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A Child's Garden of Verses

Word count: 1780

Song Cycle by Edward Falk

Show the texts alone (bare mode).

?. Bed in summer [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Paolo Montanari) , "Letto in estate", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


In winter I get up at night,
And dress by yellow candle light.
In summer, quite the other way,
I have to go to bed by day.

I have to go to bed and see
The birds still hopping on the tree,
Or hear the grown-up people's feet
Still going past me in the street.

And does it not seem hard to you,
When all the sky is clear and blue,
And I should like so much to play,
To have to go to bed by day?


Submitted by Ted Perry

?. A thought [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Paolo Montanari) , "Un pensiero", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


It is very nice to think
The world is full of meat and drink,
With little children saying grace
In every Christian kind of place.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. At the sea-side [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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When I was down beside the sea
A wooden spade they gave to me
  To dig the sandy shore.

My holes were empty like a cup.
In every hole the sea came up,
  Till it could come no more.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Auntie's skirt [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Whenever Auntie moves around,
Her dresses make a curious sound,
They trail behind her up the floor,
And trundle after through the door.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Young night thought [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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All night long and every night,
When my mama puts out the light,
I see the people marching by,
As plain as day before my eye.

Armies and emperor and kings,
All carrying different kinds of things,
And marching in so grand a way,
You never saw the like by day.

So fine a show was never seen
At the great circus on the green;
For every kind of beast and man
Is marching in that caravan.

As first they move a little slow,
But still the faster on they go,
And still beside me close I keep
Until we reach the town of Sleep.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Whole duty of children [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "I doveri di ogni bambino", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


A child should always say what's true
And speak when he is spoken to,
And behave mannerly at table:
At least as far as he is able.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Rain [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Paolo Montanari) , "Pioggia", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


The rain is raining all around,
It falls on field and tree,
It rains on the umbrellas here,
And on the ships at sea.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Pirate story [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Three of us afloat in the meadow by the swing,
  Three of us abroad in the basket on the lea.
Winds are in the air, they are blowing in the spring,
  And waves are on the meadow like the waves there are at sea.

Where shall we adventure, today that we're afloat,
  Wary of the weather and steering by a star?
Shall it be to Africa, a-steering of the boat,
  To Providence, or Babylon or off to Malabar?

Hi! but here's a squadron a-rowing on the sea --
  Cattle on the meadow a-charging with a roar!
Quick, and we'll escape them, they're as mad as they can be,
  The wicket is the harbour and the garden is the shore.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Foreign lands [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Up into the cherry tree
Who should climb but little me?
I held the trunk with both my hands
And looked abroad in foreign lands.

I saw the next door garden lie,
Adorned with flowers, before my eye,
And many pleasant places more
That I had never seen before.

I saw the dimpling river pass
And be the sky's blue looking-glass;
The dusty roads go up and down
With people tramping in to town.

If I could find a higher tree
Farther and farther I should see,
To where the grown-up river slips
Into the sea among the ships,

To where the roads on either hand
Lead onward into fairy land,
Where all the children dine at five,
And all the playthings come alive.


First published in Magazine of Art, September 1884

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Windy nights [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE FRE GER

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Sylvain Labartette) , "Nuit venteuse", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) [singable] (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Whenever the moon and the stars are set,
Whenever the wind is high,
All night long in the dark and wet,
A man goes riding by.

Late in the night when the fires are out,
Why does he gallop and gallop about?
Whenever the trees are crying aloud,
And ships are tossed at sea,

By, on the highway, low and loud,
By at the gallop goes he.
By at the gallop he goes, and then
By he comes back at the gallop again.


Submitted by Ted Perry

?. Where go the boats? [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Paolo Montanari) , "Dove vanno le barche?", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Dark brown is the river,
Golden is the sand.
It flows along for ever,
With trees on either hand.

Green leaves a-floating,
Castles of the foam,
Boats of mine a-boating -
Where will all come home?

On goes the river
And out past the mill,
Away down the valley,
Away down the hill.

Away down the river,
A hundred miles or more,
Other little children
Shall bring my boats ashore.


Submitted by Ted Perry

?. The cow [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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The friendly cow all red and white,
I love with all my heart.
She gives me cream with all her might,
To eat with apple tart.

She wanders lowing here and there,
And yet she cannot stray,
All in the pleasant open air,
The pleasant light of day;

And blown by all the winds that pass
And wet with all the showers,
She walks among the meadow grass
And eats the meadow flowers.


First published in Magazine of Art, July 1884
Submitted by Barbara Miller

?. Escape at bedtime [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE FRE

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Sylvain Labartette) , "Les étoiles", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


The lights from the parlour and kitchen shone out
  Through the blinds and the windows and bars;
And high overhead and all moving about,
  There were thousands of millions of stars.
There ne'er were such thousands of leaves on a tree,
  Nor of people in church or the Park,
As the crowds of the stars that looked down upon me,
  And that glittered and winked in the dark.

The Dog, and the Plough, and the Hunter, and all,
  And the star of the sailor, and Mars,
These shown in the sky, and the pail by the wall
  Would be half full of water and stars.
They saw me at last, and they chased me with cries,
  And they soon had me packed into bed;
But the glory kept shining and bright in my eyes,
  And the stars going round in my head.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Foreign children [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Paolo Montanari) , "Bambini stranieri", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Little Indian, Sioux or Crow,
Little frosty Eskimo,
Little Turk or Japanese,
O! don't you wish that you were me?

You have seen the scarlet trees
And the lions over seas;
You have eaten ostrich eggs,
And turned the turtles off their legs.

Such a life is very fine,
But it's not so nice as mine:
You must often, as you trod,
Have wearied not to be abroad.

You have curious things to eat,
I am fed on proper meat;
You must dwell beyond the foam,
But I am safe and live at home.

Little Indian, Sioux or Crow,
Little frosty Eskimo,
Little Turk or Japanese,
O! don't you wish that you were me?


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Happy thought [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Paolo Montanari) , "Pensiero felice", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


The world is so full of a number of things,
I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. The Land of Nod [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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From breakfast on through all the day
At home among my friends I stay,
But every night I go abroad
Afar into the land of Nod.

All by myself I have to go,
With none to tell me what to do --
All alone beside the streams
And up the mountain-sides of dreams.

The strangest things are these for me,
Both things to eat and things to see,
And many frightening sights abroad
Till morning in the land of Nod.

Try as I like to find the way,
I never can get back by day,
Nor can remember plain and clear
The curious music that I hear.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Looking forward [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Paolo Montanari) , "Pensando al futuro", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


When I am grown to man's estate
I shall be very proud and great,
And tell the other girls and boys
Not to meddle with my toys.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Marching song [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Bring the comb and play upon it!
Marching, here we come!
Willie cocks his highland bonnet,
Johnnie beats the drum.

Mary Jane commands the party,
Peter leads the rear;
Feet in time, alert and hearty,
Each a Grenadier!

All in the most martial manner
Marching double-quick;
While the napkin like a banner
Waves upon the stick!

Here's enough of fame and pillage,
Great commander Jane!
Now that we've been round the village,
Let's go home again.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. The moon [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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The moon has a face like the clock in the hall;	 
She shines on thieves on the garden wall,
On streets and fields and harbour quays,
And birdies asleep in the forks of the trees.
  
The squalling cat and the squeaking mouse,
The howling dog by the door of the house,
The bat that lies in bed at noon,
All love to be out by the light of the moon.
  
But all of the things that belong to the day
Cuddle to sleep to be out of her way;
And flowers and children close their eyes
Till up in the morning the sun shall arise.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. My shadow [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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I have a little shadow that goes in and out with me,
And what can be the use of him is more than I can see.
He is very, very like me from the heels up to the head;
And I see him jump before me, when I jump into my bed.

The funniest thing about him is the way he likes to grow --
Not at all like proper children, which is always very slow;
For he sometimes shoots up taller like an india-rubber ball,
And he sometimes goes so little that there's none of him at all.

He hasn't got a notion of how children ought to play,
And can only make a fool of me in every sort of way.
He stays so close behind me, he's a coward you can see;
I'd think shame to stick to nursie as that shadow sticks to me!

One morning, very early, before the sun was up,
I rose and found the shining dew on every buttercup;
But my lazy little shadow, like an arrant sleepy-head,
Had stayed at home behind me and was fast asleep in bed.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Singing [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Of speckled eggs the birdie sings
And nests among the trees;
The sailor sings of ropes and things
In ships upon the seas. 

The children sing in far Japan,
The children sing in Spain;
The organ with the organ man
Is singing in the rain.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. The swing [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE FRE

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Sylvain Labartette) , "La balançoire", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


How do you like to go up in a swing,
  Up in the air so blue?
Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing
  Ever a child can do!

Up in the air and over the wall,
  Till I can see so wide,
Rivers and trees and cattle and all
  Over the countryside -

Till I look down on the garden green,
  Down on the roof so brown -
Up in the air I go flying again,
  Up in the air and down!


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. System [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Every night my prayers I say,
And get my dinner every day;
And every day that I've been good,
I get an orange after food.

The child that is not clean and neat,
With lots of toys and things to eat,
He is a naughty child, I'm sure --
Or else his dear papa is poor.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. Time to rise [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Ora di alzarsi", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


A birdie with a yellow bill
Hopped upon the window sill,
Cocked his shining eye and said:
"Ain't you 'shamed, you sleepy-head?"


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

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