I wonder how many people out there believed in little people as young children. I know as a child, my grandfather would always talk about the little man who was always hanging around near the clock over the kitchen sink. I totally believed in him!
The term “little people” also refers to fairies. They’re usually seen as being mischievous. Sometimes they’re considered to be good, sometimes bad. Fairies are usually hard to see, I believe because they don’t want to be seen – at least not by adults!
This all ties in with an email I received the other day from Joy Barlow, who wrote…
I really enjoy your site and have found a couple of things that bring back memories. I’m looking for “The Little Man that Wasn’t There”. It’s a poem about who spills the milk and does all those naughty things that the kids always say, “I didn’t do that.”
Joy’s description of a little man fits in very well with the description of a fairy. Yet I can’t find a poem or rhyme that talks specifically about a little man who wasn’t there.
I did find a poem about a man who wasn’t there…
As I was walking up the stair
I met a man who wasn’t there.
He wasn’t there again today.
I wish, I wish he’d stay away.
This one was written by Hughes Mearns.
It seems there’s got to be another little man out there who’s been written about in a poem or rhyme. If anyone is familiar with this poem, please let us know in the comments below.
Meanwhile, watch out for the little man who isn’t there. He is supposed to be mischievous after all!
UPDATE: There’s a song called “The Little Man Who Wasn’t There” from 1939. It was based on the poem above. At different times, it was sung by Glenn Miller & His Orchestra, Mildred Bailey, Bob Crosby & His Orchestra, and Jack Teagarden.
This article was posted on Wednesday, November 8th, 2006 at 4:22 pm and is filed under English, Fairies, Folk Lore, I Met a Man Who Wasn't There, Languages, Little People, Nursery Rhymes, Poems, Poetry. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
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