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Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)

keberoxu 19 Nov 15 - 02:14 PM
keberoxu 19 Nov 15 - 03:14 PM
keberoxu 19 Nov 15 - 07:28 PM
GUEST,# 19 Nov 15 - 07:37 PM
keberoxu 20 Nov 15 - 03:43 PM
keberoxu 21 Nov 15 - 12:27 PM
keberoxu 20 Jan 21 - 02:48 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 20 Jan 21 - 09:01 PM
keberoxu 20 Jan 21 - 09:14 PM
Sandra in Sydney 21 Jan 21 - 06:11 AM
GUEST 21 Jan 21 - 07:47 PM
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Subject: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Nov 15 - 02:14 PM

You know the Smothers Brothers have infiltrated the mainstream, subversive interpreters that they are, when one of their pieces is printed for use by the Boy Scouts of America. Yes, I found this on the Internet. No, I am not a Boy Scout.

This appears to be a conflation of two things. One is a poem by the Reverend George A Strong, which Mudcat has on another thread (naturally, or it wouldn't be Mudcat). I'm going to save that chunk for later. The rest of the piece is built around this. Internet source material disclosed at the end of this post.

H I A W A T H A    H U N T    S O N G   

On the shores of Gitchee Goomee,
By the shining big sea water,
Stood the wigwam of Nokomis,
And the little Hiawatha.

Hiawatha, he went hunting,
Went to hunt a bunny rabbit,
Had to make a pair of mittens
From the bunny rabbit's fur.

Oh he hunted over woods,
He hunted over dell,
He hunted all about,
Where the bunny rabbits dwe -e-e- -e-ell.

He hunted all the day,
He hunted all the night,
At last he found a rabbit
With the fur just ri- -i-i-   i-ight.

Now the fur upon the rabbit,
Has the warm side fur side outside,
Hiawatha found that rabbits
Have the inside skin side in.

And Rev. George A Strong's poem is more or less shoe-horned in here. Future post.


Hiawatha, he went hunting,
Went to hunt a bunny rabbit

(This is NOT in the Boy Scouts version:
Tom Smothers stops the music and hollers from the stage:
"HI THERE I'm your bunny for the evening Tommy")

Had to make a pair of mittens
From the bunny rabbit's fur.   

Section Ten, Page 22
Campfire Programs,
Super Saturday Book, 1998
Milwaukee County Council,
Boy Scouts of America
printed by CNI Newspapers

(re: the Mad Magazine Parody thread: guest Michael D asked after the Mad Magazine parody of Hiawatha making mittens. Don't know if Mad Magazine did it, but how COULD I forget the Smothers Brothers recording of a live show, "It Must Have Been Something I Said"?
Composer credit for "Hiawatha" is given as Milton Rosen on the album.)

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Nov 15 - 03:14 PM

Here's the missing chunk from the Smothers Brothers / Milton Rosen version.

So to keep the cold air outside,
He put the inside skin side outside,
And to keep the warm air inside,
He put the skin side inside out.

That is why to keep the warm side,
He put the warm side fur side outside,
And the skin side inside-out side,
And turned them inside outside.

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Nov 15 - 07:28 PM

Make that, MORE THAN two things conflated. Mixed up together.
It's a surprisingly long and winding way from George A Strong to Milton Rosen and the Smothers Brothers.

The ill-fated polar expedition (South) led by Captain Scott was assigned Herbert George Ponting, photographer. He wrote a poem, printed in Volume III of the South Polar Times, and immortalized in the feature film, "Scott of the Antarctic." Apparently, what we have in Ponting's contribution, is neither rabbit fur (Smothers Brothers) nor squirrel fur (George A Strong), but reindeer skin. Here goes:

T H E    S L E E P I N G   B A G by Herbert George Ponting

On the outside grows the fur side,
On the inside grows the skin side.
So the fur is on the outside
And the skin is on the inside.

As the fur side is on the outside
And the skin side is on the inside,
One side likes the skin side inside
And the fur side outside;
Others like the skin side outside
And the fur side inside,
As the skin side is the hard side
And the fur side is the soft side.

If you turn the skin side outside,
Thinking you will side with that side,
Then the soft side fur side's inside,
Which some argue is the wrong side.

If you turn the fur side outside,
as you say it grows on that side,
Then the hard side's next your own side,
Which for comfort's not the right side.

As the hard side is the cold side,
And your skin side's not your warm side,
And two cold sides coming side by side,
Are not the right sides, one side decides.

If you decide to side with this side,
Turn the outside fur side inside;
Then the hard side, cold side, skin side,
Beyond all question's inside-out side.

And it does not matter a particle
What you do with the bally thing,
Someone's sure to tell you it's outside inside.

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: GUEST,#
Date: 19 Nov 15 - 07:37 PM

The Smothers Brothers doing the song on YouTube with a cartoon video.

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 Nov 15 - 03:43 PM

Forgot to credit bibliography on The Sleeping Bag.

It is found on pp. 140 - 141 of The Great White South. Herbert George Ponting, the photographer who wrote the poem, was excused from that small part of Captain Scott's that pushed on to the South Pole; so excused, Ponting survived to tell the tale. The Great White South is the book that he wrote about it afterwards.

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 21 Nov 15 - 12:27 PM

"Now the fur upon the rabbit
Has the warm side fur side outside..."

From this verse forward, in the Milton Rosen/Smothers Brothers version, the words are sung to the tune of:

"O-le, O-le-an-na,
O-le, O-le-an-na...."

No wonder they like this song around the Cub Scout campfires: an old familiar tune, whether they recognize it or not.

Before that verse, however, there is no trace of the Oleanna tune; particularly not when cribbing "On the shores of Gitchee Goomee" from Longfellow.   For the opening verses the music is a sort of march, and I don't know where the tune comes from. Goes into double time for "Oh, he hunted over woods..." and so to "Oleanna."

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 Jan 21 - 02:48 PM

Holy Hiawatha's Mittens!

sounds like one of those ejaculatory outbursts from
Batman and Robin, so it does.

That thought went through my mind
with photographs, from the 2021 US Presidential Inauguration,
of socially distanced Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont),
sitting on his folding chair outdoors,
wearing his Made-In-Vermont-Of-Recycled-Materials MITTENS.
And looking kinda Grinch-grouch-grumpy,
but not, I doubt, because of the mittens.

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 20 Jan 21 - 09:01 PM

The Modern Hiawatha
(Excerpt from "Song of Milkanwatha")
Parody of "Song of Hiawatha" by Longfellow.

by Marc Antony Henderson (Rev. George A. Strong, 1832–1912)
@bartleby and

He killed the noble Mudjokivis.
Of the skin he made him mittens,
Made them with the fur side inside,
Made them with the skin side outside.
He, to get the warm side inside,
Put the inside skin side outside.
He, to get the cold side outside,
Put the warm side fur side inside.
That’s why he put the fur side inside,
Why he put the skin side outside,
Why he turned them inside outside.


memorized and performed by a group upon stage before a cub pack 1960.

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 Jan 21 - 09:14 PM

Bravissimo, Gargoyle!

I wonder if
Bernie Sanders's Made-In-Vermont mittens
are the stuff of a
Mudcat song challenge?

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha's Photographing by Lewis Caroll
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Jan 21 - 06:11 AM

Hiawatha's Photographing by Lewis Carroll, 1859 - parody of Longfellow's 1855 poem Song of Hiawatha. Recited by Kenneth Williams

From his shoulder Hiawatha
Took the camera of rosewood,
Made of sliding, folding rosewood;
Neatly put it all together.
In its case it lay compactly,
Folded into nearly nothing;

But he opened out the hinges,
Pushed and pulled the joints and hinges,
Till it looked all squares and oblongs,
Like a complicated figure
In the Second Book of Euclid.

This he perched upon a tripod -
Crouched beneath its dusky cover -
Stretched his hand, enforcing silence -
Said, “Be motionless, I beg you!”
Mystic, awful was the process.

All the family in order
Sat before him for their pictures:
Each in turn, as he was taken,
Volunteered his own suggestions,
His ingenious suggestions.

First the Governor, the Father:
He suggested velvet curtains
Looped about a massy pillar;
And the corner of a table,
Of a rosewood dining-table.
He would hold a scroll of something,
Hold it firmly in his left-hand;
He would keep his right-hand buried
(Like Napoleon) in his waistcoat;
He would contemplate the distance
With a look of pensive meaning,
As of ducks that die ill tempests.

Grand, heroic was the notion:
Yet the picture failed entirely:
Failed, because he moved a little,
Moved, because he couldn’t help it.

Next, his better half took courage;
SHE would have her picture taken.
She came dressed beyond description,
Dressed in jewels and in satin
Far too gorgeous for an empress.
Gracefully she sat down sideways,
With a simper scarcely human,
Holding in her hand a bouquet
Rather larger than a cabbage.
All the while that she was sitting,
Still the lady chattered, chattered,
Like a monkey in the forest.
“Am I sitting still?” she asked him.
“Is my face enough in profile?
Shall I hold the bouquet higher?
Will it came into the picture?”
And the picture failed completely.

Next the Son, the Stunning-Cantab:
He suggested curves of beauty,
Curves pervading all his figure,
Which the eye might follow onward,
Till they centered in the breast-pin,
Centered in the golden breast-pin.
He had learnt it all from Ruskin
(Author of ‘The Stones of Venice,’
‘Seven Lamps of Architecture,’
‘Modern Painters,’ and some others);
And perhaps he had not fully
Understood his author’s meaning;
But, whatever was the reason,
All was fruitless, as the picture
Ended in an utter failure.

Next to him the eldest daughter:
She suggested very little,
Only asked if he would take her
With her look of ‘passive beauty.’

Her idea of passive beauty
Was a squinting of the left-eye,
Was a drooping of the right-eye,
Was a smile that went up sideways
To the corner of the nostrils.

Hiawatha, when she asked him,
Took no notice of the question,
Looked as if he hadn’t heard it;
But, when pointedly appealed to,
Smiled in his peculiar manner,
Coughed and said it ‘didn’t matter,’
Bit his lip and changed the subject.
Nor in this was he mistaken,
As the picture failed completely.
So in turn the other sisters.

Last, the youngest son was taken:
Very rough and thick his hair was,
Very round and red his face was,
Very dusty was his jacket,
Very fidgety his manner.
And his overbearing sisters
Called him names he disapproved of:
Called him Johnny, ‘Daddy’s Darling,’
Called him Jacky, ‘Scrubby School-boy.’
And, so awful was the picture,
In comparison the others
Seemed, to one’s bewildered fancy,
To have partially succeeded.

Finally my Hiawatha
Tumbled all the tribe together,
(‘Grouped’ is not the right expression),
And, as happy chance would have it
Did at last obtain a picture
Where the faces all succeeded:
Each came out a perfect likeness

Then they joined and all abused it,
Unrestrainedly abused it,
As the worst and ugliest picture
They could possibly have dreamed of.
‘Giving one such strange expressions -
Sullen, stupid, pert expressions.
Really any one would take us
(Any one that did not know us)
For the most unpleasant people!’
(Hiawatha seemed to think so,
Seemed to think it not unlikely).
All together rang their voices,
Angry, loud, discordant voices,
As of dogs that howl in concert,
As of cats that wail in chorus.

But my Hiawatha’s patience,
His politeness and his patience,
Unaccountably had vanished,
And he left that happy party.
Neither did he leave them slowly,
With the calm deliberation,
The intense deliberation
Of a photographic artist:
But he left them in a hurry,
Left them in a mighty hurry,
Stating that he would not stand it,
Stating in emphatic language
What he’d be before he’d stand it.
Hurriedly he packed his boxes:
Hurriedly the porter trundled
On a barrow all his boxes:
Hurriedly he took his ticket:
Hurriedly the train received him:
Thus departed Hiawatha.

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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
Date: 21 Jan 21 - 07:47 PM

Accent on the first beat.

ONE Two, THREE Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight.

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