Quoth the Toddler

DD987040-F60C-4FB6-8AF2-006DC960561COnce on an afternoon dreary, while I
pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of Netflix lore—
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
“Tis that postman,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door-
Only this and nothing more.”

Presently my curiosity grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
“UPS,”, said I, “or Postman, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you”—here I opened wide the door;–
Emptiness there and nothing more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
“Surely,” said I, “surely that is something at the back door;
Let me see, then, what that is, and this mystery explore—
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore;–
‘Tis the wind and nothing more!”

And as I searched throughout the house,
when with many a flirt and flutter,
Out of her room stepped a stately toddler of pajama dressed
Not the least obeisance made she; not a minute stopped or stayed she;
But with mien of lord or lady, perched upon my coffee table—
Perched and sat, and nothing more.

Then this cheeky child beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern countenance she wore,
“While you should be in bed napping, thou,” I said, “art sure no craven,
Overtired and cranky wandering from your bedroom door—
Tell me what you want from me as you’ve wandered from your bedroom door!”
Quoth the toddler “Gimme more.”

But the toddler, sitting lonely on the coffee table, spoke only
That one word, as if her soul in that one word she did outpour.
Nothing further that she uttered- not a toe did she flutter—
Till I scarcely more than muttered, “Out you have escaped before—
When will you stay in your bed? I feel my hopes have flown afore.”
Screeched the toddler, “Gimme more.”

“Child!” said I, “thing of evil!- child maybe, if toddler or devil!—
Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
On this home by Horror haunted- tell me truly, I implore—
Is there—is there balm in Gilead?—tell me—tell me, I implore!”
Quoth the toddler, “Gimme more.”

“Be that word our sign of parting, toddler or fiend!.” I shrieked upstarting—
“Get thee back into thy bedroom and go to bed!
Leave no toy or doll as a token of demand thy soul has spoken!
Give me solitude unbroken!—get off the coffee table!
Take thou empty sippy cup and get off the coffee table!”
Quoth the toddler, “Gimme more.”

So the toddler, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On my coffee table by her bedroom door.
And her eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o’er her streaming throws her shadow on the floor;
And my tired soul from that shadow
Lies sleeping on the floor- shall be rested-
nevermore!

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