How doth the little busy bee Improve each shining hour, And gather honey all the day From every opening flower! How skillfully she builds her cell! How neat she spreads the wax! And labours hard to store it well With the sweet food she makes. In works of labour or of skill, I would be busy too; For Satan finds some mischief still For idle hands to do. In books, or work, or healthful play, Let my first years be passed, That I may give for every day Some good account at last.
About the headline (FAQ)
Note: parodied by Lewis Carroll in How doth the little crocodile.
- by Isaac Watts (1674 - 1748), "Against Idleness and Mischief", from Divine Songs for Children [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by Jack Hamilton Beeson (b. 1921), "Against Idleness and Mischief and in Praise of Labor" [ sung text not verified ]
Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
This text was added to the website: 2008-07-12
Line count: 16
Word count: 93