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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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AT THE TURN OF THE CENTURY, IN ALEXANDRIA, GEORGIA, MOST
OF THE PEOPLE COULD NEITHER READ NOR WRITE. AT
GATHERINGS, AT CHURCH AFFAIRS, ETC., HE, A BOY AT
THAT TIEM, WOULD RECITE PIECES AND SING SONGS. (HE=
MR. WRIGHT, THE INFORMANT.)
RECITATION:
GOODBYE LITTLE BIRDIE FLYING TO THE SKY,
SINGING AND SINGING A MERRY GOOD BYE.
TELL ALL THE BIRDIES FLYING ABOVE,
NELL IN THE GARDEN, SENDS THEM HER LOVE.
TELL HOW I FOUND YOU HURT IN A TREE
ALTHOUGH YOU'LL WANDER, YOU COME BACK TO ME.
IT'S WRONG TO BE SORRY I OUGHT TO BE GLAD
YOU ARE THE BEST LITTLE BIRDIE I EVER HAD.

(THE GOODBYE IS TO A SWALLOW FROM NELL. THE BIRD
ANSERS):
(NELL) GOODBYE LITTLE BIRDIE,
WHERE DID YOU GO?
(BIRD) I WENT SOUTH FOR THE WINTER
AND ALWAYS DO YOU KNOW
THE SOUTH HOW DO YOU LIKE IT?
I LIKE THE SUNNY SKIES,
AROUND THE ORANGE BLOSSOMS
I CAUGHT THE NICEST FLIES.
(THIS IS ALL MR. WRIGHT COULD REMEMBER).) MR. WRIGHT
ALSO SAID HE ALSO RECITED SOME ORIGINAL THINGS OF HIS
OWN:
DON'T GIVE UP
MEN ARE EVER RUNNING AND NEVER FIRE A GUN
THEY NEVER THINK OF WINNING BUT ALWAYS THINK TO RUN
THERE'S NO NEED OF GIVING UP, THAT'S A WEAKLIN'S WAY
IF YOU'VE LOST THE DAY BEFORE, YOU MAY GAIN TODAY.
ALL DAYS AREN'T JUST ALIKE; THERE'S NO DOUBT ABOUT IT.
SOME ARE JUST AS CLEAR AND BRIGHT,
OTHERS DARK AND CLOUDY.
THERE'S NO NEED OF GRUMBLING, THERE'S NO NEED TO WHINE,
HAVE FAITH, GO FORWARD UNTIL YOU WILL HAVE PLUCKED
THE MELONS FROM THE VINE.
(THERE IS AN ALTERNATE ENDING)
NEVER THINK OF GIVING UP, ALWAYS BE A TRYING
TILL AT LAST YOU WILL HAVE PLUCKED
THE MELONS FROM THE VINE.
LITTLE WILLIE AND I HAD A FIGHT LAST NIGHT.
I'LL TELL YOU THAT BOY IS A SIGHT.
HE WAS COURTING MISS JANIE THEN
WHEN HE WALKED OUT, I WALKED IN.
I KNOW THIS WAS A GREAT BIG SIN.
SO WHEN I CAME HOME THAT NIGHT
HE ASKED ME WOULD I FIGHT.
HE SAID TO ME, "I'LL WHIP YOU SURE."
I SHOOK MY HEAD, "NO, NO."
I'M A GREAT BIG MAN, YOU SEE
AND HE ONLY TOUCHED ME 'BOUT THE KNEE.
BUT HE KNOCKED ME SO BLAZING HARD,
I FELL A WINDING IN THE YARD.
UP AGAINST THOSE RAILROAD CARS,
I THINK I SAW THE SEVEN STARS.
TWAS ONE MORNING JUST A LIGHT,
IT WAS WILLY'S, NOT MY FIGHT.
AND HE DID ME JUST 'BOUT RIGHT.

Submitter comment: ENCOURAGEMENT
WHEN MR. WRIGHT VISITS THE SOUTH, EVEN TODAY, HE RECITES
ESSAYS, SPEECHES, ETC. AT CHURCH GATHERINGS.
ANOTHER ORIGINAL RECITATION:

Where learned: HOME

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Narrative Verse
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse C730.320
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse C730.322
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse C730.325
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse C730.326

Date learned: 11-00-1967

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YOUR HEART IS NOT A PLAYTHING,
YOUR HEART IS NOT A TOY,
IF YOU WANT IT BROKEN,
GIVE IT TO A BOY.

Submitter comment: LEARNED IT FROM CAROL ROGINSKI

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; LIBRARY ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse C730.320

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VERSE

YOUR HEART IS NOT A PLAYTHING,
YOUR HEART IS NOT A TOY.
BUT IF YOU WANT IT BROKEN,
JUST GIVE IT TO A BOY.

Where learned: LIBRARY

Keyword(s): ADVICE ; ADVICE: ABCB ; INITIAL ITERATION ; RHYME: ABCB

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse C730.320

Date learned: 09-00-1967

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PROVERBIAL METAPHOR

MOTHERLAND! YOU ARE LIKE GOOD HEALTH.
HOW WE ARE SUPPOSED TO LOVE YOU.
ONLY HE KNOWS WHO LOSES YOU.
TRANSLATION OF:
OJCYZNO! TY JESTES YAH AZROWIE.
YAH CIEBIE KOCHAI TIZEBA.
TEN TYLHO SIE DOWIE, KTO CIEBIE STROCI.

Where learned: HOME

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse C730.320

Date learned: 09-15-1969

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showing 4 items

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