Uptown Chicago Resources

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod (1889)

by Eugene Field

Editor’s Note: American author Eugene Field (1850-1895) is best known for his essays and children’s poetry. In 1883, he moved to Chicago and took a job as a columnist for the Chicago Daily News. His home, which he nicknamed “The Sabine Farm,” was at the corner of Clarendon and Hutchinson in Buena Park, now a part of Uptown. His experiences building and remodeling his home provided inspiration for his series of sketches The House. Today, he is best known for his poems “Little Boy Blue” and “Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.”

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod by Maxfield Parrish

Detail from Wynken, Blynken, and Nod, 1905, by Maxfield Parrish.

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod one night
   Sailed off in a wooden shoe—
Sailed on a river of crystal light,
   Into a sea of dew.
“Where are you going, and what do you wish?”
   The old moon asked the three.
“We have come to fish for the herring fish
   That live in this beautiful sea;
   Nets of silver and gold have we!”
                     Said Wynken,
                     Blynken,
                     And Nod.

The old moon laughed and sang a song,
   As they rocked in the wooden shoe,
And the wind that sped them all night long
   Ruffled the waves of dew.
The little stars were the herring fish
   That lived in that beautiful sea—
“Now cast your nets wherever you wish—
   Never afeard are we”;
   So cried the stars to the fishermen three:
                     Wynken,
                     Blynken,
                     And Nod.

All night long their nets they threw
   To the stars in the twinkling foam—
Then down from the skies came the wooden shoe,
   Bringing the fishermen home;
’T was all so pretty a sail it seemed
   As if it could not be,
And some folks thought ’t was a dream they’d dreamed
   Of sailing that beautiful sea—
   But I shall name you the fishermen three:
                     Wynken,
                     Blynken,
                     And Nod.

Wynken and Blynken are two little eyes,
   And Nod is a little head,
And the wooden shoe that sailed the skies
   Is a wee one’s trundle-bed.
So shut your eyes while mother sings
   Of wonderful sights that be,
And you shall see the beautiful things
   As you rock in the misty sea,
   Where the old shoe rocked the fishermen three:
                     Wynken,
                     Blynken,
                     And Nod.

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