Relentless Rooster Rondeau
Rondeau: a monophonic song with two-part refrain. Our ‘boys’ have it down pat! Just as one finishes his part, the other fluffs out his neck feathers and begins with perfect timing. How did they figure that out, anyhow?
I remember clearly teaching my first graders how to sing rounds. They got it in no time, too. “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” was usually one of the first ones, followed by “White Coral Bells” and “Sarasponda.” I think it was when I was teaching second and third graders that we graduated to “One Bottle of Pop” and “Chairs to Mend.”
Fortunately for the kids, there was a real-for-sure music teacher in most of the schools where I taught, so they weren’t dependent upon my frequently-off-key leadership in that realm of their education. But what I lacked in skill, I made up for in enthusiasm, and we joyfully sang away many of those hum-drum minutes that were always around the edges of the day –waiting in line to go into the lunchroom, waiting for the bus that had broken down, re-focusing after an especially rowdy recess.
I’m not too sure what it is about our roosters that puts me in mind of those old days in the classroom. The apparent pleasure they derive by joining forces to serenade the world is part of it, no doubt. And the confidence they exude as they belt out their song. And, perhaps, their delight in singing the same tune over and over and over. I can just hear those long-ago children say, “Can we sing it again, Mrs. Stevens?”