Gateway to the Classics: Display Item
Agnes Taylor Ketchum

Bread and Butter

T HE moon seems to be very fond of children, and here is another of his pictures. "I do so love children," said the moon, one evening; "especially the very small ones; they are so innocent, and droll. Many nights I peep into the room, between the curtains and window-frames, when they are not thinking of me. It gives me so much pleasure to see them undress. First, a little, white round shoulder comes peeping out of the frock; then an arm; or a stocking is drawn off, and a little white leg appears, and a little foot, fit to be kissed, and I kiss it, too. This evening, I looked through a window, before which no curtain was drawn, and saw a whole troop of little ones, all of one family. Among them was a little sister, only four years old, who had been taught to say, 'Our Father,' as well as the rest. The mother sits by her bedside, every night, to hear her say her prayers; and after she has said them, she gives her a kiss, and stays by her until she is asleep, which is, generally, as soon as ever her eyes are closed. This evening, the two elder children were rather inclined to play. One of them hopped about the room, on one leg, and the other stood on a chair, surrounded by the clothes of all the other children, and said he was a living statue. The third and fourth were placing the clean linen, from the wash, into the drawers, which is a thing that must be done; and the mother sat by the bed of the youngest, and desired the others to be quiet, as their little sister was going to say her prayers. I looked in, over the lamp, into the little maiden's bed, where she lay under the white quilt, her little hands folded, and her face quite grave and serious. Then she repeated the Lord's Prayer, aloud. 'What is it you say to yourself?' asked the mother, when she got into the middle of the prayer. 'When you say, "Give us this day our daily bread," you always add something, which I cannot understand; you must tell mother what it is.' The little one lay silent, and looked confused. 'What is it you say after "Give us our daily bread?"—tell me.' 'Don't be angry, dear mother,' said the child, 'I only say, "And plenty of butter on it." ' "