Seven little blackbirds sat up high,
Shimmering their wings to the summer sky.
“I know a haw patch,” one bird said,
“Where a flock of blackbirds could well be fed.
I’m going, for the fruits there are red as bricks,”
And off he flew. And then there were six!
Six little blackbirds—till another cawed,
“I know where angleworms lie beneath the sod.
I’m going to go there and eat some alive,”
And off she went. And then there were five!
Five little blackbirds—till one more sighed,
“I know a spot where beetle bugs hide;
I’m going to gobble up a dozen or more,”
And off he went. And then there were four!
Four little blackbirds—till one bird cried,
“I know a cornfield that’s big and wide;
It’s full of grasshoppers I can eat free,”
And off she flew. And then there were three!
Three little blackbirds—till one of them peeped,
“I know a barn where grain is heaped;
I’m going to eat some—that’s what I’ll do,”
And off he fluttered. And then there were two!
Two little blackbirds sitting side by side.
“I know a bramblebush, big and wide.
It would be a safe place for us to be,
And we could have a cozy nest. Come and see!”
No little blackbirds sitting high up there;
Five of the seven were off eating somewhere.
Two birds were planning to build a nest,
And I think I like their plan the best.

[illustration] Illustrated by Ed Maryon