The Goop Directory, by Gelett Burgess

These poems and illustrations are from The Goop Directory, written and illustrated by Gelett Burgess and published in 1913. Burgess is best known for his poem The Purple Cow. The complete title of the book is The Goop Directory of Juvenile Offenders Famous for their Misdeeds and Serving as a Salutary Example for all Virtuous Children.

Banana peel goop

Throwing Away Things

On the sidewalk
Nancy Beal
Throws her old
banana peel;
Throws her apple
skin and cores,
Right in front
of people’s doors!
Isn’t that a
shocking trick?
Ask that Goop
to stop it, quick!

Selfish goop

Selfish With Toys

A puppy, when he
gets a bone,
Will keep it for
himself alone.
So Bildad would not
share his toys
Or lend them to
the other boys.
He was a Goop;
and so are you
If you are ever
selfish, too!

Stealing goop

Stealing Sweets

If there’s sugar
in the dish,
Who will take it?
Mandy Fish.
If there is a
box of candy,
Just look out
for little Mandy!
She goops the fruit,
and leaves the peeling–
She calls it fun;
I call it stealing!

Tongue goop

Sticking out Tongue

Do you ever
stick your tongue
Out, like
Isabel McClung?
No one but
a Goop would show
Rudeness such as that,
I know!
If you’re good,
take my advice;
Please don’t do it!
‘Tisn’t nice.

Bossy goop

Ordering People

When John D. Pell
wants something done,
D’you think he asks
of anyone?
Oh, no! He orders
someone to,
With “Get my hat!”
or, “Tie my shoe!”
The Goops all say
rude things like these,
But you, of course,
say, “If you please!”

Cheater goop

Cheating at Play

If you should ask
why Rosamund
Eliza Puddingfoot
was shunned,
I’d say, because
she’d always cheat
In every game,
so she could beat.
Only a Goop
would act that way
And be dishonest
in her play.

Here is the entire collection read aloud by Andrea L, courtesy of Librivox


~ by lolarusa on February 19, 2008.

One Response to “The Goop Directory, by Gelett Burgess”

  1. These are great. It reminds me of Little Bunny Foo Foo, but I think the lessons here are more useful.

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