Mr. Nobody is Somebody Too

I use First Language Lessons (Susan Wise Bauer) in my home school.  One of the poems that I read to the children is called "Mr. Nobody."  It's about the fact that when something is broken, neglected, or left a mess, everyone always denies responsibility, leaving all the problems caused by "Mr. Nobody."  It's a comical poem, and it is fun to explain the poem to the kids and see their eyes light up when they understand this literary puzzle of sorts. 

They are smart, they know that there isn't really a man named Mr. Nobody living in our house breaking plates and leaving the door open.  They get the message that it's a messy endeavor, raising a family and living together with all the stuff and activities that life brings.

But today I've decided that I might believe in ghosts, or the supernatural, or whatever category of crazy belief Mr. Nobody would fall under.  Because I'm here to tell you, Mr. Nobody makes his mark in my house quite often.  It happened twice today.  Someone moved the toy shelf away from the wall.  Jimmy wanted to know who did it.  There was finger pointing.  Emphatic denials.  Someone was sent to their room.  More denials.  More finger pointing.  Turns out, it was Mr. Nobody.  Then later, at dinner, I had left part of a hamburger for Violet on the counter.  I went to get it and there was a bite out of it.  I asked everyone who ate it.  Every single person said it wasn't them.  No one could recall taking meat off the counter.  Eventually, someone pointed the finger at Mr. Nobody and he is mute and unable to defend himself, so...

Despite his moniker, I'm here to tell you, Mr. Nobody is Somebody too.

Mr. Nobody
by Anonymous

I know a funny little man,
    As quiet as a mouse,
Who does the mischief that is done
    In everybody’s house!
There’s no one ever sees his face,
    And yet we all agree
That every plate we break was cracked
    By Mr. Nobody.

’Tis he who always tears out books,
    Who leaves the door ajar,
He pulls the buttons from our shirts,
    And scatters pins afar;
That squeaking door will always squeak,
    For prithee, don’t you see,
We leave the oiling to be done
    By Mr. Nobody.

He puts damp wood upon the fire
   That kettles cannot boil;
His are the feet that bring in mud,
   And all the carpets soil.
The papers always are mislaid;
   Who had them last, but he?
There’s no one tosses them about
   But Mr. Nobody.

The finger marks upon the door
    By none of us are made;
We never leave the blinds unclosed,
    To let the curtains fade.
The ink we never spill;   the boots
    That lying round you see
Are not our boots,—they all belong
    To Mr. Nobody.

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