This file also has Nursery Rhymes and Lullabies.



Ping Pong

Chitchat
Wigwag
Rickrack
Zigzag.

Knickknack
gewgaw
Riffraff
Seesaw.

Crisscross
flipflop
Dingdong
tiptop.

Singsong
Mishmash
King Kong
bong.


Whimsy on Doors

(Helen Harrington)

Doors are a wonderful invention
second to the wheel! Open one
at certain times and you will let fresh air in,
a guest as sweet as Spring, which has been
walking among flowers or marshes. If a gush
of Winter comes, you can--in a rush--
close it quickly with a fervent bang!
You'll like doors--once you get the hang
of how they work! They have the terrific clout
to give two different worlds--In and Out--
to you, at will. The trick, now and again,
is knowing what to do with them--and when!


Smuggler's Song

(Rudyard Kipling)

If you wake at midnight, and hear a horse's feet,
Don't go drawing back the blind or looking in the street,
Them that ask no questions isn't told a lie.
Watch the wall, my darling, when the Gentlemen go by!

Five and twenty ponies,
Trotting through the dark--
Brandy for the Parson,
'Baccy for the Clerk;
Laces for a lady, letters for a spy.
And watch the wall, my darling, when the Gentlemen go by!

Running round the woodlump if you chance to find
Little barrels, roped and tarred, all full of brandy-wind,
Don't you shout to come and look, nor use 'em for you play.
Put the brushwood back again--and they'll be gone next day!

If you see the stable-door setting open wide;
If you see a tired horse lying down inside;
If your mother mends a coat cut about and tore;
If the lining's wet and warm--don't you ask no more!

If you meet King George's men, dressed in blue and red,
You be careful what you say, and mindful what is said.
If they call you 'pretty maid', and chuck you 'neath the chin,
Don't you tell where no one is, nor yet where no one's been!

Knocks and footsteps round the house--whistles after dark--
You've no call for running out till the house dogs bark.
Trusty's here, and Pincher's here, and see how dumb they lie--
They don't fret to follow when the Gentlemen go by!

If you do as you are told, likely there's a chance,
You'll be given a dainty doll, all the way from France,
With a cap of Valenciennes, and a velvet hood--
A present from the Gentlemen, along o' being good!

Five and twenty ponies,
Trotting through the dark--
Brandy for the Parson,
'Baccy for the Clerk.
Them that ask no questions isn't told a lie--
Watch the wall, my darling, when the Gentlemen go by!



Nursery Rhymes

I am only including rhymes that are not widely known. There are many sites on the internet where you can find common nursery rhymes.


Nursery Rhyme explanations:

Humpty Dumpty relates to King James IV of Scotland, who died at Flodden in 1513. He was a very large man who rode the largest horse in 16th century Scotland nicknamed "The Wall." As he rode The Wall along a cliff side to join his troops, the horse slipped and the two fell to their deaths.

Jack Horner was a man who lived in 16th century England, and the plum he pulled out was a fine estate, which he got out of lands seized by Henry VIII from the church.

The Crooked Man was, according to Grip Fast, the publication of the Clan Leslie Society, was Sir Alexander Leslie (ca 1580-1661), who became the 1st Earl of Leven and Lord Balgonie (1641). He was Lord General of the Army of the Covenant during the Scottish Bishop's War. The 'crooked mile' refers to his march to the border from Edinburgh. The opponent, King Charles I, was known as the 'crooked sixpence' because he was always short of funds to pay his soldiers. The 'crooked cat' was the Scottish Army. The two armies confronted one another in the battle of Duns in 1639 (where no blood was spilled) and 'lived together in a crooked little house'--Britain--until the English Civil War.

Miss Muffet is Mary Queen of Scots, Mary Stuart. In 1567 she was living in Scotland and she was Catholic. John Knox, a Protestant and major force in Scotland, forced Mary to Flee to England.


Mary's Lamb (original version)

(Sarah Hale)

Mary had a little lamb
Its fleece was white as snow,
And everywhere that Mary went
The lamb was sure to go;

He followed her to school one day--
That was against the rule,
It made the children laugh and play,
To see a lamb at school.

And so the Teacher turned him out,
But still he lingered near.
And waited patiently about,
Till Mary did appear;

And then he ran to her, and laid
His head upon her arm,
As if he said--'I'm not afraid--
You'll keep me from all harm.'

'What makes the lamb love Mary so?'
The eager children cry--
'O, Mary loves the lamb, you know.'
The Teacher did reply;

'And you each gentle animal
In confidence may bind,
And make them follow at your call,
If you are always kind.'

This poem was first published in 1830. It was an immediate success. It was printed on silk handkerchiefs and sold in Boston bookstores. Currier and Ives made a print of Mary and her lamb. In 1834 the words were set to music and published by Mrs. Hale in her School Song Book. In 1844 the poem was published as a lesson in The First Eclectric Reader, the most popular schoolbook of its day. William McGuffey, the schoolbook's writer and editor, did not credit Mrs. Hale, and the poem became known as a Mother Goose rhyme.
In 1877, the verse was immortalized when Thomas Edison made a phonograph recording. "Mary had a little lamb" became the first words of recorded human speech.
Today the poem is usually shortened by eight lines and the lamb is referred to as "it" rather than "he."
Another accomplishment of the author, Mrs. Sarah Josepha Hale, is helping persuade Abe Lincoln to declare Thanksgiving a National holiday.


Little Miss Tuckett

Little Miss Tuckett
Sat on a bucket
Eating some
Peaches and cream;

There came a grasshopper
And tried hard to stop her;
But she said,
"Go away, or I'll scream."


Yet Didn't You See?

Yet didn't you see, yet didn't you see,
      What naughty tricks they put upon me?
          They broke my pitcher,
                And spilled my water,
                   And buffed my mother,
                      And chid my daughter,
And kissed my sister instead of me.


Jack and Jill

Jack and Jill
Went up the hill
To fetch a pail of water.
Jack fell down
And broke his crown
And Jill came tumbling after.

Then up Jack got
And off did trot
As fast as he could caper.
To old dame Mab
Who patched his nob
With vinegar and brown paper.

When Jill came in
How she did grin
To see Jack's paper plaster.
Her mother vexed
Did whip her next
For laughing at Jack's disaster.

Now Jack did laugh
And Jill did cry
But her tears did soon abate.
Then Jill did say
That they should play
At seesaw across the gate.


The Man Who Wasn't There

(Hughes Mearns)

As I was going up the stair
I met a man who wasn't there;
He wasn't there again today!
I wish that he would go away.


Hickory, Dickory Dock

Hickory, dickory, dock.
The mouse ran up the clock.
The clock struck one, the mouse ran down.
Hickory, dickory dock.

Hickory, dickory, dock.
The mouse ran up the clock.
The clock struck two, the mouse said, "Boo!"
Hickory, dickory dock.

Hickory, dickory, dock.
The mouse ran up the clock.
The clock struck three, the mouse said, "Whee!"
Hickory, dickory dock.

Hickory, dickory, dock.
The mouse ran up the clock.
The clock struck four, the mouse said, "No more!"
Hickory, dickory dock.


Baa Baa Black Sheep

Baa Baa Black sheep have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir, three bags full.
One for your sweater, and one for your rug . . .
One for your blanket that keeps you warm and snug.

Cluck Cluck red hen have you any eggs?
Yes sir, yes sir, as many as your legs.
One for your breakfast, and one for your lunch.
Come back tomorrow I'll have another bunch.

Moo moo brown cow have you milk for me
Yes sir, yes sir, tasty as can be.
Churn it into butter or make it into cheese.
Freeze it into ice cream or drink it if you please.

Buzz Buzz busy bee is your honey sweet.
Yes sir, yes sir, sweet enough to eat
Honey on your muffin and honey on your cake.
Honey by the spoonful as much as I can make.

Baa Baa Black sheep have you any wool.
Yes sir yes sir three bags full.



Lullabies


Dreams Are the Flowers (That Bloom in Your Heart)

(Jackie Cusic)

Close your eyes, sleep is more than it seems
Soon you'll discover a garden of dreams.
A blossoming tapestry lights up the dark
Dreams are the flowers
that bloom in your heart.

Rose dreams are red like a new valentine.
Violets are blue 'cause they're sad all the time.
Daisy dreams shine like the sun in the park.
Dreams are the flowers
that bloom in your heart.

So dream and bloom, bloom and dream
And watch your garden grow.
When you awaken with a smile
Everyone will know.

You've been to dreamland
and now you've returned.
Eager to share everything you've learned.
Believing in dreams isn't really so hard.
Dreams are the flowers
that bloom in your heart.


Rock-a-bye Baby

Rock-a-bye baby, in the tree top
When the wind blows, the cradle will rock
When the bough breaks, the cradle will fall
And down will come baby, cradle and all.

Note: Rock-a-bye Baby, is thought to be the first poem written in America. It was supposedly inscribed on a piece of birch bark by an early settler at Plymouth, after seeing Indian cradles hung on the limbs of trees, with the infants fastened in them--a novel sight to Europeans.


All Through the Night

Sleep my child and peace attend thee,
All through the night.
Guardian angels God will send thee,
All through the night.
Soft the drowsy hours are creeping,
Hill and dale in slumber sleeping
I my loved ones' watch am keeping,
All through the night.

Angels watching, e'er around thee,
All through the night.
Midnight slumber close surround thee,
All through the night.
Soft the drowsy hours are creeping,
Hill and dale in slumber sleeping
I my loved ones' watch am keeping,
All through the night.


All the Pretty Horses

Hush-a-bye don't you cry,
Go to sleep-y, little baby.
When you wake you shall have
All the pretty little horses.
Blacks and bays, dapple grays,
Coach and six white horses.
Hush-a-bye don't you cry,
Go to sleep-y, little baby.


Hush Little Baby

(Rick Schulman)

Hush, little baby, don't say a word
Papa's gonna buy you a mockingbird.
If that mockingbird don't sing
Papa's gonna buy you a diamond ring.

If that diamond ring turns brass
Papa's gonna buy you a looking glass.
And if that looking glass gets broke
Papa's gonna buy you a billy goat.

If that billy goat don't pull
Papa's gonna buy you a cart and bull.
And if that cart and bull turn over
Papa's gonna buy you a dog named Rover.

If that dog named Rover won't bark
Papa's gonna buy you a horse and cart.
And if that horse and cart fall down
You'll still be the sweetest little baby in town.


Sleep, Baby, Sleep

Sleep, baby, sleep!
Your father tends the sheep,
Your mother is shaking the dreamland tree
And from it fall sweet dreams for thee.
Sleep, baby, sleep!

Sleep, baby, sleep!
The large stars are the sheep,
The little stars are the lambs, I guess,
And the silver moon is the shepherdess.
Sleep, baby, sleep!


Lullaby

(Christina Rosetti)

Lullaby, oh lullaby!
Flowers are closed and lambs are sleeping;
Lullaby, oh lullaby!
Stars are up, the moon is peeping;
Lullaby, oh lullaby!
While the birds are silence keeping,
Lullaby, oh lullaby!
Sleep, my baby, fall a-sleeping,
Lullaby, oh lullaby!