Animals and Insects

Song Cycle by Louis Gruenberg (1884 - 1964)

Word count: 574

1. The Lion [sung text checked 1 time]

The Lion is a kingly beast.
He likes a Hindu for a feast.
And if no Hindu he can get,
The lion-family is upset.

He cuffs his wife and bites her ears
Till she is nearly moved to tears.
Then some explorer finds the den
And all is family peace again.

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2. An Explanation of the Grasshopper [sung text checked 1 time]

The Grasshopper, the Grasshopper,
I will explain to you: -- 
He is the Brownies' racehorse,
The fairies' Kangaroo.

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3. The Spider and the Ghost of the Fly [sung text checked 1 time]

Once I loved a spider
When I was born a fly,
A velvet-footed spider
With a gown of rainbow-dye.
She ate my wings and gloated.
She bound me with a hair.
She drove me to her parlor
Above her winding stair.
To educate young spiders
She took me all apart.
My ghost came back to haunt her.
I saw her eat my heart.

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4. A Dirge For A Righteous Kitten [sung text checked 1 time]

Ding-dong, ding-dong, ding-dong.
Here lies a kitten good, who kept
A kitten's proper place.
He stole no pantry eatables,
Nor scratched the baby's face.
He let the alley-cats alone.
He had no yowling vice.
His shirt was always laundried well,
He freed the house of mice.
Until his death he had not caused
His little mistress tears,
He wore his ribbon prettily,
He washed behind his ears.
Ding-dong, ding-dong, ding-dong.

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5. The Mysterious Cat [sung text checked 1 time]

I saw a proud, mysterious cat,
Too proud to catch a mouse or rat -- 
Mew, mew, mew.

But catnip she would eat, and purr.
And goldfish she did much prefer -- 
Mew, mew, mew.

I saw a cat -- 'twas but a dream,
Who scorned the slave that brought her cream -- 
Mew, mew, mew.

(Unless the slave were dressed in style,
And knelt before her all the while -- 
Mew, mew, mew.)

Did you ever hear of a thing like that?
Oh, what a proud mysterious cat.
Mew ... mew ... mew.

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6. The Mouse That Gnawed the Oak-Tree Down [sung text checked 1 time]

The mouse that gnawed the oak-tree down
Began his task in early life.
He kept so busy with his teeth
He had no time to take a wife.
He gnawed and gnawed through sun and rain
When the ambitious fit was on.
Then rested in the sawdust till
A month of idleness had gone.
He did not move about to hunt
The coteries of mousie-men.
He was a snail-paced, stupid thing
Until he cared to gnaw again.
The mouse that gnawed the oak-tree down,
When that tough foe was at his feet -- 
Found in the stump no angel-cake,
Nor buttered bread, nor cheese nor meat -- 
The forest roof let in the sky.
"This light is worth the work" said he.
"I'll make this ancient swamp more light."
And started on another tree.

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7. Two Old Crows [sung text checked 1 time]

Two old crows sat on a fence rail,
Thinking of effect and cause,
Of weeds and flowers,
And nature's laws.
One of them muttered, one of them stuttered,
One of them stuttered, one of them muttered.
Each of them thought far more than he uttered.
One crow asked the other crow a riddle:
The muttering crow asked the stuttering crow,
"Why does a bee have a sword to his fiddle?"
"Bee-cause," said the other crow,
("Bee-cause,)
B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B-cause,"
Just then a bee flew close to their rail: -- 
"Buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz zzzzzzzzz
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ZZZZZZZZZ."
And those two black crows turned pale,
And away those crows did sail.
Why?
B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B-cause,"
B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B-cause,"
"Buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz zzzzzzzzz
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ZZZZZZZZZ."

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]