Ring Around the Rosies…

Ring Around the RosieHubby and I were putzing in the yard and gardens last night and we could hear the children in the neighborhood singing, “Ring around the rosies, pockets full of posies. Ashes, ashes we all fall DOWN!” And then squeals of laughter and delight followed.  They sang it over and over again, and Rick and I couldn’t help but smile and be totally enchanted listening to their singing and laughter. We love our neighborhood with the sound of children’s voices ringing in the new summer.

We live in a lovely family neighborhood, that surrounds a “Co-op” where people with limited means are able to “buy” a town home with very little down, and then earn good credit, and some equity and move to a single family home, or wherever their hard work takes them.  When we first looked at this house 21 years ago, there was a field to the west of our neighborhood of 70s tri-levels, and the co-op and more expensive homes on the other side of it.  Grammy used to tell the ladies when I’d come and get her from her retirement high-rise in a nearby city that she was “Going to the country to be with Rick and Bonnie.”

The “country field” soon grew houses instead of corn, and raised children instead of chickens, so now our neighborhood is completely developed and it’s a mix of all levels of earning, and feels so great.

When we first walked into this house, everything about it said home, though, I didn’t like tri-levels, it had hardly any back yard, and was “newer”.  I wanted an old house, lots of old shade trees, and a big back yard, yet, when I walked into this house with twinsie at my side, we both knew that it was going to be the house Rick and I would buy.  With tons of windows facing the south, the house allowed me to stand in my kitchen and hear the children on all levels. Sit at my desk writing and see the kids in the kitchen.  I mean, it was a family home and besides that, it smelled really good, too.  Ask twinsie, she thought the same thing. Hubby was thrilled beyond measure that I had fallen in love with a newer home instead of an older one where the work lists were long (and little did we know all the work we’d do to this “new” house over the years.)

We had little children when we moved here, a gonna be 4th grader and gonna be 1st grader, a momma cat with four newly born babies Eenie, Meanie, Mynie, and Mo, and Paxton and Marty the dogs.  There were children up and down the street, it was a family home in a family neighborhood.  The co-op is a place where kids of all ages live, and so there were always kids here and there, riding trikes, training wheels and then bikes, and scooters, and skateboards.  Our neighborhood is surrounded by bike paths, and just a hilly mile to the river.

With Ricky now 30 and Bethani turning 27 tomorrow, all the kids that used to play on this block have grown and moved, or maybe still hang out around a fire in the back yard, or in garages watching the Hawks and playing beer pong.

But there is a new wave of young families coming now, and the kids are riding bikes, and scooters and hollering and chasing the last light of the day while singing Ring around the Rosies, and it feels so good to be the people who live in the house on a really great corner lot, with lots of room on either side of our house to play ball with Eugene, and sit in our garage and watch the kids riding back and forth, or stopping over to say hi and get some lovin’ from Lily Belle.  To be honest, it just makes us happy to hear children playing together as twilight draws near, and to watch and listen to them play up and down the street.  It’s just hopeful to us old parents who grow flowers instead of children, and wait for grandchildren…someday…to come and play.

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2 thoughts on “Ring Around the Rosies…

  1. A charming reminiscence, B-girl. When I saw the lede on FB, I thought you were going to discuss the origins of the rhyme “Ring around the rosies…”

    It is pretty dark: it came from the time of the Black Plague in Europe. “Ring around the ROSARIES” indicated prayer against the scourge. “Pocket full of posies” means that a posy of herbs was thought to be effective against the disease. “Ashes, ashes” – “ashes to ashes and dust to dust.” “We all fall down…” ought to be self-explanatory.

    It has been a long time since I played the game or heard anyone playing/singing it.

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  2. True, Susan, however, many “folklorists” rebuke the black plague origin, though it sure makes sense to me, but I understood that the posies threw people off to the odor of the disease. So many childhood songs are borne from sadness, but in this case, we just smiled a lot. Thanks for reading! xoxo

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