Read THE CHILD WHO WOULD NOT GO TO BED of Careless Jane and Other Tales , free online book, by Katharine Pyle, on

“I do not want to go to bed;
I will not go!” cried naughty Fred.
But it was growing very late;
The clock had long ago struck eight,
And so mamma, impatient grown,
Went off and left him there alone.
But hark! Creak, creak! upon the stair;
It was the sand-man walking there.

In through the door he looked, and said,
“What! Frederick will not go to bed?”
In vain did Frederick kick and bawl,
The sand-man would not heed at all;
He tumbled Fred into his sack,
And off he bore him on his back;
Away he went out through the door,
On, on for many a mile and more.

At last the sand-man, weary grown,
Sat down to rest upon a stone.
Then Frederick turned himself about,
And quick he whipped his jack-knife out;
Ke scritchy scritch! He cuts a slit
And softly clambers out of it.
And now he runs as quick as thought,
And soon a heavy stone has brought;

He softly slips it in the sack
That hangs upon the sand-man’s back.
Says clever Fred, “He will not see
He has a stone instead of me.”
And now the sand-man grunts and sighs,
And slowly he begins to rise.

And Frederick hears him sigh, “Alack,
How that boy thumps about my back!”
The stupid sand-man never sees
Where Frederick crouches on his knees,
Behind the rock, till out of sight
The old sand-man has vanished quite.

But Fred, a thankful boy is he,
As home he hastens tearfully.
And ah his mother! with what joy
She welcomes home her little boy.
“Ah always after this,” cries Fred,
“I will be good, and go to bed.”