Of speckled eggs the birdie sings
And nests among the trees;
The sailor sings of ropes and things
In ships upon the seas.
The children sing in far Japan
The children sing in Spain;
The organ with the organ man
Is singing in the rain.
Nos Cantabimus Invicem
Summis arboris in comis
Nunc nidum, sua nunc ova, canunt aves;
Interdum recinit mari
Funem navita, mox cetera navigi;
Proles gaudet Hiberica
Gaudent Nipponiae carmine liberi;
Saevit Juppiter imbribus
Sed cantat fidicen cum cithara madens.
XII. Looking Forward
When I am grown to man's estate
I shall be very proud and great,
And tell the other girls and boys
Not to meddle with my toys.
Sume Superbiam Quaesitam Meritis
Cum toga pura mihi jam sit, cum robur adultum,
Qui mihi tunc fastus! tunc ego quantus ero!
Tunc interdicam tetigisse volubile buxum,
Sive puer cupiat sive puella meum.
XIII. A Good Play
We built a ship upon the stairs
All made of the back-bedroom chairs,
And filled it full of sofa pillows
To go a-sailing on the billows.
We too a saw and several nails,
And water in the nursery pails;
And Tom said, "Let us also take
An apple and a slice of cake";--
Which was enough for Tom and me
To go a-sailing on, till tea.
We sailed along for days and days,
And had the very best of plays;
But Tom fell out and hurt his knee,
So there was no one left but me.
Pacatum Volitant Per Mare Navitae
Ad scalam facimus ratem, potiti
Sellis e thalamo remotiore;
Pulvinos cumulamus aggregatos,
Fluctus vela per horridos daturi.
Serram non sine clavulis, hamasque
Plenas gessimus, et, monente Thoma,
Pomum et dimidiam fere placentam;
Quae per tempora postmeridiana
Sat certe pueris forent duobus.
Noctes atque dies vehi per aequor
Jucundissimus omnium jocorum est.
Sic nos ludimus; at, miselle frater!
Lapsus navigio genuque laesus
Me solum dominum scaphae relinquis.
XIV. Where go the Boats?
Dark brown is the river,
Golden is the sand,
It flows along for ever,
With trees on either hand.
Green leaves a-floating,
Castles of the foam,
Boats of mine a-boating --
Where will all come home?
On goes the river
And out past the mill.
Away down the valley,
Away down the hill.
Away down the river,
A hundred miles or more,
Other little children
Shall bring my boats ashore.
In Omne Volubilis Aevum
It per aureas arenas, labitur volubilis
Inter arbores, et undas volvit amnis turbidas;
Spuma currit conglobata, defluunt frondes cito;
Spuma cymbae, frons phaseli dat natans imaginem;
Nostra classis tot scapharum quae petet navalia?
Pronus amnis it relicta valle; praeterit molam,
Praeterit colles; et ultra jam trecenta millia
Litori ignotus phaselso attrahet nostros puer.
XV. Auntie's Skirts
Whenever Auntie moves around,
Her dresses make a curious sound;
They trail behind her up the floor,
And trundle after through the door.
Talis Erat Dido
Quandoque nostra se movet matertera,
Non cernis in mirum modum
Crepare vestimenta per tapetia,
Et pone per fores sequi?
XVI. The land of Counterpane
When I was sick and lay a-bed,
I had two pillows at my head,
And all my toys beside me lay
To keep me happy all the day.
And sometimes for an hour or so
I watched my leaden soldiers go,
With different uniforms and drills,
Among the bed-clothes, through the hills;
And sometimes sent my ships in fleets
All up and down among the sheets;
Or brought my trees and houses out,
And planted cities all about.
I was the giant great and still
That sits upon the pillow-hill,
And sees before him, dale and plain,
The pleasant land of counterpane.
Surgit Amandi Aliquid Medioque Angore Voluptas
Sternit aegroti capiti cubantis
Alma pulvinum genetrix et addit
Alterum; dextrae simul adjacebat
Luderum ut felix; fugit hora velox,
Milites armis sagulisque pictis
Plumbea incedit legio, viamque
Per juga lodix
Indicat rugis; marium recessus
Dat toral classi; virides in arvis
Arbores pono; statuoque tectis
Ceu gigas celsa recubans in arce,
Cuncta pulvinis ego fultus illis,
Conspicor; campos latebrasque amoenas
XVII. The Land of Nod
From breakfast on all through the day
At home among my friends I stay;
But every night I go abroad
Afar into the land of Nod.
All by myself I have to go,
With none to tell me what to do--
All alone beside the streams
And up the mountain-sides of dreams.
The strangest things are there for me,
Both things to eat and things to see,
And many frightening sights abroad
Till morning in the land of Nod.
Try as I like to find the way,
I never can get back by day,
Nor can remember plain and clear
The curious music that I hear.
Somnia quae Veras Aequent Imitamine Formas
Jento parentes inter amabiles,
Domique totus conteritur dies;
Noctu peregrinor relicta
Nyctelios patria per agros.
Solus Soporis dum videor mihi
Rivos pererrare et nemora et juga,
Dum nitor obscurus viator,
Quid faciam mihi nullus auctor.
Nocturna quis non obstupeat videns?
Nunc offeruntur mira cibo mihi,
Nunc mira terrori, vaganti
Nyctelii per opaca regni.
Frustra petivi (luce latet) viam;
Frustra requiro saepe mele vigil
Audita; nam confusa imago
Carminis est, periere voces.
XVIII. My Shadow
I have a little shadow that goes in and out with me,
And what can be the use of him is more than I can see.
He is very, very like me from the heels up to the head;
And I see him jump before me, when I jump into my bed.
The funniest thing about him is the way he likes to grow--
Not at all like proper children, which is always very slow;
For he sometimes shoots up taller like an india-rubber ball,
And he sometimes gets so little that there is none of him at all.
He hasn't got a notion of how children ought to play,
And can only make a fool of me in every sort of way.
He stays so close beside me, he's a coward you can see;
I'd think shame to stick to nurse as that shadow sticks to me!
One morning, very early, before the sun was up,
I rose and found the shining dew on every buttercup;
But my lazy little shadow, like an arrant sleepy-head,
Had stayed at home behind me and was fast asleep in bed.
Sequiturque Parem Non Passibus Aequis
Umbra mihi comes it, pedibusque insistit; at umbra
Cur velit ire vias officiosa meas?
Et speciem et formam similem gerit umbra; quietum
Vix salio in lectum, sed salit umbra prior.
Ridicula est; lente puerilia corpora crescunt,
Sed cito, sed vario vertitur umbra modo;
Nunc sese amplificat, subito est longissima visu;
Nunc, si vult minui, nulla videnda manet.
Ludere dum ludo pueriliter umbra recusat;
Sed me ludibrio semper habere cupit.
Si lateri haererem, gelidi me dura timoris
Argueret nutrix, haeret ut umbra mihi.
Mane fuit; nullo non ros in flore nitebat,
Nondum orbis poterat cernere Solis equos.
Surrexi; cubat umbra tamen, devincta sopore;
Effugi pigram; dormiit umbra domi.
Every night my prayers I say,
And get my dinner every day;
And every day that I've been good,
I get an orange after food.
The child that is not clean and neat,
With lots of toys and things to eat,
He is a naughty child, I'm sure--
Or else his dear papa is poor.
Certa Stant Omnia Lege
Votaque sub noctem facio de more precesque;
Quotquot eunt signat regula prisca dies;
Cena ministratur; cena de more peracta
Adduntur puero Medica mala bono.
Quem maculae foedant, qui turpi squalet amictu,
Cui cena haud praesto est, pupaque nulla datur;
Non hic urbanus, non hic bonus esse videtur
Ni res dura gravat pauperiesque patrem.
XX. A Good Boy
I woke before the morning, I was happy all the day,
I never said an ugly word, but smiled and stuck to play.
And now at last the sun is going down behind the wood,
And I am very happy, for I know that I've been good.
My bed is waiting cool and fresh, with linen smooth and fair,
And I must off to sleepsin-by, and not forget my prayer.
I know that, till to-morrow I shall see the sun arise,
No ugly dream shall fright my mind, no ugly sight my eyes,
But slumber hold me tightly till I waken in the dawn,
And hear the thrushes singing in the lilacs round the lawn.
Dis Pietas Mea et Musa Cordi Est
Ante diem somno solvor; ludusque diurnus
Placetque risus et loquella candida.
Quem non felicem reddet mens conscia recti?
Bonumque, Phoebe, me videbis occidens.
Lectus adest et leve toral et lintea munda;
Decet cubare nec preces omittere.
Nec lemures timeo, ne vexent somnia mentem,
Soporis alma nosse vincla laetior,
Dum redeat Phoebus, revolet dum turdus in hortum
Canatque mane Persidas per arbores.