(January 30th to February 5th)


It was a ‘Noah’s Ark’ picnic; and there was to be the usual arrangement of quarter-mile intervals between each couple, on account of the dust.


This is from the opening of “False Dawn”  in Plain Tales from the Hills. Some  young people from a remote station go out to a picnic and ride in pairs so as to avoid the dust, hence a Noah’s Ark picnic.  Two sisters are in love with on of the young men, but in the confusion of a dust storm he makes the dreadful mistake of proposing to the wrong one.

He went into the nursery, unearthed the now disused Noah’s Ark, and sucked the paint off as many animals as remained.


This is from “Baa Baa Black Sheep” collected in Wee Willie WInkie.

Little Punch Is in dreadful trouble, having felled a bully at school, and run at Harry with a knife, Aunty Rosa will beat him as will Harry. There is no escape and he decides to lick off  the poisonous paint, which Aunty Rosa has said will kill him.

The old man kindly answered them:
“It might be Japheth, it might be Shem,
Or it might be Ham (though his skin was dark),
Whereas it is Noah, commanding the Ark.”


This is from ‘The Sailor’ in ‘ A Truthful Song’. A team of shipwrights have been working on a vessel in Blackwall Basin when a white-haired  old man comes up to see them at work. He proves to be Noah.