Wednesday, October 29, 2014

(I, J) Hand Clap & Jump Rope Rhymes Examples

Edited by Azizi Powell

This cocojams2 series showcases examples of English language hand clap & jump rope rhymes, with a special focus on examples from African American culture. The pages present examples whose "titles" begin with the featured two letters, with the exception of post #11 in this series which features examples whose titles begin with the letters "u" - "z".)

Unless otherwise indicated, the examples given below were (or "are") "hand clap rhymes".

This cocojams2 series on English language hand clap and jump rope rhymes isn't meant to be a comprehensive listing of those rhymes. For instance, I've chosen not to include a number of versions of rhymes that are generally found on other children's rhyme sites.

I'm using the word "rhymes" as a catch-all phrase to mean rhyming verses, cheers, chants, and singing games that are used in children and youth's recreatonal activities.

Read what I mean by "Afrcan American rhymes" in the "Hand clap & Jump Rope Rhyme - A, B" page

A number of these rhymes are featured in posts on my pancocojams blog. Click and either enter that rhyme's name or enter the words "children's rhymes" or "African American rhymes and cheers". Also, a number of the exanples in this collection were featured on my cultural website that was online since December 2001. That website vanished late October 2014 [!?!) and I am partially recreating its playground rhymes pages from back-up files and from recent internet "rhyme harvesting". That's the story behind this blog name cocojams2.


The content of this post is presented for folkloric and recreational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who have contributed to this collection.

With considerable regret, I have disabled the comment feature on cocojams2 blogs (and on my other blogs except for, because of the large number of spam comments that I received on those blogs.

Comments for those blogs can be sent to my email address azizip17 dot com at yahoo dot com for possible inclusion in a specific post on those blogs.

Note: These examples are published in alphabetical order based on their titles or the first few words of their first line. Multiple versions of specific rhymes are presented in chronological order based on their publishing date online or their collection date, with the oldest dated examples presented first.

I, J

I AM A PRETTY LITTLE DUTCH GIRL [as pretty as can be] Editor's Comment
Examples of "I Am A Pretty Little Dutch Girl" [as pretty as can be] are posted in this section regardless of their first line or title. Judging from the number of examples that are found on the internet and that I've directly collected, versions of this rhyme are quite popular.

Many contemporary (post 1990s) versions of these rhymes that I've collected often start with the line "I'm a little __ grader" or "I'm a pretty little __ grader". This may be because the children know that they are not of "Dutch" descent, or the children don't know what "Dutch" means. The chanters recite the grade that they are in (for instance one girl might chant "I'm a pretty little second grader" while at the same time her partner might chant "I'm a pretty little third grader").

I'm a little Dutch girl,
As pretty as can be,
And all the boys on the baseball team
Are crazy over me.

They gave me all their apples.
They gave me all their pears.
They gave me fifty cents
And kicked me down the stairs.

My mother wanted peaches.
My brother wanted pears.
My father wanted fifty cents
To fix the broken stairs.

My boyfriend gave me peaches.
My boyfriend gave me pears.
My boyfriend gave me fifty cents
To fix the broken stairs.

My mother ate the peaches.
My brother ate the pears.
My father ate the fifty cents
And fell right down the stairs.

My mother gave me peaches.
My father gave me pears.
My boyfriend kissed me on the cheek
And fell right down the stairs.

I am a little Dutch girl
As pretty as can be be be
And all the boys around my block
Are crazy over me me me.
- sources given: Abrahams (1969), Knapp (1976), Hastings (1990)
Verses from this rhyme are often found in contemporary (1990 on) versions of "Miss Susie Had A Steamboat".


WOOBLE WOOBLE WOOBLE (Version #2 of I Am A Pretty Little Dutch Girl)
Wooble Wooble Wooble
And ah 1, 2, 3
I am a lit tle first grader
as pretty as can be be.
and all the boys around my house
go crazy over me me.

My boyfriend's name is Yel low.
He comes from Ala ba ma
with 25 toes
and a pickle on his nose
and this is how the story goes

One day I was ah walk ing
I saw my boyfriend talk ing
to a very pretty girl
with strawberry curls.
And this is what she said

"I l. o. ve love you."
"I k. i. ss kiss you"
"I a d.ore adore you"
So s .t .o .p. STOP!
-female first grade students Tarea, Kayla, Kaylin (African American), and Ha and Hung (Vietnamese, ages 5-7 years old); Fort Pitt Elementary School {Pittsburgh Pennslyvania, 2000}; collected by Azizi Powell, 2000


ZING ZING ZING AT THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA (Version #3 of I Am A Pretty Little Dutch Girl)
Zing Zing Zing
at the bottom of the sea.
I am a little __ second grade
as pretty as can __ be be.
And all the boys around my house
go crazy over __ me me.

My boyfriend's name is __ Yellow.
He comes from Ala__bama
with 25 toes
and a pickle on his nose
and this is how the story goes.
One day I was ah __ walkin
I saw my boyfriend __ talking
to a very pretty girl
with cherry pie curls
And this is what she said
"I L-O-V-E __ love you."
"I K-I-S-S __ kiss you."
"I A-D-O-R-E __ adore you"
Get your black hands off of me!
- Diarra, K'azsa, and Michelle (African American girls), Fort Pitt Elementary School, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, September 2004; collected by Azizi Powell, September 2004

The dashes indicate that you pause for a beat before saying the next word or the next syllable.

"1 2 3 4" at the end of the rhyme was probably originally was "1-2-3" since "three" rhymes with "me". The "Get your black hands off of me!" line suggests that "black" skin color may still be viewed as a negative.

Note: In April 2010, I collected the same rhyme from two 9 year old African American girls (Takeya and Alexus) who live in the same neighborhood as Fort Pitt Elementary School (now titled Fort Pitt Accelerated Learning Academy). When the rhyme called for the girls to give their grades, one girl chanted "I am a second grader" and the other girl chanted "I am a third grader". Both girls said the "get your black hands off of me" line.

I also heard the beginning of this same rhyme chanted by a third grade African American girl in the lunchroom of the same school in May 2010 when I was substitute teaching there. That girl said "I am a third grader"/as pretty as can be be be". Unfortunately, I wasn't able to hear the rest of the rhyme.

Click for exampless of and comments about these versions of "I Am A Pretty Little Dutch Girl".

Also, click for comments about the line "Get your Black hand off of me" in African American playground rhymes.


I'M A LITTLE SIX GRADER (Version #4 of I Am A Pretty Little Dutch Girl)
imma little six grader
as pretty as can be be
my boyfriend name is bow wow
he lives in ohio
and this is how my story goes
one day I was walking
I saw my boyfriend talking
to the ugliest girl
in the whole wide world
and this is how my story goes
k-i-s-s kiss you l-o-v-e
love you m-i-s-s miss you
and this is how my story goes
a b c d
so keep yo hands away from me.
-, ; 3/21/2005
"Bow Bow" (formerly known as "Lil' Bow Wow") is an African American [male] rapper who was born in Columbus, Ohio.

"a b c d" was probably "a b c d e f g" as that would rhyme with the next line "so keep yo [your] hands away from me." That line is quite close to the "get your black hands off of me" that is found in other examples of this rhyme.


I AM A PRETTY LITTLE DUTCH GIRL [as pretty as can be] (Version #5)
I am a pretty little Dutch girl
As pretty as I can be
And all the boys
In the neighborhood
Are crazy over me
My boyfriend’s name is Patty
He comes from the Cincinnati
With 48 toes
And a pickle for a nose
And this is how my story goes
One day as I was walking,
I saw my boyfriend talking
To a pretty little girl
with a strawberry curl
and this is what he said to her
I L-O-V-E, love you
I'll K-I-S-S, kiss you

Then I pushed him in a lake
And he swallowed a snake
And ended up with a tummy ache
Dad called the doctor
Mum called the nurse
Sister called the lady with the alligator purse

In came the doctor
In came the nurse
In came the lady with the alligator purse
"Measles", said the doctor
"Chicken-pox", said the nurse
"Smallpox", said the lady with the alligator purse
Out went the doctor
Out went the nurse
Out went the lady with the alligator purse assessed 5/23/2010
The Wikipedia page for "I'm A Pretty Little Dutch Girl" indicates that "The earliest record found so far is for New York around 1940. It seems to have spread over the USA by the 1950s and reached Britain in 1959, where it was taken up very quickly across the country to become one of the most popular skipping rhymes among girls"...
The editors of that Wikipedia page indicated these lyrics were "common versions". However, only the first verse is the one that is standard for this rhyme. The "pushed him in the lake/and he swallowed a snake" is similar to the "jump in the lake and got bit by a snake" verse that is found in a number of 19th century and early 20th century African American secular songs. And the verse that begins with the line "in comes the doctor" is lifted from the "Miss Lucy Had A Baby" rhyme.


SEA SEA SEA (Version #6 of I'm A Pretty Little Dutch Girl)
Sea Sea Sea To the bottom of the sea Hey! Hey!
I'ma little FRESH GIRL as pretty as can BE BE
all the guys in the nieghborhood just wanna get with ME ME
my daddys name is JUMBO he lives in alaBAMA
whatca gonna cal him DADDY
whatcha gonna feed him CANDY
my mommy told me if i was goode then he would buy me a rubber dolle my auntie told her i kissed a souldier she didnt buy me that rubber dolle
3 6 9 ur momma aint fine she looks liek a monkey form a telephone line
BACK IT UP 2 3 4
FREEZE!(U freaze) thanks!
--Alexandria;; 2009; assessed August 29, 2010
Some of the lines in this example are found in a number of other rhymes and songs. For instance, the lines "whatca gonna cal him DADDY/ whatcha gonna feed him CANDY" are similar to lines in the rhyme "


Shame Shame Shame.
I don't want to go to Mexico
no more, more, more.
There's a big fat policeman
at door, door, door.
If he pulls you by the collar
girl, you better holler.
I don't want to go to Mexico
no more, more, more.
-African American girls & boys, ages 5-12; (Pittsburgh, PA) collected in 1998 by Azizi Powell
I collected this version in 1998 from a number of school aged African American girls and boys living in various Pittsburgh, PA. neighborhoods.

"I Don't Want To Go To Mexico" and other similarly worded titles have their source in the children'ss rhyme "I Don't Want To Go To Macy's". ("Macy's" is the name of a chain of large department stores.)


Shame shame shame
I don't wanna go to school no more more more
There's a big fat teacher by the door door door
If she grabs you by the collar
Lord you better holler
I don't want to go to school no more more more

I've also heard a version of this where it was Mexico and a policeman
-Pogo; "I'm Rubber . You're Glue: Children's Rhymes", 5/22/2005
This is just one of numerous versions of this rhyme. To read more examples, click for a pancocojams post on "I Don't Want To Go To Mexico".


I'll be, be
Walking down the street
Ten times a week.
Un-gawa, un-gawa, baby
This is my power.
What is the story?
What is the strike?
I said it, I meant it.
I really represent it.
Take a cool, cool, Black to knock me down.
Take a cool, cool, Black to knock me out.
I'm sweet, I'm kind,
I'm soul sister number nine.
Don't like my apples,
Don't shake my tree.
I'm a Castle Square Black,
Don't mess with me.
-John Langstaff, Carol Langstaff, Shimmy Shimmy Coke-Ca-Pop (Double Day & Company, Garden City, New York, 1973), p. 57
Examples of this rhyme also have the title "Ah Beep Beep". This rhyme was included in the "Chinese Jump Rope" section of the above cited book. ("Chinese jump rope" is another referent for the game of "Elastics"). I wonder if that was a miscategorization.

"I'll be" appears to me to be an African American bragging, taunting rhyme. Given that this book was published in 1973, my guess is that this rhyme was performed while jumping rope, and later (if it survived), it converted to a hand clap game.

This rhyme combines a number of familiar African American vernacular sayings, although the wording may be slightly different than what I've heard and used. For example, the verse "I said it, I meant it/ I really represent it" is generally given as "I said it/I meant it/ And I'm here to represent it.". Also, the lines "what's the story"/what's the strike" probably have the same meaning as "What's happening?" and (the no longer used African American Vernacular English question) "What's the word?" Furthermore, the lines "Don't like my apples/ Don't shake my tree" are often given in song as "Don't like my peaches/don't shake my tree"...

"Ungawa" was a word that was made up by some (White) Hollywood movie producer to serve as an all-purpose utterance which supposedly sounded like traditional African languages. Afrocentric African Americans in the late 1960s or early 1970s took the word "ungawa" and used it pridefully in Black power slogans:
Ungawa Black power!


Ungawa Got to get Black power!
In both examples, the word "power" was pronounced "powa" to rhyme with the word "ungawa".

In the lines "Take a cool, cool, Black to knock me down (knock me out)", the word "Black" is short for "Black person.

In the line "I'm a Castle Square Black", the words "Castle Square Black" probably refers to the person who made up this rhyme (and not necessarily to every chanter of this rhyme) being from a neighborhood called "Castle Square". I wonder if the neighborhood attribution changed with different chanters.

The verse "i'll be walking down the street/ ten times a week" is part of the version of "Down Down Baby" that was popularized in the 1988 American movie Big. That rhyme is included in the "C, D" post of this cocojams2 hand clap and jump rope rhyme series.


I LOVE COFFEE I LOVE TEA (Editor's comment)
"I Love Coffee I Love Tea" (also known as "I Like Coffee, I Like Tea")is a huge rhyme family. Verses from these rhymes are often found in "Down Down Baby" rhymes. ("Down Down Baby" is also known as "Shimmy Shimmy Co Co Pop" or similarly sounding titles.) "I Like Coffee" verses are also found in several other rhymes, particularly versions of "Last Night, The Night Before", "Not Last Night But The Night Before", "Apple On A Stick", "Take A Peach, Take A Plum, and "Eeny Meenie Epsideenie".

Click Since at least the late 1980s, or early 1990s, racial references and confrontational lines (lines about fighting) have become a part of some versions of the "Down Down Baby" / "I Love Coffee I Love Tea" rhymes. It's my guess is that these lines reflect the racial tensions between school children that often occur with the increased school integration. Click for a post on "Racialized Versions of "I Like Coffee I Like Tea" Rhymes." I LIKE COFFEE. I LIKE TEA (Version #8)
Zing, Zing, Zing,
and ah 1-2-3.
I like coffee, I like tea.
I like a black boy and he likes me.
So step back, white boy, you don't shine.
I'll get the black boy to beat your behind.

Last night and the night before.
I met my boyfriend at the candy store.
He bought me ice cream he bought me cake.
He brought me home with a belly ache.
Mama, mama, I feel sick
Call the doctor, quick, quick, quick
Doctor, doctor, will I die?
Close your eyes and count to five
I'm Alive!

See that house up on the hill.
That's where me and my baby live.
Eat a piece of meat
Eat a piece of bread.
Come on baby. let's go to bed
-Kayla. (African American female, age 5; recited for Alafia Children's Ensemble, Fort Pitt Elementary School chapter, (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), 2000; collected by Azizi Powell, 2000; posted on Cocojams, 2003
"Alafia [ah-lah-FEE-ah] Children's Ensemble" was a game song movement group that that I founded and conducted for girls and boys ages 5-12 years (2000)-2004). The groups met once a week, one group in Braddock [which also had an African drum (djembe) class component) and one, Pennsylvania, and one in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The game song group (which was mostly attended by girls) provided good opportunities to collect rhymes.

This is a racialized version of "I Like Coffee I Like Tea". Note the age of the girl who recited this rhyme. Kayla volunteered to share a rhyme during the "show and tell" portion of the game song group which I conducted. During that portion of the group, an individual or more than one person at a time can share a rhyme that they know with the group. When Kayla said that "let's go to bed" line, the rest of the group snickered, and Kayla stood there clearly not understanding that reaction. I remember saying "Well they could go to bed together because they got married". I then thanked kayla and quickly moved on to another child who wanted to share a rhyme.

Before Kayla left the group session that day, I privately asked her where she learned that rhyme. She said her mother had taught it to her. Interestingly enough, in the ten years that I conducted once a week after-school game song groups or special event (one time) game song sessions throughout many African American neighborhoods of Pittsburgh and some other surrounding communities, only one other child recited that entire verse. Coincidentally, that child was also a five year old Black girl who also said she learned it from her mother. I wonder if that verse wasn't well known or if the older children were self-censoring what rhymes they shared with an adult.


Uno, dos, siesta *
I said a-east, a-west
I met my boyfriend at the candy store
He bought me ice cream, he bought me cake
He brought me home with a belly ache
Mama mama, I'm so sick
Call the doctor quick quick quick
Doctor, doctor will I die?
Count to five and you'll be alive
I said, a-one, a-two, a-three, a-four, a-five
I'm alive!
- Kyle Bryant & Dana Bryant ; (performing hand clap game on Season 1, Episode 22 of The Cosby Show; 1984; The Slumber Party, transcription from
This rhyme appears to be known outside of many African American communities because of its inclusion on the The Cosby Show. Notice that verses of this rhyme are found in the "I Like Coffee" rhyme that is given above.

* This phrase is usually "uno dos tres" ("one, two, three" in Spanish. "Siesta" is a Spanish word that means "nap" in English).

"I Met My Boyfriend At The Candy Store" is used as a floating verse in an example of "Last Night And The Night Before" that is included in cocojams2's "Hand Clap & Jump Rope Rhymes -K, L," post.


I PLEDGE ALLEGlANCE TO THE FLAG (Editor's Comment) To date (October 30, 2014) I've not found the "I Pledge Alegiance To The Flag" verse in any other rhymes except the long form versions of "Down By The Banks Of The Hanky Panky" and/or as an introduction to the "Coca Cola Came To Town" rhyme. Usually those rhymes are either associated with Pop mega- star Michael Jackson or (since his death) with some other celebrity. Usually, the second line of that verse comments negatively about that Michael Jackson or that celebrity. This is done by using a word that rhymes with "flag" (i.e. "fag", "gag") or word that is a near rhyme with "flag" such as "bad" or "dad".

The "Michael Jackson" versions of those rhymes often continues by alluding to the accident which occured when Michael Jackson's hair was burned by a fire works malfunction while filming a television commercial for Pepsi Cola. At that time Michael Jackson was singing a form of his hit song "Blly Jean"." After that verse, many of those rhymes continue by adding a form of the "Coca Cola Came To Town" rhyme.

Click "Forms Of The Name "Billie Jean" In "Down By The Banks Of The Hanky Panky" Rhymes" for a pancocojams post that provides more commentary about and examples of this rhyme. Two examples of "I Pledge Allegiance To The Flag" are found below.


I PLEDGE ALLEGlANCE TO THE FLAG (Version #1) I was reading along with my kids and laughing at ones I remember from when I was little... I particularly liked the one with Michael Jackson in it - it also asked if there were different versions we could share... I lived in Hawaii in 1984 when the "commercial accident" occurred and this was the version I learned: I pledge allegiance to the flag Michael Jackson makes me gag Pepsi-Cola burned him up And now he's drinking 7-Up! -Rhonda; Cocojams, 6/28/2007


SOFT DRINKS (Version #2 of I Pledge Allegiance To The Flag) I pledge allegiance to the flag My cleaning lady used a rag Coca cola got blown up Now we're drinking 7up 7up got the flu now we're drinking mountain dew mountain dew fell of the mountain Now we're drinking from the fountain Broke the pipe Fountain broke Now we're drinking Plain ol' COKE! -Av5a and Rya2n;; June 25, 2010
This is one of the few examples of this rhyme that I've found that doesn't "diss" ("put-down", insult) Michael Jackson or any other celebrity.


heres one that me and my friends do:

i Went down town to meet charlie brown
he gave me a nickle that bought me a pickle
the pickle was sour so he bought me a flower
the flower was dead so this is what he said:
down down baby down by the rollercoaster
sweet sweet baby never wana let you go
just because i kissed you doesnt mean i love you
shimmy shimmy coco puffs
shimmy shimmy pow
shimmy shimmy coco puffs
shimmy shimmy pow
My momy your momy live across the street
18,19 Alligator street
Boom Bang Choo Choo Train
wind me up i do my thang
( hit the person beside you)
Oops i'm Sorry!"
-Sarah, Octoblog, Schoolyard games; 7/17/2005


i went down town to meet Charlie Brown
He gave me a nickle so i got a pickle
The pickle was sour so he gave me a flower
The flower was dead and this is what he said
Down down baby up on the rollercoaster,
Sweet sweet baby never should i let you go,
Just because I kissed you doesn't mean I love you.
Shimmy shimmy coconut I know karate.
Shimmy shimmy coconut, Oops I'm sorry.
That's not funny. I'm tellin mommy
-macdaddyeo1 on Feb 9, 2010 , (transcribed from video by Azizi Powell)
This rhyme is made up of three independent ("stand alone") rhymes. "Stand alone rhymes" are rhymes which can be recited alone. Rhyme #1's first line is "I went downtown to meet Charlie Brown". That rhyme continues with the "he gave me a pickle" lines until the beginning of Rhyme #2. Rhyme #2's first line is "Down down baby down by the rollercoaster. Rhyme #3's first line is "Shimmy shimmy coconut I know karate".


I went downtown to see James Brown
I gave him a nickel to buy me a pickle
The pickle was sour, so he gave me a shower
The shower was cold, so he gave me a bowl
The bowl was cracked, so he gave me a snack
Now I want my money back, Jack
-bettingonalice,, Octoblog, Schoolyard Games, 1/1/2007
In this version of "I Went Downtown.." the name of mega-star Soul singer James Brown replaces the name "Charlie Brown".


This is a hand clap game that we always did in elementary school:

I went to a Chinese restaurant to buy a loaf of bread, bread, bread.
They asked me what my name was and this is what I said, said, said.
My name is...
Elvis Presley
Boys are messy
Sittin’ in a hot tub
Drinkin’ diet Pepsi
My name is...
Eli Eli
Ikini, ikini
Pom pom poodles
Willy wally wiskers
My name is...
Chief! Roast Beef! (or bang bang you’re dead. Brush your teeth and go to bed) (or I know karate, punch you in the body, oops! I’m sorry, don’t tell my mommy)
-Katie S. (White female, age 17; Dallas, Texas), Cocojams, 10/6/2009
"I Went To A Chinese Restaurant" is a widely known hand clap rhyme that has a number of different versions. Some of those versons include body gestures and/or words that are insulting to Chinese people and other Asians. Click for the pancocojams post "Anti-Asian Rhymes - I Went To A Chinese Restaurant" I WOKE UP SUNDAY MORNING (Comment)
"I Woke Up Sunday Morning" rhymes are also known as "Roaches And Bedbugs","I Was Standing On The Corner Not Doing Any Harm", and other titles. Examples of this rhyme are presented without regard to the title that was used.


There was a thread on this last year I learned it as follows about 1936 in grade school

I was standing on the corner not doing any harm
When along came a copper and he took me by the arm.
He took me round the corner and rang a little bell.
Along came the ding-dong a-driving like hell.

Seven o'clock in the morning, I looked upon the wall.
The roaches and the bedbugs were having a game of ball.
The score was seven to nothing and the roaches were ahead,
When the bedbugs hit a hone run that knocked me out of bed.

Eight o'clock in the morning, the jailer comes around, And brings you bread and butter that weighs half a pound.
The coffee's like tobacco juice. The bread is hard and stale;
And that's the way they treat the bums at the Whaley Avenue jail.

I learned this about 1936 in New Haven, CT which accounts for the line Whaley Avenue jail. This is where the town jail still is. There appeared to be several variations of this song all over the country...
GUEST,Allan S.,, "Roaches and Bedbugs?", June 1, 2000
A commenter in that Mudcat discussion thread wrote that this rhyme has the same tune as "Mary and her tugboat". I assume that blogger was referring to the "Miss Susie Had A Steamboat" rhymes.


Author or authors unknown

Oh, I'm walkin' round the corner
Doing little harm
Along comes a policeman
And grabs me by the arm

Oh, he walks me round the corner
Rings a little bell
Along comes a wagon
And knocks me in a cell

I'm singin' eenie meenie and a miney moh
Catch a wiffer woffer by the toe
And if it hollers, hollers, hollers,
Let it go, I'm singin' eenie meenie and a miney moh

Oh, five o'clock in the morning
I looked up on the wall --
The roaches and the bedbugs
Were having a game of ball

Oh, the score was six to nothing
The roaches were ahead --
The bedbugs hit a home run
And knocked me out of bed

I'm singin' eenie meenie and a miney moh
Catch a wiffer woffer by the toe
And if it hollers, hollers, hollers,
Let it go, I'm singin' eenie meenie and a miney moh

Oh, six o'clock in the morning
The jailer comes around
A piece of bread and coffee
That weighs a half a pound

Oh, the coffee tastes like tobacco juice
The bread is hard and stale
But that's the way they treat the bums
In New York County Jail
I'm singin' eenie meenie and a miney moh
Catch a wiffer woffer by the toe
And if it hollers, hollers, hollers,
Let it go, I'm singin' eenie meenie and a miney moh

I went downtown for breakfast
I ordered ham and eggs
I ate so many pickles
The juice ran down my legs

I fell into a sewer
And that is where I died
They did not call it murder --
They called it sewer-cide

I'm singin' eenie meenie and a miney moh
Catch a wiffer woffer by the toe
And if it hollers, hollers, hollers,
Let it go, I'm singin' eenie meenie and a miney moh
-GUEST, Date:, "Roaches and Bedbugs?", "Roaches and Bedbugs?", 10 Sep 01
In the same post this blogger also shared an example of this rhyme entitled "Luzerne County Jail".


JELLY ON A PLATE (Elastics; Version #2)
I have just remembered we used this rhyme for French skipping (elastics):
Jelly on a plate, jelly on a plate
Wibble-wobble-wibble-wobble, jelly on a plate.
(that was - left (straddle the left band)/ middle/ right/ -Greenacres; ; Child's Game: Elastics ; March 2, 2008
Note that the "Wibble-wobble-wibble-wobble" phrase in this rhyme is similar to the "Woohle Wooble" words used in versions of "I Am A First Grader".

Click for information about and examples of the jump rope game that is known as "elastics" (among other terms).


J I GYPSY (Jump Rope Ryme
A few more...

When we were jumping rope we used to go through all the numbers first 2-4-6-8-10, 1-0 2-0 3-0 etc. and then bust out this rhyme:

J-I gypsy
where she been
she been around the world and back home again
she's a lover undercover
get down with ya mama
so spell your name on 1 foot (then she did it)
now spell your name on 2 feet (then she did it)


J-I gypsy
Muhammad Ali
Where on earth could her lover be?
I don't think anybody got further than that or either I forget the rest.
-Symphony08, Location: Illinois,"> "Old School Chants", 03-26-2003
The participants in this discussion were members of various historically Black (African American) Greek lettered sororities. No dates were given for most of these memories of rhymes, but, given their comments, I got te sense that most if not all of these remembrances date from the 1990s.

The first part of this rhyme is an adaptation of "Hambone"
Hambone, Hambone, where you been?
'Round the world and back again.


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Visitor comments and playground rhymes examples are welcome.


  1. Does anyone know any good nursery rhyme books with the old creepy nursery rhymes? If so it would be great help. I'm looking for the books.
    Nursery Rhymes Lyrics


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