Sing Books with Emily, the Blog

Aunt Flossie Waltzing With Bears, for SBWE

Posted on: March 31, 2017

Another song in my repertoire inspired to be there by my friend Charlene James Duguid.  The main character of this song is my fascinating Aunt Flossie: Florence Ellen Geisler.

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Aunt Flossie Walzing With Bears for SBWE cover only
Aunt Flossie Waltzing with Bears
Song Adapted from the Song My Uncle Terwilliger Waltzes with Bears (by Theodore Geisel)
Original Adapted Words and Music by Dale Marxem, Robert L. Force, Albert d’Oseche
Words, Tune and Chords Adapted for SBWE
Additional Lyrics by Emily Gleichenhaus

Sing it with Emily’s scratch vocal, here:

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Aunt Flossie Walzing With Bears for SBWE song sheet
Aunt Flossie Waltzing with Bears (song sheet w chords by ELEG for SBWE)
Song Adapted from the Song My Uncle Terwilliger Waltzes with Bears (by Theodore Geisel)
Original Adapted Words and Music by Dale Marxem, Robert L. Force, Albert d’Oseche
Words, Tune and Chords Adapted for SBWE
Additional Lyrics by Emily Gleichenhaus
To view or print this page, click here:
Aunt Flossie Walzing With Bears for SBWE song sheet

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AUNT FLOSSIE WALTZING WITH BEARS
Song Adapted from the Song My Uncle Terwilliger Waltzes with Bears
Original Words and Music by Dale Marxem, Robert L. Force, Albert d’Oseche
Words, Tune and Chords Adapted for Sing Books with Emily
Additional Lyrics by Emily Gleichenhaus

My Auntie Flossie goes waltzing with bears
It’s a most unbearable state of affairs
Every Saturday night she creeps the stairs
Sneaks out of the house and goes waltzing with bears

[CHORUS]
Wa-wa-wa-waltzing
Waltzing with bears
Raggy bears, baggy bears
Shaggy bears, too
And there’s nothing on earth
Auntie Flossie won’t do
So she can go waltzing
Wa-wa-wa-waltzing
So she can go waltzing
Waltzing with bears

I got Aunt Flossie a new coat to wear
But when she comes home, it’s all covered with hair
And lately I’ve noticed there’s several new tears
I’m sure Auntie Flossie’s been waltzing with bears

[CHORUS]

(Rit.)
I begged and I pleaded, “Oh, please won’t you stay?”
And I managed to keep her home for a day
But the bears all barged in and she left us that day
Now she’s waltzing with pandas
She doesn’t understand-us
She likes dancing dances
With bears every day

[CHORUS]

So she can go waltzing
Waltzing with bears

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Additional Lyrics by Emily Gleichenhaus for SBWE

Auntie Flossie explores all over the world
To find rocks and gems like green emerald
She studies and learns for her knowledge to share
But when she is done she goes dancing with bears

[CHORUS]

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SONG ORIGINS

My friend Charlene James Duguid is writing a children’s book about a bear named Beans.  It’s going to be a wonderful thing.

One of her fellow followers in this project sent this video around as a fun treat having to do with bears:

Instantly, I fell in love.  I’ve always LOVED teddy bears. The whole idea of bears charms me.  Wonderful creatures, they are. One of my favorite songs to sing is TEDDY BEAR’S PICNIC.

I went on a binge to research this song.  The video suggests that it is an Irish drinking song.  The arrangement does sound like that.  But in researching the song, I found out that it is based on a song by Theodor Geisel (aka Dr. Seuss), called MY UNCLE TERWILLIGER WALTZES WITH BEARS

My favorite version of WALTZING WITH BEARS is an adaptation of this adaptation by Robert Force.  You can find his adaptation, and download a PDF of his song sheet, here:
http://robertforce.com/SongsAndInstruction/Songs/WaltzingwithBears.html

This song is undergoing the folk song treatment, for sure. I’m adapting it for myself.  Maybe you will do the same.

One little beef I have with the world is that there are so many songs by and about men.  The characters in songs, even by women, are so often about males.  I’m always looking for a way to turn that around.

I had a fascinating and eccentric aunt named Florence Geisler. All us kids called her Aunt Flossie.  She was a geologist, an elementary school teacher, and a university professor.  She taught my mom (her own niece) in elementary school, but also taught courses at Butler University. She was a geologist in a time when there were very few women doing this work.  She traveled all over the world and collected specimens of rocks and minerals.  The basement of her home was filled with these things, meticulously labelled with the sample name and place of origin written in ball point pen on pieces of medical tape.  But this is what made her vast collection so special, researchers could know WHERE the sample came from.  When she died, we donated her collection to the Indiana State Museum.  Her collection is an important aspect of their holdings now, and one can sometimes see her items on display, medical tape labels and all.

When this song presented itself, I immediately thought of Aunt Flossie.  I’m going to write additional sets of lyrics about her to go with this one:

Auntie Flossie explores all over the world

To find rocks and gems like green emerald

She studies and learns for her knowledge to share

But when she is done she goes dancing with bears

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The Original Song (sheet music, illustrations and recordings) MY UNCLE TERWILLIGER WALZTES WITH BEARS are featured here:

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cat in the hat songbook
The Cat in the Hat Songbook (19 Seuss-Songs for Beginning Singers)
Words by Dr. Seuss
Piano Score and Guitar Chords by Eugene Poddany
Illustrated by Dr. Seuss
ISBN: 0-394-81695-1

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The musical versions of songs printed in THE CAT IN THE HAT SONGBOOK, here:
cat in the hat songbook
Cat in the Hat Songbook, If I Ran the Zoo, Sleep Book
Audio CD

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It seems that Bern Switzerland is famous for it’s association with bears and there are some wonderful images of bears dancing that you can find online, including wonderful vintage post cards, like this one:

1913 dancing w bear bern - Copy - Copy

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Note about real life abuse:

I love the idea of bears dancing on their own for pleasure and illustrated depictions of them having fun together.  But if you google for anything related to dancing bears, you will also encounter images of bears being horribly abused.  I won’t go on to describe it, but when bears are held captive and FORCED to dance, the abuse is inhumane and should not be condoned or allowed.  I cannot believe that people would take delight in that or participate in making it so.

But where bears are allowed to be bears, doing what bears do (maybe magical things when we aren’t watching), I’m all for that.

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Related Posts

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In Memoriam: Florence Ellen Geisler (my Aunt Flossie), 1904 – 1990

https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2017/04/01/in-memoriam-florence-ellen-geisler-my-aunt-flossie-1904-1990/

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IN MEMORIAM
This is a page of links to posts I’ve assembled in the memory of people who have meant the world to me.
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/10/06/in-memorium/

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SONGS BY EMILY
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/songs-by-emily/

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BEARS in Illustrated Song
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2017/04/17/bears-in-illustrated-song/

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My Pinterest collection of Dancing Bears images:
https://www.pinterest.com/singbooksemily/bears-dancing/

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