Petita història de Sant Jordi - Pilarín Bayès
The little story of Saint George (illustration) - Pilarín Bayès
 
Last June, I started my buggy songs list. According to my friend’s practical definition, a bug is a "small animal prone to be crushed with a slipper", and my list includes creatures such as beetles, cockroaches and crickets. Even so, you might remember a creature that also got into the list but it wouldn't be crushed by a slipped: a dragon. Then, let’s say that I needed my 10th buggy song and snails are mentioned in this one (incidentally, my friend loves it). Let's say too that every year, when I write the St George's post, I think of the poor dragon and its sad role in the story. Another friend tells me "it's not a dragon, it incarnates evil forces ", and he's right but still... poor dragon!

All in all, I noted down in my notebook the song Green-Eyed Dragon for the Wednesday after St. George Day as amends for the dragon. And that's how I got into a real mess because then, I realized I hardly knew anything about that song. I heard it for the very first time in a Gerald Finley and Julius Drake album, recorded at the Wigmore Hall in 2007 (it was the last encore of that recital) and I heard it later in a broadcasted recital of Bryn Terfel, I would say that Julius Drake was accompanying too. Green-Eyed Dragon is a funny song with a king, a princess, a scary dragon, a police officer, a tax collector ... The authors are Charles Wolseley (music) and Greatrex Newman (lyrics), who, if I'm not mistaken, devoted themselves to musicals; the song was written for Stanley Holloway, an actor you’ll remember as Alfred P. Doolittle (the cheeky, fun Eliza’s father) in the movie My Fair Lady.

The song was written in 1926 and Holloway recorded it in 1939; if that's the recording on Spotify, the sound quality is pretty good. In other circumstances, I would have chosen the "original version" but if I hadn't posted Gerald Finley’s recording (which is great) my friend would have been quite capable of sending the dragon to my home.

I’ve already said that I got into a mess when I chose that song; the best way of coming out of it is to leave you with Gerald Finley and Julius Drake. In the meantime, I’m going to prepare the next post... Enjoy the dragon!
 
 
Green-Eyed Dragon
 

Once upon a time lived a Fair Princess
Most beautiful and charming;
Her Father, the King, was a wicked old thing,
With manners most alarming.
And always on the front door mat,
A most ferocious Dragon sat,
It made such an awful shrieking noise
So all you little girls and boys...
Beware, take care,
Of the Green-eyed dragon with the 13 tails,
He'll feed,
With greed
On little boys, puppy dogs and big fat snails.
Then off to his lair each child he'll drag,
And each of his 13 tails he'll wag
Beware,
Take care
And creep off on tip toes.
And hurry up the stairs,
And say your prayers,
And duck your heads, your pretty curly heads,
Beneath the clothes, the clothes, the clothes.

That Dragon he lived for years and years,
But he never grew much thinner.
For lunch, he'd try a Policeman pie,
Or a roast M.P. for dinner;
One brave man went 'round with an axe
And tried to collect his income tax
The Dragon he smiled with fiendish glee,
And sadly murmured "R.I.P."...
Beware, take care,
Of the Green-eyed dragon with the 13 tails,
He'll feed,
With greed
On little boys, puppy dogs and big fat snails.
Then off to his lair each child he'll drag,
And each of his 13 tails he'll wag
Beware,
Take care
And creep off on tip toes.
And hurry up the stairs,
And say your prayers,
And duck your heads, your pretty curly heads,
Beneath the clothes, the clothes, the clothes.

That Dragon went down to the kitchen one day
Where the Fair Princess was baking;
He ate, by mistake, some rich plum cake
Which the Fair Princess was making,
That homemade cake, he could not digest,
He moaned and he groaned, and at last went west -
And now his ghost, with bloodshot eyes
At midnight clanks his chains and cries...
Beware, take care,
Of the Green-eyed dragon with the 13 tails,
He'll feed,
With greed
On little boys, puppy dogs and big fat snails.
Then off to his lair each child he'll drag,
And each of his 13 tails he'll wag
Beware,
Take care
And creep off on tip toes.
And hurry up the stairs,
And say your prayers,
And duck your heads, your pretty curly heads,
Beneath the clothes, the clothes, the clothes.
AAAARGH!

 
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Comments (2)

  • M. Pilar

    Fantàstic Sílvia!

    Moltes gràcies per tenir tanta cura de nosaltres!

  • Sílvia

    Gràcies a tu, M. Pilar! :)

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