A robin up in the linden tree,
Merrily sings this lay:
"Somebody Sweet is three years old,
Three years old to-day."
Somebody's bright blue eyes look up,
Through tangled curls of gold,
And two red lips unclose to say,
"To-day I am free years old."
Clouds were over the sky this morn,
But now they are sailing away;
Clouds could never obscure the sun
On Somebody Sweet's birthday.
Bluest of skies and greenest of trees,
Sunlight and birds and flowers,
These are Nature's birthday gifts
To this sweet pet of ours.
The pantry is brimming with cakes and creams
For Somebody's birthday ball.
Papa and mamma bring their gifts
But their love is better than all.
Ribbons and sashes and dainty robes,
Gifts of silver and gold
Will fade and rust as the days go by,
But their hearts will not grow cold.
Then laugh in the sunlight, Somebody Sweet,
Little flower of June;
You have nothing to do with care,
For life is in perfect tune.
Loving hearts and sheltering arms
Shall keep old care away
For many a year from Somebody Sweet,
Who is three years old to-day.
"The judge at whose home I boarded those three months was, through a late marriage, the father of two little girls. I became deeply attached to these children and they and their mother to me. I put little Eva to sleep every night by telling her fairy-stories. One evening, however, an editor came to call before Eva had her hour with me. She was in the back parlor with her parents, and I received the editor in the front parlor with only heavy plush portieres between. Eva could not understand why I did not come to her. Her mother explained that I had a caller; suddenly the editor and I were startled at seeing the heavy dark portieres part and a cherub in a 'nightie' standing between them, while a baby voice, with a peculiarly fascinating alto chord in it, ejaculated, 'I'd like to shot him.' Then the curtains closed and the cherub vanished. On Eva's third birthday, I wrote the following lines, which welded the heart of her parents to me forever."
[SEE POEM ABOVE]
"Only a few years before the war I was in Paris and spent a happy evening with 'Somebody Sweet,' where she lived with her fine husband and interesting family of five boys, which included sturdy twins."
The worlds and I. By Ella Wheeler Wilcox. p.63
New York : George H. Doran Company, c1918.
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