as she could be,And Essie pouted sulkily;With angry […]

Little Mothers

Story type: Poetry

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The Little Mothers of the poorThey lead a jolly life, I’m sure;For without being gray and old,They’ve all a mother’s right to scold.As eagerly each day they meetTo pass the gossip of the street,Her baby-cart, each states with pride,Is finest on the whole East side.And each, her small charge will declareThe handsomest baby anywhere.Oh, Grown-up […]

Into the boat the breeze blows fair,It blows across the deck;It blows the little children’s hair,–They get it in the neck. And in this picture you may seeThe happy girls and boys,So true to life,–but thankful beYou cannot hear the noise. The great steam-whistle’s fearful squeaks.The band, ill-tuned and loud;The babies with their screams and […]

Evolutionary Fame

Story type: Poetry

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These merry children, I’ll be boundIn careless pleasure ride around;Unthinking as they onward go,What pedigree their horses show. But, Graybeard, you learned when a boyAbout the Wooden Horse of Troy;And you assume these steeds to beThe Trojan Sire’s posterity. Well, there you’re wrong! you have forgot.They’re Flying Horses, are they not?And, scions of a noble […]

Piety

Story type: Poetry

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With new, ill-fitting gloves,With frocks as white as snow,By two and two these little lovesTo First Communion go. I watch them as they pass,–Somehow, I shrewdly guessEach child thinks little of her massAnd much about her dress. But you, dear Aged Saint,Whose eyeballs upward roll,I trust you have no worldly taintUpon your gentle soul.

The Skipping-Rope

Story type: Poetry

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This picture (as you can see, I hope)Shows a fat little maiden skipping rope.She can jump “highwater” and “pepper” too,But, fat old ladies, let me tell you,If you jump “highwater” you’ll lose your breath,And to jump “pepper” might cause your death.

Wistfulness

Story type: Poetry

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Baby and Sis and meStand by the fence and seePicnickers munchLots o’ good lunch,Jes’ givin’ nothin’ to we. Baby and Sis and me,Hungry as we can be,Haven’t no rightTo be ‘spectin’ a bite,–But we’re glad lookin’ is free.

The Bison, though he seems so grim,Is very sensitive;And when the children stare at him,He wants to cease to live. He hears them wonder why he’s there,And why he can’t break through;And why he has such funny hair,And why he doesn’t moo. At this, the suffering BuffaloCan scarce restrain to weep;Their caustic comments hurt him […]

A Cold Day

Story type: Poetry

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In winter time when ice and sleetMake slidy places on the street,The children early leave their bedsAnd rush out with their skates and sleds. All merrily the little dearsThrow snowballs in each other’s ears;And thus with pretty playful waysBeguile the white and wintry days. Oh, Venerable Veterans,I hate to disarrange your plans;But truly, if you […]

Skates

Story type: Poetry

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A blithesome boy this picture shows;He has a true Mercurian pose,Like winged heels his roller-skatesSend him fast-flying past his mates.When one is young, ’tis very niceTo skate on rollers or on ice. But Ancient Gaffers, do not tryWith active boys like this to vie.For if you get a skate on, youAcquire a rolling gait, ’tis […]

In Central Park

Story type: Poetry

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In Central Park, along the Mall,We see the gay goat-carriage crawl;With little boys and girls inside,Enjoying their exciting ride. Right willingly each nimble steedExerts his very utmost speed;And o’er the smooth hard road they raceAt something like a turtle’s pace. But stout old men and portly dames,Pray, do not urge your rightful claims;And even though […]

‘Tis taught by philosophic schoolsThe human race is mostly fools.And once a year you see this truthAbly set forth by jocund youth,Who broach the tenets of the creedPlainly that he who runs may read. But Aged Idiots, ’tis not meetFor you to run along the street,And with a manner bold and slyPin tags on ladies […]

Plebeian

Story type: Poetry

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Lucinda’s tastes are so depraved;She likes to play and rompWith children poor and ill-behaved,Who boast no style or pomp. Their costumes are not quite correct,They have no pretty tricks;Lucinda! pray be more select,In higher circles mix.

Patrician

Story type: Poetry

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Ah, sweet Lucinda, best of girls,How quick to take advice.Behold her with unpapered curls,And frock so rich and nice! Her haughty stare! Who would supposeThat dress would change her soOh, blessed influence of fine clothes,How much to thee we owe!

Quarrelsomeness

Story type: Poetry

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Dear lady-readers of whatever age,Look backward and with me enjoy this page.What happy moments have we often spentThus to our frenzied anger giving vent.Ah, me, the long-lost joys of being young!To make up faces, and stick out one’s tongue;How those occasions of Xantippish strifeGave zip and zest to our dull childish life.

The Re-echo Club

Story type: Poetry

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DIVERSIONS OF THE RE-ECHO CLUB A recent discovery has brought to light the long-hidden papers of the Re-Echo Club. This is a great find, and all lovers of masterpieces of the world’s best literature will rejoice with us that we are enabled to publish herewith a few of these gems of great minds. Little is […]

Flying Kites

Story type: Poetry

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A blustering windy day’s just rightFor boys who want to fly a kite;And it affords the greatest joyTo make and use the pretty toy. But Aged Duffers, do not tryA large-sized paper kite to fly;You could not manage tail or string,And ten to one you’d spoil the thing.

Boats On The Lake

Story type: Poetry

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A morning full of happiness any boy may findBy sailing boats upon the lake, if he is so inclined;The wind it drives them out to sea, he pulls them back, and thenThey jerk and struggle to be free–away they go again!They wibble-wobble as they sail, and sometimes they upset,–Of course he reaches out for them,–of […]

At Coney Island

Story type: Poetry

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See proud Belinda smartly dressedIn all her flaunting Sunday best;With muslin hat and ruffles bigShe cannot comfortably dig. Ask her if she would like to play,–She will not answer either way;She’ll only shake herself, and then,Just pout and grin and pout again. Dear Grandams, meekly learn from this,How very ill-advised it isTo don a costume […]