jogging the list memory

Allison Marles apm at alumni.uwaterloo.ca
Tue Apr 5 22:59:19 EDT 2005


I found four, while trying to remember one that was stuck on
the tip of my tongue.  Three of them are variations of the
one that Jon posted.  The one I knew as a kid was The Green
Grass Grows All Around.

The style sort of reminds me of There Was an Old Woman. It gets more
repetitive as it progresses.

There Was An Old Woman

 There was an old woman who swallowed a fly,
 I don't know why she swallowed a fly,
 Perhaps she'll die.

 There was an old woman who swallowed a spider,
 That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her,
 She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
 I don't know why she swallowed the fly,
 Perhaps she'll die.

 There was an old woman who swallowed a bird,
 How absurd! to swallow a bird,
 She swallowed the bird to catch the spider,
 That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her,
 She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
 I don't know why she swallowed the fly,
 Perhaps she'll die.

 There was an old woman who swallowed a cat,
 Imagine that! to swallow a cat,
 She swallowed the cat to catch the bird,
 She swallowed the bird to catch the spider,
 That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her,
 She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
 I don't know why she swallowed the fly,
 Perhaps she'll die.

 There was an old woman who swallowed a dog,
 What a hog! to swallow a dog,
 She swallowed the dog to catch the cat,
 She swallowed the cat to catch the bird,
 She swallowed the bird to catch the spider,
 That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her,
 She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
 I don't know why she swallowed the fly,
 Perhaps she'll die.

 There was an old woman who swallowed a goat,
 Just opened her throat! to swallow a goat,
 She swallowed the goat to catch the dog,
 She swallowed the dog to catch the cat,
 She swallowed the cat to catch the bird,
 She swallowed the bird to catch the spider,
 That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her,
 She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
 I don't know why she swallowed the fly,
 Perhaps she'll die.

 There was an old woman who swallowed a cow,
 I don't know how she swallowed a cow!
 She swallowed the cow to catch the goat,
 She swallowed the goat to catch the dog,
 She swallowed the dog to catch the cat,
 She swallowed the cat to catch the bird,
 She swallowed the bird to catch the spider,
 That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her,
 She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
 I don't know why she swallowed the fly,
 Perhaps she'll die.

 There was an old woman who swallowed a horse,
 She's dead -- of course! 


There's also a similar one to the Jon posted, called
Tree on the Hill.

   TREE ON THE HILL

   On yonder hill there stands a tree;
   Tree on the hill, and the hill stood still.
   And on the tree there was a branch;
   Branch on the tree, tree on the hill, and the hill
   stood still.

   And on the branch there was a nest;
   Nest on the branch, branch on the tree, tree on
   the hill, and the hill stood still.

   And in the nest there was an egg;
   Egg in the nest, nest on the branch,
   branch on the tree, tree on
   the hill, and the hill stood still.

   And in the egg there was a bird;
   Bird in the egg, egg in the nest,
   nest on the branch, branch on the tree,
   tree on the hill, and the hill stood still.

   And on the bird there was a feather;
   Feather on the bird,
   bird in the egg, egg in the nest,
   nest on the branch, branch on the tree,
   tree on the hill, and the hill stood still. 

Another slight variation on the tree-branch-nest-egg-etc ones:

   The Green Grass Grows All Around

   There was a hole (echo), In the middle of the ground (echo)
   The prettiest hole (echo), That you ever did see (echo),
   And the green grass grows all around all around,
   And the green grass grows all around.

   And in this hole (echo), There was a tree (echo).
   The prettiest tree (echo), That you ever did see (echo)
   Well, the tree in the hole, And the hole in the ground
   And the green grass grows all around all around
   And the green grass grows all around

   And on this tree (echo), There was a branch (echo)
   The prettiest branch (echo), That you ever did see (echo)
   Well, the branch on the tree, And the tree in the hole,
   And the hole in the ground
   And the green grass grows all around all around
   And the green grass grows all around

   And on this branch (echo), There was a nest (echo)
   The prettiest nest (echo), That you ever did see (echo)
   Well, the nest on the branch, And the branch on the tree,
   And the tree in the hole, And the hole in the ground
   And the green grass grows all around all around
   And the green grass grows all around

   And in this nest (echo) , There was an egg (echo)
   The prettiest egg (echo), That you ever did see (echo)
   Well, the egg in the nest, And the nest on the branch,
   And the branch on the tree, And the tree in the hole,
   And the hole in the ground
   And the green grass grows all around all around
   And the green grass grows all around

   And in this egg (echo), There was a bird (echo)
   The prettiest bird (echo), That you ever did see (echo)
   Well, the bird in the egg, And the egg in the nest,
   And the nest on the branch, And the branch on the tree,
   And the tree in the hole, And the hole in the ground
   And the green grass grows all around all around
   And the green grass grows all around.

And yet a third variation:
   The Rattlin' Bog

   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.
   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.

   Now in that bog there was a tree,
   A rare tree and a rattlin' tree,
   And the tree in the bog,
   And the bog down in the valley-o.

   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.
   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.

   Now on that tree there was a branch,
   A rare branch and a rattlin' branch,
   And the branch on the tree,
   And the tree in the bog,
   And the bog down in the valley-o.

   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.
   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.

   Now on that branch there was a limb,
   A rare limb and a rattlin' limb,
   And the limb on the branch,
   And the branch on the tree,
   And the tree in the bog,
   And the bog down in the valley-o.

   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.
   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.

   Now on that limb there was a nest,
   A rare nest and a rattlin' nest,
   And the nest on the limb,
   And the limb on the branch,
   And the branch on the tree,
   And the tree in the bog,
   And the bog down in the valley-o.

   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.
   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.

   Now in that nest there was a bird,
   A rare bird and a rattlin' bird,
   And the bird in the nest,
   And the nest on the limb,
   And the limb on the branch,
   And the branch on the tree,
   And the tree in the bog,
   And the bog down in the valley-o.

   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.
   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.

   Now on that bird there was a feather,
   A rare feather and a rattlin' feather,
   And the feather on the bird,
   And the bird in the nest,
   And the nest on the limb,
   And the limb on the branch,
   And the branch on the tree,
   And the tree in the bog,
   And the bog down in the valley-o.

   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.
   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.

   Now on that feather there was a bug,
   A rare bug and a rattlin' bug,
   And the bug on the feather,
   And the feather on the bird,
   And the bird in the nest,
   And the nest on the limb,
   And the limb on the branch,
   And the branch on the tree,
   And the tree in the bog,
   And the bog down in the valley-o.

   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o.
   Ho, ro, the rattlin' bog,
   The bog down in the valley-o. 

Hope that helps out!
Allison

On Tue, Apr 05, 2005 at 06:26:25PM -0600, Robyn Starkey wrote:
> Hi All
> 
> I have a request for information and am sure your excellent wisdoms can 
> provide it. I am doing some work on the Corpus Christi Carol. Slightly 
> modernised text herewith:
> 
> Lully, lully, lully, lully,
>   The faucon hath born my make away.
> 
> He bare him up, he bare him down,
> He bare him into an orcahrd brown.
> 
> In that orchard there was an halle,
> That was hanged with purpill and pall.
> 
> And in that hall there was a bede,
> It was hanged with gold so rede.
> 
> And in that bed there lithe a knight
> His woundes bleding day and night.
> 
> By that bede side kneleth a may,
> And she wepeth both night and day.
> 
> And by that bede side there standeth a stone,
> "Corpus Christi" wreten there on.
> 
> It may be familiar as "Down in Yon Forest", or in the Jeff Buckley version.
> 
> What I want to know is, can you think of any other rhymes (possibly 
> nursery rhymes) with that "in the orchard there was a hall; in the hall 
> there was a bed" repetitive structure? I read something that suggested 
> "The House that Jack Built," and I was hoping for some more (possibly 
> better) examples.
> 
> Robyn
> 
> 
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