James Whitcomb Riley

Rating: 5
Rating: 5

James Whitcomb Riley Biography

James Whitcomb Riley was an American writer, poet, and best selling author. During his lifetime he was known as the Hoosier Poet and Children's Poet for his dialect works and his children's poetry respectively. His poems tended to be humorous or sentimental, and of the approximately one thousand poems that Riley authored, the majority are in dialect. His famous works include "Little Orphant Annie" and "The Raggedy Man".

Riley began his career writing verses as a sign maker and submitting poetry to newspapers. Thanks in part to an endorsement from poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, he eventually earned successive jobs at Indiana newspaper publishers during the latter 1870s. Riley gradually rose in prominence during the 1880s through his poetry reading tours. He traveled a touring circuit f ...

James Whitcomb Riley Comments

Stella Mary 03 January 2012

I read your poems and it was good.

33 20 Reply
Catharine Dee 10 March 2012

Date of birth listed above is wrong. It's October 7th not the 9th.

25 26 Reply
Tony Judson 15 September 2006

James I read your 'poem of the day' and I think it is brilliant! your sense of rythmn & rhyme is beautiful and your poetic license with spelling and alliteration is superb. It makes wish I could have been the fly on the wall in a meeting between you and the late Ogden Nash- Keep it up Cheers Tony Judson

32 14 Reply
Jules Levin 15 November 2013

I am looking for the date of writing/publishing for each poem and could not find it on the site. Am I overlooking something obvious?

22 20 Reply
Carolyn Binkley 06 October 2005

James Whitcomb Riley is by far one of my favorite poets of all time. I love his imagery, his imagination, his rhyme and rhythm. And most of all I love his sense of 'simple' and his connection to the nature in all of us. He cleverly plays with that which is real, unlike Lewis Carroll who cleverly plays with that which is not.

24 12 Reply
Dean Feldmeyer 16 January 2021

I'm looking for a copy of a Riley poem entitled 'Charm to Remove Freckles.' It is very short and written in Scotish dialect. I memorized it as a youth and now would like to verify that I still remember it correctly. Thanks for any help.

0 0 Reply
Jim Finch 29 September 2018

when the weather is hot and sultry, that's no time to commit adultery. when the frost is on the pumpkin, that's the time for peter dunking'.

1 5 Reply
James Finch 29 September 2018

when the frost is on the pumpkin, that's the time for peter dunking'.

0 8 Reply
Kathryn 14 September 2018

Does anyone know of a poem by James Whitcom Riley about a boy who uses his father's seat in the family outhouse, which proves to be too large for him?

4 2 Reply
nariah n white 27 November 2017

did you know that ROBERT FROST made LITTLE ORPHANT ANNIE because I think that you work with him. So I just want to ask are you working with him. just text back as soon as you can. Oh and I am 8 years old in the 3 grade

5 13 Reply

The Best Poem Of James Whitcomb Riley

A Life-Lesson

There! little girl; don't cry!
They have broken your doll, I know;
And your tea-set blue,
And your play-house, too,
Are things of the long ago;
But childish troubles will soon pass by. --
There! little girl; don't cry!

There! little girl; don't cry!
They have broken your slate, I know;
And the glad, wild ways
Of your schoolgirl days
Are things of the long ago;
But life and love will soon come by. --
There! little girl; don't cry!

There! little girl; don't cry!
They have broken your heart I know;
And the rainbow gleams
Of your youthful dreams
Are things of the long ago;
But Heaven holds all for which you sigh. --
There! little girl; don't cry!

James Whitcomb Riley Popularity

James Whitcomb Riley Popularity

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