Appalachia Appalachia Through My Eyes

Appalachia Through My Eyes – Snail Come Out Of Your Shell

My life in appalachia - Snail Snail Come Out Of Your Shell
One day last week I was canning tomatoes. Somehow a snail hitched a ride in my bucket while I was gathering them from the garden.

I noticed the little guy as I was peeling my 2nd pot of hot tomatoes. He had climbed up to the lip of an old icecream bucket I used to discard my peelings in.

Instead of returning him to the great outdoors I thought I’d let him keep me company while I worked-silly I know.

While I continued my canning the snail began to nudge my brain. Wasn’t there a nursery rhyme about snails?

I have a great love for nursery rhymes or anything with the eloquent style of language used in days gone by. The other day I Am Bound For The Promised Land was on the radio and I told Chatter “Listen to those words don’t you wish you could go around talking like that?” I’m not sure she saw my point.

After I sent Mr. Snail back to his friends I did some looking and found the nursery rhyme that was hiding in the shadows of my mind:

Lazy old snail Come out of your shell; To slumber at night is all very well; But now the sun shines and your face I would see; Come your shutters unclose or a sluggard you will be!

Maybe when I wake the girls for school in the morning I’ll swing open their door and recite the rhyme. Couldn’t hurt could it?


Appalachia Through My Eyes – A series of photographs from my life in Southern Appalachia.




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  • Reply
    Wholesale Nursery
    November 29, 2012 at 1:00 pm

    Looks creepy for me.. 🙂 But actually i was enjoying the song in your playlist here. 🙂

  • Reply
    September 14, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    No, wouldn’t hurt a thing. But they’ll probably roll their eyes at you like my kids do at me when I wake them singing, “You Are My Sunshine”. LOL

  • Reply
    kenneth o. hoffman
    September 14, 2011 at 1:10 am

    Tipper:it seems i read somewhere that snails always travel in pairs, and since that was your 2nd batch, i wonder,was there crunchy in your maters? your friend k.o.h

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 11:37 pm

    Darling poem, and then there’s always, “Snips and snails and puppy dog tails, that’s what little boys are made of.”

  • Reply
    Vicki Lane
    September 13, 2011 at 11:18 pm

    That rhyme is a new one to me. Your pear preserves look good — our trees haven’t done much this year after several ears of bumper crops/

  • Reply
    Suzi Phillips
    September 13, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    Tipper, some days you make me downright nostalgic- I’m remembering when the kids used to bring me snail shell presents (minus their occupants, lol). They become so fragile over time, but I still have some of them. Thanks for the day brightener!

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 10:10 pm

    When we were kids, one summer we had a snail for a pet. We’d put it on the kitchen windowsill at night and search for it each morning. It was amazing how far that little guy would travel during the night and where we’d find him, and that’s probably why mom put up with it – it kept us busy for a while each summer vacation morning. Then one night he crawled in dad’s shoe and dad found him when he slipped his foot inside while scurring to get ready for work – and squashed the little guy. It was a sad thing for us, but it was an awful chore for dad trying to get the remains of the poor thing out of the toe of his shoe. He was not a happy man at all that morning, but we were sad for our pet snail was no more. 8-(
    God bless.

  • Reply
    Uncle Al
    September 13, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    On my walks with our dog, I usually end up bringing one or more “treasures” back. (much to my wife’s dismay) A feather, an acorn, an interestingly shaped stick, and most recently an empty snail shell. It’s my second one and of course I’m saving them for use in some decoration that I may create some day. Enjoyed the rhyme.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    Tipper……you and that little snail. You always awaken a fond memory from deep within my mind.
    Years ago (more than I like to think) there was this little girl that wanted to give me a Christmas Card but, she didn’t have the money. Well, she got some construction paper, elmer’s glue, and magic markers. She put all kinds of litte animals on the card and colored it.
    I don’t know where she found the poem (actually it was an Angelic Hym)but, She wrote only the first two lines but it was so appropriate and needless to say it reminded me of you Tipper.
    She wrote “all things bright and beautiful, All things great and small. God made them all.
    Then she embarassed me to death when she called me Mister.
    I have saved that card down through the years. It is is mint condition!
    And as for not returning that little snail to the yard until you let him be with you a little while…I’m thinking that was probably a heart problem. Know what I mean?

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    Nursery Rhymes are one of the happiest things I know. Snails not so much, but I do love nursery rhymes.

  • Reply
    susie swanson
    September 13, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    Loved that rhyme, don’t believe I’ve ever heard it and like you I don’t mind snails but hate slugs. I’ve often wondered where they go in the winter too. I guess they stay in their shell that’s for sure..Susie

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 4:26 pm

    I’m sure the girls would appreciate your unusual wake-up rhyme. 🙂 Love it — so cute.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    In Cyprus, snails are a great meze. Personally I don’t like them, but many people here grill them and use toothpicks to get the meat. However, I love French snails. Escargots Bourguignons is a traditional French dish consisting of snails, fresh cream and garlic.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    I don’t see as many snails as I use to, probably because I don’t
    take time for flowers since my
    girls grew up. Where do they go
    for cold weather? Never thought
    much about it but they’re always
    back come warmer weather…Ken

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    I remember when we were kids we would put salt on slugs and they would dissolve. Cruel, I know, but kids are that way sometimes. I love your poem. Could read poetry all day long.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    September 13, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    Tipper–Looks to me like you’ve got the start on a fine meal of escargot!
    I’ve actually eaten escargot a couple of times. It’s sort of like consuming raw oysters–if you can get past the texture and black off your thoughts the taste is fine.
    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    Can’t say I’ve ever heard that particular poem but I like it. I, too, used to recite poetry to my kids and now the grandkids. One of the little girls said to me once, “Did eu just make that up gwanma?” I was actually guilty of that a time or two but would never admit it of course.
    Bill B, I also like the theory of the brain like a computer and we just need a while to retrieve all the ‘stuff’ stored there.

  • Reply
    amy jo phillips
    September 13, 2011 at 11:16 am

    I guees I havent seen a snail in many years. I remember when I was little, I’d see then all the time. I guess i’m not digging in dirt and turning up rocks these days either. Good story! Amy jo

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 10:04 am

    Whew!! Glad the little fella didn’t make the hot pot! Cute poem too. I had a jumping spider one time in my kitchen who kept me company. He’d be here one day, then gone, and suddenly be here again.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 9:58 am

    That quite a companion for tomato peeling! As always- it’s a pleasure to visit with you.

  • Reply
    Barbara Johnson
    September 13, 2011 at 9:21 am

    I do the same thing..everything reminds me of a poem or a song. Sometimes it is there right away other times it takes awhile. My kids say life isn’t always about
    a song or a poem..oh but it is if you just listen!

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 9:08 am

    I had not heard that one before. Let us know who waking the girls up with that works. Have a great day, Tipper!

  • Reply
    Debby Brown
    September 13, 2011 at 8:54 am

    You know.. that’s what I keep telling myself.. I’m not getting old, I just have too much to remember! At some point it has to reach overload and then it starts leaking out! That is MY story and I too, am sticking with it!

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 8:50 am

    you’ll probably get a pillow flung at you…that’s what i would do, anyway.

  • Reply
    Bill Burnett
    September 13, 2011 at 8:36 am

    I read a Doctorul Thesis a Phd. Candidate at MIT had written. His theory was that the human brain functions much like a computer and by the time we reach forty five we have memory stored on all the available memory storage. The brain like todays computers then must overlay any mew memories like the computer overlays programs. This slows the retriveal of information on the computer and memory from the brain. Oe thing which lends credibility to his theory in my experience is the number of times I have tried to remember something and was unable to do so but later when I had moved on suddenly the memory I had tried to pull up suddenly pops up seemingly out of nowhere. I like the theory since it means that maybe we’re not getting senile we’re just victims of data overload. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    September 13, 2011 at 8:29 am

    It couldn’t hurt but then again I doubt if it will help!! LOL Particularly with your sleepyhead Chitter.

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    September 13, 2011 at 8:09 am

    I love snails!…
    Slugs not so much!…Ewwww, I stepped on one when going out barefoot one evening on the porch…Nasty, icky, sticky, slimey mess on my toes! Yuk!..ha Because of the dry conditions, (one good thing), we haven’t seen as many slugs around this year. They loved to slide around among the flower pots sitting on the concrete porch!
    Snails are really interesting creatures..
    So, I understand your watching him while you finished peeling your tomatoes…and I’ll just bet’cha that the work went by quicker…
    I can’t say that I ever heard your rhyme but seems like one that would be more dear to the damp cool mountains of NC…
    Thanks Tipper, for an interesting the way..I used to make little snails along with the fairy houses out of clay! ha

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 8:02 am

    he is so cute, I like to see them half out like this, cute little faces. that is a new rhyme to me.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2011 at 7:29 am

    I’ve always enjoyed watching these little creatures. They’re never in a hurry and they always seem to know where they’re going!

  • Reply
    Tim Mclemore
    September 13, 2011 at 6:18 am

    Funny how things like that will joggle your brain, like you know somethings back there, rolling around and finally it falls out. I tell everyone now that I’m not a “Slow learner, just a fast forgetter”.

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