by Margaret Vandergrift
You needn't be trying to comfort me - I tell you my dolly is dead!
There's no use in saying she isn't, with a crack like that in her head.
It's just like you said it wouldn't hurt much to have my tooth out, that day;
And then, when the man 'most pulled my head off, you hadn't a word to say .
And I guess you must think I'm a baby, when you say you can mend it with glue:
As if I didn't know better than that! Why, just suppose it was you?
You might make her look all mended - but what do I care for looks?
Why, glue's for chairs and tables, and toys and the backs of books!
My dolly! my own little daughter! Oh, but it's the awfullest crack!
It just makes me sick to think of the sound when her poor head went whack
Against that horrible brass thing that holds up the little shelf.
Now, Nursey, what makes you remind me? I know that I did it myself !
I think you must be crazy - you'll get her another head!
What good would forty heads do her? I tell you my dolly is dead!
And to think I hadn't quite finished her elegant new spring hat!
And I took a sweet ribbon of hers last night to tie on that horrid cat!
When my mamma gave me that ribbon - I was playing out in the yard -
She said to me, most expressly, "Here's a ribbon for Hildegarde."
And I went and put it on Tabby, and Hildegarde saw me do it;
But I said to myself, "Oh, never mind, I don't believe she knew it! "
But I know that she knew it now, and I just believe, I do,
That her poor little heart was broken, and so her head broke too.
Oh, my baby! my little baby! I wish my head had been hit!
For I've hit it over and over, and it hasn't cracked a bit.
But since the darling is dead, she'll want to be buried, of course:
We will take my little wagon, Nurse, and you shall be the horse;
And I'll walk behind and cry, and we'll put her in this, you see -
This dear little box - and we'll bury her there out under the maple-tree.
And papa will make me a tombstone, like the one he made for my bird;
And he'll put what I tell him on it - yes, every single word!
I shall say: "Here lies Hildegarde, a beautiful doll, who is dead;
She died of a broken heart, and a dreadful crack in her head."


,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,SOMEBODY'S MOTHER
,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,.by Mary Dow Brine (1816-1913)
The woman was old and ragged and gray
And bent with the chill of the Winter's day.
The street was wet with a recent snow
And the woman's feet were aged and slow.
She stood at the crossing and waited long,
Alone, uncared for, amid the throng
Of human beings who passed her by
Nor heeded the glance of her anxious eyes.
Down the street, with laughter and shout,
Glad in the freedom of "school let out,"
Came the boys like a flock of sheep,
Hailing the snow piled white and deep.
Past the woman so old and gray
Hastened the children on their way.
Nor offered a helping hand to her -
So meek, so timid, afraid to stir
Lest the carriage wheels or the horses' feet
Should crowd her down in the slippery street.
At last came one of the merry troop,
The gayest laddie of all the group;
He paused beside her and whispered low,
"I'll help you cross, if you wish to go."
Her aged hand on his strong young arm
She placed, and so, without hurt or harm,
He guided the trembling feet along,
Proud that his own were firm and strong.
Then back again to his friends he went,
His young heart happy and well content.
"She's somebody's mother, boys, you know,
For all she's aged and poor and slow,
"And I hope some fellow will lend a hand
To help my mother, you understand,
"If ever she's poor and old and gray,
 When her own dear boy is far away."
And "somebody's mother" bowed low her head
In her home that night, and the prayer she said
Was "God be kind to the noble boy,
Who is somebody's son, and pride and joy!"
,,,,,,,,,Note: I first heard this one on Garrison Keillor's daily poetry
reading program on NPR. You may thank me (and I may thank
,,...,,,,you!) ,for valuing these old poems as you do yourself by writing
me at
..........................I'd love to hear from you!...........