“The Barefoot Boy with Boots On”

Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1928 (recording, Harry "Mac" McClintock)
Keywords: paradox nonsense humorous family
Found in: US(MA,So)


Tales of the odd life of the barefoot boy with boots on. Most of the song's lyrics are either paradoxical ("The night was dark and stormy and the moon kept shining bright") or tautological ("his pants were full of pockets and his boots were full of feet")

Supplemental text

Barefoot Boy with Boots On, The
  Partial text(s)

          *** A ***

The Barefoot Boy

From Norman Cazden, Herbert Haufrecht, Norman Studer, Folk Songs
of the Catskills, #154, p. 578. From the singing of Ernie Sager.

Oh, the night was dark and stormy, and the moon kept shining bright,
And the stars cast burning rays down on the storm that raged that night;
The lightning struck the cow-shed, and the cows all chewed their cuds,
And the moonlight set the prairie afire in the middle of the woods.

Oh, the barefoot boy with boots on came a-crawling down the street;
His pants were filled with pockets, and his boots were filled with feet.
He was born when he was a baby, his grandma's pride and joy;
His only sister was a girl, and his brother was a boy.

(four and a half additional stanzas)

Cross references



  1. Randolph 447, "Popular Gag Song" (2 texts, but only the "B" text goes with this song)
  2. FSCatskills 154, "The Barefoot Boy" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. ST FSC154 (Partial)
  4. Roud #6676
  5. BI, FSC154