That dark cold night, the rain did splatter
on the dim windows, 'pitter-patter.'
The creaky old cabin 'neath the willows
groans and moans and wobbles and billows.
What there is to say haunts to the core
of the lonesome man inside that door.
Ghostly white skin and hair of gray
that, as age grew, had fallen away.
The man was so frail he scarce could fend
for himself, let alone his house could he mend.
His stomach still empty, he settled in bed
Hearing sounds and moans foretold of the dead.
He pulled his covers clear up to his nose
and in the morning, he never arose.
Then all through the day his body was cold
Until night had returned and fog had rolled.
The hunter of Birmingham followed the path,
but the fog was too thick; he was feeling its wrath.
He rounded a corner and was pleased to behold
a rickety old cabin: escape from the cold.
Gently he rapped on the door with his fist.
He pushed the door open. A fire there hissed.
The hearth was alight; with warmth it was blazing
and in the cold it looked, oh, so amazing!
He beheld a figure on the bed in the corner
so he took a few steps and tapped on its shoulder.
The sheets there covered the man in the bed
all the way up from his toes to his head.
There were no stirrings from the figure that lay;
no vain mumbling from his lips did stray.
The hunter pulled back the sheets to see
two glassy dead eyes wide open with glee.
The poor, poor hunter, he stumbled aback.
His rear hit the floor with a startling smack!
The hunter resolved to go outside
and under the porch, the body he'd hide.
He carried the plan out; no glitch did occur.
He went right to bed without any stir.
Then, in the morning, what sat by the fire
chilled his bones, his skin, and his body's entire.
For there in the rocking chair by the flame
was the dead old man looking just the same.
Even more disturbing: with a look of surprise
the man's wide open, dead, glassy blue eyes.