cat's in the cradle

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Daphne27, Dec 7, 2006.

  1. Daphne27

    Daphne27 Senior Member

    Tuscany
    Italian Italy
    Can someone explain me the meaning of this song's sentence:

    ..."And the cat's in the cradle and the silver spoon"...

    by Harry Chapin

    Thanks!
     
  2. pyan

    pyan Senior Member

    Vendée, France
    English, UK, London
    I think you would have had lots of replies by now if you had quoted more of this song.

    The cat's cradle is a child's game where you make patterns with string. It seems magical to young children. The next line (your don't quote it) contains "little boy blue" and "The man in the moon," which are both nursery rhymes. "The man in the moon finishes with 'the dish ran away with the spoon". I can't work out the "silver spoon" bit but it is probably a nursery rhyme, song or story I don't know.

    The whole song is about a father missing out on his son's childhood, but not realising it until his son grows to be just like his father, working too hard to be involved at more than a superficial level with his family. I think these are just phrases to evoke feelings of what it is like to be a small child.
     
  3. Annie734

    Annie734 New Member

    Michigan
    English, USA
    I don't think anyone could tell you definitively what exactly Harry Chapin meant, but I would guess that it has something to do with the children's game played with a loop of string, Cat's Cradle. Look it up on wikipedia. That lyric is part of a list of other kid stuff (Little Boy Blue, man in the moon). All of those are innocent, happy childhood things.
     
  4. Annie734

    Annie734 New Member

    Michigan
    English, USA
    The only phrase I can think of that has "silver spoon" it it is "born with a silver spoon in your mouth" which means you were born into a rich family (and instead of having to settle for practical utensils, you got a luxurious silver spoon).
     
  5. languageGuy Senior Member

    Kansas City, MO
    USA and English
    The silver spoon is a present for a new born (or new mother). It's a small silver (or silver plated) spoon for feeding the baby.
     

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