|Wrens build an interesting domed nest.|
Childhood bird rhyme
I have fond memories of my dad playing a sweet little nursery rhyme finger-play game with me as a child and how it fascinated me to see the little birdies vanish and then reappear.
My children remember well, when Pop-Pop played it with them too. Do you recognize this old nursery rhyme?
Two Little Dickie Birds
(my dad used the names Jack and Jill)
There were two blackbirds
Sat upon a hill,
The one was nam’d Jack,
The other nam’d Gill;
Fly away Jack,
Fly away Gill,
Come again Gill
Finger actions for the rhyme
Here are Daddy’s finger actions for the rhyme:
Out of sight, he would place a small piece of colored tape onto the fingernail of his index finger on both hands.
As he began reciting the rhyme he would show us both of his hands closed into a fist.
The hand actions are: (I adapted this Wiki Chart to Daddy’s version)
|Two little dickie birds sitting on a hill||Both fists are closed|
|One named Jack||With a quick motion, Daddy would flip one of his fists over his shoulder and return it with the index finger extended to show, Jack.|
|One named Jill||He would repeat with the other hand.|
|Fly away Jack||The Jack hand is quickly drawn back alongside the adult’s head. As part of the movement the adult folds the marked finger and sticks out the second finger of the same hand and drops the hand back down to the original position. The child sees that the marking, Jack, is no longer there – it has flown away|
|Fly away Jill||The action is repeated with the other hand|
|Come Back Jack||The action is reversed to make Jack reappear|
|Come Back Jill||The action is reversed to make Jill reappear|
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Hi there…I love your blogs. I am so excited to see that you have the exact same Mother Goose Nursery Rhyme book I used to have as a child. When I moved from home, my sister took it and has lost it over the years. Would it be possible for you to send me the details including author, year/date, publisher, etc. so that I can do a search for it? I tried several years ago to search for a vintage copy to purchase with no luck, but I’ve since lost those details to so can’t continue my search. I would really appreciate your help.
Here is the information to help you locate a copy of the book we both enjoyed in childhood 🙂
Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes
Illustrations by Esme Eve
Copyright 1958 by Blackie & Son Limited
Grosset and Dunlap
I just did a quick search and found there is currently one listed on eBay. Here is the auction link:
Hope this is helpful to you!
Lorraine…thank you soooo much! With your information, I was able to see the book information better and search for it on a broader scale. I found a really clean pristine copy in the UK which is now on it’s way to me. I can’t wait to receive it and spend hours curled up with those pictures and rhymes again – reliving amazing memories. Bless you!….I really do appreciate your help.
This is my first time to visit your blog and I love the name. We had birds nesting in our hanginf planter a couple of times too. It's so much fun to watch them. I'll be back to visit agian.
Penned Pebbles says
Beautiful photos and my boys used to love that rhyme!
Oh my word! I had COMPLETELY forgotten of that whimsical little rhyme that my great-grandpa used to do with pieces of the sweet and low packet paper at restaurants when I was a little girl! Thank you for zipping me quite quickly back to my childhood!
Pattie @ Olla-Podrida says
How PRECIOUS! I love little wrens so much. In fact, when the blue shoes (now planted at the base of our garden bench) in today's post were in the garage, wrens once nested in them!
I love your nature pictures and the wrens are so sweet as is the memory of your dad and the rhyme.
no spring chicken says
I used to do this rhyme with my kids when they were little, sans tape. Sweet memory..
What an absolute delight to have nesting wrens in your basket. It was beautiful, now it's stunning!
Oh that is MY favorite little children's riddle too! What is really fun is to "attach" two little birds to their little fingers and let THEM try to get rid of it…and if they can shake it off…watch them try to make the birds come back~ LOVED this post! xo Diana
What beautiful pictures. What a nice summer afternoon on the porch watching your visitors.
Garden Lady says
Sweet, sweet, won't you have fun watching the little birds. Watering is going to be challenging
I remember my parents teaching
that to me, too! And we just
discovered this week that we
have darling little wrens now
in an old decorative bird house
on a corner of our fence post.
It bothers me to see they've
nested there because we have so
many cats in our neighborhood.
They could easily hop onto the
fence and reach in and snatch
the baby birds. Keeping a close
eye on that bird house!
Have a lovely evening…
I remember this nursery rhyme too but with the names Peter and Paul. I noticed that's the name used in the one book in the picture also.
I never knew about the hand motions though. what a sweet memory
I remember that nursery rhyme too…but not until you reminded me!
There are house wrens building a nest in one of my pots this year as well. I discovered them when I was watering it and one swooshed out at me! Not having much knowledge about birds, I headed over to Google and found a good article about these sweet litle birds. The article mentioned that I can still water carefully around the nest…the wrens will fly off when I do and then they'll probably "scold me" from a distance and come back when I'm done watering. That is exactly what happens! Each time the little wren flys off to a nearby tree and very loudly cautions me to be careful!
I haven't gotten any photos of them yet – they move to quickly for my little point and shoot. Thanks for sharing yours!
Here's the link if you'd like to read it.
What sweet little birds! Interesting to read Marie's comment above about watering. Also, I have heard of folks using ice cubes carefully laid down in the pot to water.
That is such a precious memory of your Dad, Lorraine. I know your childhood book is very special to you.
Carol @ There's Always Thyme to Cook says
What a lovely memory, so sweet!
How will you water those plants? Good luck 🙂