Thursday, August 23, 2018

Eerie Time - Newcomer

Eerie Time
by Alphonso G. Newcomer (1864-1913)

When the clock strikes ten and the lights go out
And the folks come up to bed,
And Uncle John quits shuffling about
In the attic overhead;
And the dogs begin to bark at the posts,
And the night-owls call to the elves,
Then back in the walls I know the ghosts
Are ready to stir themselves.

They peep to see if the coast is clear,
And then step cautiously out,
And nod and whisper so I can’t hear,
But I know what they’re about.
They are going to play their games again
Of Catch-me-if-you-Can,
And Tag-across-the-Counterpane,
And Hide-and-Find-your-Man.

They never stop to open doors
For fear a hinge might creak,
But glide right through the walls and floors—
What funny Hide-and-Seek!
And they never laugh or speak out loud,
But when the hall-stairs crack
I know some ghost has tripped on his shroud
And fallen and hurt his back.

Then I snuggle closer down in bed
So I can’t hear the wail
Of the little squeak-mouse overhead
When a ghost steps on his tail;
While out of dreamland the fairy hosts
Come trooping, till papa calls
“Up Rob!” and I jump, and behold, the ghosts
Are all gone back in the walls.

circa 1903

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