The Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly

The old lady who swallowed a fly is a classic folk tale. In it, the old lady swallows a fly and tries to retrieve it by swallowing a spider. As the years go by, she tries to eat other animals, and ultimately ingests a horse. Eventually, she dies from the effort. The story is told in numerous forms, including poetry, children’s books, and even puzzles.

Simms Tabak’s version of the old lady who swallowed a fly

A Caldecott Honor Book, “There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly” retells the classic story of an elderly lady who eats insects and spiders, with a twist. The witty illustrations are complemented by a Caldecott-winning song by Cyndi Lauper. The DVD also contains seven sing-along songs and animated versions of illustrated books.

Meredith Tax’s poem “There Was a Young Woman Who Swallowed a Lie”

In Meredith Tax’s feminist poem, “There Was a Young Woman Who Stopped Telling the Truth”, she uses poetic form to convey her message of female empowerment. The poem, “There Was a Young Woman Who Swallowed a Lie,” ends with the young woman coughing up the lies she has swallowed. The poem was first performed at a Sanders Theater concert in Boston by Pete Seeger in 1980.

Meredith Tax’s puzzle based on the old lady who swallowed a fly

Meredith Tax wrote a feminist poem based on the story of the old lady who swallowed a flying insect, “There was a young woman who swallowed a lie.” The poem tells the story of a woman coughing up lies, and the ending is a metaphor for the struggle of suffragists and union organizers. Pete Seeger performed the poem at a concert in Boston in 1980.

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