Stalky Jack

By William Brighty Rands

I knew a boy who took long walks,
Who lived on beans and ate the stalks;
To the Giants’ Country he lost his way;
They kept him there for a year and a day.
But he has not been the same boy since;
An alteration he did evince;
For you may suppose that he underwent
A change in his notions of extent!

He looks with contempt on a nice high door,
And tries to walk in at the second floor;
He stares with surprise at a basin of soup,
He fancies a bowl as large as a hoop;
He calls the people minikin mites;
He calls a sirloin a couple of bites!
Things having come to these pretty passes,
They bought him some magnifying glasses.

He put on the goggles, and said “My eyes!
The world has come to its proper size!”
But all the boys cry, “Stalky John!
There you go with your goggles on!”
What girl would marry him - and quite right -
To be taken for three times her proper height?
So this comes of taking extravagant walks,
And living on beans, and eating the stalks.


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