My mother thought A.A. Milne’s Old Sailor in Now We Are Six was dreadful. I think she was trying to teach us something, but I never really learned.

The poem tells of a sailor shipwrecked on a desert island who just couldn’t make up his mind about what he should do first to ensure his survival; it ends:

And so in the end he did nothing at all,

But basked on the shingle wrapped up in a shawl.

And I think it was dreadful the way he behaved –

He did nothing but basking until he was saved!

Story of my life!

Happy basking, everyone!



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