The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #69479   Message #2085232
Posted By: Azizi
23-Jun-07 - 09:11 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: There once was a rabbit developed a habit
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: There once was a rabbit developed a habit
Thomas W. Talley, African American professor of chemistry at Fisk University and collector of African American folk rhymes, included an example of this rhyme in his now classic 1922 book "Negro Folk Rhymes-Wise and Otherwise".

See this excerpt about Talley from a recent edition of his classic book:

"Thomas W. Talley collected these tales during the 1920s from childhood memories of stories told during the post–Civil War era by friends and family in rural Middle Tennessee. A chemistry professor at Fisk University in Nashville, Talley was a twentieth-century pioneer in African-American folklore who used his keen insight and imagination to confront the complex and little-known wellsprings of his own cultural background. The result is a dynamic representation of an African-American tradition".

Thomas W. Talley; Negro Folk Rhymes

Here's the version of this particular rabbit song that Talley included in his book:


Rabbit! Rabbit! You'se got a mighty habit,
A-runnin' through de grass,
Eatin' up my cabbages;
But I'll git you shore at las'.

Rabbit! Rabbit! Ole rabbit in de bottoms,
A-playin' in de san',
By to-morrow mornin',
You'll be in my fryin' pan.

{Talley, Negro Folk Rhymes, Kennikat Press edition, 1968, p. 116, originally published in 1922, The Macmillan Company}