Friday, November 24, 2006

A Little Poetry for You: Beastly Boys and Ghastly Girls

It's Poetry Friday again, and this time I'm visiting my parents' home which gives me access to a few books I don't usually have on hand. One in particular is an old favorite from my childhood, called Beastly Boys and Ghastly Girls. Published in 1964, BB&GG contains some 60-odd poems about the worst children imaginable.

Delightfully awful children.

Some of whom meet really bad ends.

The book includes contributions from Shel Silverstein, Lewis Carroll, A. A. Milne, Robert Louis Stevenson, Ogden Nash, Mary Mapes Dodge, and many others. My copy is the 1964 version, with illustrations by Tomi Ungerer, however the later (1977) edition was illustrated by Shel Silverstein.

Now I'll admit that some of the poetry in this book falls flat with me now that I'm re-reading it. But there are still many good ones. Including my two favorite "Little Willie" poems:

Willie, with a thirst for gore,
Nailed his sister to the door.
Mother said, with humor quaint:
"Now Willie dear, don't scratch the paint."

Into the family drinking well
Willie pushed his sister Nell.
She's there yet, because it kilt her --
Now we have to buy a filter.

Happy Poetry Friday!
Liz has the round-up over at A Chair, A Fireplace and a Tea Cozy.


bob-the-goat said...

Hi. Just drifting through. I left a comment on one of your posts,,the one with the ten words contest from last summer. Your site is very cheery. Thanks. I see from your profile you're from New Jersey. I'm in BC Canada but many of my ancestors lived in New Jersey during the 18th & 19th
Centuries. One of the earliest colonists there was a FitzRandolph (1620's) one of my great great etc grandparents.

Erin said...

Oh my.

Disturbingly funny in a gruesome sort of way.

Nancy said...

bob-the-goat, thanks for both comments!

erin, yes, the little willie poems are pretty much all like that

Erin said...

Isn't there on that goes:

Willie poisoned Auntie's tea
Auntie died in agony
Uncle came and looked quite vexed
"Really, Will," he said, "what next?"

My brother wrote that in my Valentine's Day card when we were little. ;-)

Nancy said...

Ooh, one I hadn't heard. Thanks Erin!

progga said...

Memory lane indeed! I read Beastly Boys and Ghastly Girls when I was something of a ghastly girl myself, and absolutely LOVED it!