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Saturday, April 21, 2012

B is for Basil assaulted by bears

As a young child, my younger daughter was a bit freaked out by the Dr. Seuss book, "Green Pants", but now finds a 2 year old who seems enamored by the book.

If he likes "Green Pants", maybe he'd like this version of the alphabet (which contains his name):

A is for Amy who fell down the stairs, B is for Basil assaulted by bears.
C is for Clair who wasted away, D is for Desmond thrown out of the sleigh.
E is for Ernest who choked on a peach, F is for Fanny, sucked dry by a leech.
G is for George, smothered under a rug, H is for Hector, done in by a thug.
I is for Ida who drowned in the lake, J is for James who took lye, by mistake.
K is for Kate who was struck with an axe, L is for Leo who swallowed some tacks.
M is for Maud who was swept out to sea, N is for Nevil who died of enui.
O is for Olive, run through with an awl, P is for Prue, trampled flat in a brawl
Q is for Quinton who sank in a mire, R is for Rhoda, consumed by a fire.
S is for Susan who parished of fits, T is for Titas who flew into bits.
U is for Una who slipped down a drain, V is for Victor, squashed under a train.
W is for Winie, embedded in ice, X is for Xercies, devoured by mice.
Y is for Yoric whose head was bashed in, Z is for Zilla who drank too much gin.
-- Edward Gorey "The Gastly Crumb Tines"

This is actually an illustrated book from the 1950's. It's possible that if I'd heard of it when you were kids, I would have read it to you. Perhaps not.

Interestingly, there are a lot of pictures out there related to this. Here's a great one from Nicola Goodall  which is part of a larger Flicker group, the Gashlycrumb Tines   , although some of those modify the poem a bit.

The blog NMissCommentor   speculates that there may be another Edward Gorey renaissance coming.

Maybe.  For some reason I'd never heard of this until this morning, when it showed up in a Frazz comic: http://www.gocomics.com/frazz/2012/04/21/


If I'd heard of these, would I have read them to my daughters at an impressionable age? We'll never know ;)

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