Wee Willie Winkie runs through the town,
Upstairs and downstairs, in his nightgown,
Tapping at the window, crying at the lock,
"Are the babes in their beds?
For now it's ten o'clock!"
Hey, Willie Winkie, are you coming in?
The cat is singing purring sounds to the sleepy hen,
The dog's spread out upon the floor, and doesn't give a cheep,
But here's a wakeful little boy, who will not fall asleep.
Anything but sleep, you rogue, glowering like the moon,
Rattling in an iron jug with an iron spoon,
Rumbling tumbling round about, crowing like a cock.
Shrieking like I don't know what, waking sleeping folk.
Hey, Willie Winkie, the child's in the creel,
Wriggling from everyone's knee, like an eel,
Tugging at the cat's ear, and confusing all her thrums,
Hey, Willie Winkie, see there he comes!
Weary is the mother who has a dusty child,
A small short little child, who can't run on his own,
Who always has a battle with sleep before he'll close an eye,
But a kiss from his rosy lips gives strength anew to me.