White Coral Bells upon a slender stalk
Lilly of the Valley deck my garden walk
Oh don't you wish that you could hear them ring?
That can only happen when the fairies sing
This was one of my favourite songs as a Brownie. Something about the beautiful, slightly haunting melody just sort of transported me to a magical garden land full of little fairies and pixies and other assorted magical creatures.
The song originated in a Girl Guide Publication called Sing a Song for Sixes in 1975.
White Coral Bells is generally sung during Round 4, or “Marshmallow time” of a campfire. It’s a great song for when everyone wants to keep singing, but not to be silly and energetic. It’s a fantastic song for singing in rounds.
This week, however, I am going to be teaching it to my Sparks during opening circle!
[…] I had been planning for a while now to finally teach them one of my favourite Guiding Songs, White Coral Bells. So that’s on the agenda already. Obviously feel free to pick a fun winter […]
If you will read other sources, you will find that White Coral Bells appeared in print in 1916, without attribution, and is believed to be an English folk round, like London Bridge. The 1975 book, like many others of its sort, is merely a collection of well-known songs.
My older sister taught me the song when I was about 4 years old via small pictures she drew to give me prompts. I had not learned to read yet. I place the year at 1950 or 1951.
This song did not originate in 1975.
Though I don’t know the entire history of its origin ( though my guess is Celtic 19th century);
I learned this song as a Brienie in 1958 and sang it on rounds while we flew up
To Girl Scouts in fourth grade.
I stand corrected!
I learned it two different ways. One was with the line, “that will happen only when the angels sing.” The other way was when the faries sing.