Little Orphant Annie

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
Little Orphant Annie
by James Whitcomb Riley
poem 510

INSCRIBED WITH ALL FAITH AND AFFECTION
  
To all the little children: – The happy ones; and sad ones;
The sober and the silent ones; the boisterous and glad ones;
The good ones – Yes, the good ones, too; and all the lovely bad ones.

  Little Orphant Annie's come to our house to stay,
  An' wash the cups an' 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 childern, when the supper-things is done,
  We set around the kitchen fire an' has the mostest fun
  A-list'nin' to the witch-tales 'at Annie tells about,
  An' the Gobble-uns 'at gits you
   Ef you
    Don't
     Watch
      Out!

  Wunst they wuz a little boy wouldn't say his prayers,--
  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 wuzn'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 wuz 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' wunst, when they was "company," an' ole folks wuz there,
  She mocked 'em an' shocked 'em, an' said she didn't care!
  An' thist as she kicked her heels, an' turn't to run an' hide,
  They wuz 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 lamp-wick 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 parunts, an' yer teachurs 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!


This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1916, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 80 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.