And yes, we were sober when we thought of this.
But during a sing-along with a friend, we realized that some of these children’s songs are profound, secretly coded, or otherwise more adult than you might originally think.
Not since reading the original Grimm’s Brothers collection of fairy tales have I been so enthralled by the not-so-innocent context of something! Amazing!
Bear went over the mountain
- Summary: Bear goes over this mountain just to see what’s over there only to discover it’s just the other side of the mountain.
- The Truth: It’s a cross between ideologies about the grass not always being greener on the other side, and a crisis tale of dissatisfied curiosity and exploration
She’ll be coming ‘round the mountain
- Summary: This lady shows up on wagon pulled by six white horses and everyone goes out to greet her and celebrate
- The Truth: Song is about death, dude, plain and simple. The apocalypse is nigh!
Itsy bitsy spider
- Summary: Spider rises, falls and rises again in his efforts to reach the top of a waterspout
- The Truth: This one is really deep. He’s washed out by the rain, which symbolizes turmoil, turbulence, chaos, and other threatening setbacks. He could have died, man, but he hung in there for better days, regained his footing, and triumphantly crawls up again to his destination. It’s about not being deterred by life’s little upsets and knowing that the sun will shine again if we are patient, faithful, and diligent.
On top of spaghetti
- Summary: giant meatball makes a break for it after being sneezed on. He rolls into the garden, under a bush, plants himself and grows into a mighty meatball tree
- The Truth: Some will argue this is an environmental plea. The meatball could simply be eaten and turned to “waste” or he can be utilized to grow trees (which provide oxygen, shade, and homes for birdies) and contribute to society in a meaningful way.
- Others might suggest that it’s an allegory about how every little thing in life truly wants to be large, meaningful, and important. Was the meatball really pushed through the force of the sneeze, or did he take the opportunity to run for his life and become something bigger than himself?
- It could also just be a message about the importance of covering your mouth when you sneeze.
Ant & The Rubber Tree Plant (High Hopes)
- Summary: an ant tries to move a rubber tree plant and is presumably successful despite the odds
- The Truth: This song is about believing in yourself no matter what. Obstacles, non-supportive family and friends, strange onlookers, kids with magnifying glasses… none of it is important. Set a goal, set a plan, ACT, and Succeed!
The Truth: It's about not taking things so literally. :-)