Envious Minnie

A poem by Heinrich Hoffmann

Now Minnie was a pretty girl,
Her hair so gracefully did curl;
She had a slender figure, too,
And rosy cheeks, and eyes of blue.
And yet, with all those beauties rare,
Those angel eyes and curly hair,
Oh! many, many faults had she,
The worst of which was jealousy.
When on the brilliant Christmas tree
St. Nicholas hung his gifts so free,
The envious Minnie could not bear
With any one those gifts to share.
And when her sisters' birthdays came
Minnie (it must be told with shame)
Would envy every pretty thing
Which dear Mamma to them would bring.


Sometimes great tears rolled from her eyes,
Sometimes she pierced the air with cries,
For hours together she would fret
Because their toys she could not get.
Ah, then! how changed this pretty child,
No longer amiable and mild.
That fairy form and smiling face
Lost all their sprightliness and grace.
Her tender mother often sighed,
And to reform her daughter tried.
"Oh! Minnie, Minnie," she would say,
"Quite yellow you will turn some day."


Now came the merry Christmas feast;
St. Nicholas brought to e'en the least
Such pretty presents, rich and rare,
But all the best for Minnie were.
Now to her little sister Bess
St. Nicholas brought a yellow dress;
This Minnie longed for (envious child),
And snatched it from her sister mild.
Then all in tears did Bessie run
To tell her mother what was done.


Then Minnie ran triumphantly
To try the dress on, as you see.
But Minnie was not satisfied,
She pouted, fretted, sulked, and cried;
Sisters and brothers had no rest,--
She vowed their presents were the best,
And springing quickly to the glass,
What saw she there? Alas! alas!
Oh! what a sad, such deep disgrace!
She found she had a yellow face.
"Ah, me!" she cried, now, in despair,
"Where are my rosy cheeks--oh, where?"
Exclaimed her mother, "Now you see
The punishment of jealousy."

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