Granny’s come to our house,
    And ho! my lawzy-daisy!
All the childern round the place
    Is ist a-runnin’ crazy!
Fetched a cake fer little Jake,
    And fetched a pie fer Nanny,
And fetched a pear fer all the pack
    That runs to kiss their Granny!

Lucy Ellen’s in her lap,
    And Wade and Silas Walker
Both’s a-ridin’ on her foot,
    And Pollos on the rocker;
And Marthy’s twins, from Aunt Marinn’s,
    And little Orphant Annie,
All’s a-eatin’ gingerbread
    And giggle-un at Granny!

Tells us all the fairy tales
    Ever thought er wundered—
And bundance o’ other stories—
    Bet she knows a hunderd!—
Bob’s the one fer “Whittington,”
    And “Golden Locks” fer Fanny!
Hear em laugh and clap their hands,
    Listenin’ at Granny!

“Jack the Giant-Killer” s good;
    And “Bean-Stalk” s another!—
So’s the one of “Cinderell’”
    And her old godmother;—
That-un’s best of all the rest—
    Bestest one of any,—
Where the mices scampers home
    Like we runs to Granny!

Granny’s come to our house,
    Ho! my lawzy-daisy!
All the childern round the place
    Is ist a-runnin’ crazy!
Fetched a cake fer little Jake,
    And fetched a pie fer Nanny,
And fetched a pear fer all the pack
    That runs to kiss their Granny!

This poem is in the public domain.

"I cannot go to school today,"
Said little Peggy Ann McKay.
"I have the measles and the mumps,
A gash, a rash and purple bumps.
My mouth is wet, my throat is dry,
I'm going blind in my right eye.
My tonsils are as big as rocks,
I've counted sixteen chicken pox
And there's one more—that's seventeen,
And don't you think my face looks green?
My leg is cut—my eyes are blue—
It might be instamatic flu.
I cough and sneeze and gasp and choke,
I'm sure that my left leg is broke—
My hip hurts when I move my chin,
My belly button's caving in,
My back is wrenched, my ankle's sprained,
My 'pendix pains each time it rains.
My nose is cold, my toes are numb.
I have a sliver in my thumb.
My neck is stiff, my voice is weak,
I hardly whisper when I speak.
My tongue is filling up my mouth,
I think my hair is falling out.
My elbow's bent, my spine ain't straight,
My temperature is one-o-eight.
My brain is shrunk, I cannot hear,
There is a hole inside my ear.
I have a hangnail, and my heart is—what?
What's that? What's that you say?
You say today is. . .Saturday?
G'bye, I'm going out to play!"

From Shel Silverstein: Poems and Drawings; originally appeared in Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein. Copyright © 2003 by HarperCollins Children's Books. Reprinted by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

Below the thunders of the upper deep,
Far, far beneath in the abysmal sea,
His ancient, dreamless, uninvaded sleep
The Kraken sleepeth: faintest sunlights flee
About his shadowy sides; above him swell
Huge sponges of millennial growth and height;
And far away into the sickly light,
From many a wondrous grot and secret cell
Unnumbered and enormous polypi
Winnow with giant arms the slumbering green.
There hath he lain for ages, and will lie
Battening upon huge sea worms in his sleep,
Until the latter fire shall heat the deep;
Then once by man and angels to be seen,
In roaring he shall rise and on the surface die.

This poem is in the public domain.

“I really feel I can touch you even in this darkness when I pray.”
James Foley (1973–2014) from his last message to his family

Recovered now enough to scrub the deck,
which has turned dun brown with dirt
and cobwebs in the months I twisted, hurt-
ing in one more hospital bed, my spine a wreck,

my sick brain awash in static bubbles
instead of what I told myself were my tough,
astringent thoughts. Oh, Lord, the troubles
I’ve seen. Well, get over that self-pity stuff.

Your sweet wife has a job for you to do,
so do it. Soap & water (warm works best),
a sponge, & a steady stream of water too,
and voila! Progress. Until you spray a hidden nest

of hornets, who come after you, each a fighter plane
zigging this way, then that, to catch you by surprise
as first your left wrist, then your right, erupt in pain.
And now they’ve found your face, and now your eyes,

and you make what the books call a hasty retreat.
But dammit this is your porch, your house, your home,
and if these S.O.B.s had just remained discreet
or—better—stayed hidden in their aerodrome

you might have done the “live let live.” But no! Not now.
This is war, and one or the other will have to go.
And so it’s two cans of mustard gas. And POW!
Right in the kisser, as Gleason used to say. Hello!

And so I’m back again, ready for a fight, and I keep
hitting them with all I’ve got. But they too hit back
with all they have. And the sad truth is they have deep
reserves, as one winged fiend multiplies by twenty, Jack.

And soon you’re like Cuchulain swinging at the sea
as wave on wave keeps coming on. And you know that in the end
you cannot win, though you win this day. Lord, be
there when they swarm above me. Be there, then, my friend.

From Ordinary Time (Slant Books, 2020) by Paul Mariani. Copyright © 2020 by Paul Mariani. Used with the permission of the author.

’T is time this heart indifferent
     To love so long,
Should rise from slumber impotent,
     And stroll among
The gardens that are heaven sent.

The butterflies’ unholy quest
     From vase to pot
For wine within the petal’s nest,
     Will guide me not
As it profanely guides the rest.

But it is time this heart so long
For years and years, should stroll along
     Where Cupid went
One day, and listened to his song.

From Manila: A Collection of Verse (Imp. Paredes, Inc., 1926) by Luis Dato. This poem is in the public domain.