Adventures of Isabelle

Turned on the radio this morning to hear that an amazing artist (Natalie Merchant) has put old children’s poetry into song and created an album. I studied a lot of poetry in college so I immediately became immersed. Hearing her sing some of the poems was absolutely amazing. I plan to get the CD, but while researching the story behind the story, I found that Natalie wrote a song by Ogden Nash called “Adventures of Isabel”. She turned this great little poem (which I had never seen before) into a very cute, upbeat, jug-band style song that you’ll just have to hear. I am posting the lyrics here:Adventures Of Isabel

Adventures Of Isabel

Isabel met an enormous bear,
Isabel, Isabel, didn’t care;
The bear was hungry, the bear was ravenous,
The bear’s big mouth was cruel and cavernous.
The bear said, Isabel, glad to meet you,
How do, Isabel, now I’ll eat you!
Isabel, Isabel, didn’t worry.
Isabel didn’t scream or scurry.
She washed her hands and she straightened her hair up,
Then Isabel quietly ate the bear up.
Once in a night as black as pitch
Isabel met a wicked old witch.
the witch’s face was cross and wrinkled,
The witch’s gums with teeth were sprinkled.
Ho, ho, Isabel! the old witch crowed,
I’ll turn you into an ugly toad!
Isabel, Isabel, didn’t worry,
Isabel didn’t scream or scurry,
She showed no rage and she showed no rancor,
But she turned the witch into milk and drank her.
Isabel met a hideous giant,
Isabel continued self reliant.
The giant was hairy, the giant was horrid,
He had one eye in the middle of his forhead.
Good morning, Isabel, the giant said,
I’ll grind your bones to make my bread.
Isabel, Isabel, didn’t worry,
Isabel didn’t scream or scurry.
She nibled the zwieback that she always fed off,
And when it was gone, she cut the giant’s head off.
Isabel met a troublesome doctor,
He punched and he poked till he really shocked her.
The doctor’s talk was of coughs and chills
And the doctor’s satchel bulged with pills.
The doctor said unto Isabel,
Swallow this, it will make you well.
Isabel, Isabel, didn’t worry,
Isabel didn’t scream or scurry.
She took those pills from the pill concocter,
And Isabel calmly cured the doctor.

-Ogden Nash

This poem is Isabelle. It shows all her characteristics. She is adventurous, she’s is full of spirit, she is a lady, she is not afraid and she has poise and control. I cannot stop reading the last 9 lines. They literally stopped me in my tracks…

That was how Isabelle handled her last few months of battle. She was strong, showed no sign of weakness and she cured the Dr’s (and the rest of us) of our many false perceptions. She showed us that you can be strong and still be a Princess. You can experience tremendous pain and still have grace. You can do what others say is best for you and in the end show them you were right.

I would love to post the song, but hopefully you’ll get to hear it through radio, TV or by heading down to the music store. You can look up the CD “Leave Your Sleep” by Natalie Merchant or you can go here for a digital download (99 cents).


Isabelle, you are such an amazing littler girl and we miss you very much. You are my little adventurer…


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