The Bishop's Visit by Mrs. Emma Huntington Nason

Tell you about it? Of course I will!

I thought 'twould be dreadful to have him come,

For mamma said I must be quiet and still,

And she put away my whistle and drum.—

And made me unharness the parlor chairs,

And packed my cannon and all the rest

Of my noisiest playthings off up-stairs,

On account of this very distinguished guest.

Then every room was turned upside down,

And all the carpets hung out to blow;

For when the Bishop is coming to town

The house must be in order, you know.

So out in the kitchen I made my lair,

And started a game of hide-and-seek;

But Bridget refused to have me there,

For the Bishop was coming—to stay a week—

And she must have cookies and cakes and pies,

And fill every closet and platter and pan,

Till I thought this Bishop, so great and wise,

Must be an awfully hungry man.

Well! at last he came; and I do declare,

Dear grandpapa, he looked just like you,

With his gentle voice and his silvery hair,

And eyes with a smile a-shining through.

And whenever he read or talked or prayed,

I understood every single word;

And I wasn't the leastest bit afraid,

Though I never once spoke or stirred;

Till, all of a sudden, he laughed right out

To see me sit quietly listening so;

And began to tell us stories about

Some queer little fellows in Mexico.

And all about Egypt and Spain—and then

He wasn't disturbed by a little noise,

And said that the greatest and best of men

Once were rollicking, healthy boys.

And he thinks it is no matter at all

If a little boy runs and jumps and climbs;

And mamma should be willing to let me crawl

Through the bannister-rails in the hall sometimes.

And Bridget, sir, made a great mistake,

In stirring up such a bother, you see,

For the Bishop—he didn't care for cake,

And really liked to play games with me.

But though he's so honored in word and act—

(Stoop down, this is a secret now)—

He couldn't spell Boston! That's a fact!

But whispered to me to tell him how.