I do love A. A.Milne‘s poetry for children, ever since I heard his Disobedience rendered as a song, more than 50 years ago.
But riddle me this. The poem begins,
Took great care of his Mother, though he was only three.
James James said to his Mother, “Mother," he said, said he,
"You must never go down to the end of the town, if you don't go down with me."
James James Morrison's Mother put on a golden gown.
James James Morrison's Mother drove to the end of the town.
James James Morrison's Mother, said to herself, said she:
"I can get right down to the end of the town and be back in time for tea."
King John put up a notice,
"LOST or STOLEN or STRAYED!
JAMES JAMES MORRISON'S MOTHER
SEEMS TO HAVE BEEN MISLAID.
QUITE OF HER OWN ACCORD,
SHE TRIED TO GET DOWN TO THE END OF THE TOWN -
FORTY SHILLINGS REWARD!"
What was Milne thinking?? England hasn’t had a King John for more than nine centuries, and that king was probably the worst king in England’s storied history. So why chose him?This message has been edited. Last edited by: shufitz,
Bob's the only likely one to know, but I'll bet Tinman can find the answer!
I've also forwarded this to a local poetry lover and retired English perfesser.
Bob hasn’t the foggiest but he will ask around in his poetry circles.
"No man but a blockhead ever wrote except for money." Samuel Johnson.
My local friend's reply was, "Why not?"
Are you familiar with this Milne poem , which seems to be popular? Another Milne King John poem...
Milne chose the names of many of his characters from his family. Most notably Christopher Robin is his son's name and Winnie the Pooh was his son's teddy bear, originally named Edward I believe. Perhaps he used the name John in his poem simply because it was his father's name.
I couldn't find anything online about this, but I am thinking he maybe had a special attraction to King John? Who knows.
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