In a few days, October 24th to be exact, marks the 75th anniversary of GertrudeandAlice’s arrival in New York City for the beginning of their six-month U.S. lecture tour. I’ve mentioned the tour several times in previous posts, so instead of rehashing some of the details again, I thought I’d present the tour in verse.
Though initially a Berlin-based, Baby Boomer, two of the icons of my Illinois childhood were Captain Kangaroo and Dr. Seuss. I wanted to be Captain Kangaroo when I grew up and wanted to write books like Dr. Seuss.
One of the things that The Captain often did on his television show was to read a picture book, paging through the book as he read as if you were on his lap and he was reading to you. I don’t remember if Bunny Rabbit or Mr. Moose took part – certainly not Grandfather Clock who was undoubtedly asleep.
So, several years ago I began a series of stories about GertrudeandAlice with an eye toward The Captain reading them and Dr. Seuss politely giving a nod of approval to my rhyming efforts. Each story incorporates actual historic facts about their lives though liberties are taken with the rhyming scheme. (For anyone who remembers scanning poems in English class, the meter in some of these stanzas is not perfect.)
Let the tour begin!