Children’s Poetry

I’ve been thinking a lot about rhyme lately, how it’s almost impossible to write a contemporary poem with conventional rhyme, but songs and nursery rhymes still rely on rhyme. Children especially love rhyme, and some of my favorite children’s poetry is by A.A. Milne, who in addition to Winnie the Pooh, has two books of children’s verse, Now We Are Six¬†and When We Were Very Young.

I was reciting these to my grandson the other day, to both of our delight:

Disobedience

James James				
Morrison Morrison			
Weatherby George Dupree			
Took great				
Care of his Mother			
Though he was only three.		
James James				
Said to his Mother,			
"Mother," he said, said he;		
"You must never go down to the end of the town, if
you don't go down with me."		


James James				
Morrison's Mother			
Put on a golden gown,			
James James				
Morrison's Mother			
Drove to the end of the town.		
James James				
Morrison's Mother			
Said to herself, said she:		
"I can get right down to the end of the town and be
back in time for tea."			

King John				
Put up a notice,			
"LOST or STOLEN or STRAYED!		
JAMES JAMES				
MORRISON'S MOTHER			
SEEMS TO HABE BEEN MISLAID.		
LAST SEEN				
WANDERING VAGUELY			
QUITE OF HER OWN ACCORD,		
SHE TRIED TO GET DOWN TO THE END OF	
THE TOWN - FORTY SHILLINGS REWARD!	


James James				
Morrison Morrison			
(Commonly known as Jim)			
Told his				
Other relations				
Not to go blaming him.			
James James				
Said to his Mother,			
"Mother," he said, said he,		
"You must never go down to the end of the town with-
out consulting me."			


James James				
Morrison's Mother			
Hasn't been heard of since.		
King John				
Said he was sorry,			
So did the Queen and Prince.		
King John				
(Somebody told me)			
Said to a man he knew:			
"If people go down to the end of the town, well, what
can anyone do?"				

(Now then, very softly)			
J. J.					
M. M.					
W. G. du P.				
Took great				
C/o his M*****				
Though he was only 3.			
J. J.					
Said to his M*****			
"M*****," he said, said he:		
"You-must-never-go-down-to-the-end-of-the-town-if-
you-don't-go-down-with ME!"

 

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