BEST STORIES FOR CHILDREN

A Child’s Bedtime

Shadows are lengthening, black clouds go creeping
Over the World, so it’s time you were sleeping,
Stars in the night sky are winking and blinking,
By the edge of the world, the red sun is sinking.

Out in the black wood, the old owl is hooting,
In a bush by the river, the nightingale’s fluting,
Swans on the great lake are sleepily sitting,
Moths through the stillness are everywhere flitting.

From a pool in the forest the great stag is drinking,
While down towards the farmyard the red fox goes slinking,
O’er green fields and hillsides young rabbits are racing,
The wild cat its long tail is playfully chasing.

From out of the old barn brown mice come bobbing,
Over the marshlands green frogs go hopping,
‘Neath the trees in the meadow cattle are laying,
At the end of your garden the fairies are playing.


The Witch’s Magic Brew

From the play: The Spider and the Bulldog

Magog the witch is conjuring up a magic brew in her cauldron. Her cat, Muggins, passes her the ingredients as she calls for them. (Meant to be sung):

Hand me the jar of lizards toes,
First I’ll put in five of those,
A vampires fang, an old dead rat,
A bit of this, and a bit of that.

  Chorus, sung by Magog and Muggins while stirring the brew

That’s all in and left to stew,
Now it’s time to stir the brew,
Round and round, stir slow and steady
Until the magic brew is ready.

Give me the warts and worms tin,
Open it up and tip it in,
A juicy snail, some spiders legs,
Wasps and flies and a rotten egg.

Chorus

Pass me the bottle of picked fleas,
In go three good shakes of these,
Beetles blood, some cockroach cake,
A human bone and a piece of snake.

Chorus

Hand me the bowl of earwig stew,
Pour all in is what I’ll do,
Poison berries, scorpion spice,
A bat, a toad, and three blind mice.

Final Chorus

That’s all in and left to stew,
Now it’s time to stir the brew,
Round and round, stir slow and steady,
At last, the magic brew is ready !!!








Who Stole the Golden Daffodils

From the book: The Golden Daffodils

“Did you see who stole the golden daffodils” Tupo Hoopoe asked the nightingale.

 “If you listen to this song you’ll find out,” replied the nightingale, who much preferred singing to talking. 

“While everyone’s soundly sleeping
In the dark early hours,
Who should should I see come creeping
In the garden among the flowers?

But the most peculiar fellow,
A little leprechaun chap,
Dressed in green and yellow
With lumpy ears and cap.

Towards the daffodils the tip-toed-tip
And began to cut ‘ere long,
Each green stem with a snip-snap-spip
With his scissors sharp and strong.

Then away, away he softly crept 
In the dark early hours,
Stealing while the whole world slept
The golden daffodil flowers!”

Prettiest Frog I’ve Ever Seen

From the Play: The Spider and the Bulldog

Princess: (who has been turned into a frog): I hate being a frog. I feel so . . . so ugly!

Bilbo Badger:  Ugly? Nonsense. You’re not ugly. Why! You’re the most beautiful creature I’ve ever seen.

Princess:  There’s no need to pretend, Bilbo, I know you’re only trying to be kind.

Bilbo Badger:  Didn’t I tell you when we first met that I never tell a lie. You are truly beautiful, just as you are. Here, I’ll prove it to you. (TO AUDIENCE) Isn’t she beautiful . . . There, you see. All those nice boys and girls and mums and dads agree with me. So you must be beautiful. Now do you believe me.  

Princess shakes her head.

Bilbo Badger:  What! You still don’t believe me? Listen, I’ll describe to you just how beautiful you are: (Bilbo sings):

A soul so pure, a heart so warm,
A voice so soft and full of charm,
Ways so gentle, love so true,
In all the world, there’s none like you;
Eyes of blue, coat of green,
Prettiest frog I’ve ever seen.

Were I a prince with a castle fine,
I would give the world to make you mine,
No one could be a sweeter wife 
And I would love you all my life;
Eyes of blue, coat of green,
Prettiest frog I’ve ever seen.

A rosebud fresh in morning dew,
No one delights me like you do,
A precious pearl, a jewel rare,
In all the world, there’s none so fair;
Eyes of blue, coat of green,
Prettiest frog I’ve ever seen.

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 Poetry for Children from the Story Books and Plays of Irish Author
 Liam Maher