Morning-Glories and Other Stories/Peep! Peep! Peep!





<poem>Oh! merry is the life

  Of a beach-bird free,

Dwelling by the side

  Of the sounding sea,—

Where the little children

  Chase us as we go; 

Where the pretty shells

  Murmur sweet and low; 

Where the old folk sit,

  Basking in the sun; 

Where the fisher-folk

  Rest when work is done. 

"Peep! Peep! Peep!" we say,

  Tripping to and fro 

On the pebbly shore,

  Where the ripples flow.

Oh! merry is the life

  Of a beach-bird free, 

Building our nests

  By the sounding sea, 

Seeking daily food,

  And feeding with care 

The dear little ones

  Safely hidden there, 

Teaching them to fly

  Boldly o'er the sea,—

On the weak wings they

Flutter timidly.

"Peep! Peep! Peep!" we say,
   Brooding there on high,—
Sea-weed beneath us.
   Above us the sky.

Oh! happy is the life
   of a beach-bird free,
Playing our blithe games
   By the sounding sea.
High o'er the billows,
   In gay flocks we sail.
Kissed by the cool spray,
   Ruffled by the gale,
Watching the great ships
   As onward they glide,
Like white-winged birds,
   O'er the restless tide.
"Peep! Peep! Peep!" we say,
   Dancing in the sun,
Where no harm can reach
   From storm, dog, or gun.

Oh! merry is the life
   Of a beach-bird free;
Few griefs molest us
   By the sounding sea.
If rude winds destroy
   Our nests built with care,
Patiently we work
   The loss to repair;
If chilled by the gust,
   Or wet by the rain,
We do not fret, but
   Wait for sun again.
"Peep! Peep! Peep!" we say.
   Where'er we may be;
Which means, little child,
   "Hurrah for the sea!"