When he was a baby I purchased When We Were Very Young and Now We Are Six, poem collections by AA Milne. I was hoping they could be our special stories. But as the years went by the books sat on the shelf, every now and again I would pull them out and read one, but they never seem to stick. That was until a few days ago when he crawled into my bed, carrying one of the books and asked me to read to him. We read most of When We Were Very Young and then moved on to Now We Are Six. It was a great moment of sharing.
But wait, it gets even better (or at least I think so). Hanging out on New Years Eve, he starts reciting lines from the poem Busy.
I think I am a Muffin Man. I haven't got a bell,
I haven't got the muffin things that muffin people sell.
Perhaps I am a Postman. No I think I am a Tram.
I am feeling rather funny and I don't know what I am-
And round about
And round about I go-...
OK. Call me impressed.
Then last nigh he asked again, if I could read him his "chapter book" (as he calls it). He had 4 specific poems he wanted to hear. Busy, Binker, Forgiven and The Dormouse and the Doctor.
I was surprised about the last one. It is my favorite, but it is a not one I would think kids would remember, or even relate to. But in the end what excites me is he is picking up an ear for writing, and he is having fun with it. I had to actually cut him off, or we would have been reading all night long.
Here is The Doctor and the Dormouse. It is a fun poem to read out loud- give it a try.
There once was a Dormouse who lived in a bed Of delphiniums (blue) and geraniums (red), And all the day long he'd a wonderful view Of geraniums (red) and delphiniums (blue). A Doctor came hurrying round, and he said: "Tut-tut, I am sorry to find you in bed. Just say 'Ninety-nine' while I look at your chest.... Don't you find that chrysanthemums answer the best?" The Dormouse looked round at the view and replied (When he'd said "Ninety-nine") that he'd tried and he'd tried, And much the most answering things that he knew Were geraniums (red) and delphiniums (blue). The Doctor stood frowning and shaking his head, And he took up his shiny silk hat as he said: "What the patient requires is a change," and he went To see some chrysanthemum people in Kent. The Dormouse lay there, and he gazed at the view Of geraniums (red) and delphiniums (blue), And he knew there was nothing he wanted instead Of delphiniums (blue) and geraniums (red). The Doctor came back and, to show what he meant, He had brought some chrysanthemum cuttings from Kent. "Now these," he remarked, "give a much better view Than geraniums (red) and delphiniums (blue)." They took out their spades and they dug up the bed Of delphiniums (blue) and geraniums (red), And they planted chrysanthemums (yellow and white). "And now," said the Doctor, "we'll soon have you right." The Dormouse looked out, and he said with a sigh: "I suppose all these people know better than I. It was silly, perhaps, but I did like the view Of geraniums (red) and delphiniums (blue)." The Doctor came round and examined his chest, And ordered him Nourishment, Tonics, and Rest. "How very effective," he said, as he shook The thermometer, "all these chrysanthemums look!" The Dormouse turned over to shut out the sight Of the endless chrysanthemums (yellow and white). "How lovely," he thought, "to be back in a bed Of delphiniums (blue) and geraniums (red.)" The Doctor said, "Tut! It's another attack!" And ordered him Milk and Massage-of-the-back, And Freedom-from-worry and Drives-in-a-car, And murmured, "How sweet your chrysanthemums are!" The Dormouse lay there with his paws to his eyes, And imagined himself such a pleasant surprise: "I'll pretend the chrysanthemums turn to a bed Of delphiniums (blue) and geraniums (red)!" The Doctor next morning was rubbing his hands, And saying, "There's nobody quite understands These cases as I do! The cure has begun! How fresh the chrysanthemums look in the sun!" The Dormouse lay happy, his eyes were so tight He could see no chrysanthemums, yellow or white. And all that he felt at the back of his head Were delphiniums (blue) and geraniums (red). And that is the reason (Aunt Emily said) If a Dormouse gets in a chrysanthemum bed, You will find (so Aunt Emily says) that he lies Fast asleep on his front with his paws to his eyes.
I promise tomorrow, I will have more Fitzgerald. Thanks for letting me have my Momma moment.