Gently, reader, gently moving,
Wipe your feet beside the door;
Hush your voice to whispers soothing,
Take your hat off, we implore.
Mark your number, plainly, rightly,
From the catalogue you see:
With the card projecting slightly,
Then your book bring unto me.
Soon another there will be.
If above two weeks you’ve left me,
Just two cents a day I’ll take,
And unless my mind’s bereft me,
Payment you must straightway make.
Treat your books as if to-morrow
Gabriel’s trump would surely sound,
And all scribbling, to your sorrow,
‘Gainst your credit would be found.
Therefore tear not,
Spot, and wear not,
All these books so neatly bound.
These few simple rules abiding,
We shall always on you smile;
There will be no room for chiding,
No one’s temper will you rile.
And when Heaven’s golden portals
For you, on their hinges turn,
With the books for all immortals,
There will be no rules to learn.
Therefore heed them
Often read them,
Lest your future weal you spurn.