A Child's Garden Of Verses Part 2

Green leaves a-floating, Castles of the foam, Boats of mine a-boating-- Where will all come home?

On goes the river And out past the mill, Away down the valley, Away down the hill.

Away down the river, A hundred miles or more, Other little children Shall bring my boats ash.o.r.e.

XV

AUNTIE'S SKIRTS

WHENEVER Auntie moves around, Her dresses make a curious sound; They trail behind her up the floor, And trundle after through the door.

XVI

THE LAND OF COUNTERPANE

WHEN I was sick and lay a-bed, I had two pillows at my head, And all my toys beside me lay To keep me happy all the day.

And sometimes for an hour or so I watched my leaden soldiers go, With different uniforms and drills, Among the bed-clothes, through the hills;

And sometimes sent my ships in fleets All up and down among the sheets; Or brought my trees and houses out, And planted cities all about.

I was the giant great and still That sits upon the pillow-hill, And sees before him, dale and plain, The pleasant land of counterpane.

[Ill.u.s.tration: THE LAND OF NOD

And up the mountain-sides of dreams]

XVII

THE LAND OF NOD

FROM breakfast on through all the day At home among my friends I stay; But every night I go abroad Afar into the land of Nod.

All by myself I have to go, With none to tell me what to do-- All alone beside the streams And up the mountain-sides of dreams.

The strangest things are there for me, Both things to eat and things to see, And many frightening sights abroad Till morning in the land of Nod.

Try as I like to find the way, I never can get back by day, Nor can remember plain and clear The curious music that I hear.

XVIII

MY SHADOW

I HAVE a little shadow that goes in and out with me, And what can be the use of him is more than I can see.

He is very, very like me from the heels up to the head; And I see him jump before me, when I jump into my bed.

The funniest thing about him is the way he likes to grow-- Not at all like proper children, which is always very slow; For he sometimes shoots up taller like an india-rubber ball, And sometimes gets so little that there's none of him at all.

He hasn't got a notion of how children ought to play, And can only make a fool of me in every sort of way.

He stays so close beside me, he's a coward you can see; I'd think shame to stick to nursie as that shadow sticks to me!

One morning, very early, before the sun was up, I rose and found the shining dew on every b.u.t.tercup; But my lazy little shadow, like an arrant sleepy-head, Had stayed at home behind me and was fast asleep in bed.

XIX

SYSTEM

EVERY night my prayers I say, And get my dinner every day; And every day that I've been good, I get an orange after food.

The child that is not clean and neat, With lots of toys and things to eat, He is a naughty child, I'm sure-- Or else his dear papa is poor.

XX

A GOOD BOY

I WOKE before the morning, I was happy all the day, I never said an ugly word, but smiled and stuck to play.

And now at last the sun is going down behind the wood, And I am very happy, for I know that I've been good.

My bed is waiting cool and fresh, with linen smooth and fair, And I must off to sleepsin-by, and not forget my prayer.

I know that, till to-morrow I shall see the sun arise, No ugly dream shall fright my mind, no ugly sight my eyes,

But slumber holds me tightly till I waken in the dawn, And hear the thrushes singing in the lilacs round the lawn.

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