The Inventor's Wife by Mrs. E. T. Corbett

It's easy to talk of the patience of Job, Humph! Job hed nothin' to try him!
Ef he'd been married to 'Bijah Brown, folks wouldn't have dared come nigh him.
Trials, indeed! Now I'll tell you what—ef you want to be sick of your life,
Jest come and change places with me a spell—for I'm an inventor's wife.
And such inventions! I'm never sure, when I take up my coffee-pot,
That 'Bijah hain't been "improvin'" it and it mayn't go off like a shot.
Why, didn't he make me a cradle once, that would keep itself a-rockin';
And didn't it pitch the baby out, and wasn't his head bruised shockin'?
And there was his "Patent Peeler," too—a wonderful thing, I'll say;
But it hed one fault-it never stopped till the apple was peeled away.
As for locks and clocks, and mowin' machines and reapers, and all such trash,
Why, 'Bijah's invented heaps of 'em but they don't bring in no cash.
Law! that don't worry him—not at all; he's the most aggravatin'est man—
He'll set in his little workshop there, and whistle, and think, and plan,
Inventin' a jew's-harp to go by steam, or a new-fangled powder-horn,
While the children's goin' barefoot to school and the weeds is chokin' our corn.
When 'Bijah and me kep' company, he warn't like this, you know;
Our folks all thought he was dreadful smart—but that was years ago.
He was handsome as any pictur then, and he had such a glib, bright way—
I never thought that a time would come when I'd rue my weddin' day;
But when I've been forced to chop wood, and tend to the farm beside,
And look at Bijah a-settin' there, I've jest dropped down and cried.
We lost the hull of our turnip crop while he was inventin' a gun
But I counted it one of my marcies when it bu'st before 'twas done.
So he turned it into a "burglar alarm." It ought to give thieves a fright—
'Twould scare an honest man out of his wits, ef he sot it off at night.
Sometimes I wonder if 'Bijah's crazy, he does sech cur'ous things.
Hev I told you about his bedstead yit?—'Twas full of wheels and springs;
It hed a key to wind it up, and a clock face at the head;
All you did was to turn them hands, and at any hour you said,
That bed got up and shook itself, and bounced you on the floor,
And then shet up, jest like a box, so you couldn't sleep any more.
Wa'al, 'Bijah he fixed it all complete, and he sot it at half-past five,
But he hadn't mor'n got into it when—dear me! sakes alive!
Them wheels began to whiz and whir! I heered a fearful snap!
And there was that bedstead, with 'Bijah inside, shet up jest like a trap!
I screamed, of course, but 'twan't no use, then I worked that hull long night
A-trying to open the pesky thing. At last I got in a fright;
I couldn't hear his voice inside, and I thought he might be dyin';
So I took a crow-bar and smashed it in.—There was 'Bijah peacefully lyin',
Inventin' a way to git out agin. That was all very well to say,
But I don't b'lieve he'd have found it out if I'd left him in all day.
Now, sence I've told you my story, do you wonder I'm tired of life?
Or think it strange I often wish I warn't an inventor's wife?