Father calls me William,
sister calls me Will,
Mother calls me Willie but the fellers call me
Mighty glad I ain't a girl---ruther be a boy,
Without them sashes curls an' things that's worn
Love to chawnk green apples an' go swimmin' in
Hate to take the castor-ile they give for
'Most all the time, the whole year round, there
ain't no flies on me,
But jest 'fore Christmas I'm as good as I kin
Got a yeller dog named Sport,
sic him on the cat.
First thing she knows she doesn't know where she
Got a clipper sled, an' when us kids goes out to
'Long comes the grocery cart, an' we all hook a
But sometimes when the grocery man is worrited
He reaches at us with his whip, an' larrups up
An' then I laff an' holler, "Oh, ye never
But jest 'fore Christmas I'm as good as I kin be!
Gran'ma says she hopes that
when I git to be a man,
I'll be a missionarer like her oldest brother,
As was et up by the cannibals that live in
Where every prospeck pleases, an' only man is
But gran'ma she has never been to see a Wild
Nor read the life of Daniel Boone, or else I
guess she'd know
That Buff'lo Bill an' cowboys is good enough for
Excep' jest 'fore Christmas, when I'm as good as
I kin be!
And then old Sport he hangs
around, so solemn-like an' still,
His eyes they seem a-sayin': "What's the
matter, little Bill?"
The old cat sneaks down off her perch an'
wonders what's become
Of them two enemies of hern that used to make
But I am so perlite an' tend so earnestly to
That mother says to father: "How improved
our Willie is!"
But father, havin' been a boy hisself,
When, jest 'fore Christmas, I'm as good as I kin
For Christmas, with its lots
an' lots of candies, cakes an' toys,
Was made, they say, for proper kids an' not for
So wash yer face an' bresh yer hair, an' mind
yer p's and q's,
And don't bust out yer pantaloons, and don't
wear out yer shoes;
Say "Yessum" to the ladies, and "Yessur"
to the men,
An' when they's company, don'a pass yer plate
for pie again;
But, thinkin' of the things yer'd like to see
upon that tree,
Jest 'fore Christmas be as good as yer kin be!
Eugene Field (1850-1895)