Jean Frère sent this song with the note, "A little children's song originally from the Netherlands: Prayer to Saint Nicolas."
This song is about the Saint Nicolas tradition in Netherlands of Saint Nick putting something special in the little kids shoes.
One of our Dutch-speaking correspondents wrote, "I sing 'Sinterklaas Kapoentje' vs 'Sint Niklaas Kapoentje' that is because that is the way most Dutch people may know it..."
Sint Niklaas kapoentje,
Leg wat in mijn schoentje,
Leg wat in mijn laarsje,
Dank U Sinter Klaasje.
Saint Nicolas Little Rascal,
Put something in my little shoe,
Put something in my little boot,
Thank you little Saint Nicolas!
About the terms "Kapoentje" (from the song) and its root word "Kapoen":
According to the Dutch Wikipedia (I translate and paraphrase):
A kapoen (capon) is a castrated rooster. [Kapoentje comes from kapoen . Note that adding tje to a word in Dutch makes it a diminutive.]
Kapoen was a term of abuse in the 19th century. Kapoen Klaas was a famous (fictional) character who appeared in many cartoons. Kapoen Klaas, in stories from school, was fired from his boss. It went from bad to worse, and he finally ends up in jail. He kills once and finally he ends up under the guillotine.
One way or another, the name of Kapoen Klaas transferred to Santa Kapoentje . That was a celibate bishop just like a capon is celibate. This may have contributed to the association, but more important is probably that "schoentje" (shoe) rhymes with "kapoentje".
In addition, kapoen or kapoentje is the name for the ladybug regionally - specifically around Rotterdam.
In Flanders, kapoen stands for "rascal", hence it's the name of an age level in scouts ...
The latter is why a Belgian man translated this song for us as, "Saint Nicolas Little Rascal"
Thanks and Acknowledgements
Many thanks to Jean Frère for contributing this Saint Nikolas Day song and translating it into French. Many thanks to Rudy Welvaert for the English translation.
Many thanks to F. S. for the recording!
Dank u wel!