August 30, 2013Posted by on
Listening to music on the radio this afternoon the words ‘apple tree’ reminded me of a cartoon film I must have seen many years ago and which I have never forgotten. The cartoon was about Johnny Appleseed‘. Why I should remember the cartoon so well, I don’t know, maybe it was the period during which I saw it.
A time when ‘ youthful aspirations flourished in a world that needed rebuilding’, a time before adulthood had chanced to temper altruism.
Johnny Appleseed, a voice in the wilderness – the story of the pioneer John Chapman. Centennial tribute by Harlan Hatcher and others. ‘Gathering the facts about John Chapman does not detract from Johnny Appleseed – far from it. His legend is enhanced thereby. There is magic in it. The transformation of John Chapman into Johnny Appleseed is still visible, as the material in this volume engagingly shows’. [Courtesy of the Hathi Trust Digital Library]
Long ago on a fine spring day
Johnny Appleseed came this way
Over hill and meadow land
Scattered his seeds with a lavish hand.
Here are Jonathan, Bell Flower, Northern spy,
Apples for baking, apples for pie
Rhode Island Greening, Maidenblush,
Winesap, Pippin, McIntosh,
Russet, Ben Davis, Grimes Yellow Gold,
Rambo and Baldwin to store in the cold,
Rich apple butter and cider for all,
Transparent jelly from apples that fall.
Apples are gathered in orchards today
For Johnny Appleseed came this way.
Mary Ferguson Legler
Thanks to modern technology the cartoon short Johnny Appleseed is available.
The music connection may well be me remembering the WWII and post war period, when the Andrew Sisters were popular with songs like ‘Don’t sit under the apple tree’.
Some of you may recognise the stooge playing the ‘Master Sergeant’ who occasional appeared on stage with the trio.
However, it was Ella Fitzgerald that triggered this memory. Here’s Ella singing (from that period) ‘It’s a pity to say goodnight’ (including an apple tree reference).
My peer group I’m sure will know ‘In the shade of old apple tree’. No bouncing ball but ‘on screen lyrics’ mean that you can sing along.
Perhaps you can add some more ‘apple tree’ song connections?