The Mouse - Poem by Laura E. Richards

I'm only a poor little mouse, Ma'am.
I live in the wall of your house, Ma'am.
With a fragment of cheese,
And a _very few_ peas,
I was having a little carouse, Ma'am.

No mischief at all I intend, Ma'am.
I hope you will act as my friend, Ma'am.
If my life you should take,
Many hearts it would break,
And the mischief would be without end, Ma'am.

My wife lives in there, in the crack, Ma'am,
She's waiting for me to come back, Ma'am.
She hoped I might find
A bit of a rind,
For the children their dinner do lack, Ma'am.

'Tis hard living there in the wall, Ma'am,
For plaster and mortar _will_ pall, Ma'am,
On the minds of the young,
And when specially hung -
Ry, upon their poor father they'll fall, Ma'am.

I never was given to strife, Ma'am, -
(Don't look at that terrible knife, Ma'am!)
The noise overhead
That disturbs you in bed,
'Tis the rats, I will venture my life, Ma'am.

In your eyes I see mercy, I'm sure, Ma'am.
Oh, there's no need to open the door, Ma'am.
I'll slip through the crack,
And I'll never come back,
Oh! I'll _never_ come back any more, Ma'am!