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A Wrangdillion

James Whitcomb Riley 1849 (Greenfield) – 1916 (Indianapolis)



Dexery-tethery! down in the dike,
Under the ooze and the slime,
Nestles the wraith of a reticent Gryke,
Blubbering bubbles of rhyme:
Though the reeds touch him and tickle his teeth--
Though the Graigroll and the Cheest
Pluck at the leaves of his laureate-wreath,
Nothing affects him the least.

He sinks to the dregs in the dead o' the night,
And he shuffles the shadows about
As he gathers the stars in a nest of delight
And sets there and hatches them out:
The Zhederrill peers from his watery mine
In scorn with the Will-o'-the-wisp,
As he twinkles his eyes in a whisper of shine
That ends in a luminous lisp.

The Morning is born like a baby of gold,
And it lies in a spasm of pink,
And rallies the Cheest for the horrible cold
He has dragged to the willowy brink,
The Gryke blots his tears with a scrap of his grief,
And growls at the wary Graigroll
As he twunkers a tune on a Tiljicum leaf
And hums like a telegraph pole.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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James Whitcomb Riley

James Whitcomb Riley was an American writer, poet, and best-selling author. During his lifetime he was known as the "Hoosier Poet" and "Children's Poet" for his dialect works and his children's poetry respectively. more…

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