Estimated reading time: 2 minute(s)

It has been a good while since I re-published a nineteenth century poem at The New Leaf Journal. Today I rectify that by re-printing Margaret E. Sangster’s A Little Marauder, a poem about a robin with wasteful cherry consumption habits (see more Sangster poems). The poem, which is good fun and presents a small moral lesson for young readers, appeared in a July 19, 1881 issue of Harper’s Young People.

“A Little Marauder” by Margaret E. Sangster (1881)

Oh, Robin, my Robin, so clever and merry,
Pray why do you never peck twice at a cherry?
You fly at the daintiest one you can see,
Eat a morsel for yourself, and spoil it for me.

Oh, Robin, sweet Robin, you dear little warden,
You're welcome to feast on the fruit in my garden:
I know what invaders you're driving away
From flower and tree through the long summer day.

But, Robin, bright Robin, please listen to reason:
You waste lots of cherries, my pet, every season.
I finish my cake to the very last crumb—
Why can not you finish your cherry or plum?

Additional Robin Content

Although I have written a good amount of bird content here at The New Leaf Journal, the reddish-orange robin has made only one previous appearance. In May 2021, I published a compendium of spring stories from rour issues of The Nursery, a nineteenth century children’s magazine. One of my favorite stories from the magazine (evinced from the fact that I featured a pull quote from the story in the introduction to my article) was Ida Fay’s Good Morning Sir, which I discussed in my post.

This excellent photo of a robin is in the Public Domain. Original un-compressed photo was taken by Mr. Petr Ganaj from Pexels.
This excellent photo of a robin is in the Public Domain. Original un-compressed photo was taken by Mr. Petr Ganaj from Pexels (link).