Kleines Riesenglück

Karlhans Frank (1937-    )

Der Däumeling war winzig klein,
ging dennoch in die Welt hinein
und hatte dort ein Riesenglück:
Er kam als kleiner Mann zurück.



Billy Collins (1941 - )

A wolf is reading a book of fairy tales.
The moon hangs over the forest, a lamp.

He is not assuming a human position,
say, cross-legged against a tree,
as he would in a cartoon.

This is a real wolf, standing on all fours,
his rich fur bristling in the night air:
his head bent over the book open on the ground.

He does not sit down for the words
would be too far away to be legible,
and it is with difficulty that he turns
each page with his nose and forepaws.

When he finishes the last tale
he lies down in pine needles
He thinks about what he has read,
the stories passing over his mind
like clouds crossing the moon.

A zig-zag of wind shakes down hazelnuts.
The eyes of owls yellow in the branches.

The wolf now paces restlessly in circles
around the book until he is absorbed
by the power of its narration;
making him one of its illustrations,
a small paper wolf, flat as print.

Later that night, lost in a town of pigs,
he knocks over houses with his breath.


La Prisonnière

Jacques Charpentrau (1928 - )

Plaignez la pauvre prisonnière
Au fond de son cachot maudit !
Sans feu, sans coussin, sans lumière...
Ah ! maman me l'avait bien dit !

Il fallait aller chez grand-mère
Sans m'amuser au bois joli,
Sans parler comme une commère
Avec l'inconnu trop poli.

Ma promenade buissonnière
Ne m'a pas réussi du tout

Maintenant je suis prisonnière
Dans le grand ventre noir du loup.

Je suis seule, sans allumettes,
Chaperon rouge bien puni :
Je n'ai plus qu'un bout de galette,
Et mon pot de beurre est fini !


Rumpelstilz sucht Freunde

Gerald Jatzek (1956-    )

Ach wie dumm, dass niemand weiß,
dass ich Rumpelstilzchen heiß.

niemand schreibt mir Liebesbriefe,
niemand fragt, ob ich gut schliefe.

Niemand schreibt mir Ansichtskarten,
lädt mich ein in seinen Garten.

Niemand wünscht mir frohe Feste,
niemals kommen zu mir Gäste.

Niemals schrillt das Telefon,
so geht das seit Jahren schon.

Doch so will ich nicht verweilen,
deshalb schreib ich diese Zeilen.

Damit nun ein jeder weiß,
dass ich Rumpelstilzchen heiß.


How to Change a Frog Into a Prince

Anna Denise

Start with the underwear. Sit him down.
Hopping on one leg may stir unpleasant memories.
If he gets his tights on, even backwards, praise him.
Fingers, formerly webbed, struggle over buttons.
Arms and legs, lengthened out of proportion, wait,
as you do, for the rest of him to catch up.
This body, so recently reformed, reclaimed,
still carries the marks of its time as a frog. Be gentle.
Avoid the words awkward and gawky.
Do not use tadpole as a term of endearment.
His body, like his clothing, may seem one size too big.
Relax. There’s time enough for crowns. He’ll grow into it.


Le petit chaperon rouge

Maurice Carême (1899-1978)

" Chaperon rouge est en voyage " ,
Ont dit les noisetiers tout bas.
"Loup aux aguets sous le feuillage,
N'attendez plus au coin du bois".

Plus ne cherra la bobinette
Lorsque, d'une main qui tremblait,
Elle tirait la chevillette
En tendant déjà son bouquet.

Mère-grand n'est plus au village.
On l'a conduite à l'hôpital
Où la fièvre, dans un mirage,
Lui montre son clocher natal.

Et chaperon rouge regrette,
Le nez sur la vitre du train ,
Les papillons bleus, les fleurettes
Et le loup qui parlait si bien.



Wolfgang Bächler  (1925-2007)

Der goldene Sonnenball
ist in den Brunnen gefallen.
Am Morgen holt ihn
der Froschkönig wieder herauf.
Da keine Prinzessin ihn ruft
wirft er den Ball in den Himmel.


Bad Day

Kay Ryan (1945 -)

Not every day
is a good day
for the elfin tailor.
Some days
the stolen cloth
reveals what it
was made for:
a handsome weskit
or the jerkin
of an elfin sailor.
Other days
the tailor
sees a jacket
in his mind
and sets about
to find the fabric.
But some days
neither the idea
nor the material
presents itself;
and these are
the hard days
for the tailor elf.


La petite chèvre

Jean Rousselot (1913-2002)

La petite chèvre
De Monsieur Seguin
Ne fut pas mangée
Au petit matin

Elle se battit
Si gaillardement
Qu’à la fin le loup
Alla s’essoufflant

Arrêtons petite
Lui dit le coquin
C’était pour rire
Serrons-nous la main

Ainsi firent-ils
Et se retirèrent
Pour aller chacun
Dans sa chacunière

Bien sûr la biquette
Fut mise au piquet
A-t-on jamais vu
Chèvre découcher ?

Mais pour sa vaillance
On l’en retira
Je crois savoir même
Qu’on la décora

Si j’en ai menti
Je veux bien copier
Dix fois la nouvelle
De Monsieur Daudet.


Altneues Märchen

Hans Manz (1931-    )

Es war einmal eine Prinzessin …
Halt! Rief die,
hört auf mit den alten Sachen,
womöglich mit einem Drachen,
der Königstöchter verspeist,
sowie drei Prinzen,
die, von weither angereist,
mit ihm fochten,
wobei ihn zwei
nicht zu töten vermochten.
Wenn das Ungetüm
denn schon besiegt sein muss,
kann ich das selber machen.


The Little Match Girl

William McGonagall (1825–1902 )

It was biting cold, and the falling snow,
Which filled a poor little match girl’s heart with woe,
Who was bareheaded and barefooted, as she went along the street,
Crying, “Who’ll buy my matches? for I want pennies to buy some meat!”

When she left home she had slippers on;
But, alas! poor child, now they were gone.
For she lost both of them while hurrying across the street,
Out of the way of two carriages which were near by her feet.

So the little girl went on, while the snow fell thick and fast;
And the child’s heart felt cold and downcast,
For nobody had bought any matches that day,
Which filled her little mind with grief and dismay.

Alas! she was hungry and shivering with cold;
So in a corner between two houses she made bold
To take shelter from the violent storm.
Poor little waif! wishing to herself she’d never been born.

And she grew colder and colder, and feared to go home
For fear of her father beating her; and she felt woe-begone
Because she could carry home no pennies to buy bread,
And to go home without pennies she was in dread.

The large flakes of snow covered her ringlets of fair hair;
While the passers-by for her had no care,
As they hurried along to their homes at a quick pace,
While the cold wind blew in the match girl’s face.

As night wore on her hands were numb with cold,
And no longer her strength could her uphold,
When an idea into her little head came:
She’d strike a match and warm her hands at the flame.

And she lighted the match, and it burned brightly,
And it helped to fill her heart with glee;
And she thought she was sitting at a stove very grand;
But, alas! she was found dead, with a match in her hand!

Her body was found half-covered with snow,
And as the people gazed thereon their hearts were full of woe;
And many present let fall a burning tear
Because she was found dead on the last night of the year,

In that mighty city of London, wherein is plenty of gold—
But, alas! their charity towards street waifs is rather cold.
But I hope the match girl’s in Heaven, beside her Saviour dear,
A bright reward for all the hardships she suffered here.


L'aurore en chaperon rose

Andrée Hyvernaud (1910-2005)

L'aurore en chaperon rose
brin de lune sur les talons
s'en allait offrir à la ronde
sa galette et ses chansons.

Mais le loup profile son ombre
avalant galette en premier.
Sauve-toi Chaperon rose
car c'est toi qu'il va croquer.

Matin gris matin mouillé
Que cette histoire est décevante
il faudra la recommencer
heureusement la terre est ronde
demain c'est le loup -peut-être-
le loup qui sera mangé.


Vom Schlaraffenland

August Heinrich Hoffmann von Fallersleben (1798-1874)

Kommt, wir wollen uns begeben
jetzo ins Schlaraffenland
seht da ist ein lustig Leben
und das Trauern unbekannt
seht da läßt sich billig zechen
und umsonst recht lustig sein
Milch und Honig fließt in Bächen,
aus den Felsen quillt der Wein

Alle Speisen gut geraten,
und das Finden fällt nicht schwer
Gäns und Enten gehen gebraten
überall im Land umher
Mit dem Messer auf dem Rücken
läuft gebraten jedes Schwein
Oh wie ist es zum Entzücken,
Ei, wer möchte dort nicht sein.

Und von Kuchen, Butterwecken,
sind die Zweige voll und schwer
Feigen wachsen in den Hecken,
Ananas im Busch umher
Keiner darf sich mühen und bücken,
alles stellt von selbst sich ein
Oh, wie ist es zum Entzücken,
Ei, wer möchte dort nicht sein

Und die Straßen allerorten,
jeder Weg und jede Bahn
sind gebaut aus Zuckertorten,
und Bonbons und Marzipan
Und von Brezeln sind die Brücken,
aufgeführt gar hübsch und fein
Oh, wie ist es zum Entzücken,
Ei, wer möchte dort nicht sein

Ja, das mag ein schönes Leben,
und ein herrlich Ländchen sein
Mancher hat sich hinbegeben,
aber keiner kam hinein
ja, und habt ihr keine Flügel,
nie gelangt ihr bis ans Tor
denn es liegt ein breiter Hügel
ganz von Pflaumenmus davor.



Anne Sexton (1928-1974)

You always read about it:
the plumber with twelve children
who wins the Irish Sweepstakes.
From toilets to riches.
That story.

Or the nursemaid,
some luscious sweet from Denmark
who captures the oldest son's heart.
From diapers to Dior.
That story.

Or a milkman who serves the wealthy,
eggs, cream, butter, yogurt, milk,
the white truck like an ambulance
who goes into real estate
and makes a pile.
From homogenized to martinis at lunch.

Or the charwoman
who is on the bus when it cracks up
and collects enough from the insurance.
From mops to Bonwit Teller.
That story.

the wife of a rich man was on her deathbed
and she said to her daughter Cinderella:
Be devout. Be good. Then I will smile
down from heaven in the seam of a cloud.
The man took another wife who had
two daughters, pretty enough
but with hearts like blackjacks.
Cinderella was their maid.
She slept on the sooty hearth each night
and walked around looking like Al Jolson.
Her father brought presents home from town,
jewels and gowns for the other women
but the twig of a tree for Cinderella.
She planted that twig on her mother's grave
and it grew to a tree where a white dove sat.
Whenever she wished for anything the dove
would drop it like an egg upon the ground.
The bird is important, my dears, so heed him.

Next came the ball, as you all know.
It was a marriage market.
The prince was looking for a wife.
All but Cinderella were preparing
and gussying up for the big event.
Cinderella begged to go too.
Her stepmother threw a dish of lentils
into the cinders and said: Pick them
up in an hour and you shall go.
The white dove brought all his friends;
all the warm wings of the fatherland came,
and picked up the lentils in a jiffy.
No, Cinderella, said the stepmother,
you have no clothes and cannot dance.
That's the way with stepmothers.

Cinderella went to the tree at the grave
and cried forth like a gospel singer:
Mama! Mama! My turtledove,
send me to the prince's ball!
The bird dropped down a golden dress
and delicate little gold slippers.
Rather a large package for a simple bird.
So she went. Which is no surprise.
Her stepmother and sisters didn't
recognize her without her cinder face
and the prince took her hand on the spot
and danced with no other the whole day.

As nightfall came she thought she'd better
get home. The prince walked her home
and she disappeared into the pigeon house
and although the prince took an axe and broke
it open she was gone. Back to her cinders.
These events repeated themselves for three days.
However on the third day the prince
covered the palace steps with cobbler's wax
and Cinderella's gold shoe stuck upon it.
Now he would find whom the shoe fit
and find his strange dancing girl for keeps.
He went to their house and the two sisters
were delighted because they had lovely feet.
The eldest went into a room to try the slipper on
but her big toe got in the way so she simply
sliced it off and put on the slipper.
The prince rode away with her until the white dove
told him to look at the blood pouring forth.
That is the way with amputations.
The don't just heal up like a wish.
The other sister cut off her heel
but the blood told as blood will.
The prince was getting tired.
He began to feel like a shoe salesman.
But he gave it one last try.
This time Cinderella fit into the shoe
like a love letter into its envelope.

At the wedding ceremony
the two sisters came to curry favor
and the white dove pecked their eyes out.
Two hollow spots were left
like soup spoons.

Cinderella and the prince
lived, they say, happily ever after,
like two dolls in a museum case
never bothered by diapers or dust,
never arguing over the timing of an egg,
never telling the same story twice,
never getting a middle-aged spread,
their darling smiles pasted on for eternity.
Regular Bobbsey Twins.
That story.


Temps des contes

Georges Jean Arnaud (1928 - )

S'il était encore une fois
Nous partirions à l'aventure,
Moi, je serais Robin des Bois,
Et toi, tu mettrais ton armure.
Nous irions sur nos alezans
Animaux de belle prestance,
Nous serions armés jusqu'aux dents
Parcourant les forêts immenses.

S'il était encore une fois
Vers le château des contes bleus
Je serais le beau-fils du roi
Et toi tu cracherais le feu.
Nous irions trouver Blanche-neige
Dormant dans son cercueil de verre,
Nous pourrions croiser le cortège
De Malbrough revenant de guerre.

S'il était encore une fois
Au balcon de Monsieur Perrault,
Nous irions voir ma Mère l'Oye
Qui me prendrait pour un héros.
Et je dirais à ces gens-là :
Moi qui suis allé dans la lune,
Moi qui vois ce qu'on ne voit pas
Quand la télé le soir s'allume ;
Je vous le dis, vos fées, vos bêtes,
Font encore rêver mes copains
Et mon grand-père le poète
Quand nous marchons main dans la main.


Klein Ännchen


Klein Ännchen von der Mühle
Saß eines abends kühle
Auf einem breiten Stein,
Auf einem breiten Stein.

Kaum hat sie angefangen,
Da kam der Prinz gegangen,
Ein Ritter jung und schön,
Ein Ritter jung und schön.

Klein Ännchen, hast du Eltern?
Ach nein ich habe keine!
Komm mit mir in mein Schloß.
Komm mit mir in mein Schloß.

Als Fürstin sollst du leben,
In Samt und Seide schweben,
In Gold und Edelstein
Sollst du begraben sein.
Sollst du begraben sein.


The Wolf's Postcript to 'Little Red Riding Hood'

Agha Shahid Ali (1949–2001 )

First, grant me my sense of history:
I did it for posterity,
for kindergarten teachers
and a clear moral:
Little girls shouldn't wander off
in search of strange flowers,
and they mustn't speak to strangers.

And then grant me my generous sense of plot:
Couldn't I have gobbled her up
right there in the jungle?
Why did I ask her where her grandma lived?
As if I, a forest-dweller,
didn't know of the cottage
under the three oak trees
and the old woman lived there
all alone?
As if I couldn't have swallowed her years before?

And you may call me the Big Bad Wolf,
now my only reputation.
But I was no child-molester
though you'll agree she was pretty.

And the huntsman:
Was I sleeping while he snipped
my thick black fur
and filled me with garbage and stones?
I ran with that weight and fell down,
simply so children could laugh
at the noise of the stones
cutting through my belly,
at the garbage spilling out
with a perfect sense of timing,
just when the tale
should have come to an end.


Temps des contes

Georges Jean Arnaud (1928 - )

S'il était encore une fois
Nous partirions à l'aventure,
Moi, je serais Robin des Bois,
Et toi, tu mettrais ton armure.
Nous irions sur nos alezans
Animaux de belle prestance,
Nous serions armés jusqu'aux dents
Parcourant les forêts immenses.

S'il était encore une fois
Vers le château des contes bleus
Je serais le beau-fils du roi
Et toi tu cracherais le feu.
Nous irions trouver Blanche-neige
Dormant dans son cercueil de verre,
Nous pourrions croiser le cortège
De Malbrough revenant de guerre.

S'il était encore une fois
Au balcon de Monsieur Perrault,
Nous irions voir ma Mère l'Oye
Qui me prendrait pour un héros.
Et je dirais à ces gens-là :
Moi qui suis allé dans la lune,
Moi qui vois ce qu'on ne voit pas
Quand la télé le soir s'allume ;
Je vous le dis, vos fées, vos bêtes,
Font encore rêver mes copains
Et mon grand-père le poète
Quand nous marchons main dans la main.


Der Schmetterling

Heinz Erhardt (1909-1979)

Es war einmal ein buntes Ding
ein so genannter Schmetterling.

Der flog wie alle Falter
recht sorglos für sein Alter.

Er nippte hier – er nippte dort
und war er satt, so flog er fort.

Flog zu den Hyazinthen
und schaute nicht nach hinten.

So kam´s, daß dieser Schmetterling
verwundert war, als man ihn fing.



Cold Cold Hands

allan james saywell

Your cold, cold hands
That stroke my soul
Your cold, cold hands, that stroke my soul
Your cold, cold hands, that chilled my bones
You made me feel the chill
That blow in from the arctic ice
Oh, you made me feel that i didn't belong
In your home you made so nice
But it was you who tasted the street
You played me for a fool
When you found your crown prince
When you found him he was a frog
That lived in a pond
You kissed him and he became a prince
And i became a pauper
But the pauper was touched by the holy ghost
And the prince bore the mark of cain
You walked away with the prince
Who went back to the pond
And you lived the life of a frog
And i married the holy ghost
And became a man complete in myself
For i need warm hands to touch me
Not cold, cold hands


Centaures et Lapithes

José-Maria de Heredia (1842-1905)

La foule nuptiale au festin s'est ruée,
Centaures et guerriers ivres, hardis et beaux ;
Et la chair héroïque, au reflet des flambeaux,
Se mêle au poil ardent des fils de la Nuée.

Rires, tumulte... Un cri !... L'Epouse polluée
Que presse un noir poitrail, sous la pourpre en lambeaux
Se débat, et l'airain sonne au choc des sabots
Et la table s'écroule à travers la huée.

Alors celui pour qui le plus grand est un nain,
Se lève. Sur son crâne, un mufle léonin
Se fronce, hérissé de crins d'or. C'est Hercule.

Et d'un bout de la salle immense à l'autre bout,
Dompté par l'oeil terrible où la colère bout,
Le troupeau monstrueux en renâclant recule.


Der alte Wolf

Heinz Erhardt (1909-1979)

Auch 'n Märchen
Der Wolf, verkalkt und schon fast blind,
traf eine junge Dame:
"Bist du nicht Rotkäppchen, mein Kind?“
Da sprach die Dame: "Herr, Sie sind ---!
Schneewittchen ist mein Name!"

"Schneewittchen? Ach, dann bist du die
mit diesen 7 Raben?"
Sie antwortete: "Lassen Sie
sich lieber gleich begraben!
Mit 7 Zwergen hatt ich mal
zu tun - das waren nette...!"
"Ach ja! du durftest nicht zum Ball,
Und Erbsen waren nicht dein Fall,
besonders nicht im Bette...!"

Da lachte sie hell ha-ha-ha,
dann: "Darf ich Sie was fragen?
Sie fraßen doch die Großmama,
wie hab'n Sie die vertragen?"

"Das ist nicht wahr, daß ich sie fraß,
ich krümmte ihr kein Härchen!
Die BrüderGrimm, die schrieben das
für kleine Kinderchen zum Spaß -
das sind doch alles Märchen...!"


Frogs in chorus

Andrew Barton Paterson (1864–1941)

The chorus frogs in the big lagoon
Would sing their songs to the silvery moon.
Tenor singers were out of place,
For every frog was a double bass.
But never a human chorus yet
Could beat the accurate time they set.
The solo singer began the joke;
He sang, "As long as I live I'll croak,
Croak, I'll croak,"
And the chorus followed him: "Croak, croak, croak!"

The poet frog, in his plaintive tone,
Sang of a sorrow was all his own;
"How shall I win to my heart's desire?
How shall I feel my spirit's fire?"
And the solo frog in his deepest croak,
"To fire your spirit," he sang, "eat coke,
Coke, eat coke,"
And the chorus followed him: "Coke, coke, coke!"

The green frog sat in a swampy spot
And he sang the song of he knew not what.
"The world is rotten, oh cursed plight,
That I am the frog that must set it right.
How shall I scatter the shades that lurk?"
And the old man bullfrog sang, "Get work,
Work, get work,"
And the chorus followed him: "Work, work, work!"

The soaring spirits that fain would fly
On wings of hope to the starry sky
Must face the snarls of the jealous dogs,
For the world is ruled by its chorus frogs.


Ballade sur les hôtes mystérieux de la forêt

Théodore de Banville  (1823-1891)

Il chante encor, l'essaim railleur des fées,
Bien protégé par l'épine et le houx
Que le zéphyr caresse par bouffées.
Diane aussi, l'épouvante des loups,
Au fond des bois cache son cœur jaloux.
Son culte vit dans plus d'une chaumière.
Quand les taillis sont baignés de lumière,
A l'heure calme où la lune paraît,
Échevelée à travers la clairière,
Diane court dans la noire forêt.

De nénufars et de feuilles coiffées,
La froide nixe et l'ondine aux yeux doux
Mènent le bal, follement attifées,
Et près du nain, dont les cheveux sont roux,
Les sylphes verts dansent et font les fous.
On voit passer une figure altière,
Et l'on entend au bord de la rivière
Un long sanglot, un soupir de regret
Et des pas sourds qui déchirent du lierre :
Diane court dans la noire forêt.

Diane, au bois récoltant ses trophées,
Entend le cerf gémissant fuir ses coups
Et se pleurer en plaintes étouffées.
Un vent de glace a rougi ses genoux ;
Ses lévriers, ivres de son courroux,
Sont accourus à sa voix familière.
La grande Nymphe à la fauve paupière
Sur son arc d'or assujettit le trait ;
Puis, secouant sa mouvante crinière,
Diane court dans la noire forêt.

Prince, il est temps, fuyons cette poussière
Du carrefour, et la forêt de pierre.
Sous le feuillage et sous l'antre secret,
Nous trouverons la ville hospitalière ;
Diane court dans la noire forêt.


Es war einmal ein König

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)

Es war einmal ein König,
Der hatt' einen großen Floh,
Den liebt' er gar nicht wenig,
Als wie seinen eig'nen Sohn.
Da rief er seinen Schneider,
Der Schneider kam heran:
"Da, miß dem Junker Kleider
Und miß ihm Hosen an!"
In Sammet und in Seide
War er nun angetan,
Hatte Bänder auf dem Kleide,
Und hatt' ein Kreuz daran.
Und war sogleich Minister,
Und hatt' einen großen Stern.
Da wurden seine Geschwister
Bei Hof auch große Herrn.
Und Herrn und Frau'n am Hofe,
Die waren sehr geplagt,
Die Königin und die Zofe
Gestochen und genagt,
Und durften sie nicht knicken
Und weg sie jucken nicht.
Wir knicken und ersticken
Doch gleich, wenn einer sticht.


Gretel in Darkness

Louise Gluck (1943 - )

This is the world we wanted. All who would have seen us dead
Are dead. I hear the witch's cry
Break in the moonlight through a sheet of sugar: God rewards.
Her tongue shrivels into gas....

Now, far from women's arms
And memory of women, in our father's hut
We sleep, are never hungry.
Why do I not forget?
My father bars the door, bars harm
From this house, and it is years.

No one remembers. Even you, my brother.
Summer afternoons you look at me as though you meant
To leave, as though it never happened. But I killed for you.
I see armed firs, the spires of that gleaming kiln come back, come back--

Nights I turn to you to hold me but you are not there.
Am I alone? Spies
Hiss in the stillness, Hansel we are there still, and it is real, real,
That black forest, and the fire in earnest.


Von Nix, der den Knaben in den Brunnen hinab ziehen  wollte

Julius Sturm (1816-1896)

Ein Knäblein stand
Am Brunnenrand
Und schaute munter
Ins Wasser hinunter.
Wie es nun da
Tief unten sah
Die goldene Sonne,
Rief es voll Wonne:
„Warte nur, wart!
Hast ausgenarrt.
Tatest immer blitzen,
Wenn ich musst' sitzen
Daheim und treiben
Das Lesen und das Schreiben.
Durft' ich hinaus
Spät aus dem Haus,
Um nach der vielen
Arbeit zu spielen,
So wurdest du bass
Vor Neid ganz blass;
Und spielt ich munter,
Husch, gingst du unter.
Eh' ich's gedacht,
War's finstre Nacht.
Die Lust war aus,
Ich musst nach Haus.
Nun hast du drunten
Den Lohn gefunden.
Ätsch! Steckst im Loch!
Wie, lachst du noch?
Verhöhnst du mich?
Ich treffe dich!“
Sprach's das Knäblein
Und wälzt einen Stein
Mit seiner Hand
Vom Brunnenrand.
Pauz! Fiel der Stein
Polternd hinein.
„Ich will hoffen,
Dass ich getroffen
Die Sonne habe“,
Sagte der Knabe
Und sprang gewandt
Auf den Brunnenrand
Und schaute munter
Ins Wasser hinunter.
Da kam, o Graus!
Der Nix heraus,
Der schlummernd geruht
In der Wasser flut,
Rief grimmig „Du,
Lass mir in Ruh
Mein liebes Licht,
Sonst, kleiner Wicht,
Fass' ich dein Bein,
Zieh' dich herein,
Zieh' dich herab
Ins nasse Grab!“
Er rief's und fasst
In zorn'ger Hast
Schon nach dem Bein.
Da hub zu schrei'n
Der kleine Mann
Gewaltig an;
Riss eilends aus
Und lief nach Haus
Und hielt gescheut
Seit jener Zeit
Sich immer gern
Dem Brunnen fern.


The Frog Prince

Anne Sexton (1928-1974)

Frau Doktor,
Mama Brundig,
take out your contacts,
remove your wig.
I write for you.
I entertain.
But frogs come out
of the sky like rain.

Frogs arrive
With an ugly fury.
You are my judge.
You are my jury.

My guilts are what
we catalogue.
I'll take a knife
and chop up frog.

Frog has not nerves.
Frog is as old as a cockroach.
Frog is my father's genitals.
Frog is a malformed doorknob.
Frog is a soft bag of green.

The moon will not have him.
The sun wants to shut off
like a light bulb.
At the sight of him
the stone washes itself in a tub.
The crow thinks he's an apple
and drops a worm in.
At the feel of frog
the touch-me-nots explode
like electric slugs.
Slime will have him.
Slime has made him a house.

Mr. Poison
is at my bed.
He wants my sausage.
He wants my bread.

Mama Brundig,
he wants my beer.
He wants my Christ
for a souvenir.

Frog has boil disease
and a bellyful of parasites.
He says: Kiss me. Kiss me.
And the ground soils itself.

should a certain
quite adorable princess
be walking in her garden
at such a time
and toss her golden ball
up like a bubble
and drop it into the well?
It was ordained.
Just as the fates deal out
the plague with a tarot card.
Just as the Supreme Being drills
holes in our skulls to let
the Boston Symphony through.

But I digress.
A loss has taken place.
The ball has sunk like a cast-iron pot
into the bottom of the well.

Lost, she said,
my moon, my butter calf,
my yellow moth, my Hindu hare.
Obviously it was more than a ball.
Balls such as these are not
for sale in Au Bon Marché.
I took the moon, she said,
between my teeth
and now it is gone
and I am lost forever.
A thief had robbed by day.

Suddenly the well grew
thick and boiling
and a frog appeared.
His eyes bulged like two peas
and his body was trussed into place.
Do not be afraid, Princess,
he said, I am not a vagabond,
a cattle farmer, a shepherd,
a doorkeeper, a postman
or a laborer.
I come to you as a tradesman.
I have something to sell.
Your ball, he said,
for just three things.
Let me eat from your plate.
Let me drink from your cup.
Let me sleep in your bed.
She thought, Old Waddler,
those three you will never do,
but she made the promises
with hopes for her ball once more.
He brought it up in his mouth
like a tricky old dog
and she ran back to the castle
leaving the frog quite alone.

That evening at dinner time
a knock was heard on the castle door
and a voice demanded:
King's youngest daughter,
let me in. You promised;
now open to me.
I have left the skunk cabbage
and the eels to live with you.
The kind then heard her promise
and forced her to comply.

The frog first sat on her lap.
He was as awful as an undertaker.
Next he was at her plate
looking over her bacon
and calves' liver.
We will eat in tandem,
he said gleefully.
Her fork trembled
as if a small machine
had entered her.
He sat upon the liver
and partook like a gourmet.
The princess choked
as if she were eating a puppy.
From her cup he drank.
It wasn't exactly hygienic.
From her cup she drank
as if it were Socrates' hemlock.

Next came the bed.
The silky royal bed.
Ah! The penultimate hour!
There was the pillow
with the princess breathing
and there was the sinuous frog
riding up and down beside her.
I have been lost in a river
of shut doors, he said,
and I have made my way over
the wet stones to live with you.
She woke up aghast.
I suffer for birds and fireflies
but not frogs, she said,
and threw him across the room.

Like a genie coming out of a samovar,
a handsome prince arose in the
corner of her bedroom.
He had kind eyes and hands
and was a friend of sorrow.
Thus they were married.
After all he had compromised her.

He hired a night watchman
so that no one could enter the chamber
and he had the well
boarded over so that
never again would she lose her ball,
that moon, that Krishna hair,
that blind poppy, that innocent globe,
that madonna womb.


Der König von Thule

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)

Es war einst ein König in Thule,
Gar treu bis an das Grab,
Dem sterbend seine Buhle
einen goldnen Becher gab.

Es ging ihm nichts darüber,
Er leert' ihn jeden Schmaus;
Die Augen gingen ihm über,
So oft trank er daraus.

Und als er kam zu sterben,
Zählt' er seine Städt' im Reich,
Gönnt' alles seinen Erben,
Den Becher nicht zugleich.

Er saß beim Königsmahle,
Die Ritter um ihn her,
Auf hohem Vätersaale
Dort auf dem Schloß am Meer.

Dort stand der alte Zecher,
Trank letzte Lebensglut
Und warf den heil'gen Becher
Hinunter in die Flut.

Er sah ihn stürzen, trinken
Und sinken tief ins Meer.
Die Augen täten ihm sinken,
Trank nie einen Tropfen mehr


Fairy-tale Logic

A.E. Stallings ( 1968 -)

Fairy tales are full of impossible tasks:
Gather the chin hairs of a man-eating goat,
Or cross a sulphuric lake in a leaky boat,
Select the prince from a row of identical masks,
Tiptoe up to a dragon where it basks
And snatch its bone; count dust specks, mote by mote,
Or learn the phone directory by rote.
Always it’s impossible what someone asks—

You have to fight magic with magic. You have to believe
That you have something impossible up your sleeve,
The language of snakes, perhaps, an invisible cloak,
An army of ants at your beck, or a lethal joke,
Then you  will to do whatever must be done:
Marry a monster. Hand over your firstborn son.



Friedhelm Kändler (1950-    )

("Dornröschen" wird hier nicht "Dornröschen" gesprochen, sondern "DornRöschen", also mit sch)
Voorgedragen door de dichter.

Mit Küssen, mit kecken
Dornröschen zu wecken
Schlug sich Dorn für Dorn
Ein Prinz nach vorn
Durch einen Rosenwald
Dornröschen, halt
Aus, denn ich komme bald!
"Ja", rief
Die Maid, die schlief
im Traume tief
"Mich zu erlösen
Aus dem Bösen
Bann, schöner Mann, komm an!"
Jahre vergingen
Im Winter hingen
Die Rosenköpfe runter
Litten unter der Kälte Macht
Wurden wieder munter
Sprossen neu
In des Lenzens Frühjahrspracht
Der Sommer kam
Der Herbst, er wich
Der Winter wieder nahte sich
Der Frühling
So sehr sich der in Liebe erglühte
Prinz die Rosen zu köpfen bemühte
Bemühten sich die durch einer Hexe
Bösen Fluch gewachsenen Gewächse
Den Weg zu Dornröschen nicht
Frei zu geben
Im Kampfe verging des Prinzen Leben
Da lag er -
Erstochen erstickt, resigniert
Und er war nicht der erste
Dem das passiert!
Gerippe neben Gerippe lagen
Sie alle! Die es wagen
Wollten, Dornröschen zu befreien
Sieh dort zwischen
Den Rosenbüschen
Die Gerippe-Reihen
Tote Königssöhne in Scharen
Die allesamt gescheitert waren
Tot - tot - tot!
Dornröschen in bitterer Not
Wälzte sich auf ihrem Lager
Wurde mager
Verlor an Gewicht
Sie aß ja nicht
Schlief ja nur in einer Tour
Wurde dünner, die schöne Maid
Mit des Wartens langer Zeit...
Was ist das?
Was krabbelt da?
Vor dem Schloß so sonderbar?
Halt! Zurück!
Was willst du von Dornröschen?
Sie rief nach Prinzen
Nicht nach Fröschen
Hinfort! Du nasses Krötentier
Das ist ein anderes Märchen hier!
Die Rosendornen, die spitzen
Werden dir den Leib aufritzen...
Verflixt, der Lurch kommt durch!
Hopst in aller Ruhe, ganz gemach
Zu Dornröschens Schlafgemach
Hopst auf's Bett
Krabbelt zum Gesicht
Man glaubt es nicht!
Als wär der Frosch intelligent
Als ob er weiß, genaustens kennt
Wo's langgeht:
Kriecht an der Seite
Vorbei an den Rippen
och zu Dornröschens süßen Lippen...
Ach so!
Das ist der Grund
Es sitzt eine Fliege auf dem Mund
Der Prinzessin -
Und putzt sich, macht sich fein
Fliege! Das könnte dein Ende sein!
Die Zunge saust aus dem Frosch heraus
Ein kurzes Kleben - dann ist es aus
Dornröschen erwacht
"Wer war's?"
Wer hat ein Ende gemacht
Dem Schlaf, dem langen
Dem ich verfangen?
Wo ist der königliche Junge
Der mich erlöst mit seiner Zunge
Der Galan, der Schlimme?"
"Quark!" ertönt des Frosches Stimme
Um der Himmel ew'ger Gnade
Ihr Götter nein!
Warst du das grade?
Soll das die Erlösung sein?
Hast du mich wachgeküsst?
Mutter! Vater! Mir ist
ein Frosch erschienen
Mich zu befreien!"
Durch des Schlosses Hallen
Drang der Jungfrau Schreien
Der König erwachte, die Königin
Die Minister, der Kochgehilfe fing
Sich eine Ohrfeige ein
Stubenmädchen und Lakain
Stallburschen, Pferdesattler
Briefträger, Butler
Gouvernanten, Schloßpolizei
Alle erwachten von dem Geschrei
Das Dornröschen entsetzt anhub
Sogar in den Bergen der Hirtenbub
Alle erwachten, wurden wach
Von dem Krach
Und freuten sich nicht wenig
Sprach der König
"Es tut mir leid
Der Frosch hat nicht nur dich
Er hat auch mich befreit
Und alle hier..."
"Vater! Der Frosch ist ein Tier!
Ich höre wohl nicht richtig?"
"Das, mein Kind, ist nicht wichtig
Der Bann ist gebrochen!
Ob ein Prinz kommt angeritten
Ein Bauerssohn herbeigeschritten
Oder ein Frosch kommt gekrochen
Versprochen ist versprochen!"
Und auch die Königin, die strickte
Rief Dornröschen
"Ich ekel mich vor Fröschen!
So eine beliebige
Herbeigelaufene Amphibie?
Ich töte die Kröte!"
Und Dornröschen nahm den Frosch
In die Hand
Warf ihn mit aller Kraft
Gegen die Wand
Ein Knall! Gespritz
Und vor Dornröschen stand
Ein wunderschöner junger Mann
Der schaute die Maid zornig an
"Die junge Dame ist sich zu fein
Einen Frosch zu frei'n?
Dann bist du für mich
Und meine Nächte
Auch nicht die Rechte
Außerdem -
Ich wollte sowieso nur die Fliege."
Sprach der Jüngling
Wandte sich ab sogleich
Und hopste stolz
Zurück zu seinem Teich
Und die Moral von der Geschicht?
Ich weiß es nicht
Das Leben ist Hart und unerträglich
Erweist es sich auf's neue, wie
Das Leben zuschlägt
Voller Ironie
Träume vom Feinsten
Beim Erwachen
Mußt du Zugeständnisse machen
Ein Frosch in der Hand
Und endlich wach
Ist besser als ein Prinz auf dem Dach
Träume vom Zusammenleben
Mit einem königlichen Mann...
Das soll's doch geben
Dass auch ein Frosch
Eine Frau glücklich machen kann
Dornröschen hat ihre Entscheidung bereut
Und wenn sie nicht gestorben ist
Bereut sie sie noch heut
Geht heimlich des Nachts zum Teich
Ieinen Frosch zu fangen
Nimmt ihn in ihre Hände
Kehrt zurück zum Schloß
Und wirft ihn dort
Voller Hoffnung gegen die Wände
Ansonsten ist nichts passiert
Wird das Zimmer neu tapeziert
So ist das eben
Wie im Märchen, so im Leben
Manche Liebesgeschichten enden
Mit Flecken an den Wänden



Mary Jo Bang (1946 -)

Mother, I am bare in a mist-mad forest.
Only the moon shows me love.

Winter will crush me: tiny arms, pale feet,
tongue of rust. I have a thousand visions:

you ironing an enormous dress; eating
chocolate and honey, sausage

and a luscious peach; the sun drunk
and easy; spring blowing raw sky

and storm scream; someone running.
You cry, Go, go. Take them, will you?

He does, along the sea road with its
stopped ship fast asleep. In this place

of elaborate beauty, it is late autumn
and mostly quiet, except when

the heaven-born wind wags and flaps
the branch he left tied

to a sere white ash. Silence itself is strategy,
a signed language,

gorgeous, fluid in the hands
of those who learned it in childhood.

You know we were never meant
to live here, only to learn relinquished,

forsworn, to grasp with wet hands the cold
metal of life, then find a way to let go.


The True Story of Snow White

Bruce Bennett (1940 -)

Almost before the princess had grown cold
Upon the floor beside the bitten fruit,
The Queen gave orders to her men to shoot
The dwarfs, and thereby clinched her iron hold
Upon the state. Her mirror learned to lie,
And no one dared speak ill of her for fear
She might through her devices overhear.
So, in this manner, many years passed by,
And now today not even children weep
When someone whispers how, for her beauty's sake,
A child was harried once into a grove
And doomed, because her heart was full of love,
To lie forever in unlovely sleep
Which not a prince on earth has power to break.



Andrea Hollander Budy (1947 -)

A woman is born to this:
sift, measure, mix, roll thin.

She learns the dough until
it folds into her skin and there is

no difference. Much later
she tries to lose it. Makes bets

with herself and wins enough
to keep trying. One day she begins

that long walk in unfamiliar woods.
She means to lose everything

she is. She empties her dark pockets,
dropping enough crumbs

to feed all the men who have ever
touched her or wished.

When she reaches the clearing
she is almost transparent—

so thin
the old woman in the house seizes

only the brother. You know the rest:
She won’t escape that oven. She’ll eat

the crumbs meant for him, remember
something of his touch, reach

for the sifter and the cup.


An Embroidery

Denise Levertov (1923 - 1997)

Rose Red's hair is brown as fur
and shines in firelight as she prepares
supper of honey and apples, curds and whey,
for the bear, and leaves it ready
on the hearth-stone.

Rose White's grey eyes
look into the dark forest.

Rose Red's cheeks are burning,
sign of her ardent, joyful
compassionate heart.
Rose White is pale,
turning away when she hears
the bear's paw on the latch.

When he enters, there is
frost on his fur,
he draws near to the fire
giving off sparks.

Rose Red catches the scent of the forest,
of mushrooms, of rosin.

Together Rose Red and Rose White
sing to the bear;
it is a cradle song, a loom song,
a song about marriage, about
a pilgrimage to the mountains
long ago.
Raised on an elbow,
the bear stretched on the hearth
nods and hums; soon he sighs
and puts down his head.

He sleeps; the Roses
bank the fire.
Sunk in the clouds of their feather bed
they prepare to dream.

Rose Red in a cave that smells of honey
dreams she is combing the fur of her cubs
with a golden comb.
Rose White is lying awake.

Rose White shall marry the bear's brother.
Shall he too
when the time is ripe,
step from the bear's hide?
Is that other, her bridegroom,
here in the room?



Lisel Mueller (1924 -)

In Sleeping Beauty's castle
the clock strikes one hundred years
and the girl in the tower returns to the
So do the servants in the kitchen,
who don't even rub their eyes.
The cook's right hand, lifted
an exact century ago,
completes its downward arc
to the kitchen boy's left ear;
the boy's tensed vocal cords
finally let go
the trapped, enduring whimper,
and the fly, arrested mid-plunge
above the strawberry pie,
fulfills its abiding mission
and dives into the sweet, red glaze.

As a child I had a book
with a picture of that scene.
I was too young to notice
how fear persists, and how
the anger that causes fear persists,
that its trajectory can't be changed
or broken, only interrupted.
My attention was on the fly;
that this slight body
with its transparent wings
and lifespan of one human day
still craved its particular share
of sweetness, a century later.


Fairy-tale Logic

A.E. Stallings (1968 - )

Fairy tales are full of impossible tasks:
Gather the chin hairs of a man-eating goat,
Or cross a sulphuric lake in a leaky boat,
Select the prince from a row of identical masks,
Tiptoe up to a dragon where it basks
And snatch its bone; count dust specks, mote by mote,
Or learn the phone directory by rote.
Always it’s impossible what someone asks—

You have to fight magic with magic. You have to believe
That you have something impossible up your sleeve,
The language of snakes, perhaps, an invisible cloak,
An army of ants at your beck, or a lethal joke,
Then you  will to do whatever must be done:
Marry a monster. Hand over your firstborn son.


The Twelve Dancing Princesses

Anne Sexton (1928-1974)

If you danced from midnight
to six A.M. who would understand?

The runaway boy
who chucks it all
to live on the Boston Common
on speed and saltines,
pissing in the duck pond,
rapping with the street priest,
trading talk like blows,
another missing person,
would understand.

The paralytic's wife
who takes her love to town,
sitting on the bar stool,
downing stingers and peanuts,
singing "That ole Ace down in the hole,"
would understand.

The passengers
from Boston to Paris
watching the movie with dawn
coming up like statues of honey,
having partaken of champagne and steak
while the world turned like a toy globe,
those murderers of the nightgown
would understand.

The amnesiac
who tunes into a new neighborhood,
having misplaced the past,
having thrown out someone else's
credit cards and monogrammed watch,
would understand.

The drunken poet
(a genius by daylight)
who places long-distance calls
at three A.M. and then lets you sit
holding the phone while he vomits
(he calls it "The Night of the Long Knives")
getting his kicks out of the death call,
would understand.

The insomniac
listening to his heart
thumping like a June bug,
listening on his transistor
to Long John Nebel arguing from New York,
lying on his bed like a stone table,
would understand.

The night nurse
with her eyes slit like Venetian blinds,
she of the tubes and the plasma,
listening to the heart monitor,
the death cricket bleeping,
she who calls you "we"
and keeps vigil like a ballistic missile,
would understand.

this king had twelve daughters,
each more beautiful than the other.
They slept together, bed by bed
in a kind of girls' dormitory.
At night the king locked and bolted the door
. How could they possibly escape?
Yet each morning their shoes
were danced to pieces.
Each was as worn as an old jockstrap.
The king sent out a proclamation
that anyone who could discover
where the princesses did their dancing
could take his pick of the litter.
However there was a catch.
If he failed, he would pay with his life.
Well, so it goes.

Many princes tried,
each sitting outside the dormitory,
the door ajar so he could observe
what enchantment came over the shoes.
But each time the twelve dancing princesses
gave the snoopy man a Mickey Finn
and so he was beheaded.
Poof! Like a basketball.

It so happened that a poor soldier
heard about these strange goings on
and decided to give it a try.
On his way to the castle
he met an old old woman.
Age, for a change, was of some use.
She wasn't stuffed in a nursing home.
She told him not to drink a drop of wine
and gave him a cloak that would make
him invisible when the right time came.
And thus he sat outside the dorm.
The oldest princess brought him some wine
but he fastened a sponge beneath his chin,
looking the opposite of Andy Gump.

The sponge soaked up the wine,
and thus he stayed awake.
He feigned sleep however
and the princesses sprang out of their beds
and fussed around like a Miss America Contest.
Then the eldest went to her bed
and knocked upon it and it sank into the earth.
They descended down the opening
one after the other. They crafty soldier
put on his invisisble cloak and followed.
Yikes, said the youngest daughter,
something just stepped on my dress.
But the oldest thought it just a nail.

Next stood an avenue of trees,
each leaf make of sterling silver.
The soldier took a leaf for proof.
The youngest heard the branch break
and said, Oof! Who goes there?
But the oldest said, Those are
the royal trumpets playing triumphantly.
The next trees were made of diamonds.
He took one that flickered like Tinkerbell
and the youngest said: Wait up! He is here!
But the oldest said: Trumpets, my dear.

Next they came to a lake where lay
twelve boats with twelve enchanted princes
waiting to row them to the underground castle.
The soldier sat in the youngest's boat
and the boat was as heavy as if an icebox
had been added but the prince did not suspect.

Next came the ball where the shoes did duty.
The princesses danced like taxi girls at Roseland
as if those tickets would run right out.
They were painted in kisses with their secret hair
and though the soldier drank from their cups
they drank down their youth with nary a thought.

Cruets of champagne and cups full of rubies.
They danced until morning and the sun came up
naked and angry and so they returned
by the same strange route. The soldier
went forward through the dormitory and into
his waiting chair to feign his druggy sleep.
That morning the soldier, his eyes fiery
like blood in a wound, his purpose brutal
as if facing a battle, hurried with his answer
as if to the Sphinx. The shoes! The shoes!
The soldier told. He brought forth
the silver leaf, the diamond the size of a plum.

He had won. The dancing shoes would dance
no more. The princesses were torn from
their night life like a baby from its pacifier.
Because he was old he picked the eldest.
At the wedding the princesses averted their eyes
and sagged like old sweatshirts.
Now the runaways would run no more and never
again would their hair be tangled into diamonds,
never again their shoes worn down to a laugh,
never the bed falling down into purgatory
to let them climb in after
with their Lucifer kicking.



Roald Dahl (1916 - 1990)


I guess you think you know this story.
You don't. The real one's much more gory.
The phoney one, the one you know,
Was cooked up years and years ago,
And made to sound all soft and sappy
just to keep the children happy.
Mind you, they got the first bit right,
The bit where, in the dead of night,
The Ugly Sisters, jewels and all,
Departed for the Palace Ball,
While darling little Cinderella
Was locked up in a slimy cellar,
Where rats who wanted things to eat,
Began to nibble at her feet.

She bellowed 'Help!' and 'Let me out!
The Magic Fairy heard her shout.
Appearing in a blaze of light,
She said: 'My dear, are you all right?'
'All right?' cried Cindy .'Can't you see
'I feel as rotten as can be!'
She beat her fist against the wall,
And shouted, 'Get me to the Ball!
'There is a Disco at the Palace!
'The rest have gone and 1 am jalous!
'I want a dress! I want a coach!
'And earrings and a diamond brooch!
'And silver slippers, two of those!
'And lovely nylon panty hose!
'Done up like that I'll guarantee
'The handsome Prince will fall for me!'
The Fairy said, 'Hang on a tick.'
She gave her wand a mighty flick
And quickly, in no time at all,
Cindy was at the Palace Ball!

It made the Ugly Sisters wince
To see her dancing with the Prince.
She held him very tight and pressed
herself against his manly chest.
The Prince himself was turned to pulp,
All he could do was gasp and gulp.
Then midnight struck. She shouted,'Heck!
Ive got to run to save my neck!'
The Prince cried, 'No! Alas! Alack!'
He grabbed her dress to hold her back.
As Cindy shouted, 'Let me go!'
The dress was ripped from head to toe.

She ran out in her underwear,
And lost one slipper on the stair.
The Prince was on it like a dart,
He pressed it to his pounding heart,
'The girl this slipper fits,' he cried,
'Tomorrow morn shall be my bride!
I'll visit every house in town
'Until I've tracked the maiden down!'
Then rather carelessly, I fear,
He placed it on a crate of beer.

At once, one of the Ugly Sisters,
(The one whose face was blotched with blisters)
Sneaked up and grabbed the dainty shoe,
And quickly flushed it down the loo.
Then in its place she calmly put
The slipper from her own left foot.
Ah ha, you see, the plot grows thicker,
And Cindy's luck starts looking sicker.

Next day, the Prince went charging down
To knock on all the doors in town.
In every house, the tension grew.
Who was the owner of the shoe?
The shoe was long and very wide.
(A normal foot got lost inside.)
Also it smelled a wee bit icky.
(The owner's feet were hot and sticky.)
Thousands of eager people came
To try it on, but all in vain.
Now came the Ugly Sisters' go.
One tried it on. The Prince screamed, 'No!'
But she screamed, 'Yes! It fits! Whoopee!
'So now you've got to marry me!'
The Prince went white from ear to ear.
He muttered, 'Let me out of here.'
'Oh no you don't! You made a vow!
'There's no way you can back out now!'
'Off with her head!'The Prince roared back.
They chopped it off with one big whack.
This pleased the Prince. He smiled and said,
'She's prettier without her head.'
Then up came Sister Number Two,
Who yelled, 'Now I will try the shoe!'
'Try this instead!' the Prince yelled back.
He swung his trusty sword and smack
Her head went crashing to the ground.
It bounced a bit and rolled around.
In the kitchen, peeling spuds,
Cinderella heard the thuds
Of bouncing heads upon the floor,
And poked her own head round the door.
'What's all the racket? 'Cindy cried.
'Mind your own bizz,' the Prince replied.
Poor Cindy's heart was torn to shreds.
My Prince! she thought. He chops off heads!
How could I marry anyone
Who does that sort of thing for fun?

The Prince cried, 'Who's this dirty slut?
'Off with her nut! Off with her nut!'
Just then, all in a blaze of light,
The Magic Fairy hove in sight,
Her Magic Wand went swoosh and swish!
'Cindy! 'she cried, 'come make a wish!
'Wish anything and have no doubt
'That I will make it come about!'
Cindy answered, 'Oh kind Fairy,
'This time I shall be more wary.
'No more Princes, no more money.
'I have had my taste of honey.
I'm wishing for a decent man.
'They're hard to find. D'you think you can?'
Within a minute, Cinderella
Was married to a lovely feller,
A simple jam maker by trade,
Who sold good home-made marmalade.
Their house was filled with smiles and laughter
And they were happy ever after.