Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Of runcible spoons and dancing by the light of the moon

"Dear Pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling
Your ring?" Said the piggy, "I Will."
So they took it away, and were married next day
By the turkey who lives on the hill.
They dined upon mince and slices of quince,
Which they ate with a runcible spoon,
And hand in hand on the edge of the sand
They danced by the light of the moon.
The moon,
The moon.
They danced by the light of the moon.

[Last verse of "The Owl and the Pussycat": Eward Lear, 1867]
Edward Lear, Highgate, London, was the 20th child of Ann and Jeremiah Lear. If you are not familiar with Edward Lear you damn well ought to get yourself familiarized with him before the day is out.


  1. You elegant fowl!
    How charmingly sweet you sing!

  2. Admittedly, although I was passingly familiar with "The Owl and the Pussycat," I was not familiar with Mr. Lear. I appreciate the edification and the fact I now don't have to look up the word, runcible.

  3. I love jellied quince.
    And I always felt sorry for the Pobble who had no toes.

  4. I have always loved that little ditty. My Grandmother used to tell me that when I was very little. Now I know a little about the man behind the words. I love the pic.

  5. @A. - Well, thank you! Actually I am not really that foul either. :)

    @ Stephanie - Is NOBODY going to mention that he was kid number twenty????!!?

    @Soubriquet - Quince? You can have my share then. :)

    It is hard to feel sorry for any Pobble who was sealed with blue wax and labeled with a parchment label.

    Or other anti-congenial succedaneum. To be sure.

    Yet no harm can come to one's toes if one keeps one's nose warm. So there's very little sympathy from the folks who live in the American West. You see.

    You seem to be feeling your oats today. :)

    @Frostygirl - Thank you. I am, as you know, very picky about the things I steal. Hope you are having a nice week. :)

    @Ettarose - You are STILL little. :)


  6. We're all trying to ignore the fact that he was kid #20. Of course, in the early 1800s, it's unlikely that all 20 of them survived. Still, that poor woman was pregnant and gave birth 20 times. She was pregnant 180 months, or 15 YEARS of her life. I have to go take an aspirin now.

    We love Lear. My mother has a copy of his Book of Nonsense that belonged I think to her grandfather. And interestingly enough, you posted this on her birthday!



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