Monday, May 1, 2006


By L. Frank Baum
Author of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Daughters of Destiny, The Visitors from Oz, etc.

Originally published in 1907.


Lovely, limber Lady Rake
Had the gardener's bed to make
When at morning she'd arise -
'Twas her daily exercise.

As she picked her way o'er the grass so gay
The tools all loved her, and they say

That the hammer lost his head,
And the anvil colored red,
Augur got to be a bore,
While the lawn adored her mower;
She refused the prying pick -
Made him dig out might quick!
Hatchet was too sharp, by far,
So she gave his edge a jar;
But the spade, as you might guess,
Won from her a gracious “"yes,"
And the tweezers, passing by,
Bound them with a railway tie.

But though wed they say Lady Rake got gay
And conducted herself in an indiscreet way:

Scraped acquaintance with a file,
On a shovel dared to smile,
Danced around with sickle keen
Cutting capers on the green!
So the spade soon got divorce -
From the tennis-court, of course;
She's a widow, now, alas!
Moral is: Keep off the Grass.

Hickory, dickory, dock;
The mouse ran up the clock
Of the maiden's stocking -
'Twas really shocking!
They heard her half a block.


A maiden once sailed on the briny deep -
A wide-awake girl when she wasn't asleep;
The sea acted roughly, 'twas rude and 'twas wet.
And took a wild notion to fume and to fret
Till the ship and the girl were completely upset.

She floated ashore on a cannibal isle,
And the Cannibal King smole an amiable smile.
"I'll give you your choice," the savage one said,
"To be instantly married, or eaten, instead."
"I reckon," said she, "I prefer to be wed."

Now the cannibal planned, when he tired of his bride,
To serve her for luncheon, sliced thin and then fried;
But the girl had a far better scheme in her head:
She baked him a batch of her Cooking-School bread
And the cannibal's spirit immediately fled -
He was dead.

Boy afloat;
Sudden squall;
That's all.

By Ruth Plumly Thompson
Originally published in the Philadelphia Public Ledger, February 3, 1918.

Riddles and Rhymes for Divers Times

Mr. Bookmarker writes that a word meaning injures will give you another of the fable folks, and that the beginning of a medicine boys and girls have to take after Christmas will give still another.

The answers to his last week's riddles are Atalanta, Paris and Pan, Saturn, Penelope, Pandora, Juno, and Thisbe. I wonder how many of you know the stories of these mythological folks?

Last week Mr. Forgetful Poet was eaten up by curiosity, and that is why he is still here, and bitten by the frost, which certainly has no teeth. Some more of his remarkable verses came in this week. He just can't resist the riddle department, and in spite of his many threats to send no more riddles, I am not worrying at all. Here, then, are his latest:
? ? ?
What have caps
That haven't heads?
What have sheets
And yet no beds?

What some people own,
And what some people rent
Will give you an author
Of humorous bent?

[You'll have to guess the answers yourself. No answers to these next time.]

Copyright © 2006 Eric Shanower and David Maxine. All rights reserved.