Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Nov. 5, 1850 - Oct. 30, 1919


A Baby In The House

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

I knew that a baby was hid in that house,
Though I saw no cradle, and heard no cry;
But the husband went tip-toeing 'round like a mouse,
And the good wife was humming a soft lullaby;
And there was a look on the face of the mother
That I knew could mean only one thing, and no other.

The mother, I said to myself; for I knew
That the woman before me was certainly that;
For there lay in a corner a tiny cloth shoe,
And I saw on a stand such a wee little hat;
And the beard of the husband said, plain as could be,
Two fat, chubby hands have been tugging at me.

And he took from his pocket a gay picture-book,
And a dog that would bark if you pulled on a string;
And the wife laid them up, with such a pleased look;
And I said to myself, There is no other thing
But a babe that could bring about all this, and so
That one is in hiding here somewhere, I know.

I stayed but a moment, and saw nothing more,
And heard not a sound, yet I know I was right;
What else could the shoe mean that lay on the floor,
The book and the toy, and the faces so bright;
And what made the husband as still as a mouse?
I am sure, very sure, there's a babe in that house.


Poems of Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Copyright 1910
W.P. Nimmo, Hay, and Mitchell, Edinburgh