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'May I Bring a Friend?' Editor's note: A little boy takes a menagerie of friends on his visits to the king and queen.


The King and Queen

Invited me

To come to their house

On Sunday for tea.

I told the Queen

And the Queen told the King

I had a friend

I wanted to bring.

The King told the Queen,

"My dear, my dear,

Any friend of our friend

Is welcome here."

So I brought my friend ...

The King said, "Hello."

He said, "How do you do?"

The Queen said, "Well!

Fancy meeting you!"

My friend sat down

Right next to me.

Then everyone had

A cup of tea.

The King and Queen

Sent me a card.

"Come for lunch on Tuesday.

Please try hard

to come."

So I sent a card:

"Dear Queen and King,

I have a friend

I want to bring."

The King and Queen

Sent me a letter.

They said, "The more friends

You bring the better."

So I brought more friends ...

The King said, "Hello."

The Queen gave me a kiss,

And said, "What monkey

Business is this?"

They hung from the roof.

They sat on the floor.

The ate and they ate

Till there wasn't any more

to eat.

"Please," said the King.

And "Please," said the Queen,

"Come on Thursday

For Halloween."

"And we want you to know,"

Said the Queen and King,

"You can bring any friends

You would like to bring."

So I came and I brought my friends ...

"Hello!" said the King and Queen.

"Now who can this be?"

Then the lions ROARED,

And they knew I was me.

The King and Queen

Invited me

To come on Saturday

For tea.

"No, no! My friends want you,


To come and visit them," I said.

So that is why ...

The King and Queen

And I and all

My friends were seen

On Saturday at half-past two

Having tea at the City Zoo.

Excerpted from the book MAY I BRING A FRIEND?, text by Beatrice Schenk de Regniers and illustrations by Beni Montresor. Text copyright 1964, renewed 1992 by Beatrice Schenk de Regniers; illustrations copyright 1964, renewed 1992, by Beni Montresor. Reprinted by permission of Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, Inc., Children's Publishing Division. All rights reserved.

Pub Date: 12/27/98

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