Songs Mother Goose Taught Me

by Elizabeth Lee

Hey! diddle diddle
The cat played the fiddle,
And knaves made merry 'neath the moon;
They drank and they laughed
about the night's craft
And put their conquest to tune:

The maid ran out to the garden, but tripped on her clothes.
They followed her with garden shears, and snapped off her hose.

(It is well far known
That if you tell-tale-tit
Your tongue will be slit,
And the dogs in our town
Shall each have a bit.)

Then a little man among them,
Laid our little maid;
And he said: "Little maid will you wed, wed, wed?
          I don't have a thing more to say,
          but that you will, say you either aye or nay."
She was soon mend-ed, ded, dead.

(Was that not a dainty dish
To prepare for the queen?)

Ah Mary, Mary
Quite contrary
Some of them fat, some of them lean
And between the lot of them
they licked the platter clean

(It is now well surmised
that all rhymes are lies)

Elizabeth Lee's poems have appeared in The Harrow, Illumen, Aoife's Kiss and Paper Crow. Currently, she resides outside of New York City with her boyfriend and three marmalade cats, but years ago, she lived in a house in Michigan with a cherry tree in the backyard. At harvest time, blue jays would swoop down and attack anyone daring to climb the ladder and invade their bowery. To this day, she prefers hard-won cherries above all other fruits...

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