Home  |  Authors  |  Books  |  Stories  |  What's New  |  How to Get Involved 
   T h e   B a l d w i n   P r o j e c t
     Bringing Yesterday's Classics to Today's Children                 @mainlesson.com
Search This Site Only
 
 
Poems Every Child Should Know by  Mary E. Burt

[Illustration] Hundreds of additional titles available for online reading when you join Gateway to the Classics

Learn More
[Illustration]

 

 

LITTLE ORPHANT ANNIE

"Little Orphant Annie" certainly earns her "board and keep" when she has "washed the dishes," "swept up the crumbs," "driven the chickens from the porch," and done all the other odds and ends of work on a farm. The poet, James Whitcomb Riley (1853-1916), has shown how truly a little child may be overtaxed and yet preserve a brave spirit and keen imagination. Children invariably love to learn this poem.

Little Orphant Annie's come to our house to stay,

An' wash the cups and saucers up, an' brush the crumbs away,

An' shoo the chickens off the porch, an' dust the hearth, an' sweep,

An' make the fire, an' bake the bread, an' earn her board-an'-keep;

An' all us other children, when the supper things is done,

We set around the kitchen fire an' has the mostest fun

[55]

A-list'nin' to the witch-tales 'at Annie tells about,

An' the Gobble-uns 'at gits you

Ef you

Don't

Watch

Out!


Onc't they was a little boy wouldn't say his pray'rs—

An' when he went to bed at night, away up-stairs,

His mammy heerd him holler, an' his daddy heerd him bawl,

An' when they turn't the kivvers down, he wasn't there at all!

An' they seeked him in the rafter-room, an' cubby hole, an' press,

An' seeked him up the chimbly flue, an' ever'-wheres, I guess;

But all they ever found was thist his pants an' roundabout!

An' the Gobble-uns'll git you

Ef you

Don't

Watch

Out!


An' one time a little girl 'ud allus laugh an' grin,

An' make fun of ever' one, an' all her blood-an'-kin;

An' onc't when they was "company," an' ole folks was there,

She mocked 'em an' shocked 'em, an' said she didn't care!

[56]

An' thist as she kicked her heels, an' turn't to run an' hide,

They was two great big Black Things a-standin' by her side,

An' they snatched her through the ceilin' 'fore she knowed what she's about!

An' the Gobble-uns'll git you

Ef you

Don't

Watch

Out!


An' little Orphant Annie says, when the blaze is blue,

An' the lampwick sputters, an' the wind goes woo-oo!

An' you hear the crickets quit, an' the moon is gray,

An' the lightnin'-bugs in dew is all squenched away,—

You better mind yer parents, an' yer teachers fond an' dear,

An' churish them 'at loves you, an' dry the orphant's tear,

An' he'p the pore an' needy ones 'at clusters all about,

Er the Gobble-uns'll git you

Ef you

Don't

Watch

Out!


JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY.


 Table of Contents  |  Index  | Previous: Old Ironsides  |  Next: O Captain! My Captain!
Copyright (c) 2000-2017 Yesterday's Classics, LLC. All Rights Reserved.