Poem: Two Little Maids

Below is a poem I read in the 1910 book “Farmers of Forty Centuries” written by F.H. King chief of the Division of Soil Management in the USDA Bureau of Soils in Washington, D.C starting in 1902. The Poem is from an early 1900 kids magazine called “St. Nicholas” and written by Margaret Johnson.


Two little maids I’ve heard of, each with a pretty taste,
Who had two little rooms to fix and not an hour to waste.
Eight thousand miles apart they lived yet on the selfsame day
The one in Nikko’s narrow streets, the other on Broadway.
They started out, each happy maid her heart’s desire to find,
And her own dear room to furnish just according to her mind.

When Alice went a-shopping, she bought a bed of brass,
A bureau and some chairs and things, and such a lovely glass
To reflect her little figure with two candle brackets near
And a little dressing table that she said was simply dear!
A book shelf low to hold her books, a little china rack,
And then of course a bureau set and lots of brica brac;
A dainty little escritoire, with fixings all her own
And just for her convenience, too, a little telephone.
Some oriental rugs she got, and curtains of madras,
And then a couch, a lovely one, with cushions soft to crush,
And forty pillows, more or less, of linen, silk and plush;
Of all the ornaments besides I couldn’t tell the half,

But wherever there was nothing else, she stuck a photograph
And then when all was finished, she sighed a little sigh,
“For it needs a statuette or so – a fern -a silver stork-
Oh something, just to fill it up!” said Alice of New York.

When little Oumi of Japan went shopping, pitapat,
She bought a fan of paper and a little sleeping mat.
She set beside the window a lily in a vase,
And looked about with more than doubt upon her pretty face;
“For really – don’t you think so? with the lily and the fan,
It’s a little overcrowded!” said Oumi of Japan!

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About ellieearly

I was born and raised in Amarillo, Texas. I moved back to Amarillo Feb 2011 after university in at Umass Dartmouth and post college adventures in central rural Tennessee on The Farm and surrounding land. Back in Amarillo I tried staring a business called Better Kitchen Gardens. This year, 2013, the High Plains Food Bank hired me to teach nutrition and gardening at the Mavrick Boys and Girls club. I'm a "Permi" a permaculutralist! I will use this site to share my Amarillo Permi ventures.
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