Earlier this year, I found a 1928 children’s songbook in a bin, it being un-resellable due to some child (or children) having scribbled all over it; also, both the illustrations and texts are severely dated. Makes them perfect for handmade cards, though, as well as just moments of marveling at the notion of getting today’s grade-school kids to sing stanzas such as these:
Fashions are so changing!
In the days of old
Young men dressed in colors,
Laced with thread of gold.
Now their clothes are solemn,
Black and brown and gray.
We should like to see them
Dressed the other way.
- Nancy Byrd Turner, “In Days of Old” (a “reading song” set to a tune by Haydn)
On the next page, there’s a “rote song” by Abbie Farwell Brown (tune by Horatio Parker):
A candy lion’s very good,
Because he cannot bite,
Nor wander roaring for his food,
Nor eat up folks at night.
But though it’s very nice for me,
It’s not nice for him;
For ev’ry day he seems to be
More shapeless and more slim.
…And first, there’s no tail any more;
And next he has no head;
And then he’s just a candy roar,
And might as well be dead.
…okay, I could see some 21st-century ten-year-olds getting into that. The diction’s a trifle stodgy, though…
*saunters off with thoughts of riffing on just a candy roar*