Home
  By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon


We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

´╗┐Title: Songs for Parents
Author: Farrar, John Chipman, 1896-1974
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Songs for Parents" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.



SONGS FOR PARENTS

By John Farrar



Dedication


     Here's a rhyme for Barbara,
        Laughing white and pink,
     Here's a rhyme for smiling Ted,
        And one for Wink.

     Now Dick's not much at reading rhymes,
        He'd rather sit and fish.
     Well here's a couple of verses, Dick,
        Read them if you wish!



Contents



     Dedication


     SONGS OF DESIRE

     Summer Explorer
     Spring Wish
     Ambition
     Dreams
     Water-Lily
     Humor
     Independence


     SONGS FOR OUT OF DOORS

     A Comparison
     Speculation
     Parade
     Flower Preferences
     Parental Advice
     Song for a Child Watching Clouds
     Problem
     Garden Musings
     My Garden
     Tracks
     Chanticleer
     Rainbow
     Windmill
     Cat-Fish
     Visiting
     Castles
     Parenthood


     SONGS OF CIRCUMSTANCE

     Moral Song
     Serious Omission
     Choice
     Natural Fireworks
     Conspiracy
     Cuckoo Clock
     The Sentinel
     Royalty
     Crackers
     The Drum
     Theatricals
     Sally


     SONGS FOR A CHRISTMAS TREE

     Bundles
     The Candy Santa Claus
     The Tinsel Star
     The Ambitious Mouse
     Prayer



SONGS OF DESIRE



Summer Explorer


     I'd like to be a gypsy
     With gold rings in my ears,
     Along the road to sit and sing,
     And not do another thing
     For years and years;

     A road to dream upon by day,
     A fire for dreams at night,
     Free to wander far away,
     Free to shout and free to play,
     Quite impolite.

     I'd pitch my tent beside a wall,
     All apple trees within,
     And if the apples didn't fall,
     I wouldn't hesitate at all.
     I'd climb--and sin!

     But if the weather wasn't fine,
     If all the world were rain,
     If there weren't anywhere to dine
     And goose-flesh quivered up my spine--
     I _might_ come home again!



Spring Wish


     A frog's a very happy thing,
     Cool and green in early spring,
     Quick and silver through the pool,
     With no thought of books or school.

     Oh, I want to be a frog,
     Sunning, stretching on a log,
     Blinking there in splendid ease,
     Swimming naked when I please,
     Nosing into magic nooks,
     Quiet marshes, noisy brooks.

     Free! And fit for anything!
     Oh, to be a frog in spring!



Ambition


     If I were a rocket
     Shot high across the night,
     I'd rather burst in silver stars
     Than green or purple light;

     For then, perhaps, I'd fool the moon,
     Although she's very wise,
     And thinking me a baby star
     She'd keep me in the skies.



Dreams


     I'd like to dream my own dreams,
     Instead of dreaming those
     The silly sandman brings along
     Like moving picture shows.

     I'd like to dream of palaces,
     Of magic meadowlands,
     Of silver gates and golden thrones
     And chanting fairy bands;

     Of seas of spraying jewels,
     Of dancing crystal ships,
     Of the queen of all the elves herself--
     Two rubies for her lips;

     But, alas! I never dream such things,
     And when I jump and wake
     As an oozy ogre clutches me--
     It's just a stomach ache!



Water-Lily


     I'd like to be a water-lily sleeping on the river,
     Where solemn rushes whisper, and funny ripples quiver.
     All day I'd watch the blue sky--all night I'd watch the black,
     Floating in the soft waves, dreaming on my back,
     And when I'd tired of dreaming, I'd call a passing fish,
     "I want to find the sea!" I'd shout, "Come!  You can grant my wish!"

     He'd bite me from my moorings, and softly I would slip
     To the center of the river like an ocean-going ship.
     The waves would laugh upon me.  The wind would blow me fast,
     And oh, what shores and wonders would greet me as I passed!
     Yes, if I were a water-lily, I'd sail to sea in state--
     A green frog for my captain--and a dragon-fly for mate!



Humor


     Have you ever watched the clowns at play,
     White, red and black on circus day?
     They're always very, very gay.
     I wonder how they stay that way!

     I'd like to be a clown,
     Playing tricks around the town,
     Turning somersaults and springs,
     As if they were easy things,
     Laughing morning, noon and night,
     Being such a funny sight!

     Do you think, then, I'd grow tired of fun,
     Laughing so from sun to sun?
     Or, when performances are done,
     Do clown-folk cry like anyone?



Independence


     I like to go out in the night
     When there's neither a sound nor a light,
     With my hands and feet bare,
     And the wind in my hair,
     Not a nurse nor a parent in sight;

     But only the night, moon and me
     As I dance in the dew joyfully,
     Quite daring and bold
     For there's no one to scold,
     Because there is no one to see.



SONGS FOR OUT OF DOORS



A Comparison


     Apple blossoms look like snow,
     They're different, though.
     Snow falls softly, but it brings
     Noisy things:
     Sleighs and bells, forts and fights,
     Cosy nights.

     But apple blossoms when they go,
     White and slow,
     Quiet all the orchard space,
     Till the place
     Hushed with falling sweetness seems
     Filled with dreams.



Speculation


     I wonder if God sits alone
     Upon the highest mountain stone
     To stir the clouds and drop the rain,
     And then to pick it up again.

     I wonder if he sends the brooks
     Foaming from their distant nooks,
     And, sitting there in robes of gray,
     Turns rivers on at break of day.



Parade


     The scarlet trumpet flowers are gay
     And yet they never seem to play,
     They never trumpet up the dawn
     Nor blow retreat across the lawn.

     But oh, to-day I heard a strain,
     A happy, martial, quick refrain,
     As down across the garden grass
     I saw the marching flowers pass:

     Gaudy phlox and flaunting rose,
     Stiff and straight and on their toes,
     And, blaring from the garden wall,
     The trumpet flower led them all.



Flower Preferences


     If I were a tiny fairy
        With nothing else to do
     But to wriggle into flowers
        All the long day through,

     I'd dance among the roses,
        I'd take a stately walk,
     Balancing precisely
        On an Easter-lily stalk.

     For play I'd choose the jonquils,
        For swimming, poppy cups,
     For jokes and tricks and tiny naps,
        The Johnny-jump-ups!

     But on some quiet evening,
        I'd leave my fairy band,
     And on a star-flower through the sky
        I'd sail to fairyland.



Parental Advice


     Who laid the egg that hatched the moon?
     Was it the earth, I wonder,
     Was it the sun, the clouds, or rain,
     Was it night or thunder?

     If I were mother to the moon
     I'd spank her every day
     Until she learned to stay at home
     And _never_ run away!



Song for a Child Watching Clouds


     I've watched the clouds by day and night,
     Great fleecy ones all filled with light,
     Gray beasts that steal across the sky,
     And little fellows slipping by.

     Sometimes they seem like sheep at play,
     Sometimes when they are dull and gray
     The pale sun seems a ship to me,
     Sailing through a rolling sea;

     And I've seen faces in them too,
     Funny white men on the blue,
     They look so many different ways,
     And not one single cloudlet stays;

     But on across the heavens they blow,
     I often wonder where they go,
     Now sometime, maybe when I die,
     I, too, will wander through the sky.



Problem


     If I were a violet I'd think it a shame
     To be always so simple and modest and tame,
     To be hidden away like a hermit or nun
     While the hare-brained pink roses can dance in the sun!
     But consider the naughty wild ways of the rose--
     There _must_ be _respectable_ flowers, I suppose!



Garden Musings


     Why is the lily so stately and still?
     Why doesn't she dance like the gay daffodil?
     Why doesn't she blush like the rose or the pink,
     Or, like mischievous pansy, indulge in a wink?
     Do you think it's because she is holier than they,
     Or did God just decide he would make her that way?



My Garden


     My garden was silly and stubborn;
        I worked, but the weeds worked, too;
     I dug and scraped and scrambled--
        They hustled themselves and grew;

     Now Ted's garden's fine and cleanly,
        He has lettuce and roses and peas--
     Oh, most probably plants are like children--
        They only behave when they please!



Tracks


     I wonder where the rabbits go
     Who leave their tracks across the snow;
     For when I follow to their den
     The tracks always start out again.



Chanticleer


     High and proud on the barnyard fence
     Walks rooster in the morning.
     He shakes his comb, he shakes his tail
     And gives his daily warning.

     "Get up, you lazy boys and girls,
     It's time you should be dressing!"
     I wonder if he keeps a clock,
     Or if he's only guessing.



Rainbow


     The rainbow comes across the hill,
     It shines upon the sky, until
     It frightens all the tears from rain,
     And then it hides itself again.

     Now when I'm very tired of play
     I'll cross that rainbow bridge some day;
     And while dear nurse and father scold,
     I'll reach the end--and find the gold!



Windmill


     The windmill stands up like a flower on the hill
     With its petals a-whirling--they seldom stay still--
     And its funny old voice creaking all the long day
     As it scolds little breezes for running away.



Cat-Fish


     The cat-fish with whiskers that lives in the brook,
     Is an ugly old beast with the wickedest look.
     I suppose there were mouse-fish one time in brook town
     Till that ugly old cat-fish gulped all of them down.



Visiting


     You and I shall travel far,
     We'll pass the old earth by,
     We'll ride the moon and drive a star
     Across the evening sky.

     We'll flash upon the milky way
     To pay Dame Night a call--
     But should we happen on old Day--
     We'd fall and fall and fall.



Castles


     I used to build me castles of moisty sand and shells,
     And dream they were for princesses who wove me magic spells;
     But yesterday along the beach my fairy princess came--
     And she's too big for castles--now isn't that a shame!



Parenthood


     The birches that dance on the top of the hill
     Are so slender and young that they cannot keep still,
     They bend and they nod at each whiff of a breeze,
     For you see they are still just the children of trees.

     But the birches below in the valley are older,
     They are calmer and straighter and taller and colder.
     Perhaps when we've grown up as solemn and grave,
     We, too, will have children who do not behave!



SONGS OF CIRCUMSTANCE



Moral Song


     Oh, so cool
     In his deep green pool
     Was a frog on a log one day!
     He would blink his eyes
     As he snapped at flies,
        For his mother was away,
       _For his mother was away!_

     Now that naughty frog
     Left his own home log
     And started out to play.
     He flipped and he flopped
     And he never stopped
        Till he reached the great blue bay,
       _Till he reached the great blue bay!_

     Alas, with a swish
     Came a mighty fish,
     And swallowed him where he lay.
     Now it's things like this
     That never miss
        Little frogs who don't obey,
       _Little frogs who don't obey!_



Serious Omission


     I know that there are dragons,
     St. George's, Jason's, too,
     And many modern dragons
     With scales of green and blue;

     But though I've been there many times
     And carefully looked through,
     I can't find a dragon
     In the cages at the zoo!



Choice


     If I had just one penny
        On the Fourth of July,
     Oh, what a problem it would be
        To think what I should buy!

     With lollypops and fire-works,
        With cakes and whiz-bangs, too,
     With tops and candy cigarettes,
        Whatever should I do?

     Torpedoes have a splendid noise,
        But noise is quickly past,
     And the sweetness of a lollypop
        Is something that will last.



Natural Fireworks


     The fireflies in the valley
     Are having their display
     Among the river willows
     Like little bits of day!

     Come, light your silver sparkler
     And wave it in the air.
     Go dance among the willows
     And sprinkle sparkles there.

     Then, oh, the world will wonder
     To see the willows shine,
     And even the fireflies will not know
     Their tiny sparks from mine.



Conspiracy


     The sun has a face that is laughing and red
     When nurse pulls me out in the morning from bed;
     But he's not half so sly as the silly old moon,
     Who winks when I'm sent to my bedroom too soon.



Cuckoo Clock


     The cuckoo in the clock by day
     Is usually very gay;
     And that's because, with people near,
     There's not a thing for him to fear;

     But when the sitting room is dim
     And no one's there to welcome him--
     How tremblingly he must come out
     To flap his wings and look about.

     Why!  Only just the other night
     The cuckoo stopped the clock from fright!



The Sentinel


     I'm only a little toy dough-boy,
     And I have neither sorrows nor fears;
     But I patiently wait,
     With my gun pointed straight
     And my helmet pulled down on my ears.

     The ugly wood lions and tigers
     May show their white teeth if they please,
     If the whole Noah's ark
     Should threaten and bark
     It wouldn't unstiffen my knees.

     And some day when you are a soldier
     With your helmet pulled down on your ears
     I'll still be as straight
     As I wonder and wait,
     Standing my watch through the years.



Royalty


     If I should meet a king or queen
     Upon the street some day,
     Do you think that I'd be frightened?
     Why, I'd know just what to say.

     "Your reverend majesties," I'd say,
     And humbly bow the knee,
     "I am your very humble swain,
     And will you honor me?"

     The king would strike my shoulder
     With a sword of passing might,
     He'd lift me grandly to my feet,
     He'd say, "Arise, O Knight!"

     Oh, I would not be frightened,
     For I've seen kings galore,
     Don't you think it's just to learn of them
     That playing cards are for?



Crackers


     Oh, there are very many kinds
     Of crackers, great and small,
     Saltines and ginger-snaps and such,
     I'd like to eat them all;

     But there's a kind of cracker
     That I _need much worse,_
     A bright red giant cracker
     To set off under nurse!



The Drum


     The drum's a very quiet fellow
     When he's left alone;
     But oh, how he does roar and bellow,
     Rattle, snap and groan,
     Clatter, spatter, dash and patter,
     Rumble, shriek and moan
     Whene'er I take my sticks in hand
     And beat him soundly for the band.



Theatricals


     Now I'll play at being queen,
        Hold my head quite stiff and haughty,
        Always proud and never naughty,
     Sweeping grandly down the green.

     Or I'll be a moonlight fairy,
        Bobbing lightly on the river,
        Dancing where the shadows quiver,
     Winged and shining, swift and wary.

     If the doctor thinks I'm sick,
        He's just silly.  _I am not!_
        I'm just tired and very hot,
     Hating drink that's sweet and thick.

     Flowers dance across the walls,
        Mother's face seems far away,
        She's the audience, I'm the play,
     She will clap for curtain calls.

     No!--I do not want to play!
        Seven thrones around my bed,
        Circling gold about my head--
     Angels always fly away!



Sally


     If I were a stately sailboat,
     I'd sail to Zanzibar,
     I'd sail the seven secret seas,
     Where the secret cities are,
     And some day I'd be sailing with the wind before my prow,
     And all the mermaids of the sea would clamber up the bow.
     They'd beckon me with laughter,
     They'd beckon me with smiles,
     They'd show me cakes and candies
     In half a dozen styles,
     They'd promise me a life of ease
     Eating sweets beneath the seas,
     They'd promise me a life of play--
     A never ending holiday;
     But I would say quite plainly,
     And, oh, how stern I'd look!
     Do you think that you can tempt me
     While Sally is our cook?

     If I were a little fire balloon
     I'd float aloft to Mars,
     I'd pay a call on Venus
     And chatter with the stars,
     And just as I'd be fluttering across the yellow moon,
     The angels would come singing a solemn Sunday tune.
     They'd beckon to me gravely,
     They'd tell me I could stay,
     They'd show me all the jewels
     That pave the milky way.
     They'd promise me a golden crown
     And silver robes like eider-down,
     They'd give me harps with shiny strings
     And wonderfully fluffy wings;
     BUT--I would tell them plainly
     I didn't want to die--
     Till all the angel cooks had learned
     How Sally makes mince pie!



SONGS FOR A CHRISTMAS TREE



Bundles


     A bundle is a funny thing,
     It always sets me wondering;
     For whether it is thin or wide
     You never know just what's inside.

     Especially on Christmas week,
     Temptation is so great to peek!
     Now wouldn't it be much more fun
     If shoppers carried things undone?



The Candy Santa Claus


     I'm very fond of candles
     With their quaint coquettish way,
     But alas!  I wooed too often,
     And now my life's to pay.

     They knew I was important
     When they decked the Christmas tree,
     Yes, they hung me on the tip-top
     For all the world to see.

     But, alas!  A lady candle
     Has come with me to the top,
     And I'm melting with affection,
     I'm dying drop by drop.



The Tinsel Star


     I'm just a shiny tinsel star,
     Boxed all the time as such things are,
     And only used just once a year,
     Oh, life is very dull and drear!

     A real star has far fields to roam,
     A tinsel star must stay at home.
     It is a terrible vexation
     To be a silly imitation!



The Ambitious Mouse


     If all the world were candy
     And the sky were frosted cake,
     Oh, it would be a splendid job
     For a mouse to undertake!

     To eat a path of sweetmeats
     Through candy forest aisles--
     Explore the land of Pepper-mint
     Stretched out for miles and miles.

     To gobble up a cloudlet,
     A little cup-cake star,
     To swim a lake of liquid sweet
     With shores of chocolate bar.

     But, best of all the eating,
     Would be the toothsome fat,
     Triumphant hour of mouse-desire,
     To eat a candy cat!



Prayer


     Last night I crept across the snow,
     Where only tracking rabbits go,
     And then I waited quite alone
     Until the Christmas radiance shone!

     At midnight twenty angels came,
     Each white and shining like a flame.
     At midnight twenty angels sang,
     The stars swung out like bells and rang.

     They lifted me across the hill,
     They bore me in their arms until
     A greater glory greeted them.
     It was the town of Bethlehem.

     And gently, then, they set me down,
     All worshipping that holy town,
     And gently, then, they bade me raise
     My head to worship and to praise.

     And gently, then, the Christ smiled down.
     Ah, there was glory in that town!
     It was as if the world were free
     And glistening with purity.

     And in that vault of crystal blue,
     It was as if the world were new,
     And myriad angels, file on file,
     Glorified in the Christ-child's smile.

     It was so beautiful to see
     Such glory, for a child like me,
     So beautiful, it does not seem
     It could have been a Christmas dream.



About the author:


John Chipman Farrar (1896-1974), late of the New York publishing firm of
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, attended Yale University where his poem
"Portraits" was the Yale University Prize Poem in 1916. After serving
during the First World War as an intelligence officer with the U.S. Air
Service, Farrar returned to Yale and graduated in 1919. His first book
"Forgotten Shrines" was published late that same year as the second
volume of the Yale Series of Younger Poets, reprinted in 1971, over half
a century later.

After graduation, Farrar turned to publishing and literary criticism,
editing George H. Doran Company's periodical "The Bookman". Between 1927
and 1929, Farrar was editor at Doubleday, Doran and Company. In mid-
1929, he and two sons of the famous mystery writer Mary Robert Rinehart
started the publishing firm if Farrar and Rinehart, Inc. His connection
with that firm lasted until 1945, although he was absent during the war
years assisting in U.S. government psychological war efforts.  Farrar
and Rinehart was later absorbed by Henry Holt.

As a young editor in New York, Farrar volunteered in 1922 for the
organizing committee of an American chapter of PEN (originally Poets,
Essayists and Novelists) founded in England the year before by Sappho
(Amy Dawson Scott) to foster support of visiting foreign writers. PEN
grew quickly to become an international advocate for freedom of
expression and continues its activism to this day. (See
http://www.pen.org)

After the Second World War, the American chapter of PEN foundered for
lack of direction.  Farrar, co-principal of the newly formed publishing
house of Farrar, Straus and Company, now Farrar, Straus and Giroux,
stepped in to refocus its energies and recruit dozens of new members. He
served as president twice, once from 1951-1953 and again from 1963-1965.

In his roles as both and editor and a publisher, Farrar had a lasting
impact on literature through the years.  Farrar, Straus & Giroux has
published many Nobel Laureates (20 as of 1995) and dozens of
distinguished poets and authors.  It is my privilege  to reprint this
etext of some of his own work for posterity.

--Stewart A. Levin





*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Songs for Parents" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.



Home