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Sendak's Chicken Soup With Rice


Published January 10, 2008 at 5:16 p.m.

Maurice Sendak is probably best known for Where the Wild Things Are. But as a youngster, I had a much deeper affection for a miniature set of Sendak books called "The Nutshell Library." Of the four tiny books, my favorites were Pierre: A Cautionary Tale in Five Chapters and a Prologue and the yummy Chicken Soup with Rice: A Book of Months.

When I learned today that January is "National Soup Month," the silly, sing-songy jingle of CSWR was the first thing that popped into my head.

Here are a couple of my favorite months...

In January it's so nice,
while slipping on the sliding ice,
To sip hot chicken soup with rice.
Sipping once, sipping twice,
sipping chicken soup with rice...

In June I saw a charming group
of roses all begin to droop.
I pepped them up with chicken soup!
Sprinkle once, sprinkle twice,
sprinkle chicken soup with rice...

In September for a while,
I will ride a crocodile
Down the chicken soup-y Nile.
Paddle once, paddle twice,
paddle chicken soup with rice...

Just for the record, Seven Days does NOT advocate pouring chicken soup on flowers or drinking from the Nile.

Wanna see the whole poem? Thanks to Carole King, who turned the story into a song, you can find it here.