When I was a child I remember my parents having a thick green poetry book. It had shiny pages and on one page was a picture of the Venus de Milo on another page was a poem that had the following lines in it.
There was an old old old old lady and a boy with a bended knee.
I loved that book and would like to find it again. I have no idea of the title or authors but thought I would try the internet.
If anyone can help me I would love to hear from you.
I know you may find it in
The Home Book of Verse, Volume 4
by Burton Egbert Stevenson
but I don't know anything about the cover, sorry
ONE, TWO, THREE!"
By H. C. Bunner (Henry Cuyler Bunner)
It was an old, old, old, old lady,
And a boy that was half-past three;
And the way that they played together
Was beautiful to see.
She couldn't go running and jumping,
And the boy, no more could he;
For he was a thin little fellow,
With a thin little twisted knee.
They sat in the yellow sunlight,
Out under the maple-tree;
And the game that they played I'll tell you,
Just as it was told to me.
It was Hide-and-Go-Seek they were playing,
Though you'd never have known it to be
With an old, old, old, old lady,
And a boy with a twisted knee.
The boy would bend his face down
On his one little sound right knee,
And he'd guess where she was hiding,
In guesses One, Two, Three!
"You are in the china-closet!"
he would cry, and laugh with glee
it wasn't the china-closet;
but he had Two and Three.
"You are up in Papa's big bedroom,
In the chest with the queer old key!"
And she said: "You are warm and warmer;
But you're not quite right," said she.
"It can't be the little cupboard
Where Mamma's things used to be
So it must be the clothes-press, Gran'ma!"
And he found her with his Three.
Then she covered her face with her fingers,
That were wrinkled and white and wee,
And she guessed where the boy was hiding,
With a One and a Two and a Three.
And they never had stirred from their places,
Right under the maple-tree
This old, old, old, old lady,
And the boy with the lame little knee
This dear, dear, dear old lady,
And the boy who was half-past three.
April 10, 2005
Thank you to someone for posting this poem . My parents were from the late 1800's , an era when people could quote poetry. And the generation before that, I was told would give dramatic readings for the entertainment of friends and neighbors. This poem of the... old old old lady and the boy who was..... always made me cry. And like the original request I too had remembered the words just a little wrong. But there it came up anyway. Again my thanks to the person who was kind enough to bring this poem back to life, this time on the internet.
Thank you so much ilza! I'm visiting my children and grandchildren a thousand miles from my home and forgot to bring vol.#2 of CHILDCRAFT so I could read some of the poems to the grandchildren that their parents and myself grew up with for Christmas Eve. Here it is five years past the time you posted this poem and you are still touching lives with your thoughtfulness! Merry Christmas...2010