WHEN the little boy ran in to see Uncle Remus the night after he
had told him of the awful fate of Brer Wolf, the only response to
his greeting was:
No explanation could convey an adequate idea of the intonation
and pronunciation Which Uncle Remus brought to bear upon this
wonderful word. Those who can recall to mind the peculiar
gurgling, jerking, liquid sound made by pouring water from a large
jug, or the sound produced by throwing several stones in rapid
succession into a pond of deep water, may be able to form a very
faint idea of the sound, but it can not be reproduced in print. The
littleeboy was astonished.
What did you Say, Uncle Remus?
I-doom-er-ker-kum-mer-ker! I-doom-er-ker-kum mer-ker!
What is that?
Dats Tarrypin talk, dat is. Bless yo soul, honey, continued the
old man, brightening up, wen you git ole ez mewen you see wat
I sees, en year wat I yearsde creeturs dat you cant talk wid ll be
mighty skasedey will dat. Wy, ders er old gray rat wat uses bout
yer, en time atter time he comes out wen you all done gone ter
bed en sets up dar in de comder en dozes, en me en him talks by de
our; en wat dat old rat dunno aint down in de spellin book. Des
now, wen you run in and broke me up, I wuz fetchin into my mine
wat Brer Tarrypin say ter Brer Fox wen he turn im loose in de
What did he say, Uncle Remus?
Dat wat he said-I-doom-er-ker-kum-mer-ker! Brer Tarrypin wuz
at de bottom er de pon, en he talk back, he did, in bubblesI-doom-er-ker-kum-mer-ker! Brer Fox, he aint sayin nuthin, but
Brer Bull-Frog, settin on de bank, he hear Brer Tarrypin, he did,
en he holler back:
Den ner Frog holler out:
Den ole Brer Bull-Frog, he holler back:
Den de bubbles come up fum Brer Tarrypin:
Den ner Frog sing out:
Wade in! Wade in!
Den ole Brer Bull-Frog talk thoo his hoseness:
Sho nuff, Brer Fox look over de bank, he did, en dar wuz ner Fox
lookin at im outer de water. Den he retch out fer ter shake hans,
en in he went, heels over head, en Brer Tarrypin bubble out:
Was the Fox drowned, Uncle Remus? asked the little boy.
He werent zackly drowndid, honey, replied the old man, With an
air of cautious reserve. He did manage fer ter scramble out, but a
little mo en de Mud Turkle would er got im, en den hed er bin
made hash un worril widout een.