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James Callow Folklore Archive

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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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There Was an Old Lady

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

There was an old lady who swallowed a spider.
It wiggled 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 lady who swallowed a bird.
How absurd to swallow a bird.
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
That wiggled and jiggled and tickled inside her.
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly.
Etc.

There was an old lady who swallowed a cat.
Imagine that! She swallowed a cat.
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird.
How absurd to swallow a bird.
Etc.

There was an old lady who swallowed a dog.
What a hog to swallow a dog!
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat.
Imagine that! She swallowed  a cat.
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird.
Etc.

There was an old lady who swallowed a goat.
How remote to swallow a goat.
She swallowed the goat to catch the dog.
What a hog to swallow a dog!
Etc.

There was an old lady who swallowed a cow.
I don't know how she swallowed a cow.
She swallowed the cow to catch the goat.
How remote to swallow a goat.
She swallowed the goat to catch the dog.
What a hog to swallow a dog!
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat.
Imagine that! She swallowed  a cat.
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird.
How absurd to swallow a bird.
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
That wiggled and jiggled and tickled inside her.
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly.
I don't iknow why she swallowed the fly.
Perhaps she'll die.

There was an old lady who swallowed a horse.
She died, of course.



 

Submitter comment:

Learned this song from his father.

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector share the same surname.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK ; from father

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Ballad Epic

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The Prettiest Girl

The prettiest girl, (repeat)
I ever did saw, (repeat)
Was sippin' cider through a stra-a-a-a-aw.

I asked her if, (repeat)
She'd teach me how, (repeat)
To sip some cider through a stra-a-a-a-aw.

The straw did slip, (repeat)
I kissed her lips, (repeat)
While sippin' cider through a stra-a-a-a-aw.

And now I've got, (repeat)
A mother-in-law (repeat)
From sippin' cider through a stra-a-a-a-aw.

And fourteen kids, (repeat)
All call me "Pa" (repeat)
From sippin' cider through a stra-a-a-a-aw.

The moral of, (repeat)
This sad, sad tale, (repeat)
Is: Sip your cider from a PAIL!

 

Submitter comment:

Learned this song from my father. It is meant to be sung by one "leader" and a chorus.

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector are the same person.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK ; from father

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Marriage

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