The King’s Breakfast

Hannah and Jack worked on “The King’s Breakfast” by A. A. Milne a while ago, but we never got around to filming it and then when we tried to film it some people who shall remain nameless had trouble sitting still. At any rate, today at long last Hannah declared that she would sit still and recite the poem in its entirety if she could hold the book whilst so doing. Jack refused to participate, although he did sit on my lap and help hold the camera, and he interjected a few things and clapped at the end. Sarah, as you’ll see, took the opportunity to throw her hairstyle into complete disarray and chew on her hairclip. Such is life for preschool recitation. In case this all seems a bit strange to you, be sure to read my thoughts on poetry for preschoolers. And now, without further ado, the poem (text appended below):

The King’s Breakfast, by A. A. Milne

The King asked
The Queen, and
The Queen asked
The Dairymaid:
“Could we have some butter for
The Royal slice of bread?”
The Queen asked
The Dairymaid,
The Dairymaid
Said, “Certainly,
I’ll go and tell
The cow
Now
Before she goes to bed.”

The Dairymaid she curtsied,
And went and told
The Alderney:
“Don’t forget the butter for
The Royal slice of bread.”

The Alderney
Said sleepily:
“You’d better tell
His Majesty
That many people nowadays
Like marmalade
Instead.”

The Dairymaid
Said, “Fancy!”
And went to
Her Majesty.
She curtsied to the Queen, and
She turned a little red:
“Excuse me,
Your Majesty,
For taking of
The liberty,
But marmalade is tasty, if
It’s very
Thickly
Spread.”

The Queen said,
“Oh!”
And went to
His Majesty:
“Talking of the butter for
The Royal slice of bread,
Many people
Think that
Marmalade
Is nicer.
Would you like to try a little
Marmalade
Instead?”

The King said,
“Bother!”
And then he said,
“Oh, dear me!”
The King sobbed,
“Oh, deary me!”
And went back to bed.
“Nobody,”
He whimpered,
“Could call me
A fussy man;
I only want
A little bit
Of butter for
My bread!

The Queen said,
“There, there!”
And went to
The Dairymaid.
The Dairymaid
Said, “There, there!”
And went to the shed.
The cow said,
“There, there!
I didn’t really
Mean it;
Here’s milk for his porringer
And butter for his bread.”

The Queen took
The butter
And brought it to
His Majesty;
The King said,
“Butter, eh?”
And bounced out of bed.
“Nobody,” he said,
As he kissed her
Tenderly,
“Nobody,” he said,
As he slid down
The banisters,
“Nobody,
My darling,
Could call me
A fussy man –
BUT
I do like a little bit of butter to my bread!”

7 thoughts on “The King’s Breakfast

  1. We read this last year and it was one of James' favorites! I can't wait to let him see Hannah reciting it! 🙂

    She did a great job!!!!!!!

  2. Ohhhh… We just read this poem 5x week for most of the last trimester! We were reading a poem a day from AA Milne and this was the girls favorite, so it got read in addition to our daily reading. I will show them the video; Hannah is so dramatic; they will love it. We had fun having the girls split the lines so that one would be the queen and one the king, or any variety of other combinations.
    Anna Larson

  3. That's funny – at our house Jack is always the king and likes to sob "oh deary me!" but Hannah and Sarah take turns being the queen and the dairymaid. Mostly Hannah is the dairymaid because she likes to curtsy. 🙂

  4. I should also point out that in those games Sarah of course does not say the proper lines of the poem, at least not so far as we can understand!

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