90 My Brother Theodore Roosevelt
one hat and all the questions into another, and after each child had drawn a question and a word, he or she was obliged to answer the question and bring in the word in a verse. Amongst my papers I find some of the old poetic efforts of those happy summer days. One is dated Plum Point, Oyster Bay, 1875. I remember the day as if it were yesterday; Theodore, who loved to row in the hottest sun, over the roughest water, in the smallest boat, had chosen his friend Edith as a companion; my cousin West Roosevelt, the "Jimmie" of earlier childhood, whose love of science and natural history was one of the joys that Theodore found in his companionship, took as his companion my friend Fannie Smith, now Mrs. Parsons, and my brother Elliott and I made up the happy six. Lying on the soft sand of the Point after a jolly luncheon, we played our favorite game, and Theodore drew the question: "Why does West enjoy such a dirty picnic?" The word which he drew was "golosh," and written on the other side of the paper in his own boyish handwriting is his attempt to assimilate the query and the word !
"Because it is his nature to, He finds his idyl in the dirt,
And if you do not sympathize But find yours in some saucy flirt,
Why that is your affair you know, It's like the choosing a (?) golosh,
You doat upon a pretty face,
He takes to carrots and hogwash."
Perhaps this sample of early verse may have led him later into other paths than poetry !
We did not always indulge in anything as light and humorous as the above example of poetic fervor. I have in my possession all kinds of competitive essays-on William Wordsworth, Washington Irving, and Plutarch's "Lives," written by various members of the happy group of young people at Oyster Bay; but when not indulging in these literary efforts "Teedie" was al