James Whitcomb Riley

(7 October 1849 - 22 July 1916 / Greenfield, Indiana)

The Tree-Toad Poem by James Whitcomb Riley


''Scurious-like,' said the tree-toad,
'I've twittered far rain all day;
And I got up soon,
And I hollered till noon--
But the sun, hit blazed away,
Till I jest clumb down in a crawfish-hole,
Weary at heart, and sick at soul!

'Dozed away far an hour,
And I tackled the thing agin;
And I sung, and sung,
Till I knowed my lung
Was jest about give in;
And then, thinks I, ef hit don't rain now.
There're nothin' in singin', anyhow!

'Once in awhile some
Would come a drivin' past;
And he'd hear my cry,
And stop and sigh--
Till I jest laid back, at last,
And I hollered rain till I thought my th'oat
Would bust right open at ever' note!

'But _I fetched_ her! O _I fetched_ her!--
'Cause a little while ago,
As I kindo' set,
With one eye shet,
And a-singin' soft and low,
A voice drapped down on my fevered brain,
Sayin',--' Ef you'll jest hush I'll rain!''

Submitted: Friday, April 09, 2010

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