The Painted Ceiling
by Amy Lowell (1874-1925)
My Grandpapa lives in a wonderful house
With a great many windows and doors,
There are stairs that go up, and stairs that go down,
And such beautiful, slippery floors.
But of all of the rooms, even mother’s and mine,
And the bookroom, and parlour and all,
I like the green dining-room so much the best
Because of its ceiling and wall.
Right over your head is a funny round hole
With apples and pears falling through;
There’s a big bunch of grapes all purply and sweet,
And melons and pineapples too.
They tumble and tumble, but never come down
Though I’ve stood underneath a long while
With my mouth open wide, for I always have hoped
Just a cherry would drop from the pile.
No matter how early I run there to look
It has always begun to fall through;
And one night when at bedtime I crept in to see,
It was falling by candle-light too.
I am sure they are magical fruits, and each one
Makes you hear things, or see things, or go
Forever invisible; but it’s no use,
And of course I shall just never know.
For the ladder’s too heavy to lift, and the chairs
Are not nearly so tall as I need.
I’ve given up hope, and I feel I shall die
Without having accomplished the deed.
It’s a little bit sad, when you seem very near
To adventures and things of that sort,
Which nearly begin, and then don’t; and you know
It is only because you are short.