Sunday, July 20, 2008

Old Mother Hubbard

Old Mother Hubbard is a Nursery Rhyme classic.
I'm sure that you will find some verses you remember and others that seem very odd. Like most stories or poems that were originally in the oral tradition, the poem has changed through the years.
The history of the poem can be found at the end of this post.


Old Mother Hubbard
Went to the cupboard
To get her poor Dog a bone;
But when she came there
The cupboard was bare,
And so the poor Dog had none.

She went to the baker's
To buy him some bread,
But when she came back
The poor Dog looked dead.

She went to the hatter's
To buy him a hat,
But when she came back
He was feeding the cat.

She went to the barber's
To buy him a wig,
But when she came back
He was dancing a jig.

She went to the joiner's
To buy him a coffin,
But when she came back
The poor Dog was laughing.

She took a clean dish
To get him some tripe,
But when she came back
He was smoking a pipe.

She went to the ale-house
To get him some beer,
But when she came back
The Dog sat in a chair.

She went to the tavern
For white wine and red,
But when she came back
The Dog stood on his head.

She went to the fruiterer's
To buy him some fruit,
But when she came back
He was playing the flute.

She went to the tailor's,
To buy him a coat,
But when she came back
He was riding a goat.

She went to the sempstress
To buy him some linen,
But when she came back
The Dog was a-spinning.

She went to the hosier's
To buy him some hose,
But when she came back
He was dressed in his clothes.

She went to the cobbler's
To buy him some shoes,
But when she came back
He was reading the news.

The Dame made a curtsey,
The Dog made a bow;
The Dame said, “Your servant;”
The Dog said, “Bow-wow!”

This wonderful Dog
Was Dame Hubbard's delight;
He could sing, he could dance,
He could read, he could write.

So she gave him rich dainties
Whenever he fed,
And erected a monument
When he was dead.

Origins of Old Mother Hubbard lyrics in British history (from:
The Old Mother Hubbard referred to in this rhyme's words allude to the famous Cardinal Wolsey. Cardinal Thomas Wolsey was the most important statesman and churchman of the Tudor history period in 16th century England. Cardinal Wolsey proved to be a faithful servant but displeased the King, Henry VIII, by failing to facilitate the King's divorce from Queen Katherine of Aragon who had been his queen of many years. The reason for seeking the divorce and hence the creation of the Old Mother Hubbard poem was to enable him to marry Anne Boleyn with whom he was passionately in love. In the Old Mother Hubbard song King Henry was the "doggie" and the "bone" refers to the divorce (and not money as many believe) The cupboard relates to the Catholic Church although the subsequent divorce arranged by Thomas Cramner resulted in the break with Rome and the formation of the English Protestant church and the demise of Old Mother Hubbard - Cardinal Wolsey.

Monday, July 14, 2008

The Fir Tree and the Bramble

A very short Aesop's Fable
(told by Squirrel who knows all about trees)

gif animation

Friday, July 4, 2008

Fairytale Generator

I just stumbled across this site and thought others might find it fun and interesting.....Fairytale Generator

Basically you pick situations from a list and the site "generates" a short, very short, fairytale for you.

The Fox Who Had Lost His Tail Aesop Fable

An Aesop Fable retold by LLL, Storysinger/Storyteller

Once a fox, who had been running in the forest, became caught in a trap.
With a great deal of pulling and tugging and pain, the fox finally escaped. Unfortunately, in order to escape the trap, the fox lost his tail.

Without his tail, the fox did not feel like himself.
All the other foxes still had their big bushy tails and
he felt ashamed that he was different.
The fox decided to hide from everyone.
While he was hiding, he thought and thought.
Finally he decided that if he could convince the other foxes that being
tailless was much more attractive,they would be like him and he would not feel so ashamed.

The fox quickly gathered together a large group of foxes.
He told them that they too should cut off their tails.
He went on to praise the joys of being tailless.
How much faster he could run and how he never got caught in traps.
Of course, none of this was true but he didn't care.

The fox went on like this for several minutes.
Finally, one of the older foxes interrupted him saying, "If you had
not lost your tail, would you still give us this advice?"

The fox, having no answer to this question, quickly ran home.

Moral: Misery loves company.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Why the Sun and the Moon Live in the Sky

"Why the Sun and the Moon live in the Sky" is an African folktale from Nigeria.

Long, long ago, Sun, Moon and Water were the best of friends.
At that time, Sun and Moon, who were married, lived on the earth.
Sun went to visit Water, almost every day, but Water never returned the visits.

Finally, Sun asked, "Water, my friend, why is it that you never come to visit?"
Water replied, "Sun, I would very much like to come to visit. But you home is not big enough for me and all of my people. Were I to come visit, there would be no room left for you and your lovely wife, Moon."

Water then told Sun, "If you want me to visit you, you will have to build a very large house. But I warn you that it will have to be very, very large, as my people are numerous and take up a lot of room."

Sun was overjoyed that his good friend Water wanted to come visit.
"Do not worry, my friend," he said,"I will build a huge compound so that you and your people can come visit."

Sun soon returned home, where his wife Moon greeted him with a smile.
"My dearest Moon", he said "Our friend Water has promised to visit us but first we must build a larger house so that he and his people will fit."
"How wonderful!" said Moon.

The next day, they began building a very large house to entertain the water and all his people. When it was finished, it was the largest house in the area.

Sun then went to ask water to come and visit him.
Water said he would be there the next morning.

When Water arrived, one of his people called out "Sun, we are here. May we come in?"
"Yes," said Sun "Tell my friend,Waater, that he is welcome in my home."

With those words, Water began to flow in. With Water came fish, crabs, otters and other water animals.

Soon, the water was knee-deep in the house.
Water called out, " Sun do you want me and my people to continue to come in?" Together Sun and Moon answered, "Oh yes, please come in to our home."
And more of Water's people poured into the house octopi, stingray, eels, starfish and more.

When the water was at the level of a man's head, Water,who was becoming a little concerned called to Sun and said, "Are you sure you want more of my people to come in?"

Wanting to be good hosts, Sun and Moon both said, "Yes, please, you are all welcome in our home."
More and more of the water's people came in, seahorses, whales, eels, anemonie, sponges and more.
So many that soon, Sun and Moon had to sit on top of the roof.

Once again, Water asked, "Do you wish us to continue to come in?"
Sun and Moon answered "Yes,please, you are all welcome in our home."
So more of Water's people came in. Sea turtles, sharks,coral shrimps, urchins, lobsters......

By now Water overflowed the top of the roof, and the sun and the moon were forced to go up into the sky.

...and they have been there ever since.

Retold by LLL,Storysinger/Storyteller

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Fun Storytelling

Yes! It is related to storytelling. Everything is....if you try :)
Stumbled on this one a few months ago.
There are other characters available and you can put in any text you want.
Of course, I put in a story! Enjoy....

gif animation

Animated Generator Site