Kids Songs

These songs were written over many years in response to children in my life, including my own – one of whom is featured on Cherish the Earth – and terminally or chronically ill young patients at the Royal Children’s Hospital where I was a Composer in Residence. The lyrics of Percy Williams Tucker’s Dream were written by night with my young son and by day with a young cancer patient as a way to communicate with her grieving family. The hope and beauty she conveyed through song lyrics, to her family as she lay dying, astounded me and confirmed my belief in the connecting and healing power of music! As a former music teacher and performer I have played these songs with many young children across three states of Australia and hope you and the children in your care get some enjoyment from these rough recordings.



I had a bad day at school, my teacher had the grumps
I lost my lunch money and I think I’ve got the mumps
When I got home, my Mum wasn’t there
The best I could do was go straight to bed
But there were:

50 cockroaches in my bed
One squashed frog right under my head
A black ducking scratching at my feet
I said: Oh mamma mia, let me out of here.

Mum came home and we made some tea
Then we sat down and watched some TV
She looked at the clock and patted my head
Saying ‘Hey little girl, you should be in bed.’
But there were:

I woke the next morning and I looked a mess
I jumped out of bed and got my self-dressed
Called to me mum, to show her what I’d seen
She said to me it was all just a dream.
But there were:

I took my mum to my bed and pulled back the rugs
Showed to her those fifty little bugs
The frog and the duckling were under the sheets
All she could do was look and believe.
Cause there were:

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There was an old man called Grotto, he wore very smelly clothes
He never had a bath or swim, even picked his nose
He was a very yucky man with pimples and lots of sores
He smelt just like a sewerage farm, scratches, spits and snores.

He coughs up globs slimy goo from having too many smokes
With a fag in his mouth he coughs and spits, you think he’s about to choke.
He’s always making very bad smells scratches all his sores
He doesn’t wipe his bottom and he doesn’t wash his floors.

He loves to eat stale crayfish, so old they really smell.
He east the insides and the claws, even eats the shells.
He hasn’t washed his clothes for years, his socks stand up and pong.
And just before he goes to sleep he sings a dirty song.

One day he was at the hospital he fell in love at first sight
With a cleaner whose name was Gretel, he asked her out that night
Now Gretel was a real lady her house was spick and span
She said he’d have to clean himself up, if he wanted to hold her hand.

He went home and had a bath brushed his teeth and washed his face
Some new clothes from the second hand shop, even cleaned up his place
She was so impressed when he came that night
They had dances, wine and laughter.
They loved each other very much, got married very soon after.

He’s no longer a yukky man since he fell in love with Gretel
He calls her my little cabbage patch doll she calls him, my sweet smelling petal.
That’s the story of Grotto and Gretel.

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(Featuring my son when he was 11)

Cherish the earth, the place of my birth.
We are the keepers of the our planet
Cherish the earth, the place of my birth.
We are the keepers of the our planet

We belong to the world. The earth is our mother
Brother sun, sister moon. We have to care and love her
We belong to the world. We won’t have another
Brother fire, sister water. The earth is our mother

Keep it green, keep the air fresh.
Don’t let us leave it in a great big mess
Look after special places, animal’s homes
Keep lots of bushland for the fairies and gnomes.

We belong to the world. The earth is our mother
Brother sun, sister moon. We have to care and love her
We belong to the world. We won’t have another
Brother fire, sister water. The earth is our mother

We belong to the world.

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There’s a little boy called Morgan
Lying in his bed
He thinks there’s a witch sitting in the chair
I tell him there’s no one there

I say there’s no witches in our house
No witches my dear.
No witches in our house
I wouldn’t let them in here.

He’s sitting in the lounge room
Building a block house
He thinks there’s a witch in the pantry
I tell him it’s only a mouse


He’s playing in his sandpit.
He thinks there’s a witch in the bin
Till I come out and tell him
It’s the trees blowing in the wind


He’s sitting the bathtub,
He thinks there’s a witch in the sink
Till I come in and show him
It’s a little mouse having a drink.


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Percy William Tucker sat up in his bed
Said I have a picture of a dragon in my head
As he flies his fur moves, his eyes twinkle in the gloom
He says Percy if you find me we’ll fly to the moon
But you must find me soon, I leave Friday afternoon
And I’d like you to come with me.

His great Auntie Pattie believed in the dream,
Made silks for a canopy, sewed up the seams
With a laundry basket made a hot air balloon,
So Percy William Tucker could fly to the moon
She said go find your dragon before you are grown,
Every young boy should have a dream of his own.

They put in dry twigs and an old billy can where
He could make a small fire to fill the balloon with hot air.
They packed vegemite sandwiches, apple juice and nuts
A telescope and a compass so he wouldn’t get lost
They untied the ropes, and said come back to us soon
Waved and blew kisses as he left for the moon

He looked at the birds and the clouds all around,
Called to the dragon without making a sound
Looked to the stars and felt brave in his heart
Felt a little frightened when the day became dark
The dragon would come soon he knew deep inside a
And he’d jump on his back and go for a ride

He saw two shooting stars in the distance below
Coming up instead of down where he thought they should go
Behind the twinkling stars he saw a long white streak,
Like the tail of Halley’s Comet he’d seen on TV
As it came closer someone whispered his name
Percy William Tucker, I’m so glad you came.

Percy who’d always believed dreams come true
Said I’ve waited so long to meet someone like you
The dragon winked his eye and he gave a big smile
Get on my back and we’ll go for a ride
Percy didn’t even have to think about that
He climbed out very carefully and sat on his back

Then the skies filled with music from his favorite song
They flew up, they swooped and both sang along
They landed on the moon and flew over Mars
Wind blew through their hair as they passed by the stars.
Percy hugged the dragon, said you are my friend
This will end soon will I find you again.

The dragon turned around with his eyes all agleam
I’ll always come if you believe in your dreams
Percy said goodbye hugged the dragon’s head
Opened his eyes and was back in his bed.
Cuddled up to his Mum and he told her what he could,
She held him close and said she understood

Percy very often had dreams of that kind
They were always just as wonderful as the very first time.
He grew into a man who believed in his dreams.
He was loved and cared for the things he believed.
When he became the father of a very handsome boy
He shared the dreams that gave him so much joy.
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